A rugged, whitewater river flowing northward through deep canyons, the New River is among the oldest rivers on the continent. New River Gorge National River in West Virginia encompasses over 70,000 acres of land along the New River, is rich in cultural and natural history, and offers an abundance of scenic and recreational opportunities.
OF THE SENATE ENERGY AND NATURAL RESOURCES COMMITTEE,
CONCERNING S. 3744,
TO ESTABLISH PINNACLES NATIONAL PARK
IN THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA
AS A UNIT OF THE NATIONAL PARK SYSTEM,
AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES.
SEPTEMBER 29, 2010
Mr. Chairman, thank you for the opportunity to appear before your committee to present the views of the Department of the Interior on S. 3744, a bill to establish Pinnacles National Park in the State of California as a unit of the National Park System, and for other purposes.
The Department supports S. 3744, which would designate and rename additional wilderness areas within Pinnacles National Park with technical amendments.
The bill would add 2,905 acres to the designated wilderness at the monument and rename the Pinnacles Wilderness as "Hain Wilderness." Congress has recognized wilderness characteristics at Pinnacles by previously designating more than one-half of the monument's 24,000 acres as wilderness.The additional acreage is appropriate for wilderness designation.
Naming the wilderness as "Hain Wilderness" would commemorate the establishment of Pinnacles National Monument by immigrant homesteaders from Michigan who first arrived at the Pinnacles in 1886.The Hain families were farmers and community pioneers who established the first post office and county road.In 1893, Schuyler Hain conceived the idea of designating the Pinnacles a public park or even a national park.Mr. Hain successfully championed the establishment of the Pinnacles Forest Reserve in 1906 and Pinnacles National Monument in 1908.The National Park Service considers it a high honor to be permanently commemorated in a unit of the national park system and seeks to reserve this honor for cases where there is a compelling justification for such recognition.We believe that there is a compelling justification in this case.
If the committee decides to act on S. 3744, we suggest the following technical amendments:
On page 4, line 16, strike "are" and insert "shall consist of those areas".
On page 6, lines 6 and 7, delete the map reference and substitute a new map reference to a map produced by the National Park Service (to be provided).
Mr. Chairman, this concludes my statement.I would be pleased to respond to any questions that you may have.