Conservation & Advocacy

Conservation & Advocacy

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Impact Giving | Gearing Up New Adventurers

It’s a hot afternoon in July, but the Seattle Program Center basement is invitingly cool. Ethan Metzger, Gear Library Manager, sits at an old wooden desk. He is surrounded by shelves full of packs, snowshoes, and boots from floor to ceiling. A rolling workbench is cluttered with repair and cleaning supplies and a couple of large tents are set up to air out.  Read more…

Volunteer Opportunity - Olympic National Forest Sustainable Trails Survey

Join the Olympia Branch as they work to support the Olympic National Forest's Sustainable Recreation Study. The study is designed to engage the public in the care of trails and gather feedback on individual trail management. Read more…

The Case for Geotagging

I took two years away from social media for a much-needed cleanse several years ago. Before going off the grid, I posted three times a day, intending to gain traction for my hiking blog. But as much as I enjoyed beautiful landscape photos, I found I needed a break from seeing evasive posts from the self-proclaimed "influencers" or "inspirers" with a large following on Instagram and Facebook. Read more…

Protect the Mount St. Helens Area from Mining

Directly bordering the monument, the upper Green River Valley is an ecologically important landscape beloved for its scenic views and many recreation opportunities. Early versions of the bill to designate Mount St. Helens a national monument included protections for the valley, but those lands were carved out of the final version to protect mining interests. Left unprotected, the valley continues to face the threat of development. Read more…

Meet The Mountaineers Conservation & Advocacy Committee

At its heart, conservation is about people - people with strong outdoor connections that steward and protect our landscapes, and grow a community of advocates for our wild places. The people that power conservation at The Mountaineers aren’t just our staff, they’re members and volunteers driven to preserve the outdoor experience for future generations. Read more…

Stewardship Trip Report: Glacial Heritage Preserve

Glacial Heritage is a special native prairie ecosystem. It is one of the premier prairie conservation sites in the South Puget Sound region, and is only open to the public once a year on Prairie Appreciation Day, May 14.  Read more…

Conservation 101: The Mountaineers Conservation History

When you hear the word “conservation,” what comes to mind? To us, conservation can mean protecting natural landscapes for public enjoyment through the creation of national parks, forests, and wilderness areas. It can also mean individual acts of advocacy, stewardship, or low-impact recreation. Read more…

Stewarding Mount Rainier National Park: A Conversation with Volunteer Margot Tsakonas

Mountaineers have cherished the natural beauty and challenges offered by Mount Rainier since our beginning, and stewardship and volunteering have always been a part of that story. Early members helped build the original Wonderland Trail, and many current and former members volunteer their time to care for this special place today. Read more…

Stevens Lodge Stewardship Weekend - June 24-26, 2022

Are you looking for a fun and rewarding stewardship experience? Join us for a weekend at Stevens Lodge to give back Friday, June 24 through Sunday, June 26. You can join for one or more days to help tear out an old bathroom and prepare it for a much-needed remodel. We will also clean out the lodge of 40+ year of accumulated junk.  Read more…

Hunting for Watermelon Snow: A citizen science project to track snow algae and its environmental effects

The incongruous streaks of red and pink on the snowfield look like faint blood stains across the side of the mountain. I quicken my pace, excited to finally find my quarry after two days of hiking in the Goat Rocks Wilderness. I step gingerly onto the snow and head straight for the darkest patch of red as I pull a sample tube out of my pocket. I fill it with the vibrant, pink-tinted snow, screw on the cap tightly, and label it with my coordinates. This small vial, which at first glance looks like a prop in a bad horror movie, is filled with tiny bits of algae that live a fascinating life in the mountains – one that is tied to the larger stories of climate change in our home ranges. Read more…

Ananth's Rainier 100: A collection of thoughts on 100 peaks

Mount Rainier National Park (MRNP) is one of the oldest national parks in the country, and also one of the most visited. Home to the highest volcanic peak in the contiguous United States and the largest alpine glacial system outside of Alaska, it’s no wonder that people come from near and far to appreciate its beauty. Read more…

Mountains to Sound Greenway National Heritage Area Update

The Mountains to Sound Greenway is an ecologically diverse corridor stretching 100 miles from Seattle to Ellensburg. A focal area for Mountaineers adventures, the Greenway’s 1,600 miles of trails are home to many of the places we ski, hike, climb, and bike. Whether taking in stunning views of the Cascade crest, climbing at Exit 38, or hiking to Rattlesnake Ledge, the Greenway’s landscapes and the outdoor opportunities they provide help preserve our region’s unique history and culture. Read more…

Did You Know | High Country Bumble Bee

After a long winter, there's nothing more wonderful than seeing the mountains in bloom. It’s that time of year when hikers are returning to the trails, hoping to admire the petals popping up to color our landscapes. Of course, wildflowers wouldn’t be possible without pollinators. But did you know that out of the 28 species of bumble bees found in the Northwest, one in particular is largely responsible for our alpine blooms? Read more…

Action Alert: Help take federal climate investments across the finish line

Whether out in the backcountry or your own neighborhood, Mountaineers see and experience the worsening impacts of the climate crisis in our communities and the natural landscapes we love. As the Pacific Northwest faces earlier and more intense wildfire seasons, unprecedented heat waves, severe droughts, and more frequent flooding, the need to fight climate change is more urgent than ever. Read more…

Conservation & Advocacy: April 2022 Town Hall Recap

The Mountaineers has a special role to play when it comes to conservation and advocacy. We represent a community of active outdoor users with deep connections to our landscapes, making us effective stewards and powerful advocates for the outdoors. Read more…

