Home page photograph courtesy of Rachel Jepson Wolf
Established in Viroqua, Wisconsin, in 2010, Driftless aims to support organizations who work to protect or enhance the natural environment within the driftless region of Wisconsin through the sale of proprietary merchandise.
The word driftless describes a geographic region of central North America, located within in the upper Mississippi River valley. The pastoral landscape of the area appeals to naturalists who appreciate its diverse ecosystems and fascinating geological history.
300 million years ago, the glaciers that covered most of midwestern North America encircled what we now know as southwestern Wisconsin, and adjacent portions of Minnesota, Iowa, and Illinois. When the glaciers retreated, they left behind all the earthen matter captured within them. That matter is called drift, and where there were glaciers, the drift filled the valleys. Where the glaciers were not, there is a notable absence of drift.
The melting glaciers further carved the terrain—now identified by rolling hills, rock outcroppings, and small trout streams—as the water made its way to the world famous Mississippi River.
And now, millions of years later, we have a driftless region, where silent sports, such as birding, bicycling, hiking, and skiing, are popular recreational activities. Paddlers prefer the rivers, while pools in gentle streams attract fly-tying anglers, precisely casting for pretty trout.
The rugged terrain is also home to many idyllic, and organic, small, family farms.
Many who call the region home are respectful of the environment we share, and make an effort to live sustainably with the land.
When the original driftless sticker was first printed in 2010, I didn't anticipate that it would evolve into an environmentally charitable brand. But over time, we have found growing enthusiasm for the word. The common ground among those getting behind it seems to be an appreciation for the peaceful beauty of nature.
And therefore, since October 2017, seven years after the first sticker sold, 7% of all sales—literally thousands of dollars—have been donated to organizations working to protect and serve the driftless environment we share. Give yourselves a pat on the back, and thank you for continuing to care about our Mother Earth.
Yours slowly but steadily,
©2020 Viroqua Creative Workshop LLC