Liberating the Lands

Anna Valer Clark

When Anna Valer Clark first arrived at South East Arizona, a place she would call home, her first question was “What do the cows eat, rocks?” The land she stood on was exhausted and the only thing thriving in the unfortunate barren landscape was the tiny rocks scattered across the view. She had left her life as a New York City socialite to become a Permaculturalist. She wanted to stimulate or directly utilize the patterns and features observed in the natural ecosystem to revive the terrain.  She saw the potential of the land and dreamt of restoring it back to its original grandeur. Many years of poor management, over-grazing, and logging in the hills had left the earth unable to hold the rainfall causing monsoons like floods and severe erosion.

Valer believes where there is water there is life and with barely any life remaining on her land the key was to avoid further damage. She realized she could hinder the erosion and capture water in the hills by putting rock dams across the places that been affected in hopes to return this area to its former glory.

 As she suspected the areas where the dams were established prevented further devastation. The soil did not wash away and that gave the native plants an opportunity to grow roots and thrive.

With each year the natural vegetation grew and established itself with vigor. To see the lands today one could not conceive that this was once a place of dust and sun-soaked earth. Anna Valer Clark has brought back balance to her lands and the harmony is magnificent.

My life has been a continuation of applying these same principles of harvesting water, revegetation of the land, and the restoration of water to dry areas. My mission has been to take severely degraded land and restore it. If one can accomplish this under the seemingly impossible conditions, then one can do it anywhere.

Anna Valer Clark

Heroes of Conservation – Bill Anderson

cc2014027 - Conservationist and Fisherman Bill Anderson photogra

We are honored to be involved in the 2014 Field and Stream Heroes of Conservations project. For the third year running, we have had the opportunity to travel all over this great nation meeting and photographing the six conservation finalists. Since 2005, the magazine has been recognizing these outstanding individuals who work tirelessly to promote, improve, or protect wildlife and their habitats all across the country.

This year we received the call from our editors to hit the road and photograph all six of the subjects. The journey lasted weeks and took us from Pennsylvania to Tennessee, Minnesota to North Dakota, and Washington to Idaho. As with all of the years before this, we were humbled by the generosity and efforts of the finalists – we took a wild tour of the country and have plenty of stories and photos to share. Our forth story took the Crisman team right into our own backyard of Pennsylvania to spend the day fishing and photographing with conservationist Bill Anderson. We may have been shooting close to home, but that didn’t stop the adventure. Keep reading to see more…

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Heroes of Conservation – Ken Miracle

chris crisman field and stream hereos of conservation ken miracl

We are honored to be involved in the 2014 Field and Stream Heroes of Conservations project. For the third year running, we have had the opportunity to travel all over this great nation meeting and photographing the six conservation finalists. Since 2005, the magazine has been recognizing these outstanding individuals who work tirelessly to promote, improve, or protect wildlife and their habitats all across the country.

This year we received the call from our editors to hit the road and photograph all six of the subjects. The journey lasted weeks and took us from Pennsylvania to Tennessee, Minnesota to North Dakota, and Washington to Idaho. As with all of the years before this, we were humbled by the generosity and efforts of the finalists – we took a wild tour of the country and have plenty of stories and photos to share. The Third story we’re sharing is that of Ken Miracle, champion of the Chukar and Sage Grouse. We traveled to Boise Idaho earlier this summer to meet and photograph Ken, who made sure to show us locations that offered the true natural beauty of that part of our country. There’s a ton more photos to share – keep reading to see them all.

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Heroes of Conservation – Ryan Krapp

chris crisman field and stream hereos of conservation ryan krapp

We are honored to be involved in the 2014 Field and Stream Heroes of Conservations project. For the third year running, we have had the opportunity to travel all over this great nation meeting and photographing the six conservation finalists. Since 2005, the magazine has been recognizing these outstanding individuals who work tirelessly to promote, improve, or protect wildlife and their habitats all across the country.

This year we received the call from our editors to hit the road and photograph all six of the subjects. The journey lasted weeks and took us from Pennsylvania to Tennessee, Minnesota to North Dakota, and Washington to Idaho. As with all of the years before this, we were humbled by the generosity and efforts of the finalists – we took a wild tour of the country and have plenty of stories and photos to share. Our second shoot took the Crisman team to the Badlands of North Dakota to meet and photograph Ryan Krapp, a tireless advocate for preserving and maintaining mule deer habitats amid the recent energy industry development in the area. Ryan is doing some amazing work in an incredibly beautiful part of this country – keep reading to see more photos and stories from the shoot…

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Heroes of Conservation – John Muramatsu

chris crisman field and stream hereos of conservation john muram

We are honored to be involved in the 2014 Field and Stream Heroes of Conservations project. For the third year running, we have had the opportunity to travel all over this great nation meeting and photographing the six conservation finalists. Since 2005, the magazine has been recognizing these outstanding individuals who work tirelessly to promote, improve, or protect wildlife and their habitats all across the country.

This year we received the call from our editors to hit the road and photograph all six of the subjects. The journey lasted weeks and took us from Pennsylvania to Tennessee, Minnesota to North Dakota, and Washington to Idaho. As with all of the years before this, we were humbled by the generosity and efforts of the finalists – we took a wild tour of the country and have plenty of stories and photos to share. Our first shoot took us to the Pacific Northwest to meet and photograph Dr. John Muramatsu, a conservationist who has spent decades restoring and rehabilitating salmon habitats in the Seattle area. Keep reading for more stories and photos…

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Heroes of Conservation – Gene Wright

chris crisman field and stream heroes of conservation gene wrigh

Earlier this year we received a call from our editors at Field and Stream magazine to photograph their Heroes of Conservation finalists for 2013. Since 2005, the magazine has been profiling and recognizing a handful of dedicated sportsmen and women who work to protect, improve, or create wildlife habitat and embody the spirit of conservation.

We’ve had the honor of meeting and photographing some of these heroes in the past, (you may remember we blogged about the shoots last fall) and this year was particularly significant because we were given the task to photograph all six of the Heroes. Taking us from Wisconsin to Maryland, Arizona, Idaho, Wyoming, and Oklahoma in the span of two weeks, this assignment was a whirlwind tour of the country. We wrapped up these shoots having met and made great photos of six inspiring conservationists. We’re excited to share the stories and the behind the scenes for each shoot – our final shoot taking us to the great state of Idaho to meet and photograph longtime conservationist Gene Wright. Keep reading for a few more photos from our final shoot for the 2013 Heroes of Conservation…

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Heroes of Conservation – David Sweet

cc2013022 - David Sweet, for Field & Stream Heroes of Conservati

Earlier this year we received a call from our editors at Field and Stream magazine to photograph their Heroes of Conservation finalists for 2013. Since 2005, the magazine has been profiling and recognizing a handful of dedicated sportsmen and women who work to protect, improve, or create wildlife habitat and embody the spirit of conservation.

We’ve had the honor of meeting and photographing some of these heroes in the past, (you may remember we blogged about the shoots last fall) and this year was particularly significant because we were given the task to photograph all six of the Heroes. Taking us from Wisconsin to Maryland, Arizona, Idaho, Wyoming, and Oklahoma in the span of two weeks, this assignment was a whirlwind tour of the country. We wrapped up these shoots having met and made great photos of six inspiring conservationists. We’re excited to share the stories and the behind the scenes for each shoot – our fifth adventure taking us all the way to Yellowstone National Park to spend the day photographing David Sweet, a retired ranch owner who is leading the way to protect the cutthroat trout. Keep reading for more photos and behind the scenes from the day…

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