Environment: Playgrounds for a Price

Californians turn chunks of wilderness into private parks

The Klamath River winds down over the Oregon border into the deep green wilderness of Siskiyou County in northern California, bringing with it the finest steelhead and salmon fishing in the West. Rugged hills jut up from its banks, shadowed by towering trees. In the valleys beyond lie sparkling blue streams and half a dozen clear lakes. Not a single country house mars the virgin beauty of this vast territory. Yet it is the personal playground of some 2,500 nature lovers.

These happy few share in an unusual private fiefdom...

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