Conservation & Advocacy

Conservation & Advocacy

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Update: Mountains to Sound Greenway Legislation Gets a Hearing

In spring 2015, over 3,100 of you signed a petition to designate the Mountains to Sound Greenway as a National Heritage Area (NHA), more than doubling the number of petition signatures to date. Last week, this legislation took an important step forward in Congress, when the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee held a hearing that included consideration of the NHA bill.   Read more…

Discover The Rewards Of Stewardship

It's easy to forget that many of our beloved trails and historic structures are maintained by volunteers. The Mountaineers have a long tradition of stewarding these places, and the tradition grows stronger every day - as long as you get involved! Consider being a part of history and join us on a stewardship activity this summer. Read more…

Forest Service Announces Plans to Streamline Special Use Permitting Processes

Today, the U.S. Forest Service announced new guidance that will change the operation of the agency’s outfitter-guide permitting system. This new guidance will streamline the process for issuing permits to outdoor leaders and recreation businesses that take people outdoors. These improvements will provide more access to federal lands and waters for a wide range of facilitated use.  Read more…

How To: Poop in the Outdoors

I am confident that you and I have at least two things in common: 1) we both set aside time to explore the outdoors, and 2) at some point during these adventures we will both experience the discomfort of knowing we have to go number two. Even if you don't, you will inevitably be reminded of this basic human function by the sight of toilet paper discarded uncomfortably close to trails and water sources. By the amount of TP I have seen recently on Washington’s trails, it seems even the most avid outdoor enthusiasts may not know how to handle nature’s calling. Read more…

The Mountaineers Pacific Crest Trail Challenge!

The Pacific Crest Trail (or PCT), a 2663.5-mile National Scenic Trail stretching from Mexico to Canada through California, Oregon, and Washington, epitomizes the ideal of physical challenge and one-of-a-kind natural resources bringing people together for a purpose larger than themselves - much like the mission of The Mountaineers. Read more…

Fire and Drought: Impacts Beyond Recreation

Last year, The Mountaineers advocated for the Wildfire Disaster Funding Act - legislation to treat emergency wildfires like natural disasters to funded through the disaster programs rather than the Forest Service’s budget. We shared how wildfires impact outdoor recreation and how we engaged as an organization on the issue in 2015. The bill has lost momentum in Congress this season due to lower fire predictions, but fire management is not something we can afford to put on the back burner. Read more…

Campaign Seeks to Fend Off Mining in the Methow Valley

The Methow Valley sits in the cradle of more than twenty 8,000-foot peaks, their snow-covered summits melting into a web of rivers and tributariesIt’s a human-powered recreationist’s dream, home to the nation’s largest cross-country ski area, a heralded section of the Pacific Crest Trail, and a vast expanse of wild forests with some of the best hiking, backpacking, paddling, and fly-fishing around.  Read more…

Watch out for those weeds!

Invasive non-native plants are a major threat to biodiversity in our National Forests. The Mountaineers is partnering again this year with King County and the National Forest Service to help stop the spread of invasive species in our wilderness areas. Read more…

Play Safe: Recreating in Bear Country with David Moskowitz - June 29

Washington’s North Cascades are home to thousands of black bears and fewer than twenty grizzly bears. Knowing how to play safe in bear country is as important as bringing a first aid kit and appropriate clothing for your adventure. Read more…

Outdoor Enthusiasts Take The Hill

The Mountaineers is proud to be one of the member organizations making up the Outdoor Alliance,  a group working to unite the voices of outdoor recreation advocates, including backcountry skiers, paddlers, climbers, and mountain bikers. Last month we were in DC advocating for your public lands and waters.  Read more…

'Your Mission' breakfast a success!

A group of dedicated Mountaineers had an alpine start this morning. Not for a climb, but for our inaugural fundraising breakfast, hosted at the downtown Seattle Sheraton hotel. We’re grateful for the donors, members, volunteers, staff and friends of The Mountaineers who began their day with us. Through the generous support of nearly 300 attendees and corporate sponsors, we raised over $110,000!  Read more…

Inslee announces nearly $1 million in grants to connect Washington youth to nature

How have The Mountaineers thrived for over 100 years? By continually investing in the next generation of explorers, outdoor-lovers, and conservationists. The Mountaineers’ commitment to youth recently scored a major victory when Governor Inslee announced nearly $1 million in grants to give kids access to the outdoors. The grants come courtesy of Senate Bill 5843. Read more…

National Trails Day - June 4, 2016

We've got four great work parties scheduled for National Trails Day this year. Whether you are on the Peninsula, in the greater Seattle area or near the North Cascades, you can get outside and get your hands dirty!  Read more…

Observable Differences: Glacier Recession in the North Cascades

The project measures a variety of glaciers across the North Cascades — from the south end of the range on Mount Daniel to the north end on Mount Shuksan; and from the West side on Kulshan (Mount Baker) to the dry East side on the Ice Worm Glacier (aka Hyas Creek Glacier). The glaciers are a critical resource in the region, providing water for farm and crop irrigation, hydropower, salmon and other wildlife, along with municipal supply. Read more…

Big Conservation News From Outdoor Alliance

How many human-powered recreationists does it take to screw in a light bulb that illuminates the value of protecting our public lands and waters? A lot - there is power in numbers! That’s why we’re proud to be one of seven member organizations in Outdoor Alliance, an organization that mobilizes the voice of outdoor enthusiasts nationwide. This week we celebrate two huge successes: the next step in permanent reauthorization of the Land and Water Conservation Fund, and a call by Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell to improve diversity, access, and funding for public lands. Read more…

Wild Olympics Act rides a wave of support to Senate hearing

Update: This legislation has been reintroduced in the 116th Congress (2019) by Senator Patty Murray (S. 1382) and Congressman Derek Kilmer (H.R. 2642).  Thank you Washington state lawmakers for continuing to fight for our treasured lands and waters! 

