The heat of spring's first summery weekend found me sheltered in a shady grove of big maples and cottonwoods several miles up a remote creek in the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument. I watched the shadows and light play in the leaves as the sun crossed the sky, and when I got too hot, a dip in the icy clear water of the creek left me refreshed, cool and enlivened. At night owls called and songbirds made a ruckus in the morning. Hiking through the earthbound rainbow of fritillaries, chocolate lilies, and other wildflowers, I felt deep gratitude to be in this rich, wild place.

The heat of spring's first summery weekend found me sheltered in a shady grove of big maples and cottonwoods several miles up a remote creek in the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument. I watched the shadows and light play in the leaves as the sun crossed the sky, and when I got too hot, a dip in the icy clear water of the creek left me refreshed, cool and enlivened. At night owls called and songbirds made a ruckus in the morning. Hiking through the earthbound rainbow of fritillaries, chocolate lilies, and other wildflowers, I felt deep gratitude to be in this rich, wild place.

The Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument encompasses nearly 53,000 acres of rugged land in Southern Oregon where the Cascade, Klamath, Great Basin and Siskiyou eco-regions come together. It's home to a unique diversity of plants, birds, butterflies, and mollusks, including several that are rare or endangered. Designating a portion of the monument as wilderness would give this special place the best protection possible and guarantee the opportunity for future generations to experience this unique area in its fullness. I strongly support this and thank the Soda Mountain Wilderness Council for their tireless efforts to protect this place. — Sarah Lowry, Ashland

Since the Manor is an attractive landmark in Medford, it would seem that they would want to keep up the outer perimeter of the beautiful golf course along Juanipero Way.

As you drive along Juanipero to North Phoenix Road, you cannot see there is a golf course. The noxious weeds and grasses are an eyesore for the Larson Creek subdivision residents. If it were in the city, it would be considered a fire hazard, which it is, and would be required to be cut. It is also causing a lot of allergies. — H. Dorig, Medford

I noticed that in May the 4-H Spring Fair, which took place along with the rodeo, was not given much recognition in the paper. The rodeo received a whole page!

During the Spring Fair kids like me arrived at the fairgrounds by 6:30 a.m. to begin showing their animals, and did not leave to go home until approximately 10 p.m. It was a long but exciting weekend for many 4-Hers.

Kids work hard all spring to get to fair and I believe they deserve a spot somewhere. 4-H is an excellent organization that gives kids the opportunity to work toward a goal, grow, travel and make new friends.

I hope in the future you will consider covering our Spring Fair achievements. — Stephanie Haupt, Medford

Why? Why? Why? It was so disgusting to read that humans use hunting animals as entertainment!

I was repelled by the Mail Tribune's front page story of a "wounded bear that got up slowly and staggered down the hill" with hunters after him. I honestly couldn't and didn't finish the disgusting story.

I like to believe we humans are evolving to a more compassionate level (after thousands of years of religions). Then I read a disturbing story of a simple animal, bothering no one, being wounded, then chased and killed.

Why? Entertainment? Or maybe, a "macho ego." — Marie Griffith, Phoenix