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Reflections of the Year 2006 - Conservation Northwest

winter 2007 Issue 68

Q u a r t e r l y

Reflections

on the year 2006

Wolverine wisdom

Keeping the Northwest wild Fall 2006


Inside Conservation Northwest

5

Connecting old

growth & community

Conservation Northwest protects

and connects old-growth forests and

other wild areas from the Washington

Coast to the BC Rockies: vital to a

healthy future for us, our children,

and wildlife.

6

Protecting wildlife

& habitat

8

Focus on special

areas north

10 9

And special

areas south

Inside/Outside:

News, views, and

thank yous...

center insert

Cover photo © Stefano Crosio

About the photo:

“This wolverine (Gulo gulo) portrait

is one of my favorites because I think

it shows the character of this fierce

animal. Wolverines tend to be solitary

and roam extensively in search of food

(an adult’s home range can stretch up to

240 sq mi). Large expanses of wilderness

are necessary to support a healthy

population. Encounters with wolverines

in the wild are rare and chances to get

a decent photograph in good light are

even slimmer. I photographed this

beautiful, very pugnacious captive animal

in a controlled situation on a snowy

winter morning. This opportunity made

me value even more organizations like

Conservation Northwest, who strive

to preserve and connect wild areas to

provide wildlife a self-sustaining habitat.”

Please visit more of Stefano’s work at

ww.photoxplore.com

Our website is www.conservationnw.org

We also publish an email action alert (to subscribe, send a blank email to wildnw-subscribe@onenw.org)

and a monthly illustrated online newsletter (subscribe by emailing esubscribe@conservationnw.org).

Published as a benefit to members, Conservation Northwest Quarterly is printed with vegetable inks on

Living Tree Paper Company’s Vanguard Recycled Plus: 10% hemp/flax, 90% post-consumer, process

chlorine-free paper. Visit www.conservationnw.org for a complimentary copy.

Conservation Northwest is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. All donations are tax deductible to the extent permitted by law.

Erin Moore, editor (erin@conservationnw.org) Jake Pederson (communications intern), assistant editor

Published December 2006

Staff

Paul Bannick

Development director

Jodi Broughton

Business and

membership director

Barbara Christensen

Membership

associate

Derek Churchill

Forester

Tim Coleman

Wilderness campaign

director

Seth Cool

Conservation

associate

Hudson Dodd

Outreach director

Mitch Friedman

Executive director

Crystal Gartner

Development

associate

David Heflick

Conservation

associate

Derrick Knowles

Outreach coordinator

Joel Litwin

Web contractor

Lisa McShane

Community relations

director

Joseph Losi

Leadership gifts

director

Jasmine Minbashian

Communications

director

Erin Moore

Publications

coordinator

Rose Oliver

Office manager and

events coordinator

Pat Roberts

Accountant

Joe Scott

International

conservation director

Jen Watkins

Conservation

associate

Dave Werntz

Science and

conservation director

George Wooten

Conservation

associate

Board of directors

Alexandra Loeb

President

William Donnelly

Vice president

Jeffrey Jon Bodé

Secretary

Tom Campion

Treasurer

Emily Barnett

Kenan Block

Greg James

John Magoteaux

David Mann

Lewis Persons

Nancy Ritzenthaler

Tim Wood

Offices

Winter 2007

Bellingham

1208 Bay Street, #201

Bellingham, WA 98225

360.671.9950

360.671.8429 (fax)

Seattle

3414 1 /2 Fremont Ave. N.

Seattle, WA 98103

206.675.9747

206.675.1007 (fax)

Republic

600 South Clark, #7

Republic, WA 99166

509.775.2667

509.775.3454 (fax)

Spokane

35 West Main, #220

Spokane, WA 99201

509.747.1663

509.747.1267 www.conservationnw.org

(fax)


Inside Conservation Northwest

View from the Director

Hope—and Wolverines

As a whisper or a shout, hope is ever a part of our lives. Whether this condition

is endemic to humanity, strangely American, or perhaps the quintessence of

a conservationist, I do know it is a big part of who we are here at Conservation

Northwest.

For long years we labored against a political tide hostile to our natural heritage

and to our goals; yet, buoyed by hope, we not only persevered but prospered and

accomplished great things, from connecting wildlife habitat in the Central Cascades

to redirecting the Forest Service timber program in Washington state away

from old-growth logging and toward restoration forestry.

