The land surrounding Cottonwood Lake Regional Park and Apex Ski Area, just South of Nelson, is privately owned and scheduled to be clear cut as early as March 1, 2019.
Is that bad?
- The area provides important habitat for Grizzly Bears (a species at risk) and other wildlife within the wetlands, riparian forests and mixed forests of ponderosa pine, white pine, douglas-fir, western larch, and western red-cedar. This diversity must be preserved.
- The sensitive wetland ecosystem feeds two watersheds and local water licenses. Clear cutting will threaten the water quality and overall health of this wetland which currently acts as an important filter for downstream water users.
- In 20-40 years the forests will mature and qualify as old-growth, which holds much importance for biodiversity.
- It’s an important recreation area for hikers, fishers, bikers, skaters, and cross-country skiers. Cottonwood Lake, in particular, is rare for its ease of access and quiet waters. The very young to the very old, and everyone in between, can fish and boat safely here.
- It’s beautiful and, if it is cut, it will be a visual blight to visitors and anyone passing through on the way to Whitewater, Salmo, or the US border.
- It plays a key role in attracting economic development to the area. New companies come and set up shop here because of our nature and recreational assets.
It’s potentially dangerous not to protect it.
- Landslides and avalanches are a real threat. Experts explain that, when trees are removed off this steep area, slope erosion and instability, silting in waterways, and avalanches are much more likely.
- Downstream Flooding risk will increase. Spring melt will be different - more rapid, with higher flows and will carry more debris. The Cottonwood Creek channel has limited capacity already.
- And last, this area is in our hearts! We grew up here, skied and skated with our kids here. We must do all we can do to keep it for our future.
What can we do about it?
We have an opportunity to buy it and save it.
- Please support this campaign. For every dollar we raise, we expect to get 10-20x in matching funds from grants.
- If we are unsuccessful, all money raised from this GoFundMe campaign will be refunded back to you through GoFundMe.
Who are we?
We are a group of concerned Nelson and area residents.
- We are in the process of forming the Cottonwood Lake Preservation Society (non-profit) to manage this campaign.
Need more info?