The Wilderness Idea: The First Great Battle for Wilderness

Just after the turn of the century, the first national controversy about wilderness raged across America: should Hetch Hetchy, a beautiful valley within Yosemite National Park, be dammed to provide badly needed water for San Francisco? The film traces the ideas of the two leaders at odds in this debate: Gifford Pinchot, the first American professional forester, and John Muir, whose ideas about the “gospel of nature” won over many converts to his preservationist cause.  With Wallace Stegner, Roderick Nash, and other stalwarts on the philosophy of landscape preservation.