This past Fourth of July, I celebrated the Independence of our Nation by rafting, with old friends and new, through the Frank Church Wilderness Area on the Middle Fork of the Salmon River. This stretch of water is one of the last free-flowing tributaries into the main Salomon. The surrounding landscape was rugged and the water was crystal clear. Despite our rambunctious and rowdy crew hooting and hollering around every bend, there was an overwhelming sense of isolation. This is why this land was protected in the first place and I hope it remains that way for generations to come.