Daily Drakemason_tract

CRAWFORD COUNTY, MICHIGAN—Nine years ago river advocate Rusty Gates assembled a team of angler conservationists and volunteer lawyers to scrutinize Savoy Energy’s plans to drill under the South Branch of the Au Sable River. Although Gates has since passed, he’s likely awash in posthumous Crown Royal swigs now that Anglers of the Au Sable won the long-fought battle to stymie oil and gas interests in the Mason Tract Wilderness Area.

More from Anglers of the Au Sable:

“Our journey through the legal process started back in June of  2003, when environmental icon Rusty Gates, organized a group of volunteer lawyers to review the plans of Savoy. At that initial meeting we knew we had to take steps to stop the incremental encroachment of development into this beautiful river corridor. Nine and a half years later this battle has come to an end. This victory is a tribute to our organization’s staying power and commitment to protecting our forests and rivers for future generations. This battle has been won, but rest assured the Anglers will remain vigilant. We will continue to monitor actions which may negatively impact our beloved watershed. On behalf of the Anglers, I wish to thank all the volunteers who freely gave of their time to work on this matter. Our members’ passion to protect and preserve is what makes the Anglers such a powerful voice in defending the environs of the Au Sable River.”

—Bruce Pregler, President of the Anglers of the Au Sable.

Savoy Energy L.P., of Traverse City, has officially terminated its Application for Permit to Drill, which was under EIS review by the Bureau of Land Management and the Forest Service.

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Tom Bie is the founder, editor, and publisher of The Drake. He started the magazine in 1998 as an annual newsprint publication based in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. He then moved it to Steamboat, Colorado (1999), Boulder, Colorado (2001), and San Clemente, California (2004), as he took jobs as managing editor at Paddler, Senior Editor at Skiing, and Editor-in-Chief at Powder, respectively. Tom and The Drake are now both based in Denver, Colorado, where The Drake is finally all grows up(Swingers, 1996) to a quarterly magazine.

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