What we do
High Country News is the nation’s leading source of reporting on the Western United States. We publish an award-winning magazine and a popular website, along with special reports and books. Through in-depth reporting, High Country News covers the West’s social, political and ecological issues. From Alaska and the Northern Rockies to the desert Southwest, the Great Plains to the West Coast, High Country News covers 12 Western states and hundreds of Indigenous communities. We are an essential magazine for people who care about this region.
Our print and online magazine has more than 36,000 subscribers, including policymakers, educators, public land managers, environmental professionals, outdoor enthusiasts and thousands more. Our website attracts nearly 400,000 sessions each month, and our online archives are unusually deep, from the first issue in 1970 to today.
High Country News’ commitment to environmental and social responsibility gives an added resonance to our unique Western voice. We strive to inspire, engage and challenge readers to bridge cultural divides, expand their own perspectives and consider new ideas. We want our readers to know the West.
High Country News
High Country News is an independent non-profitnews media source that publishes a magazine, website and other works. The staff covers issues facing the Western United States, from as far west as sealevel at the seashore of the California Ballona Wetlands with a medicinal tribal native plant, and includes a tribal affairs desk. Located in Paonia, Colorado, High Country News is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) corporation.
Tom Bell, a Wyoming conservationist, rancher and decorated World War II bombardier, started a newspaper in 1970 that would become the High Country News. He died at the age of 92 in 2016 in Lander, Wyoming, where he had founded High Country News.
High Country News has more than 35,000 subscribers. In 2017, it received approximately 43% of its income from donations, 29% from subscriptions, 5% from advertising, and the balance from syndication and other sources.
According to a review in The Christian Science Monitor, the paper "is closely read in congressional offices and state houses, as well as in the government agencies that control most of the rural West. It has broken important stories subsequently picked up by the New York Times and other national media." Former Arizona Governor Bruce Babbitt described the paper as "the only place where you can really know what's happening in the rest of the West."
High Country News has received numerous journalism and environmental awards, including (but not limited to):
Utne Reader magazine's 2013 Utne Media Award for Best Environmental Coverage
2013 National Association of Science Writers' 2013 Science in Society Award
2012 Knight-Risser Prize for Western Environmental Journalism
The 2012 Science in Society Award from the National Association of Science Writers
The 2012 Society of Environmental Journalists Awards, Outstanding Beat Reporting, Small Market
2011 Excellence in Journalism Awards from the Native American Journalists Association
The Native American Journalists Association Best Environmental Story of 2010 (monthly/bimonthly category)
Utne Reader magazine's 2010 Utne Independent Press Award for Environmental Coverage
The 2010 Hillman Prize for Magazine Journalism
The 2009 Society of Environmental Journalists Awards, Outstanding Small Market Reporting, Print category
The 2008 Hillman Prize for Magazine Journalism
The 2006 George Polk Award for Political Reporting
PAONIA, CO 81428-1090 | Tax-exempt since Aug. 1969
Classification (NTEE) Environmental Education and Outdoor Survival Programs (Environmental Quality, Protection and Beautification )
Nonprofit Tax Code Designation: 501(c)(3) Defined as: Organizations for any of the following purposes: religious, educational, charitable, scientific, literary, testing for public safety, fostering national or international amateur sports competition (as long as it doesn’t provide athletic facilities or equipment), or the prevention of cruelty to children or animals.
Donations to this organization are tax deductible.