UM Wilderness Institute to Present Free Lecture Series, ‘The Rivers Will Run’

January 29, 2018

MISSOULA – The Wilderness Institute at the University of Montana invites UM students and the public to the annual Wilderness Issues Lecture Series, held at 7 p.m. each Tuesday of spring semester in Gallagher Business Building Room 123. The series begins Jan. 30.

This year’s series, “The Rivers Will Run,” celebrates the 50th anniversary of the National Wild and Scenic Rivers Act, passed by Congress in 1968 to protect free-flowing, undammed portions of rivers across the U.S. 

“2018 gives us the opportunity to celebrate the wilderness of waterways – the wild and scenic rivers,” Wilderness Institute Director Natalie Dawson said. “This is especially exciting for Montanans, as we were home to some of the first rivers designated under this act. It was also the result of hard work of Montanans like Lance and John Craighead, who spearheaded this important legislation.”

The lectures will feature perspectives from scholars, writers, photographers, activists, recreationists, policy experts and managers. Each will discuss the implications of the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act in the U.S. and abroad.

Lectures will be held on the following dates:

  • Jan. 30 – Charles Ray, activist and writer: “The Salmon River: Idaho’s River of No Return.”
  • Feb. 13 – Tim Palmer, author and photographer of 26 books about American rivers: “Wild and Scenic Rivers: An American Legacy.”
  • Feb. 20 – Alan Watson, research scientist at Aldo Leopold Wilderness Research Center: “Developing a Wild and Scenic Rivers Science Agenda in the US and Abroad.”
  • Feb. 27 – Mike Fiebig, American Rivers Northern Rockies associate director: “5000 Miles of Wild and the One River Adventure.”
  • March 6 – Scott Bosse, American Rivers Northern Rockies director “The Past, Present and Future of Legislation for Wild Rivers.”
  • March 13 – Jimmy Gaudry, Forest Service program manager, and Colter Pence, Forest Service program manager: “Rapids and Eddies of Wild and Scenic River Management: An Agency Perspective.”
  • March 20 – Denielle Perry, assistant professor at Northern Arizona University: “The Political Ecology of Wild and Scenic: Lessons for Advancing Resilient River Ecosystems.” 
  • April 3 – American Rivers will present one of their film selections for the 2018 Wild and Scenic Film Festival, along with a conversation with producers of the film.

For more information, call The Wilderness Institute at 406-243-5361, visit or email


Contact: Natalie Dawson, director, UM Wilderness Institute, 406-552-5550,