Among the events that encouraged hope among us at Conservation Northwest

were recent wolverine sightings in the Cascades. Nothing symbolizes, and indicates,

a healthy, wild ecosystem so well as this rambunctious creature, pictured on

the cover of this issue.

Wolverine prefer carrion, so they do best where predators are also present.

Moving at a perpetual trot, wolverines range daily over vast areas in search of a

carcass felled by a hard winter or downed by wolf or cougar. And they don’t like

people. A wolverine may abandon its offspring and den if disturbed by the presence

of humans.

The fact that we have wolverine in our Cascades—and so close to the booming

freeway corridors—means both that we have done some things right to sustain

this ecosystem and that there is indeed hope for a wild future.

Now, with election results that liberated the nation from the powerful grip of

ideologues who were motivated to harm endangered species and wild places, hope

arrives like the great storm winds that knocked out power in our Bellingham office

in mid-November.

The prospects for success for our Columbia Highlands Initiative have changed

from an exciting challenge to an achievable imperative.

Those wolverines in the Cascades would be heartened if they knew. Because

it’s not enough that we’ve done things right in the Cascades. Without habitat

connection to other populations of wolverine (and lynx, grizzly bear, and more)

in the Rockies, our Cascades population will be too small and isolated to survive

in the long term. The Columbia Highlands Initiative aims to protect habitat in

northeast Washington that is key to maintaining that connection.

I’m so proud and thankful for the progress we’ve made, thanks to your help.

And I’m excited for the opportunities ahead. Wolverines forever!

Mitch Friedman. Jodi Broughton

Among the events

that encouraged

hope among us here

at Conservation

Northwest were

recent wolverine

sightings in the

Cascades. Nothing

symbolizes, and

indicates, a healthy,

wild ecosystem

so well as this

rambunctious

creature.

The moment of recognition

There’s a wonderful moment of recognition when the animal you’ve so believed in—the fierce, independent, powerful yet

shy wolverine that you’ve never seen in the wild—shows up real as life, happily rolling in its version of a lunchtime treat (see page 9).

That vicarious contact brings hope to every animal lover’s heart. The presence of wolverine in the Washington Cascades this year

was documented by government biologists as well as by the Rare Carnivore Remote Camera Project, a collaboration between the

Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife and Conservation Northwest.

The wolverine’s future also brightened this year when, in a breakthrough ruling, a federal judge said that the government must

consider new legal protections for this rarest of wild animals in the lower 48. Conservation Northwest has pushed for protection

of wolverine, believing in it from the start.

Keeping the Northwest wild Winter 2007


Conservation in the Northwest

From the Washington

Coast to the BC Rockies

2006 was a year of progress

Olympics/

Willapa Hills

North

Cascades

Central

Cascades

Columbia

Mountains

Conservation Northwest is engaged in protecting and connecting four

greater ecosystems: Columbia Mountains, North Cascades, Olympics/

Willapa Hills, and Central Cascades. The Columbia Mountains span two

of our geographic focus areas, the Inland Temperate Rainforest and

Columbia Highlands. Map by Brett Cole, www.wildnorthwest.org

Conservation Northwest staff at our fall retreat in Mazama, hosted by

board treasurer Tom Campion. Top row (l to r): Tim Coleman, David Heflick,

Seth Cool, Crystal Gartner, Joe Scott, Barbara Christensen, Joseph Losi,

George Wooten, Mitch Friedman, Derek Churchill, Derrick Knowles, Dave

Werntz, Jen Watkins. Bottom row (l to r): Pat Roberts, Rose Oliver, Jasmine

Minbashian, Jodi Broughton, Hudson Dodd, Erin Moore, Lisa McShane,

Paul Bannick. Photo by Tom Campion

Throughout the Coast to Rockies landscape,

Conservation Northwest focuses on two major program areas:

Old Growth & Community and Wildlife & Habitat. We

also have four major geographic focus areas to our work—the

Inland Temperate Rainforest, the Columbia Highlands, the

North Cascades, and the Central Cascades.

In these landscape focus areas, we run special campaigns

to accomplish specific conservation objectives, important to

keeping old-growth forests and other wild areas in the Coast to

Rockies region protected and connected.

