Thursday, March 3, 2011

Butch v. Wild? Dude, it's par for the course

Posted on Thu, Mar 3, 2011 at 12:07 PM

Idaho Gov. Butch Otter's math skills are taking a beating after he appeared to have misunderestimated the relative popularity of golf versus wilderness during testimony before Congress on Tuesday.

Otter, a former three-term Republican Congressman himself, was testifying before the House Natural Resources Committee in opposition to a plan by the Obama administration to reverse a Bush-era policy and make millions of acres of undeveloped land available once again for federal wilderness protection.

"There are more people in one day, probably, that play golf on the floating green in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, than visit the Frank Church-River of No Return (Wilderness) in a year,” Otter told the committee. “And that’s just a par 3."

Better put the Guv down for a bogey on that one.

Idaho Statesman columnist Rocky Barker crunched the numbers and found that Otter might want to take a mulligan. Barker's early returns seem to indicate the golf course, if it went at full capacity for 90 days of summer, would total 25,200 golfers compared to a minimum of 33,000 rafters and hunters (augmented by an unknown number of hikers and campers) visiting the central-Idaho wilderness.

Read Barker's full column here.

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