We were pleased to hear that Sen. Tom Udall (D-N.M.) and Sen. Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) were able to steer the Columbine-Hondo Wilderness Act through the Senate’s Committee on Energy and Natural Resources on Thursday (Nov. 13). Now the bill is headed to the full Senate. Locals have been working for years to get this proposed wilderness area near Red River a reality. Making the Columbine-Hondo Wilderness a full-fledged wilderness area would ensure that water resources New Mexico communities rely on would receive even more protection. It would be a boon to the health of the Red River and the Rio Grande. The town of Red River would benefit from the guarantee that adjacent land would be permanently left protected from development. We encourage readers to contact Heinrich and Udall to ensure that this bill gets quickly passed and does not linger in Washington’s gridlock. Contact Udall’s Washington office at 202-224-6621 or his Santa Fe office at 505-988-6511. Heinrich’s Washington number is 202- 224-5521and his Santa Fe office number is 505-988-6647. Their help is essential.