Conservation & Advocacy

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Voices Heard | POC-in-Chief: A Legacy Living On

In Tucson, a large Latino community abuts Saguaro National Park but seldom visits it. It was there that I met Cam Juárez through work that Barack Obama made possible. Juárez was a planner and project manager outside the Park Service when he agreed to take on the challenge of connecting his community with Saguaro. Juárez is a miracle, really. He has birth defects that caused shortened upper limbs and missing digits, and a cardiac condition. His mother was a single parent and a migrant farm worker in California’s Central Valley, where she likely was exposed to pesticides associated with defects suffered by her son and now her grandson as well. Read more…

Take the 2019 Olympia Stewardship Challenge

As Mountaineers, we enjoy thousands of miles of trails and waterways throughout our public lands. We must set a compelling example as principled stewards who are willing to work hard to maintain the lands we enjoy. The Olympia Branch is challenging you to dedicate one day (or more!) this year to stewarding our public lands. This challenge is a great way to give back to our outdoor playgrounds and meet a vibrant community of volunteers. Read more…

Voices Heard | Belonging in Nature

In 2005, Dr. Carolyn Finney visited the Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site in Atlanta with her father, a stoic man who grew up in the segregated South. She was startled when he grabbed her with a stricken look on his face. “I thought he was having a heart attack,” Finney said during a recent lecture at the University of Washington. Read more…

The Government Is Temporarily Reopened – Let’s be Patient as Land Managers Get back to Work

On Friday, a temporary funding measure was passed to reopen the federal government. The move marks the first step in getting our public lands up and running at full capacity, but recreationists should take heed that there’s still a long way to go. Read more…

What the New Congress Means for Public Lands

January 3, 2019 marked the start of the 116th Congress, and with it a new landscape for outdoor advocates to navigate. Here are some key changes to keep in mind as we work to conserve the public lands and waters of the Pacific Northwest and beyond: Read more…

Action Alert: The Government Shutdown and Its Impact on Public Lands

The government shutdown is now the longest in history, and it may continue for weeks or even months. One of the most visible manifestations of the shutdown has been its effects on our national parks, many of which are being kept open despite having few staff and no budget. Read more…

Winter Wildlands Backcountry Film Festival - Jan 10 & Jan 21

Calling all “go big or go home” winter enthusiasts! Get ready to get goosebumps while you “Ooh!” and “Ahh!” at the impact and importance of our winter wildlands through this collection of short films. The fourteenth annual Winter Wildlands Alliance Backcountry Film Festival will screen in  Bellevue on January 10 and in Seattle at The Mountaineers Seattle Program Center on January 21.  Read more…

New Things to Try in 2019 (with Mountaineers Books)

Welcome to 2019, everyone! It’s that time of the year when ambitions are high, and confidence is running even higher. It’s really time to carpe that diem! And if you are not already cranking your music playlist to loop “Eye of the Tiger” ad nauseam because you are not sure what to do this year, hey – we got a few suggestions for you. Veni, vidi, vici! (Guess who just checked “learning Latin” off this year’s list?) Read more…

Conservation Currents | What Does the Future of Conservation Look Like?

Lovers of wild places owe a lot to the year 1968. That fall, Congress gave us three key conservation victories: the establishment of North Cascades National Park, the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act, and the National Trails System Act. Read more…

Voices Heard | Solitude vs. Community: There’s No “Right” Way to Be Outside

The first time I tried my hand at astrophotography (shooting the stars, as opposed to shooting stars) was on a clear night just outside Mount Rainier National Park. I was renting a cabin with my wife and her family, a trio of sisters from Colombia who spoke frequently about the possibility of seeing wildlife. I left them for the pitch darkness down the road along the Nisqually River. Read more…