Protecting Wilderness in the North Cascades

Washington’s designated wilderness areas are incredibly diverse, ranging from hundreds of small islands off the western coast, to rugged, glaciated mountains, to dry, windswept sand dunes in the south-central part of the state. A number of them reside within the fabled North Cascades Ecosystem, a 28,000-square-mile region that stretches west to east from the coast of the Salish Sea to the shrub-steppe habitat of the Okanogan River, and north to south from the Canadian border to the timothy hay producing region of Kittitas Valley.

Wild and unkempt, this land is home to incredibly diverse habitat teeming with wildlife, including the charismatic gray wolf, Canada lynx and wolverine. Wilderness allows visitors the opportunity to unmask, breathe deep and find refuge from the modern world. These unique landscapes leave a person reveling in their raw beauty and the assurance that they will remain unchanged, now and for future generations.

And yet, there are places within wilderness that threaten their sustainability. Some 3,600 acres of privately owned lands grandfathered into the state’s wilderness designations have left it vulnerable to mineral extraction, logging and private development, leaving the wild irrevocably tamed, the unkempt managed, the beauty permanently altered.

We Need Your Help Protecting This Wild Land
The Wilderness Land Trust has 10 projects underway in the state of Washington. This includes the acquisition of four properties totaling 346 acres and the transfers of six private properties to public ownership to become wilderness that total 830 acres. When this current slate of projects is complete, a total of 1,176 acres of new wilderness will be added to Washington’s wilderness areas and permanently protected from private development, now and for future generations.

Consider Joining Our Efforts
A total of $400,000 is needed to accomplish this goal. To date, several funders have committed $200,000, leaving $200,000 remaining to cover the cost of land acquisition, with 25 percent of each gift used to support lands staff time and required due diligence to transfer each parcel.

The deadline for securing this vital funding is Sept. 1, 2021.

About The Wilderness Land Trust 
Founded in 1992, The Wilderness Land Trust is the only organization solely dedicated to removing these threats from within and adjacent the boundaries of designated wilderness, or directly in the path of future wilderness designations. This is accomplished by purchasing these properties from willing sellers and then transferring them over to public ownership to be incorporated into the surrounding wilderness.

Land acquisition is a lengthy and complicated process that includes remote site visits, environmental analysis, appraisals, land owner negotiations and execution of complex contracts. Once a property is purchased, the Trust immediately embarks upon a similar journey to transfer the land over to the managing agency.

The Wilderness Land Trust has 10 projects underway across the state of Washington, including seven in the Wild Sky and Henry M. Jackson Wilderness areas. Combined, these two wilderness areas encompass more than 200,000 acres of ragged, exposed mountain peaks, deep glaciated valleys, dense old growth forests, and tumbling clear waters located in the north Cascade
mountain range.

Thank you for your consideration. With your generous support, nearly 1,200 acres will soon be protected forever from the threat of residential, industrial or commercial development and transferred over to public ownership where it belongs.


Ingrid Ougland
Bainbridge Island, WA
The Wilderness Land Trust
Registered nonprofit
Donations are typically 100% tax deductible in the US.

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