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National Forests Committee

The National Forests Committee engages in issues affecting National Forests in the Washington Cascades, Olympic Mountains, Columbia Highlands, and Blue Mountains. We work to preserve and protect ancient forests, roadless areas, watersheds, and forest habitat. Committee members learn about forest management and biology, analyze and comment on land management projects, draw up proposals for protection and restoration, lobby government officials, and educate the public. Our efforts are run mostly by our volunteers.

Our major projects are:

  • Cascade Checkerboard Project: We work to improve public land ownership patterns between Mt. Rainier and Stevens Pass and to restore wildlife habitat connections in this biologically important area. In 2008 we convinced the Summit at Snoqualmie to avoid developing in a critical old growth forest wildlife corridor between Summit East and Summit Central.
  • Wild Places Campaign: We work to preserve roadless areas from development and to gain permanent protection wherever possible. One of our great victories was Congress' designation of the Wild Sky Wilderness in 2008. We have also worked to reduce destructive Forest Service logging proposals, such as recent projects near Lake Keechelus and in the Teanaway Range. To benefit native salmon, wildlife, and recreation, we also work to restore forest watersheds by removing inappropriate roads and manmade obstructions to fish.
  • Trails: We care about trail-based recreation, working to reduce the use of motorized vehicles on trails in sensitive areas and to improve non-motorized trails. We convinced the Forest Service to scale back a proposed Forest Service project in the Mad River basin, west of Lake Chelan, that would have increased motorcycle use on trails near the river. Each spring and summer we sponsor trail work parties where we repair and maintain trails.

Please join us at the next committee meeting! For more information, please contact the committee chair, Mark Lawler.