U.S. Sen. Jim Risch Proposes New Wilderness Area In Idaho

Dec 9, 2016

Credit J. Scott Applewhite / AP

U.S. Sen. Jim Risch, an Idaho Republican, has introduced a bill that would protect the state's portion of the craggy, scenic Scotchman Peaks.

The Spokesman-Review reports that Risch has proposed legislation that would designate about 14,000 acres of Idaho's land as a federal wilderness area, which would limit development to preserve the land's natural character and ecological function.

The proposed wilderness area includes the 7,009-foot Scotchman Peak, which has a popular hiking trail and a summit overlooking the Clark Fork River delta. The entire Scotchman Peaks region is about 88,000 acres and includes federal land in Montana that would require separate legislation.

The nonprofit Friends of Scotchman Peaks Wilderness, Bonner County leadership and the local Chamber of Commerce support the legislation.