If you’re a Mountaineer, there’s a good chance you’ve enjoyed the Olympic National Forest. Old growth trees, lush rain forests, ocean views, and towering mountains—the area’s list of scenic wonders goes on. But preserving them requires us to broaden our scope to collaborate with many others who also have a vested interest in these lands. We've been working with a diverse group of interested parties to advocate for the Wild Olympics Act, which could result in nearly 127,000 acres of new Wilderness in Olympic National Forest and 19 new Wild and Scenic Rivers.  Read more…

Update: U.S. Army responds to concerns about helicopter landing zones

Last summer, we shared the US Army’s proposal for several helicopter landing sites in the North Cascades for pilots to practice flyovers and high altitude landings. Some of the proposed landing zones have raised concerns because of their proximity to popular recreation lands, trails, and designated Wilderness areas. Read more…

National Parks Week

Happy National Park Week! This April 16-24 we celebrate National Park Week by about making connections, exploring amazing places, and discovering open spaces in our National Parks. To help you celebrate, the National Park Service is giving you free entry to National Parks this week!   Read more…

Our National Parks - The Next Chapter

How can we ensure the iconic lands “made for you and me” continue to be the gateway for falling in love with and protecting the natural world? Can our national parks be more inviting and better reflect the rich diversity of America? Will they remain world-class destinations? Can our parks become models for sustainability? Read more…

Solace in Mountain Solitude

Every morning I wake to the heaviness of dread and scattered anxiety. Big life-shaking questions bombard me the minute I realize I’ve stopped dreaming. Every effort to create mental order in my overturned life is like opening closet doors only to have the contents of my life spill into a giant mess at my feet. Would I have to move away? Quit my job that I love? Leave the house that I built on eleven acres and leave behind my community and deep relationships in a giant dust-cloud of failure?  Read more…

Public Lands for All - Take Action to Keep our Public Lands Public

Think back to a time when you stood in the middle of an old growth forest or looked out over an expanse of uninterrupted wild country. Didn't it just feel... right? Make you feel small? Make you feel whole? Content? Read more…

Protect the Greenway - Write your Legislators Today

Last spring, we encouraged you to sign a petition supporting a National Heritage Designation for the Mountains to Sound Greenway. Over 3,000 of you lent your voice to this issue - your signature helped double the support for this designation!   Read more…

Secretary Jewell Signs Order Promoting Outdoor Access for Under-Resourced Youth

Today, U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell released a Secretary’s Order to decrease barriers for disadvantaged and under-resourced youth to access America’s public lands and waters. Read more…

Comment Period Open for Roads in Nooksack Watershed

The Nooksack Access Travel Management project in Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest seeks to identifying roads to retain, roads that are no longer needed, and roads that need work to stay open. The major roads for recreational users included in this project area are Glacier Creek, Hannegan Pass, Skyline Divide, and Canyon Creek Road.  Read more…

BeWild Speaker Series 2016

The Mountaineers, Mountaineers Books, and adidas outdoor are pleased to present the 2016 BeWild Speaker Series, putting passion and adventure at center stage! This year, we're presenting adventurers who've achieved great things and overcome huge challenges through the outdoors. Come to any one of these talks - or all four - and we guarantee you'll leave inspired to seek adventure, connect with nature, and work to protect the wild places we cherish. Read more…

Olympic National Park and The Mountaineers

Think back to a time when you stood in the middle of an old growth forest or looked out over an expanse of uninterrupted wild country. Didn't it just feel... right? Make you feel small? Make you feel whole? Content? Read more…

The Olympic Peninsula: A Mountaineers Love Story

Our love for the peninsula started early with our members advocating for the establishment of Olympic National Park  in the early 1900s. Our feelings have only become stronger since, and we feel lucky to continue educating, advocating, and providing stewardship opportunities to ensure the greater community falls in love with the Olympics too. Read more…

4th Annual Big Tent Rally Day

On February 3, we joined other members of Washington’s Big Tent Coalition, as well as lifetime Mountaineers members Jim and Diane Whittaker, under a BIG TENT on the capital grounds in Olymipa to celebrate the outdoor recreation economy in Washignton State. As members of the Big Tent Coalition, we understand the importance our role as recreationists - with our boots-on-the-round perspective - as an economic driver for the state, and we use this perspective to advocate for our public lands. Read more…

The end of access? An inside look at the implications of privatizing our national forests.

In the mounting battle to keep public lands in public hands, certain voices have been louder than others. Read more…

Forest Service Expands Permit Season for Enchantments

The beauty of our wild places is what inspires and motivates so many  Mountaineers to get outside. Access to the Pacific Northwest's stunning places is fundamental to our mission. To assure these places remain picturesque for generations to come, we practice and teach responsible, low-impact recreation in all of our volunteer-led trips. To that end, we support the Forest Service’s decision to expand the permitted season for the Enchantments in order  to balance access  with protecting the fragile environment of this special place. Read more…