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Don't Let Motors Silence the Wild

Dear Guardian,

Did you know that the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest in Washington has 2,500 miles of roads? That’s more than the distance from Seattle to Houston. Or visualize Washington State—an area that is 18 times as big as this forest but with only twice as many roads (rural and urban roads combined). Clearly roads are densely distributed in this wild place.

Send your comments today to the U.S. Forest Service to speak out for the wild being crisscrossed with roads.

Many of these old national forest roads are damaged and eroding. Streams are polluted by sediment-filled runoff, wildlife habitat is bisected by mazes of roads and now maintenance dollars for fixes are virtually non-existent.

What if one of these roads was rewilded to connect habitat for the gray wolf, Canada lynx or grizzly bear? Or another was reclaimed to stop dirt from pouring into streams—suffocating Chinook salmon eggs? Options exist—but the quiet voice for wildness is being overrun by motors.

The Forest Service has finally started to look in-detail at its oversized and undermaintained road system. Let them know you value reclaiming these roads.

Some forests have already finished this work but some—like the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie—are just beginning. We are asking you today to speak up for wildlife and wild fish and wild rivers because their voices are not being heard.

Before October 31, fill out the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest’s online questionnaire. Even if you are not familiar with specific roads, at least tell the Forest Service that you are one quiet voice speaking up for wildness.
Stay tuned to the Wild Places program as we scrutinize this work on the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie and other forests across the West.

For the wild,
Marlies Wierenga signature R2

staff_photo_Marlies_Wierenga

Marlies Wierenga
Pacific Northwest Conservation Manager
mwierenga@wildearthguardians.org

Mt. Hood recovered road pc WildEarth Guardiansphoto credit: WildEarth Guardians

Unneeded road converted to a trail in the Mt. Hood National Forest.

Mt Baker Snoqualmie National Forest reclaimed road
photo credit: USFS


Unneeded road in the Mt. Baker – Snoqualmie reclaimed for the wild.  Roadbed has been tilled and mulched to re-establish natural hydrology and speed plant growth.


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Monitor progress at the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest here.

 

 

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