Well, there's lots of folks, miners included that like to hug bunnies and trees. I walk a fine line, I grew up with hunters, fishermen and cowboys. I love to fish, I just don't hunt, but my husband does. We don't believe in shooting anything you have no intentions of eating, and he doesn't believe in taking a shot if he cannot ensure a quick, clean, fast kill to ensure there's no suffering on the animal's part. I do eat game meat, but if it was up to me to bring the animal down he'd still be walking. And I supported the reintroduction of the wolf into northeastern AZ, but a lot of my ranching friends did not.
Anyway, I'm kinda on the fence about developing the mines, strictly because I'm a 3rd generation miner. It has provided a decent living for my entire family, including my children. however I do know if I hadn't already seen this side of the fence, I would be flat dead-set against it for the damage it does. I've been watching a lot of it, and however it shakes out we will all lose something.
By the same token, I also figured folks would be a little put off by our buggy. But we respect the land, you don't see us tearing the bleep out of the place, and we stay on existing roadways. Most people who ride ATVs do respect the land, but there are always some out there who give the rest of us a bad name. I can tell you that Putnam Springs and the San Pedro where the wash runs into it were PACKED with people over Easter weekend. I expected the place to be really trashed, but it wasn't. They did ride hard, dust everywhere, but for the most part they picked up their trash. I was thankful for that.
Thanks to you for giving me a heads up, I'm not too worried. It is what it is. This canyon where this mine is located was probably stunning before the shovels and haul trucks came in. I know most reasonable people will not blame me for the mines or the way I choose to make a living. I kinda fell into that old scenario anyway of doing what your father did. I never moved away. As a matter of fact, right now I'm sitting maybe 2 miles from where I was born.
Nice to meet ya by the way!