Saturday, May 25, 2024

Project implementation for the Upper Wenatchee Pilot Project begins this spring

Community Open House is April 25 at Lake Wenatchee Rec Club


LEAVENWORTH— Natural resource specialists with the U.S. Forest Service and Chelan County Natural Resources are partnering with the North Central Washington Forest Health Collaborative (NCWFHC) to host a community open house that will provide an update on implementation plans for the Upper Wenatchee Pilot Project.


The open house is from 5 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, April 25, at the Lake Wenatchee Recreation Club, 14400 Chiwawa Loop Road, near Leavenworth.


“Working closely with the Forest Service, many partners and forest stakeholders have contributed much time and energy over the course of several years to raise needed funds, organize field trips, and review and add recommendations that will ultimately lead to the successful accomplishments of the Upper Wenatchee Pilot Project,” said Lloyd McGee, Eastern Washington Program manager for the Nature Conservancy and former NCWFHC co-chairman. 


“This open house is the perfect time and place to learn about the implementation work that will be starting this spring and coming in the foreseeable future. If you are interested in this 75,000-acre landscape, you will want to attend this meeting to know what types of treatments will be accomplished to create forest resiliency, reduce wildfire impacts, protect our communities and wildlife, and produce local jobs that will stimulate our economy,” McGee said. “Please bring your friends and neighbors and join us at the open house.”


Forest health restoration treatments will begin this spring in the vicinity of Plain and Lake Wenatchee. Restoration treatments are designed to improve stand health and restore fire to the landscape to reduce the risks of and effects from catastrophic wildfires. Work will include commercial and non-commercial tree thinning, prescribed fire, road construction and road decommissioning. Implementation will occur in phases through 2030. 


Community members interested in learning about planned treatments are also encouraged to visit the open house’s information tables, which will be available prior to the planned presentation. A project overview will be presented at 6 p.m., followed by an opportunity to talk with resource specialists. Staff from partner agencies and organizations will be on hand to share information about resources available to private property owners.

Partners include Lake Wenatchee Fire & Rescue, the Washington Department of Natural Resources, Lake Wenatchee Fire Adapted Communities, Cascadia Conservation District’s Forest & Community Resilience Program, and Blue Forest Conservation. 


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