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Whatcom Welcomes New Forested Park

Posted by Loren Drummond at Mar 13, 2013 04:35 PM |
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In great news for hikers, Whatcom County Council approved a new park for the county with a vote of 5-2 last night. The new Lake Whatcom Forest Preserve Park, at almost 8,844 acres, will be one of the largest local parks in the nation.

In great news for hikers, Whatcom County Council approved a new park for the county with a vote of 5-2 last night. Once approved by the state Board of Recreation, the new Lake Whatcom Forest Preserve Park, at 8,844 acres, will become one of the largest local parks in the nation. (Portland's Forest Park, as a point of comparison, is about 5,100 acres.)

Speaking up for new northwest recreation opportunities

WTA's Northwest Regional Manager Arlen Bogaards spoke at the meeting, highlighting the accomplishments of WTA's local trail volunteers and partnerships to create great trail systems, including recent trail work at nearby Larrabee State Park. Dozens of trail users that included families, hikers, mountain bikers and trail runners also spoke up on behalf of the new park.

Washington Trails Association and other groups, including Conservation Northwest, have all advocated strongly for the county creating the new park from lands previously held by the state for timber harvest.

The demand for outdoor recreation in and around Bellingham continues to grow, and the new park will provide hikers new recreation opportunities in a wild forest landscape while preserving a local ecological resource. As many as 55 miles of new trails are proposed in the coming years.

As the number of trail users and volunteers in the Northwest region of the state grows, WTA is eager to help Whatcom County land managers and elected officials plan for the future of this landscape.

What's involved in building a brand new trail?

While it may be a while before the new park trails are created, you can join WTA in building a brand new trail at Larrabee State Park from The Cyrus Gates Overlook at the top of Cleator Road to Lost Lake through some amazing cliff bands and previously uncharted territory in the Chuckanuts.

> Volunteer on this new trail on Saturday, Mar 16 or on Sunday, Mar. 17.

> Read more about the meeting from the Bellingham Herald

Comments

Lake Whatcom Park

Rather than look to a co-operative arrangement such as Tiger Mountain, the Whatcom County Council is taking working forest. Rather than maintaining a sustainable forest resource this land will become a sink for tax dollars. Which parks will recieve less to support this new area?

Short sighted and selfish; another trophy of "preservation" on the wall. No notion of local working forest to provide the products we need. As with farm land we need to preserve our working forests. Sustainably managed they provide timber AND recreational opportunities. Canadian lumber producers are laughing at us.

Posted by:


"paul wagner" on Mar 18, 2013 12:31 PM