From legal victories that upheld protections for the Northwest’s

old-growth and roadless forests to protections for our

most vulnerable endangered wildlife, one of the biggest developments

of 2006 was the rejection by the courts and the voters

of the Bush administration’s radical agenda to roll back two

decades of progress in wildlife and forest protection.

While we are pleased with these developments, courts and

controversy ultimately aren’t the best avenue for establishing

public policy. This year Conservation Northwest strengthened

its commitment to work locally to find solutions based in good

science and common ground—with great results. From equestrians

to evangelicals and fishermen to farmers, we are now

working with a greater diversity of people than ever before to

advance the cause of conservation.

More and more people are becoming aware of the effects

that human actions are having on wildlife, forests, and the

state of our planet; which might explain why Conservation

Northwest added nearly 1,000 new member households over

the last year—with a great majority from the eastern part of our

state. We welcome all of you who are new to us—and we look

forward to partnering with you to keep the Northwest wild.

Next year expect to see our membership gain even greater

strength and diversity statewide, as we prepare to put the

Columbia Highlands Initiative into full gear, launch the

Whatcom Legacy Project, and advocate for a plan that protects

the highly endangered mountain caribou and old-growth

forests of the Inland Temperate Rainforest.

From equestrians to evangelicals

and fishermen to farmers, we

are now working with a greater

diversity of people than ever

before to advance the cause of

conservation.

Winter 2007 www.conservationnw.org


Conservation in the Northwest

Coming together with concerned citizens and local communities to

help protect and restore our remaining old-growth forests

our work

Old Growth & Community

Getting our groove on

It’s been well over a year since

Northwest Ecosystem Alliance and Kettle

Range Conservation Group merged

forces to become Conservation Northwest.

This year we finally “had our groove

on,” from Bellingham to Republic, Spokane

to Seattle. We added a forester to

our staff and expanded our forest collaborative

work into the Wenatchee-Okanogan

National Forest. We helped avert a

disturbing post-fire logging bill, and expanded

our use of mapping tools in forest

roadless inventory, off-road vehicle route

mapping, and volunteer field work.

We also celebrated an increase in

roadless forestland on the Colville and

Wenatchee-Okanogan National Forests.

Hundreds of hours of labor by Conservation

Northwest field staff and volunteers

paid off when the Forest Service used the

information generated to recognize thousands

of acres of new roadless forests in

eastern Washington—including about

70,000 acres and six new roadless areas on

the Colville National Forest.

Five years of uncertainty for America’s

roadless forests resolved into firm protection

in September when a federal judge

reinstated the 2001 Roadless Area Rule

for 58 million acres of public land. Washington

alone has nearly 2 million acres of

roadless forest, which Governor Christine

Gregoire also pushed hard to protect.

Thousands of acres of old-growth forests

were protected when, in response to a

suit brought by Conservation Northwest

and others, a US district judge required

public agencies to “survey and manage”

for rare plants and animals before logging

public forests (see page 6).

Collaborative forest planning on the

Wenatchee National Forest this year is leading

us in the right direction for dry forest

restoration and fuel reduction in the wildland

urban interface where people work

and live. We also worked to reduce the

growing threat of “salvage” logging following

fire. The Forest Service’s instinct is to

cut big burned trees for money after the

burn; yet that isn’t what’s best for the recovering

forest, or for wildlife. This year

we got proactive on fire following the massive

Tripod Fire on the Okanogan National

Forest, to form a coalition of conservationists

and industry to develop a reasonable

post-fire cutting proposal. The idea

is to move fast to cut small logs before

they economically decay while retaining

all big trees and avoiding roadless lands,

new road building, and negative soil impacts.

It’s an approach we’d like the Forest

Service to adopt whenever they consider

post-fire logging.

It’s been a long trek, but national forest

managers in Washington are now following

the lead of Conservation Northwest

and allies to focus on restoration forestry

in second-growth stands, incorporating

thinning projects designed through community

collaboration. And, after years

of public and scientific persuasion, today

virtually no national forest timber sales in

Washington include old growth.

