In December 2016, President Obama designated Bears Ears as federally protected land. The area, which encompasses parts of New Mexico, Arizona and Colorado, covers 1.35 million acres. The presidential order was made to protect this land as a national monument, which has been the sacred ancestral tribal homelands of several tribes —the Hopi, Navajo, Ute, and Ute Mountain Ute tribes. This effort was largely due to an alliance between these tribes, known as the Bears Ears Inter-Tribal Coalition. After Obama left office, President Trump shrank Bears Ears to open opportunities for extraction in the area.
In March 2018, a the coalition came together to run 800 miles to Bears Ears - the Sacred Strides for Healing Prayer Run. Outside Magazine covered the event and produced this wonderful short film about the run and the coalition's efforts to preserve the land of their ancestors.