Klickitat Canyon, photo by Brian Chambers Photography
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: The Conservation Alliance awards Columbia Land Trust $50,000 grant to conserve Klickitat Canyon

Vancouver, WA— Columbia Land Trust is excited to announce the receipt of a $50,000 grant from The Conservation Alliance to help fund the conservation of 3,200 acres of forestland along Klickitat Canyon. The grant will provide crucial funding to complete the second phases of a broader 5,600-acres conservation effort nearly a decade in the making.

The Conservation Alliance is a group of outdoor industry companies that disburses its collective annual membership dues to support community-based campaigns that protect wild spaces for their habitat and recreation values. This is the first Conservation Alliance grant awarded to Columbia Land Trust, whose work conserves and cares for land across the Columbia River region. The area is widely regarded as mecca for outdoor adventure both by retailers and recreationists.

“We are proud to fund Columbia Land Trust’s Klickitat Canyon Conservation Project,” said John Sterling, executive director of The Conservation Alliance. “Conservation Alliance member companies recognize the importance of protecting this area for recreation, wildlife, and habitat connectivity along the Wild and Scenic Klickitat River.”

The Klickitat Canyon project represents a unique opportunity to conserve and restore critical wildlife habitat, protect a cherished cultural and recreational resource, and support local forest economies.

The Klickitat River is the longest undammed river in the state of Washington, flowing 95 miles from the Goat Rocks Wilderness Area in the Central Cascades, through the Yakama Reservation, and then along a mosaic of private forest and ranchland. Designated a National Wild & Scenic River, the Klickitat gives life to endangered salmon and steelhead, wildlife such as cougar, bear and mountain goat, migratory songbirds and, in the spring, a burst of wildflowers enfolding its watershed. There are precious few places like it.

The rugged golden hillsides and glacial waters of the Klickitat are part of the rich cultural fabric of the region, where American Indians have lived for millennia and the Yakama Nation today sustainably manages 650,000 acres of forest. The area is also a recreational resource for local hunters, anglers, bird watchers, rafters, kayakers and hikers, drawing thousands of visitors annually, creating multi-million dollar local industries.

“The Klickitat Canyon project is a great example of collaborative, community-driven conservation,”  said Glenn Lamb, executive director of Columbia Land Trust. “We’re finding common ground with the Yakama Nation, county leadership, and adjacents communities based on a shared love for the nature of this place.”

The Land Trust hopes to complete first phase of the Klickitat Canyon conservation project by the end of 2016, and the second phase by the end of 2017, resulting in the permanent protection of 5,600 acres of forestland and nearly three miles of river. Bolstered by the support of The Conservation Alliance, we are well positioned to ensure that this scenic, irreplaceable landscape is protected for generations to come.