This year the Northeast Washington

Forestry Coalition blossomed. Comprised

of local businesses and timber, recreation,

and conservation advocates, including

Conservation Northwest, the NEW Forestry

Coalition is a progressive collaboration

that is finding common ground for

forests, wildlife, and resources on the

Colville National Forest (see page 7).

With never a dull moment in the negotiation

room, together we are shaping a

future for Washington’s national forests.

Fire-scarred survivor—“cat faced” old-growth ponderosa pine in the Colville National

Forest. © James Johnston, www.northforkphotos.com

Keeping the Northwest wild Winter 2007


Conservation in the Northwest

Keeping the Northwest wild by protecting wild

animals and the lands where they live

Our work

Wildlife & Habitat

Glimpses of a wild future

2006 was a heady year for Conservation Northwest’s

work protecting wildlife and habitat from the Coast to the

Rockies, with excitement enough to keep everyone going.

Legal suits enjoined by Conservation Northwest triggered

rulings protecting lynx, caribou, and wolverine, bringing back

balance to a radical agenda issued by the Bush administration.

The Endangered Species Act survived dogged efforts by

Congressional extremists to rewrite it; and in November, voters

sent Rep. Richard Pombo—the House Resource Committee

chair bent on gutting the act—packing home. Thanks to the

actions of many, including hundreds of our members, America

retains the most effective conservation law in the world.

This year a court decision halted 144 old-growth timber sales

in the Northwest, protecting thousands of acres of old-growth

forest. The ruling followed the same judge’s decision last year—

in response to a suit brought by Conservation Northwest and

others—that federal agencies must “survey and manage” for

rare plants and animals before logging forests. Reinstating the

practice of “look first” is powerful news for regional wildlife

and habitat.

In the connective corridor between the Olympics/Willapa

Hills and the Central Cascades (see map, page 4), we’re continuing

our work protecting the last remaining oak-woodland prairie

Perhaps no animal

better represents

the work that we

do for wildlife

and habitat than

the Canada lynx.

In 2000 this wild

cat was protected

as a threatened

species under

the Endangered

Species Act after

a decade of work

by Conservation

Northwest. © Photo

courtesy Patrick Reeves

Photography

Bald eagles are thriving in Washington because of the ESA, but

many other birds are not faring well. Washington state may

retract habitat protection for northern spotted owls, and BC

spotted owls are in deep trouble: seven pairs survive in coastal

old-growth forests there. Marbled murrelets will also suffer if the

Bush administration moves forward with a plan to slash critical

habitat for the fast-dwindling seabird. © Paul Anderson

in Washington. In November a coalition of groups including

Conservation Northwest submitted notice of intent to sue the

Department of Transportation and others as a means of stopping

construction of the Cross Base Highway. The four-lane highway

if built would cut through the heart of what is today perhaps the

rarest habitat in Washington.

Conservation Northwest’s two-year administration of the

Washington Invasive Species Coalition ended this autumn on

a high note for habitat protection. The coalition produced and

distributed 25,000 Gardenwise booklets on common invasive

plants and non-invasive alternatives; worked with commercial

nurseries to create a “code of conduct” to phase out invasives;

bolstered laws helping keep greater Puget Sound waters free of

marine invasives arriving in exotic ship ballast water; and was

instrumental in passing legislation creating a statewide invasive

species council to better protect native flora and fauna.

Speaking of native wildlife, Canada lynx in 2006 moved a

giant step closer to better protection when a judge agreed with us

that the US Fish and Wildlife Service must explain its decision

to lump together all North American lynx rather than recognize

the lynx’s separate populations in the North Cascades, Rocky

Mountains, Minnesota, and the Northeast. Separate populations

they certainly are. This summer the Tripod Fire burned heavily

into fire-dependent lodgepole pine forests of one of two natural

resource conservation areas protected for Washington’s lynx in

2000 by Conservation Northwest and the Loomis Forest Fund.

The next decade will tell how well lynx respond to the large new

swaths of young forest habitat created by the fire.

Pacific fisher is another priority animal for Conservation

Northwest, and together with the Washington Department of

Fish and Wildlife we are moving toward reintroduction of this

key forest hunter onto the Olympic Peninsula. As to the fisher’s

bigger cousin, the wolverine: recent sightings in the North

and Central Cascades of Washington show that this shy forest

mammal is doing better than we’d ever imagined (see page 3).

