News and Opinion from Sisters, Oregon

Writer explores history of Three Sisters Wildreness

“There are many excellent hiking and backpacking guides to the Three Sisters Wilderness, but this is not one of them,” confesses Les Joslin in the introduction to “Three Sisters Wilderness: A History,” just published by The History Press.

“This book, instead, is a brief guide to a more profound wilderness experience. It is a guide to understanding the Three Sisters Wilderness as wilderness — to its natural and cultural history and to the philosophical, legal, and management concepts that combine to keep it a wilderness.”

In 175 pages, the author shares the history of the wilderness concept and its on-the-ground expression in Oregon’s most-visited and second-largest National Wilderness Preservation System unit located within the Deschutes and Willamette national forests. He does this in four concise chapters illustrated by 85 photographs — including 32 in full color on 16 pages nestled between pages 66 and 67 — and several maps and diagrams.

The author served 14 summers in the Three Sisters Wilderness followed by two years as team leader for recreation, heritage, and wilderness resources on the Bend-Fort Rock Ranger District of the Deschutes National Forest. He has taught wilderness-management courses for Central Oregon Community College and Oregon State University, and received the U.S. Forest Service Chief’s Wilderness Education Leadership Award for the year 2000. He has authored several books on various aspects of Forest Service history.

Three Sisters Wilderness: A History, published in paperback by The History Press, an imprint of Arcadia Publishing, is available from area retailers and may be ordered from through Arcadia’s website,


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