|Washington’s Whistler Canyon Protected|
As 2013 was coming to a close, local hikers, climbers, horseback riders, and community members joined forces to protect a critical property in Okanogan County of north central Washington. The 63-acre property serves as the access point for a popular trail network and dozens of rock climbs, as well as access to climbing further up the canyon.
In an unfortunate series of events, the County put the property up for auction for possible conversion to a quarry, putting recreational access and wildlife habitat at imminent risk. Local nonprofits immediately came together in an effort to protect the property, and came to the Access Fund for support. Kinross Corporation, which runs the local Buckhorn Mine, stepped in to purchase the property to show their support of local conservation. Washington State Department of Ecology approved the purchase for open space protection, assuring conservation of the property in perpetuity. Access Fund provided a letter of support towards implementing this solution and the property will be protected for future generations.