That gives us hope that the conservation work we do—little

by little, day in, day out—is working. Together we are creating a

better future for wildlife and habitat in the Northwest.

Winter 2007 www.conservationnw.org


Conservation in the Northwest

Engaging for forests, wilderness, wildlife, and

community in northeast Washington

Focus on

Columbia Highlands

the stage is set

Over the last year you’ve heard about the Columbia

Highlands Initiative. In northeast Washington we are partnering

with local communities, timber interests, recreation groups,

and the Forest Service to build a vision for the future of forests,

wilderness, and wildlife in this important region where the

Cascades meet the Rockies.

This year the relationships Conservation Northwest have built

were strengthened. Through the Northeast Washington Forestry

Coalition, Tim Coleman, Conservation Northwest’s wilderness

campaign director, and David Heflick, conservation associate,

have been working to identify a blueprint outlining a vision for

the management of the Colville National Forest. The NEW Forestry

Coalition is very close to finalizing the blueprint, which will

include recommended wilderness; potential restoration areas;

and responsible management areas, where careful thinning and

prescribed fire can help reduce the risk of catastrophic wildfire

while sending logs to the local mills.

Derrick Knowles, our wilderness outreach coordinator, has

been participating in several coalitions to bring unusual allies

together for conservation, including the Faith and the Environment

Network, the Hunting and Fishing Conservation Coalition,

and the Inland Northwest Trails Coalition.

Thanks to Derrick and to Crystal Gartner, development associate,

we also had a fantastic field season with a popular series

(above) At the fifth annual Kettle Range Rendezvous. © Eric Zamora

(below) The quiet beauty of the Columbia Highlands. © James Johnston

of hikes and work parties co-organized with the Backcountry

Horsemen, the Mountaineers, and others. A big highlight was

the annual Kettle Range Rendezvous where more than 50 people

gathered at the Jungle Hill Campground for a fun weekend

of hikes, discussion, and revelry. Crystal also organized some

well-attended wine and cheese events in the Spokane area that

brought new interest in the Columbia Highlands Initiative from

the business community.

Most of all, our success in 2006 can be measured by the fact

that Conservation Northwest, through the Northeast Washington

Forestry Coalition, successfully resolved all of its issues

on every timber sale proposed by the Colville National Forest

and no appeals were filed. This new era of cooperation and collaboration

is giving us confidence that in 2007 we will witness

our vision put into action.

Next year is going to be a big one for the Columbia Highlands,

and you’ll be hearing a lot more about this very special

place and community over the coming months.

The NEW Forestry Coalition is close to

finalizing a blueprint for the Columbia Highlands

that will include recommended wilderness,

potential restoration areas, and

responsible management areas.

Keeping the Northwest wild Winter 2007


Conservation in the Northwest

We often look north, because the animals do, too; as

we work to protect a region that lies east of the North

Cascades and north of the Columbia Highlands.

Focus on

Inland Temperate Rainforest

Protecting Mountain caribou

The lush, big-tree rainforest west and windward of the

Canadian Rockies—the Inland Temperate Rainforest of British

Columbia—is one of four special focus areas for Conservation

Northwest. The reasons why reflect much about who we are:

a regional group focused on greater ecosystem protection for

wide-ranging wildlife such as mountain caribou, which make

hash of “borders” between the Northwest US and Canada.

Caribou are symbolic of the health of the forest for many other

animals, too, from grizzly bear to chorus frog.

Forest lost to logging affects mountain caribou immediately

and intimately. These caribou cannot survive without old forests,

which provide protection from predators and a predictable winter

food supply of tree lichens unique to old growth.

This year was as good as it could be for an animal still considered

one of the most endangered mammals in North America.

The good news is that through our work with the Mountain Caribou

Project, Conservation Northwest raised awareness about the

importance of and threats to caribou habitat to such an extent that

the BC government has finally been made to sit up and listen. After

years of inaction British Columbia is in the process of drafting

a range-wide caribou conservation plan. Several industrial timber

companies have volunteered to stop cutting in critical caribou

habitat. We also gained a moratorium—pending release of a final

government recovery plan—on new backcountry motorized recreation

tenures in the most critical caribou habitat.

