FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: October 12, 2022
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Nevada Monument Coalition Congratulates Colorado on Camp Hale, Tenmile Range Designation, Asks Biden to Prioritize Avi Kwa Ame Next
NV – Today, President Joe Biden took executive action through the Antiquities Act to issue a designation of Camp Hale and the Tenmile Range as the Camp Hale – Continental Divide National Monument in the state of Colorado. The Honor Avi Kwa Ame coalition released the following statement in response:
Camp Hale is an historic training camp used by the 10th Mountain Division during WWII to combat the rise of Nazis and fascism in Europe, helping to end the war. Upon return from the war, veterans founded several ski areas in Colorado, including Vail Ski Mountain, and 64 other ski resorts nationwide. This helped found the outdoor recreation economy in Colorado and in the West, bringing millions of dollars in economic activity and millions of jobs. The communities in Eagle and Summit County, veterans and veterans organizations, local and outdoor industry businesses, and conservation and recreation groups supported the designation of a national monument to permanently protect Camp Hale and Continental Divide.
In Nevada, tribes, local municipalities, conservation groups, and outdoor recreation enthusiasts in Nevada are calling for similar action by the Administration to protect Avi Kwa Ame (the Mojave name for Spirit Mountain and the surrounding area). Avi Kwa Ame is territory that is sacred to Yuman-speaking Native American tribes, including the Fort Mojave Indian Tribe, and is an integral part of the creation story for these Indigenous communities. Avi Kwa Ame also includes part of the world’s largest Joshua Tree forests, and is a crucial habitat rich in biodiversity, featuring iconic desert species such as the desert tortoise and bighorn sheep. The local towns and cities in the surrounding area, like Laughlin, Searchlight, and Boulder City, are likely to see increased economic activity and jobs by bolstering Nevada’s already-vibrant outdoor recreation economy, which supports close to 60,000 jobs in the state of Nevada alone. As we, the Honor Avi Kwa Ame coalition, celebrate Camp Hale’s designation we also hope to see President Biden announce a plan to designate Avi Kwa Ame very soon. Congresswoman Dina Titus filed legislation in the House for the designation of Avi Kwa Ame earlier this year. We’re thrilled by today’s news in hopes that it shows new momentum on behalf of the administration to protect unique and important landmarks and outdoor spaces.
About Honor Avi Kwa Ame: A coalition of tribes, local Searchlight, Boulder City and Laughlin residents, the Nevada Legislature, conservation groups, recreation interests, and others are working to establish the Avi Kwa Ame National Monument to permanently protect these treasured lands. Avi Kwa Ame is the Mojave name for Spirit Mountain and the surrounding landscape. The mountain, located on the eastern boundary of the proposed monument, and the surrounding landscape are sacred to twelve Native American tribes.
For a full list of Avi Kwa Ame National Monument supporters, click here.
About Avi Kwa Ame (Pronunciation: Ah-VEE kwa-meh): Sacred to 12 tribes, the proposed Avi Kwa Ame National Monument is at the center of Yuman creation stories and spiritual ideology and deserves permanent protection. Located between the Lake Mead National Recreation Area and the Nevada/California border, Avi Kwa Ame, the Mojave name for Spirit Mountain, could be Nevada’s 4th national monument. Covering almost 450,000 acres in southwestern Nevada, it is rich in both history and beauty. The proposed national monument includes petroglyphs; historic mining- and pioneer-era artifacts; rare and threatened wildlife such as the Mojave Desert tortoise and desert bighorn sheep.