Men’s Vogue

A Budding Invasion


March 2007

By James Verini

Flying dope The Shasta-Trinity National Forest in Northern California covers over two million acres, stretching roughly from the former lumber town of Redding north to near the Oregon border, and from close to the Pacific Ocean east toward Nevada. Like most of the public land in this part of the country, Shasta is beloved of campers and hunters, a seemingly endless expanse of pine, fir, and oak trees, glistening lakes, and snowy mountaintops. It is the kind of place where a visitor resolves to write a check to the Sierra Club immediately upon returning home. It is also a new front in something else seemingly endless—the drug wars. Which is why I found myself, last August, knee-deep in Shasta’s undergrowth, bushwhacking my way up a hillside with a group of Forest Service agents. Clad in dark camouflage and Kevlar vests, they carried M-16 rifles and hip-holstered pistols. See Full Story (pdf)