On the US side of the Inland Temperate Rainforest, Conservation

Northwest and its allies, led by Selkirk Conservation

Alliance and Defenders of Wildlife, went to court to seek a ban

on snowmobiling in the Caribou Recovery Zone after having

shown that snowmobilers were harassing caribou. Although

they fell short of a complete ban, the judge agreed that restrictions

were necessary and banned snowmobiles from nearly 90%

of caribou habitat in northern Idaho.

The Mountain Caribou Project this

year expanded to include the Western

Canada Wilderness Committee, Sierra

Club BC, and Canadian Parks and Wilderness

Society (CPAWS). Together the

groups intend to turn up the heat on BC

government for a caribou recovery plan

with teeth, one that recovers all herds by

protecting, restoring, and reconnecting

critical habitat. That plan must also include

enforceable standards for motorized

and commercial recreation operations,

Here the trees—many in forests wet enough to have never been

touched by fire—just keep getting bigger. © Dave Quinn

(bottom left) Bus shelter ad in Victoria, part of a campaign run

by the Mountain Caribou Project: “Happily ever after...or once

upon a time? Which story will BC tell?” The Project also produced

a tabloid on the plight of the caribou, distributing 60,000

copies throughout BC. © Dave Quinn

motorized recreation which biologists say places added stress on

an already at-risk species. Also this year, an effective ad campaign

has put mountain caribou on billboards in bus shelters, ferry terminals,

and other prominent locations throughout the province.

Perhaps our biggest success of the year was the Mountain

Caribou Project’s hiring of Lawrence Redfern as community organizer.

Born and raised in the heart of caribou country, Redfern

knows the territory, people, and communities well. Personable

and persuasive and a scientist by trade, he’s had a profound effect

delivering the message of pride of place and wildlife heritage

through presentations ranging from community forums to professional

society meetings.

Propelled by Redfern’s work and the more than 35 different

articles on caribou published this year in the local press, Conservation

Northwest is hopeful for a strong recovery plan to emerge

for mountain caribou, one that protects Inland Temperate Rainforest

and all of its creatures, from grizzly bear to wolverine.

Released caribou:

BC biologists plan

to import seven

new mountain

caribou to the

crossborder Selkirk

herd. © Trevor Kinley

Visit the Mountain Caribou Project’s new

website: www.mountaincaribou.ca

Winter 2007 www.conservationnw.org


Conservation in the Northwest

Geologists and biogeographers separate the North

from the Central Cascades near Snoqualmie Pass. The

landscape is a connective corridor for healthy wildlife.

focus on

Central Cascades

safe passage for wildlife

It’s a hard act to follow, The Cascade Conservation

Partnership. In less than four years from 2000 to 2004, The

Partnership, brainchild of Conservation Northwest and the

Sierra Club’s Charlie Raines, raised $86 million in private and

federal funds to successfully protect 38,000 acres of critical

lands in the Interstate 90 corridor.

But follow it up we did—with the I-90 Wildlife Bridges Coalition,

another novel partnership spearheaded by Conservation

Northwest. This summer the coalition was key in shaping

the Washington State Department of Transportation’s (DOT)

final choice for a design for the I-90 Snoqualmie Pass East Project.

The visionary final design for this freeway upgrade between

Hyak and Easton incorporates improved or expanded crossings

at 18 locations, including two wildlife overpasses. Animals now

have a fair chance to cross the freeway, and people will have

safer passage, too, across the Cascades.

The proposal comes on the heels of a year’s long work by

the I-90 Wildlife Bridges Coalition and its more than 40 supporting

organizations. The recommended design is a victory for

Northwest wildlife.

With a design in hand, funding has now become the primary

issue. As with many projects across the state, I-90 Project costs

have gone up. Yet here’s some relief: Through a creative system

of matching dollars including $50,000 from The Partnership,

the US Fish and Wildlife Service this fall approved a grant of

$3.9 million to acquire lands in Gold Creek valley, near one

of the new underpasses at Gold Creek. Gold Creek currently

experiences the highest amount of deer and elk roadkill along

I-90. It has also been identified as an area that could provide the

safest passage for wide-ranging species sensitive to road densities,

including bear and wolverine.