SOAR Act Advances in U.S. Senate

We’re thrilled to share that legislation we’ve been working on for over seven years - the Simplifying Outdoor Access for Recreation (SOAR) Act - passed out of the Senate Energy & Natural Resources Committee. Next, the bill will head to the Senate floor for a vote. That means we’re one step closer to fixing the current inefficient, unpredictable recreational permitting system, which creates barriers for people to experience the outdoors through outdoor programs like The Mountaineers.  Read more…

Trip Report: Outdoor Alliance Washington Talks Equitable Outdoor Access with Rep. Marilyn Strickland

Last year, we announced that The Mountaineers is leading Outdoor Alliance Washington, a group of organizations representing the human-powered outdoor recreation community in Washington State. Outdoor Alliance Washington meets with elected officials to advocate for funding to improve outdoor recreation opportunities and conserve our public lands. While we often meet through Zoom or in an office, it’s much more fun - and effective - to meet in officials’  districts in parks and public lands. Read more…

Conservation Currents | A Brighter Future for Washington’s Forests

 For years, Mountaineers Super Volunteer Richard Babunovic loaded up his Subaru Outback and headed to Mt. Pilchuck - his favorite mountain. Read more…

Conservation 101: What are Public Lands?

Public lands are central to The Mountaineers experience. Playing host to our programs and activities, these parks, trails, waterways, and other open spaces connect us to nature and provide many public health benefits. North Cascades National Park, Deception Pass State Park, and Tiger Mountain State Forest are just a few of Washington’s popular public lands. Public lands are managed for different conservation objectives and recreational uses, but public access for recreation remains a common thread that defines these places. Read more…

Join us for a Conservation & Advocacy Town Hall - Apr 27

The Mountaineers has a long history of protecting our natural landscapes. Time and time again, small individual actions have led to big victories for Washington’s outdoors, from the formation of Olympic National Park to the recent expansion of the Alpine Lakes Wilderness. Today, we continue our proud legacy by educating our members on how to be thoughtful stewards, advocating for the places we explore, and inspiring the outdoor community to take action for threatened landscapes.  Read more…

Public Lands Win Big in State Legislative Session

The Washington State Legislature just wrapped up its 2022 session on March 10. This year legislators met for a short 60-day session to pass legislation and enact supplemental budgets for our state. Each legislative session, The Mountaineers works with other organizations to advocate for bills and funding requests that improve conservation and recreation in Washington.  Read more…

10 Essential Questions: Conor Marshall

Each week we bring you a personal story from one of our members. For our member profile this week we talked to... Read more…

Stewardship is a Year-Round Calling for Members of the Olympia Branch

Stewardship is a key component of maintaining the health and vitality of our trail systems. The Olympia Branch is known for its robust stewardship program, supporting trail work across the lower Puget Sound region and into the peninsula. However, the work isn't just completed in the sunnier months - winter is a busy time for these volunteers as well. Learn about what the Olympia Conservation Committee has been up to this season, and how you can help.  Read more…

How We’re Reducing Our Carbon Footprint: Ebikes

The Mountaineers made a commitment to reduce our organization’s carbon footprint as part of Vision 2022. In the Carbon Footprint Reduction Committee’s last blog post, we introduced you to carbon offsets. In this blog, we talk about the benefits of ebikes. Read more…

Conservation 101: What is Advocacy, and Why is it Important

Conservation advocacy has been an enduring priority throughout The Mountaineers history. Early members recognized the importance of protecting wild places for the outdoor experience, and as a result we have been involved in nearly every major conservation campaign in our state's history. Advocacy has been, and remains, at the heart of key environmental protections.  Read more…

Action Alert! Help Fund Washington’s Public Lands

Here in Washington, we’re fortunate to have 6.5 million acres of state-managed parks and public land. Whether it’s climbing at Frenchman’s Coulee near Vantage, paddling Deception Pass, or hiking through the Snoqualmie River Valley, our state public lands play host to many Mountaineers activities and other outdoor experiences. But, as anyone who has tried to get a summer camping reservation in a state park can attest, our state parks and trails are heavily used, especially during the Covid-19 pandemic.  Read more…

Washington’s Role in the National Goal to Protect 30% of Lands and Waters

The Pacific Northwest’s lands and waters provide so many recreational opportunities, from traversing glaciers to camping in lush evergreen forests. But as Mountaineers know well, the future of our recreational pursuits depends on protecting the places we love, now more than ever, as the climate and biodiversity crises reshape outdoor landscapes. Conserving our lands and waters is urgent, and land managers and policymakers must adapt and find new tools to meet these complex challenges. Read more…

It’s Electric! The Tacoma Program Center Takes Its Foot off the Gas

Next time you shed your jacket or turn on the tap at the Tacoma Program Center (TPC), take a moment to bask in our all-electric heat and hot water. We are proud to report that Phase II of our Net-Zero Energy Project is complete - a milestone in our quest to go 100 percent carbon-neutral at the TPC! Read more…

Conservation Currents | The Great American Outdoors Act, One Year Later

Let’s be honest: if our national parks and forests had a Yelp rating, it wouldn’t be five stars. Many of us encounter potholed roads, decrepit restrooms, and eroded trails all too often on our outdoor adventures. That’s why The Mountaineers has been fighting for years for better funding for our parks and public lands. Read more…

How #ProtectTheArctic Went Viral and Helped Stop Arctic Drilling

The Arctic National Wildlife Refuge is the United States’ largest wildlife refuge, a place of tremendous ecological importance, where birds from all 50 states migrate to each year. But in January 2021, the future of the Arctic Refuge looked uncertain.
Read more…