Palomar victory hike and Timberline controversy

Dear Barker,

We did it! We stopped NW Natural from building the Palomar Pipeline and clearcutting 47 miles across Mt. Hood National Forest. You will hear more from us as we monitor NW Natural’s plans to resurrect the project, but in the meantime we’re focusing on other threats to Mt. Hood --- like a proposal to establish a mountain bike park at Timberline Lodge that would have permanent impacts to alpine soils and the headwaters of Still Creek. To take action and learn how Bark is promoting mountain biking in less sensitive areas of Mt. Hood see “Bark-Out” below.

Alex P Brown, Executive Director

PS- Palomar spent almost 200 times more money to plan the Pipeline than Bark spent to organize communities to protect Mt. Hood. Your support goes a long way. Please give today.

Bark-Out: Stop the Timberline Bike Park Proposal
Bark-About: Victory Hike to the Palomar Pipeline Clackamas River Crossing!
Giving Tree: How giving to Bark canvassers stopped the Palomar Pipeline
Bark Tales: Monica Vaughan and the Hey! NW Natural Campaign
Bark Bites: Update on the Collawash Road Decommissioning

Take Action! Tell the Forest Service to stand up for salmon and elk and reject Timberline’s proposed mountain bike trails and skill park

The Forest Service is considering a proposal from RLK Company, manager of Timberline Lodge, to build a 17.2-mile trail network for lift-assisted mountain biking on Mt. Hood. Recreation is one of the most important uses of Mt. Hood National Forest, which is why Bark has encouraged the Forest Service to build new trails for mountain bikers in appropriate places such as decommissioned roads in the Collawash and White River watersheds.

But the fragile soil and unique habitat found in the relatively undisturbed area near Timberline Lodge make it the wrong place to build new trails. Take action now to tell the Forest Service that it should not sacrifice the salmon and elk that depend on this habitat for survival for this high impact project at Timberline Lodge. To learn more about the proposal, click here.

Palomar victory hike!
Sunday, April 10th, 9am-5pm

It’s time to celebrate the defeat of NW Natural’s Palomar Pipeline by getting into the forest andenjoying the beauty of the places we’ve protected! Martin, Carolyn, and little Ursula Evans will be leading this family-friendly hike along the Riverside Trail to where the Palomar Pipeline would have crossed the Clackamas River. Come hear about the history of the campaign and what it took to bring this project to a halt.

Please bring lunch, water, and sturdy boots. The weather is very unpredictable this time of year, so don't forget extra layers of clothes and water resistant gear. Children are welcome on this month's hike, so please leave your dogs at home.

Bark-Abouts are led on the second Sunday of every month and are free to the public. Click here for more information about this month’s hike.

Giving Tree
Donating to Bark canvassers makes a big difference for Mt. Hood

The next time a Bark canvasser knocks on your door or talks to you at the farmer’s market, remember that your donation helps educate and mobilize thousands of Oregonians. For example, during our campaign against the Palomar Pipeline, Bark canvassers educated over 50,000 residents in Portland, Oregon City and Hood River on the impacts of the proposal and collected over 8,000 comments opposing the Pipeline. “Strength in numbers” is what we call it, and it is one of the things that makes Bark such an effective advocate for Mt. Hood.

So remember, even though it may be a minor inconvenience to have us knock on your door, that check you wrote stopped the Palomar Pipeline and the next one will help us convince the State of Oregon to reject Nestle’s proposal to bottle our Columbia Gorge spring water!

Bark Tales
Monica Vaughan helped bring Palomar down with the Hey! NW Natural Campaign

Monica Vaughan is a community organizer who spent the last five years fighting liquefied naturalgas (LNG) development in Oregon from the Columbia River to Coos Bay and Klamath Falls. Monica’s efforts to stop the Palomar Pipeline culminated in 2010 when she directed the Hey! NW Natural Campaign that delivered some of the deepest of the thousand cuts that stopped the proposal.
Thanks to Monica’s creativity in organizing hundreds of activists across the Pacific Northwest we were able to: hand deliver more than 700 petitions to NW Natural opposing Palomar; gather more than 300 protesters to rally at the NW Natural Shareholders Meeting; cover Portland streets with chalk messages about the Palomar threat; publish op-eds in the Oregonian about Palomar’s impact to our clean energy future; and finally stop the pipeline!

Here’s a shout out to Monica and the Hey! NW Natural Campaign that helped us to clinch our victory over the Palomar Pipeline!

Bark Bites
Road decommissioning plans for the Collawash Watershed get watered down

The Forest Service just released its decision to decommission 39%, or 170 miles, of unneeded roads in the Collawash watershed. In a Preliminary Assessment the agency identified 258 miles of road, or 58% of the roads in the watershed, for decommissioning. The Collawash Watershed, home to threatened and endangered salmon and spotted owls, has been heavily impacted by logging and road building. Click here to learn more about the Forest Service decision.

Bark and our allies have strongly supported the Forest Service’s efforts to address its unaffordable, confusing, and crumbling road network. We encouraged an ambitious vision for the Collawash that included decommissioning longer segments of old logging roads that were causing significant habitat fragmentation. We also worked with numerous local recreation groups to encourage the Forest Service to build new trails for hikers, equestrians, and especially mountain bikers along the decommissioned roads. The Forest Service rejected these suggestions, even at the same time that it is supporting a mountain bike park at Timberline Lodge because of demand for new mountain bike trails.

It appears that the Forest Service caved to pressure from a few elk hunters and its own timber sale planners who asked to keep these roads regardless of their impacts on the environment. Bark is obviously disappointed that future logging, and more watershed damage, is being used to justify keeping roads open. The Forest Service is apparently still stuck in the past, when timber ruled.