Conservation Northwest volunteers spent 2006 monitoring

corridor wildlife, from deer and elk to bobcat and wolverine,

using remote cameras to capture photos of these often shy

animals. The photos augment documentation by the Fish and

Wildlife Service who earlier trapped and radio-collared a female

wolverine. And there’s more to come. Thoughout the winter

we’re teaming up with the Wilderness Awareness School to

add snow tracking of wildlife to our data.

Thanks to an intern from Central Washington University,

the I-90 Wildlife Bridges Coalition has also initiated outreach

tabling in Ellensburg to better get the word out on what promises

to be an exciting future for wildlife conservation in the

Central Cascades.

(side) A wolverine rolls in scent lure. Photo taken by remote

camera near Glacier Peak. Rare Carnivore Remote Camera Project

(below) Artist’s rendition of a wildlife overpass at the rock knob

near the Keechelus Dam, one of two overpasses planned for

the Interstate 90 upgrade. Once built, the I-90 Project will be

an international example for restoring waterways and linking

wildlife. WA DOT

Keeping the Northwest wild Winter 2007


Conservation in the Northwest

Long-term vision for grizzly bears in the wildlands,

and a plan for Whatcom County that combines wildlife,

habitat, towns, and working farms and forests

focus on

North Cascades

creating a whatcom legacy

Some might call it the great leap

forward. This year Conservation Northwest

initiated the Whatcom Legacy

Project and a 100-year plan for a future

for the Coast to the Cascades. Because

it is not just the high mountain valleys,

with their bear and wolverine habitat,

that are important, but the hard-hit lowlands,

the watersheds and salmon, that

need attention, too. Maintaining critical

habitat and connections in the lowlands

keeps farms and forests intact, benefiting

people and wildlife. It’s the long, strong

path to sustaining Whatcom County’s

natural environment, economic prosper-

ity, and community values into the next

century.

Great ideas often start small, and Conservation

Northwest’s work in Whatcom

County has long centered on two other,

smaller projects in the greater North Cascades

ecosystem: one, the Lake Whatcom

drinking watershed and the other,

Blanchard Mountain, a major recreation

destination. Both have great potential for

clean water and healthy fish and wildlife

habitat. Both are affected by sprawl and

anachronistic forest management.

In the Lake Whatcom watershed, where

public forests filter and clean a drinking water

supply for nearly 90,000, we’re changing

the way that the Department of Natural

Resources (DNR) manages these school

trust lands, attempting to broaden that outlook

from a sole focus on timber revenue to

concerns about water quality, wildlife habitat,

recreation opportunities, and safety for

people living in the watershed.

This year our work to protect Blanchard

Mountain—public lands also managed

by DNR—took new shape in a breakthrough

collaboration. The agency convened

a group of diverse interests including

Conservation Northwest and Friends

of Blanchard Mountain and charged them

with creating a forest management plan

for Blanchard’s forests.

That group is close to achieving an intriguing

new type of forest conservation

for Blanchard Mountain. Their innovative

solution attempts several things at

once. It would protect much of the roadless

core forest, compensate the trusts for

lost timber revenue, encourage restoration

thinning on appropriate national forest

in Skagit County to make up for lost

timber supply, and acquire adjacent lands

Blanchard Mountain is the only place

where the Cascades touch the sea. You

can see that connection for yourself

driving north from Seattle on I-5 as you

approach Bellingham. Here a paraglider,

launched from Blanchard, enjoys a unique

view. © Paul Anderson

and inholdings to help bolster an operable

DNR-land base and prevent sprawl

around Lake Samish.

For wildlife in the heart of the North

Cascades this year we’ve begun working

in earnest on a long-time dream to recover

grizzly bears to the North Cascades, promoting

recovery plans already developed

by the US Fish and Wildlife Service. The

North Cascades is one of only six grizzly

bear recovery zones around the nation.

This year Conservation Northwest

coalesced a local grizzly citizen advocacy

group called Friends of the North Cascades

and continued close collaboration

with the Grizzly Bear Outreach Project.

We’re also working with Seattle-area

conservation and recreation leaders to

advance grizzly bear-friendly recreation

projects to build awareness and support

for grizzly bear recovery among urban users

of the backcountry.

For Conservation Northwest, the future

is a greater North Cascades ecosystem

that endures, rich and viable, now and

into the next century.

