March 28, 2008
Senator Elizabeth Dole
555 Dirksen Senate Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20510-3301
Dear Senator Dole,
We, the Carolina Mountain Club of Asheville, North Carolina, request your support for the acquisition of the Rocky Fork, Tennessee property which is located near the Appalachian Trail near western North Carolina. The Appalachian Trail Conservancy and numerous other conservation groups such as Southern Appalachian Highlands Conservancy and The Conservation Fund have succeeded in negotiating and signing a Purchase and Sales Agreement with the owners of the property.
This property is the largest unprotected tract left in the southern Appalachian Mountains and is home to several threatened and endangered species and provides prime habitat for many game species such as the black bear, wild turkey, native brook trout and contains more than one mile of the Appalachian Trail, which represents 17 percent of the remaining Appalachian Trail mileage in need of protection.
In addition, the Appalachian Trail Conservancy has requested a fiscal year 2009 Land and Water Conservation Fund appropriation of $8 million for Rocky Fork which the Carolina Mountain Club also requests your support. The Appalachian Trail Conservancy has also requested your support of a fiscal year 2009 Land and Water Conservation Fund appropriation for the Wesser Bald Appalachian Trail tract ($270,000)at the Appalachian Trail section and a fiscal year 2009 Land and Water Conservation Fund appropriation for a tract in the Roan Highlands ($1,875,000) at the Appalachian Trail section which the Carolina Mountain Club requests your support also.
Again, we ask your support in keeping these beautiful green areas part of our country’s natural heritage and resources.
Letitia Ann Desjardins
Carolina Mountain Club