Forest Stories

Profile: Mike Kaputa, Stemilt Community Forest

Profile: Mike Kaputa, Stemilt Community Forest

The Stemilt Community Forest brings together Chelan County Name: Mike Kaputa Affiliation: Stemilt Community Forest   1. What first drew you to forestry work? The opportunity for the County to purchase lands to protect ecologically diverse forestlands from development and partner with neighboring landowners and stakeholders to create the Community Forest was an exciting and unprecedented event for Chelan County. The obvious connection between this forest and the community that depends upon it was the force that drew us into the realm of community forestry. The importance of keeping this contiguous forestland intact to protect the needs of the community in terms of agricultural water supply, high-quality outdoor recreation, and protection of sensitive wildlife species was what really drove the momentum toward the Community Forest. 2. What is your favorite attribute of the community forest you’re affiliated with? The Stemilt Community Forest supports complex ecosystems and a variety of wildlife…

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Profile: Justin Hall, Nisqually Community Forest

Profile: Justin Hall, Nisqually Community Forest

Managing for the all the benefits of a forest Name: Justin Hall Hometown: Olympia, Washington Community forest affiliation: Nisqually Community Forest 1. What first drew you to forestry work? As an undergraduate I received Bachelor's degrees in Wildlife Science and Fisheries Biology. I then worked for the University of Washington Charles Lathrop Pack Forest as a forester which led to a Master’s degree in Silviculture and Forest Planning. I've always loved being in the woods and working in them just seemed like a natural extension of what I enjoyed. That said, I've spent most of the intervening time in office settings running a nonprofit. 2. What is your favorite attribute of the community forest you’re affiliated with? My grandfather moved to Washington from the east coast during World War II to work in the timber industry and as it turns out he worked on the same forest that we are…

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Profile: Tom Tuchmann, US Forest Capital, LLC

Profile: Tom Tuchmann, US Forest Capital, LLC

A forest finance aficionado shares tips for bringing projects to fruition Name: Tom Tuchmann Hometown: Portland, Oregon Affiliation: US Forest Capital, LLC   1. What first drew you to forestry work? Like many working in this field, I was inspired by spending time in our nation’s forests and wildlands at a young age and wanted to see them conserved. Within this context, I was drawn to forestry because it essentially serves as the liberal arts of the sciences. Meaning, working in forestry provides exposure to biology, ecology, hydrology, economics, business, policy and planning, and wood products manufacturing among other disciplines. If you know forestry, there is a good chance you can conserve forests. 2. What is your favorite attribute of the community forest you’re affiliated with? My work is focused on helping both existing and new landowners achieve their community forestry acquisition and management objectives. As a result, we are affiliated with numerous…

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Case Study: Stemilt-Squilchuck Community Forest

Case Study: Stemilt-Squilchuck Community Forest

Project Location/Community Supported by the Forest The greater Wenatchee, WA, metropolitan area, population 50,000+, plus visitors enjoy the use and values of the forest. Project Description Chelan County owns and manages the 4,000 acre Stemilt-Squilchuck Community Forest acquired from Longview Fibre Timber Co. In 2007, Washington Department of Natural Resources (DNR) announced plans to sell four sections of public land in the upper reaches of the Stemilt basin into private hands. While these lands were no longer a management priority for DNR, they were of tremendous value to the local community. The four sections and the surrounding landscape are the heart of the Stemilt-Squilchuck watershed, providing critical water storage and production functions, recreational opportunities, and important wildlife habitat and resources. The privatization of these lands would put all of these values and more in jeopardy. Additionally, the Longview Fibre Timber Co. proposed to auction off over 4,000 acres adjoining the…

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Profile: Jay McLaughlin, Mt. Adams Resource Stewards