On the trail in the North Cascades

© Brett Baunton

10 Winter 2007 www.conservationnw.org


Inside Conservation Northwest

Working it

Keep up to date on

ways you can get involved

in our work at www.conservationnw.org.

Go to “Calendar,” “Take Action,” or “Get

Involved,” or contact Conservation Northwest

volunteer coordinators:

Bellingham: Rose Oliver, 360.671.9950

x10, rose@conservationnw.org

Western Washington: Hudson Dodd,

800.878.9950 x26, hudson@conservationnw.org

Spokane: Crystal Gartner, 509.747.1663,

crystal@conservationnw.org

Eastern Washington: Derrick Knowles,

509.747.1663 x26, derrick@conservationnw.org

Holiday wish list

We make every effort to use the lion’s share of our members’ generous

in-kind donations for vital program work—protecting wildlife and wild places.

Therefore, we occasionally appeal to our supporters for in-kind donations to

meet our administrative needs. If you’re upgrading this holiday season, please

consider donating what you no longer need!

Questions? Donations? Please contact Barbara Christensen, 800.878.9950 x12 or

bc@conservationnw.org.

Flat screen monitors: Help us decrease our electricity usage—and

improve staff eyesight! Please consider donating LCD monitors (17” or greater

preferred).

Computers: Please consider donating your gently used PC or laptop.

Specifications: Processor: 900 MHz Pentium, Memory: 128MB, Hard Drive: 20GB

External hard drives: 40GB or larger external drives

To get involved or donate, go online to www.conservationnw.org

Gifts to support our work

Donations from members of Conservation Northwest make

up more than 75 percent of our annual revenue. Our members also

take action on issues critical to protecting forests and wildlife from the

Washington Coast to the BC Rockies. If you’re not already a member,

please join us (sliding scale, suggested $35 donation). Or consider giving a

nonmaterial gift this season: a gift membership to Conservation Northwest

for your friends or family (justt $25, gift special). They’ll receive a welcome

card with your name on it—and no other solicitations until their renewal

next year. To support Conservation Northwest’s programs we also have

merchandise available, including a 2007 wildlife calendar.

I’d like to join, or donate a gift membership to:

(name)

(address)

(city, state)

(zip, email)

TOTAL

Please add $2-5 for shipping (sliding scale)

Holiday specials

Please write in quantities

Logo t-shirts

Size S M L XL XXL

Unisex Styles $16 $13

Natural, short-sleeve, organic cotton

Green heather/dark green trim,

jersey “ringer” short sleeve

N/A

Gray heather jersey, short sleeve

Women’s Styles $18 $15

Gray heather/black, 3/4 raglan

sleeve, baby rib*

White w/ Kelly green, raglan sleeve*

N/A

N/A

N/A

Junior/girl’s Style $16 $13

Eggplant heather/dark eggplant trim,

jersey “ringer” short sleeve

*Sizes run quite small; shirts are made by American Apparel, sweatshop free

2007 wildlife calendar “Wildlife of the Pacific Northwest”

by Patrick Reeves (see it online at www.patrickreevesphoto.com;

generously donated by photographer) Quantity $15

Card #

Paying by VISA/MC/AmEx

Paying by check*

*made payable to Conservation NW

Exp Date

Please use the enclosed envelope to pay by check or credit card, or go online to www.conservationnw/donate

Logo leather work gloves (pictured top left)

Natural, with light blue accent Medium Large $9 $6

Logo ball cap

Charcoal w/pebble bill Khaki w/green bill All green $20 $17

Keeping the Northwest wild Winter 2007 11


Conservation Northwest has

earned my support because

they deliver practical

solutions to the pressing

conservation issues facing

our region. They take the

lead in working with local

communities and public

agencies to make real

gains for wildlife and the

Northwest landscape.

—Paul Brookshire

Paul Brookshire is a donor and

volunteer with Conservation

Northwest. He is also a North Cascades

team leader for the Rare Carnivore

Remote Camera Project.

Snow Peak sunrise in the

Columbia Highlands.

© James Johnston

1208 Bay Street #201

Bellingham, WA 98225

Non Profit Org.

US POSTAGE

PAID

Blaine, WA

Permit No. 106

We have a new brochure. Help us distribute it!

Contact rose@conservationnw.org

12 Winter 2007 www.conservationnw.org

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