Obama Makes Important Move to Protect Roadless Areas

Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack — who has jurisdiction over the management of National Forests — announced an interim rule today aimed at protecting inventoried roadless areas until the Obama Administration can develop a long-term policy for these wild forests. The rule, which expires in one year, requires that Vilsack sign off on any road construction or logging projects in roadless areas. The new rule prevents individual forest supervisors from approving projects that are inconsistent with Obama's commitment to protecting our remaining roadless forests. The rule also applies to the Tongass National Forest in Alaska, our largest National Forest which had been excluded from the Roadless Rule under the Bush Administration. Click here to read the full order.

Conservation Alliance Goes to Washington

Conservation Alliance board members Gareth Martins (Osprey Packs) and Conrad Anker (The North Face) joined Executive Director John Sterling on a whirlwind visit to Washington, DC to talk to Congressional offices about the economic benefits of protecting wild lands and rivers. The trio (pictured here with Colorado Rep. John Salazar) met with 20 offices in two days, and encouraged these elected officials to support efforts to protect public lands throughout the US. The group also thanked offices for supporting the Omnibus Public Land Management Act, which President Obama signed into law on March 30. The bill protects three million acres of land and 1000 miles of rivers.

Check out Gareth's blog post about the trip here.

Another Victory! Vermont Climbing Crag Protected

Recent Conservation Alliance grantee CRAG-Vermont has succeeded in its effort to purchase and protect Upper West Bolton Cliff (aka "Resin Ridge"), a popular crag near Burlington, Vermont. The Conservation Alliance was a leading supporter of the campaign to purchase this 18-acre property. Over the years, the Alliance has supported several key climbing area acquisitions. Previous efforts have protected lands around Laurel Knob (NC), Castleton Tower (UT), Peshastin Pinnacles (WA), Indian Creek (UT), the Gunks (NY), and Mecca (NV).

Backyard Collective in Boring, Oregon

A Hearty Group of Volunteers Make it Happen in Boring

Friday May 15, 2009 representatives from KEEN Footwear, Lizard Lounge, REI, Moon Photography, Save our Wild Salmon, Trout Unlimited, Clackamas River Basin Council, WaterWatch and Friends of Boring Trails joined forces to be the first hands on the ground in a new four-acre park in Boring, Oregon. 

The group started the day removing English Ivy and Himalayan Blackberry; tough jobs cutting through the ivy vines that were choking the existing trees and enduring the thorns of the blackberry.  Through perseverance we saved over 50 trees and cleared enough land to reestablish the area with a variety of native species.  We planted over 200 plants including big leaf maple, alder, vine maple, flowering red currant, oregon grape, cascara, western red cedar, sword ferns and service berry.

Another great Backyard Collective and hats off to this hearty group of workers!!!

Next up – Seattle Backyard Collective, May 29 at Lincoln Park.


Great Day in the Badlands! Bend Backyard Collective is a Big Hit

grantee booths - Bend ByCOn Friday, May 8, 70 volunteers from the Bend area joined The Conservation Alliance for a day of field work in the sunny Badlands.  This enthusiastic group was a collection of individuals that work for local Conservation Alliance member companies Ruff Wear, Footzone, Pandora's Backpack, Moon Photo and Quick Feat International, as well as representatives from Oregon based non-profits organizations that have received funding from the Alliance.  Oregon Natural Desert Association, Oregon Wild, Trust for Public Land, Save our Wild Salmon, Deschutes Land Trust, Central Oregon Landwatch and WaterWatch of Oregon each set up a table to share information with the attendees about projects and initiatives that are happening around the state of Oregon.

Micah WolfThe day started at noon with lunch served by Tate and Tate Catering and time for participants to learn about local projects.  The beautiful desert setting was augmented by live music provided by Micah Wolf.  Having his chill sound provided backyard bar-b-que feel to the afternoon; we hope to continue this partnership at future events!

At 1pm Friends of the Badlands leader David Eddleston explained the various work opportunities and split the volunteers into smaller groups who then headed out into the Badlands to post new trail signs, clean up trailheads and camouflage old roads for 4 hours in the warm afternoon sun.  Sunburns, great conversations and good work filled the afternoon and everyone seemed to enjoy themselves.  Once the work was done the group reconvened at the Oregon Natural Desert Association offices in downtown Bend to share in a keg of Badlands Bitter Ale provided by Silvermoon Brewery and listen more of Micah Wolf's music.

Check out the tallies from the day!

  • 62 volunteers participated for 4 hours, 248 volunteer hours
  • Aprox. 324 total miles walked by volunteers
  • One volunteer on horseback, with Pack saddle horse, dropping off old jumper fence posts for installation, (prior to the event), 12 hours
  • 60 lbs of trash collected! – about 45 lbs of garbage from the Old Borrow Pit at the south end of Larry Chitwood Trail, and about 15 lbs from Reynolds Pond Trailhead
  • One sign repaired, with a new juniper fence post.
  • Two brand new signs installed, one at Badlands Rock Trailhead, one at the south end of the Larry Chitwood Trail
  • One brand new marquee reader board and large map installed at Larry Chitwood Trailhead
  • 3 obsolete side trails closed with juniper material
  • Two obsolete carsonite posts pulled
  • One keg of Badlands Bitter Ale consumed (at the after party of course!)

This Friday, May 15, we will host another Backyard Collective in Boring, Oregon, just 40 minutes outside of Portland.  Participating member companies include KEEN, REI, Patagonia, Horny Toad and Moon Photography.  Participating non-profits include Save our Wild Salmon, Oregon Wild, Clackamas River Basin Council, Oregon Natural Desert Association, WaterWatch, Trout Unlimited, Friends of Boring Trails and Klamath-Siskiyou Wildlands Center.


Help The Conservation Alliance Become the Eco-Champion

One of The Conservation Alliance's founding member companies, The North Face, is running a campaign on Brickfish Social Media website to identify an Eco-Champion.  The campaign is called "Be an Eco-Champion" and the winning organization will received $15,000.  This is an opportunity to vote for an organization that is doing their part to improve the environment.

The above link will take you directly to The Conservation Alliance page where you can easily cast your vote and help us move up in the polls!  You can vote daily, so please bookmark the page and cast your vote each day.  As always, thank you for your support of The Conservation Alliance!


Conrad Anker a PBS Star: “On Thin Ice” Looks at Global Warming and Glacier Ice

Conservation Alliance board member Conrad Anker co-stars in a new episode of NOW on PBS with David Brancaccio. The episode explores the melting of glacier ice caused by global warming. Conrad helps guide viewers with his first-hand experience with glaciers over decades of mountaineering. Check out the five-minute preview below. Or click here to view the full hour-long episode. Nice work Conrad!

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