Profile: Jay McLaughlin, Mt. Adams Resource Stewards

Daring to imagine a new future for forests and people Name: Jay McLaughlin Hometown: Glenwood, Washington Community forest affiliation: Mt. Adams Community Forest and Klickitat Canyon Community Forest Trust property [embed]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AXalm7wF-vk[/embed] Rural Reinvention: Mt. Adams Resource Stewards, Glenwood, WA   1. What first drew you to forestry work? I have always had a love for the outdoors and originally thought I would become a wildlife biologist. Somewhere along the way I took a silviculture course framed as applied ecology, and I was really intrigued by the challenge of using our understanding of ecological systems through forest management to achieve whatever outcome we desire. 2. What is your favorite attribute of the community forest you’re affiliated with? Of the properties we own and manage, the Pine Flats Tract of the Mt. Adams Community Forest resembles a classic east slope Cascades, dry mixed conifer forest. I love the plant communities there. We've…

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Profile: Cherie Kearney, Columbia Land Trust

Profile: Cherie Kearney, Columbia Land Trust

The Columbia Land Trust’s go-to conservation champion shares her best practices Name: Cherie Kearney Hometown: Washougal, Washington Affiliation: Columbia Land Trust   1. What first drew you to forestry work? I live in a region where everyone is connected to and has an opinion about forests and forestry. Here, there are wide ranging views and values about our forests, how they should be managed and who and what should reap the benefits. What drew me to forestry work is the challenge and reward of negotiating toward commonly held values around this vital resource. 2. What is your favorite attribute of the community forest you’re affiliated with? The fact that in a setting wracked with opinions, disagreement, economic stress, emotion and lawsuits over how forests are or should be treated there is prevailing agreement that a community forest is good idea. 3. From your perspective, what is the most important benefit…

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Opportunities on the Oregon Coast

Opportunities on the Oregon Coast

Maintaining working forestlands through community forestry By Stephanie Campbell, Community Forest Fellow and Ben Dair, Conservation Finance Fellow Sustainable Northwest ***UPDATE September 9, 2017 -- The Oregon Water Resources Department selected the Arch Cape Domestic Supply District as the winner of the Best Water Management and Conservation Plan award for a municipal water supplier serving fewer than 1,000 people. Sustainable Northwest is working with the District to build on this success and pursue a long-term solution to ensuring residents have access to clean, safe drinking water through the creation of a community forest.*** Here in the Pacific Northwest, our forestlands are a regional treasure--beloved landscapes carpeted with feathery ferns and towering trees covered in soft, verdant mosses. These lush forests have nourished countless generations with sustenance, recreation, and inspiration, yet increasing population, development, and climate-related disturbances are making the task of managing and sustaining forests in the Pacific Northwest ever…

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The Hidden Canyon

The Hidden Canyon

Columbia Land Trust has a bold vision to conserve 10,000 acres of forestland at Klickitat Canyon By The Columbia Land Trust Nate Ulrich considers himself more of a botany guy. When Columbia Land Trust’s conservation lead for the East Cascades and Columbia Plateau lists wildlife species found in Klickitat Canyon, he starts with rare wildflowers, such as penstemon and desert parsley. Ulrich also describes the canyon, which sits just below the northern border of southern Washington’s Klickitat County, as a wildlife haven—home to black bears, black-tailed deer, elk, sandhill cranes, owls, hawks, and elusive golden eagles. Anglers love the Wild and Scenic–designated Klickitat River for its legendary steelhead runs, along with its wild and stocked salmon runs. A combination of artesian springs, snowmelt from headwaters in Goat Rocks Wilderness, and glacial melt from Mount Adams supply the undammed river with the clean, cold water critical to fish. “I always tell…

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Case Study: Assessing Community Forest Potential in Washington and Montana

Case Study: Assessing Community Forest Potential in Washington and Montana

Enabling Conditions and Barriers to Community Forest Development in the Pacific Northwest Introduction In June of 2016, The Nature Conservancy (TNC) initiated the Community Forest Study in collaboration with faculty and post-docs at the University of Washington (UW) School of Environmental and Forest Sciences and University of Montana (UM) College of Forestry and Conservation. The purpose of the study was to provide preliminary information relevant to the possible development of community forests on TNC’s properties in the Blackfoot River Valley of Montana, and the Central Cascades and Olympic Rainforest regions of Washington. Study goals included  gain a better understanding of the three properties and the human communities around them, conduct a survey of community forests nationally to learn how they operate, and begin to understand enabling conditions and barriers that could influence the development of community forests in these project areas. This report provides a summary of findings from Phase…

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