Hoh River Trust Update
Dear Friends and Hoh River Supporters,
Itís been a full year since I took on the role as Executive Director of the Hoh River Trust, and Iím excited about the progress we have made over the last year to help preserve this great river. In these unsettled times, its personally rewarding to be working on a project that can have such a positive impact on both the environment and the community. I greatly appreciate the support and generosity from those who have helped out along the way. We have a big job in front of us to manage the land we have acquired, and Iím confident that we can partner with the local community to create a cooperative stewardship effort that is a model for river conservation.
The Trust now owns over 4,500 acres within a 10,000 acre corridor that extends from the Olympic National Park boundary to the Pacific Ocean. Efforts continue to acquire more land and we hope to eventually have over 7,000 acres preserved. To date, the Trust has received approximately $8.8mm in federal funds earmarked for protecting habitat for endangered species. The funds were granted through the Washington State Department of Natural Resources specifically for the acquisition of these important lands.
The Trustís work is really focused in three areas; restoration, stewardship, and outreach. We are working to restore the industrial timberland to a more naturally evolving condition that will enhance habitat for the dependent species. We oversee the condition of the property and ensure that its uses are compatible with our conservation objectives. And we engage the community in a meaningful way to ensure that this land retains its recreational and cultural vitality, and that ultimately the community has a true sense of ownership and stewardship over these lands. Iíve highlighted below some of our accomplishments this year.
Land and Forest Management Plans
These plans that were created in partnership with the Cascade Land Conservancy are in place and serve as the roadmap for the Hoh River Trust to follow in its restoration and stewardship activities.
Summer Youth Program
We kicked off our inaugural summer youth work internship employing a University of Washington undergraduate majoring in Fisheries and two Forks High School kids. Under the capable supervision of Mike Hagen, our Director of Land Management, this team performed a variety of restoration, maintenance, and science-related projects.
Habitat for Humanity
The Trust arranged for the donation of all of the electrical supplies needed for the construction of a Habitat for Humanity home in Forks. We will continue to provide such support in the planned construction of up to nine homes.
Through the generous financial support of Sage Manufacturing, the premier manufacturer of fly fishing rods and reels, the Trust created a fly tying materials kit that has been sold at the Orvis stores in Bellevue and Denver. The merchandising and packaging of the product promotes the work of the Hoh River Trust. We expect to completely sell out the product over the coming holiday season.
In partnership with the Hoh Tribe, the University of British Columbia, and others, we are supporting the work of a PhD Candidate in his efforts to determine improved reforestation techniques. An important benefit of this work will be the testing and development of natural means of combating spruce tip weevil infestations that are prevalent in the spruce forests on the Peninsula.
Cooperative Restoration Work
We have applied for and received verbal approval of an award to repair a major culvert blockage that will open up over two miles of fish habitat in a small tributary of Nolan Creek, which is an important spawning and rearing tributary of the Hoh. We will work very closely with the Hoh Tribe, the Wild Salmon Center, and other state and private fish and conservation groups on this important project that is estimated to cost up to $200,000.
We have identified several other important restoration opportunities where we will seek public funding and community partnerships.
New Website Launched
A beautiful and compelling website was launched that does a great job of introducing the project and showcasing the ecosystem, the history of the region, and the community. Take some time to explore it at www.hohrivertrust.org.
We have expanded the Hoh River Trust Board of Directors with the addition of five outstanding individuals, including two from the Forks/Hoh Valley community. We will continue to seek out board members who share in the passion of this project, and who are motivated to help us achieve our strategic and funding objectives. (If thatís you, please call me!)
The Trust held an event at the Bellevue Orvis store in February introducing the project to a broader Seattle-area audience. Not intended as a fundraiser, the event raised over $50,000 as a result of an unexpected and generous challenge grant by an anonymous supporter, inspiring many in attendance to make a donation.
Our development efforts throughout the year have been rewarded with generous support from a variety of private individuals and foundations, many of which are the most respected foundations in the region.
I again want to thank those of you who have supported this effort, and hope that you are encouraged enough by our progress to continue that support. You can make a financial contribution via our website at www.hohrivertrust.org, or mail a check payable to the Hoh River Trust at 1512 46th Ave SW, Seattle, WA 98116. The Trust is a 501 (c) 3 non profit organization and your contributions are tax deductible.
If you have any comments, questions, or suggestions, please donít hesitate to call or email. Enjoy the rest of you summer!!
Hoh River Trust
1512 46th Ave SW
Seattle, WA 98116
Learn more about the Trust at www.hohrivertrust.org
-Lost poor realitive of the Simms family fishing fortune
I have to commend you on your efforts. I spent this last February on the Hoh chasing beautiful steelhead, and it was absolutely stunning. Such a gem should be preserved for all to see in its natural state. Once again thank you from the bottom of my heart. For anyone out there that hasn't seen the Hoh river, you really must go.
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