By Emilene Ostlind
“For many Americans, the open road best captures the essential character of the West—unfinished, open-ended, a marriage of the human psyche with the earth, sky, and highway.” —William Wyckoff, Geographer
By Kristen Pope
Researchers are changing the ways we see, think about, and manage our roadways
“People don’t really think about this impact that roads have because roads and cars are such an important part of our life in North America,” says Western Transportation Institute (WTI) senior research scientist Tony Clevenger.
By Morgan Heim
Who are these animals, their lights gone out? What journeys have fallen apart here?
—Barry Lopez, Apologia
By Birch Malotky
Montana cyclists are helping make the state’s roads safer for wildlife and people
Crowell Herrick, 63, rides his gravel bike down Montana Highway 1, wearing a high-vis vest.
By Rhiannon Jakopak
Carrying salamanders across roadways helps local populations persist
On a rainy April night when temperatures peeked just above freezing, around 30 people spread out along a well-traveled street next to a city park in Laramie, Wyoming.
By Kristen Pope
Traffic sounds disturb wildlife far beyond the asphalt
Leather-clad motorcyclists cruised around Devils Tower National Monument in August 2015
Text and images by Claire Giordano
The engineer behind a lonely desert highway
My mom tells stories of a magic road. It wound from a gleaming blue alpine lake to the desert below. It required no gas, didn’t wear out brakes, and had the most beautiful vistas.
By Aubin Douglas
Can Western cities grow without displacing their neighboring natural wonders?
My first visit to the Great Salt Lake was a graduate course field trip to the Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge.
By Tessa Wittman
How to restore sagebrush habitat on decommissioned roads
In the natural gas fields of western Wyoming, innumerable dirt roads cut through the sagebrush steppe, connecting gas wells and carrying heavy equipment.
By Nathan C. Martin
Agencies bet that hundreds of miles of temporary new roads can help a forest
The Medicine Bow National Forest is the most densely roaded forest in Wyoming. Interstate 80 borders it to the north, and winding byways bisect its major mountain ranges—the Sierra Madre and the Snowy Range.
By Meghan Kent
Researchers investigate non-motorized recreation’s ecological impacts
Following his GPS, University of Wyoming field technician Michael Gjellum descends into a canyon between the folded foothills of Pilot Hill, keeping a careful eye out for mountain lion activity.
By Manasseh Franklin
Riding Coal Basin’s closed mining roads
While quietly pedaling a narrow, paved road near Redstone, Colorado, I rounded a corner and came face-to-face with a small black bear.
Perspective From Corinna Riginos
The need to value and safeguard wildlife movements
Roads may well be humankind’s greatest source of metaphors, inspiration for a plethora of phrases about journeys and all the bumps, bends, twists, and turns along them.