Magazine article Sunset

Music of the Wild: Archivists Jeff Rice and Kenning Arlitsch Are Recording the Disappearing Sounds of the West. They Share Picks for Listening to Nature, Including Its Most Endangered Sound-Silence

Magazine article Sunset

Music of the Wild: Archivists Jeff Rice and Kenning Arlitsch Are Recording the Disappearing Sounds of the West. They Share Picks for Listening to Nature, Including Its Most Endangered Sound-Silence

Article excerpt

Hear wildlife

OWYHEE MOUNTAINS, ID, NV & OR This wild landscape is one of the great remaining sagebrush ecosystems: a haven for hawks, sage grouse, and pronghorn deer, whose call "sounds like a ricochet," says Rice. Enter via the Owyhee Uplands Backcountry Byway, blm.gov

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ANO NUEVO STATE PARK, CA "Elephant seals gather here and bellow and snort, creating one of the great soundscapes of the West," Rice says. parks.ca.gov

SONORAN DESERT NATIONAL MONUMENT, AZ During the summer rains, this area comes alive with frogs, toads, and coyotes.blm.gov

Listen to water

SALMON RIVER, ID Whether you float the main Salmon or its wilder middle fork, the sound of rushing water enfolds you. "It's also a rich river for wildlife," says Arlitsch. "You can hear coyotes, osprey--wolves if you're lucky." www.fs.fed.us/r4/sc; for river outfitters, go to ioga.org

OLYMPIC NATIONAL PARK, WA This rugged coast "is great for recording waves and beach rake," says Rice ("rake" is his term for waves receding on the beach). "I plan to go back this winter after a storm and capture some of the dramatic waves at Ruby Beach." nps.gov/olym

Experience silence

GRAVEL CANYON, UT It's a bit of a walk to get here, but "there's no silence like the silence of the canyons," says Arlitsch. …

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