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National Park Service

U.S. Department of the Interior


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National Park Service News Release


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE –September 2, 2004    

Jim Nepstad 715/779-3398 ext.102


Assistant Interior Secretary Announces Completion of Apostles Islands National Lakeshore Wilderness Study

Announcement coincides with 40th Anniversary of the Wilderness Act

Bayfield, WI --- Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Fish and Wildlife and Parks Craig Manson visited Apostle Islands National Lakeshore today to announce the completion of the Wilderness Study for the park. The Notice of Availability for the Wilderness Study’s Record of Decision will be published in the Federal Register tomorrow, coinciding with the 40th anniversary of the Wilderness Act.


The Department of the Interior is recommending that approximately 80 percent of the land area of the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore be formally protected as part of the National Wilderness Preservation System.  It will remain part of the park and still be managed by the National Park Service. The wilderness proposal would preserve the remote, undeveloped islands in Lake Superior and the current manner in which visitors access these islands. 


 “Secretary of the Interior Gale Norton wanted me to commend the nearly 10,000 citizens who took the time to provide comment during the course of the Wilderness Study and the study team for carefully listening to the public and incorporating its concerns into the final proposal,” Manson said. “On the 40th Anniversary of the passage of Wilderness Act, the National Park Service’s proposal for the Apostle Islands reaffirms an important principle stated in the act’s eloquent preamble: that wilderness is for the use and enjoyment of the American people.” 


The final decision on wilderness designation will be made by Congress.






The National Park Service cares for special places saved by the American people so that all may experience our heritage.