Craig Childs offered his thoughts on the matter. Here’s a link to his essay in High Country News. And here’s an excerpt:
In the West, we’ve got plenty of space. But are we supposed to be using it? We’re hearing different messages. There’s been a pushback against recreating on public lands, mostly from gateway communities receiving visitors they don’t want, even as people are being encouraged to enjoy parks and open spaces where they can keep a safe distance from others. Most national parks remain open, and entry fees have been waived.
So which is it? Stay indoors, or go outside? If you go out for a walk, you might hear someone shouting at you from a window, “What don’t you understand about just stay home?”
…I believe in the right to be outside, but at this moment it shouldn’t be exercised through visitor centers and bottlenecks. Forget the parks; seek out the spaces in between, the backyards and alleys. It’s a great time to explore an irrigation ditch or the woods at the edge of town — to see what’s around you. Be as local as you can.My driver license says my home is Douglas, Arizona. My heart says my home is the West. I've been staying in Arizona the past couple of weeks to blend in, to pass as a local, to avoid possible flack in neighboring states. Right now the closest person is about a mile away. Social distancing is the default setting out here. Ain’t no viruses being exchanged from me or to me. I’m doing my part, just not in the way the house-bound majority imagines it.