Stewardship

Whatcom Land Trust is dependent on community support to carry out our mission. Much of our stewardship work involves habitat restoration and general upkeep on our many properties. This work includes planting trees, removing invasive plants, and maintaining trails. Help us with our stewardship goals by volunteering at a work party — or make a long-term commitment to Whatcom Land Trust by becoming a Volunteer Land Steward.

Upcoming work parties

 

Work Parties – Spring 2018

 

Stick around at the end of the work party for a casual tour led by the Volunteer Land Stewards of each site! This will be a 30-minute to 1-hour opportunity to explore more of the property while gaining knowledge and stories from the volunteers that steward the land.

 

Invasive Control and Planting Party (RSVP Required! – max 30) – Kelsey

Saturday, March 10th (9 AM – Noon)

This piece of land just northeast of Lake Terrell was Whatcom Land Trust’s second gifted property by J. Ruth Kelsey in 1992. It contains 20 acres of riparian and wetland habitat along Butler Creek. We will be removing blackberry on the upland portions and planting willows in the lower, wetland habitat. RSVP is required for this work party as parking is limited along a shared driveway. Please carpool!

Directions: From Bellingham, travel north on I-5 and take Exit 266 for Grandview Rd. Turn left onto Grandview Rd toward Custer and travel approximately 3.5 miles before taking a left onto North Star Road. After approximately 1.4 miles, the gravel driveway to access the property will be on the right shortly after crossing Butler Creek.

 

Planting Party, partnered with NSEA – Riverstead

Saturday, March 17th (9 AM – Noon)

Jump in for a joint planting party with Nooksack Salmon Enhancement Association (NSEA) at our Riverstead property! We will be planting native trees and shrubs to improve the riparian zone (areas immediately adjacent to rivers and streams) to grow large trees that can one day interact with the river. Learn the story of this unique property and the growing South Fork habitat corridor. WLT has partnered with many organizations to conserve and restore this amazing site. Our goals for this site are lofty and the payoff for the future health of the river is vast.

Directions: Take Mt. Baker Hwy (SR 542) east past Deming. Turn right (south) on SR 9 to Acme. Park at Acme Elementary School on Turkington Road and NSEA will provide a shuttle to the site.

 

Volunteer Land Stewards Training (RSVP Required!) – WLT Office

Sunday, March 25 (10 AM – Noon, followed by potluck lunch)

Have you ever wondered what it’s like to be a volunteer land steward for Whatcom Land Trust? New volunteers and seasoned stewards alike can meet at Whatcom Land Trust’s office to learn about the rewards of adopting a property, tips for monitoring, and advice on submitting a report. Stay for the potluck following the training to chat with other stewards, and make a friend or two to show you the ropes.

Address: 412 N. Commercial Street, Bellingham, WA

 

Invasive Control with Whatcom County – Canyon Creek/Glacier Springs

Saturday, April 7 (9 AM – Noon, followed by an Invasive-101 Talk)

Join us and invasive weed specialist, Laurel Baldwin with Whatcom County, at Whatcom Land Trust’s and Whatcom County’s properties along Canyon Creek. This site has gone through significant restoration, but some invasive plants persist and need to be pulled. If the weather allows, there will be an amazing view of Mt. Baker from the work area! Following the work party, Laurel Baldwin will provide further information about our county’s noxious weeds and the best methods to control them. This is a unique and exciting learning opportunity!

Directions: From Bellingham, take Mt. Baker Hwy (SR 542) east past the town of Maple Falls. Take a left at Glacier Springs Drive, making sure to stay on the right hand side of the median. Take the first right on Miller Way, followed by the first left on Canyon View Drive. Parking will be available at the bend. There’s limited space, so please carpool if you can!

 

Scotch Broom Removal – Maple Creek Reach

Earth Day! – Saturday, April 21 – (9 AM – Noon)

Volunteering on Earth Day is a great way to give back to the environment we all love and appreciate! As this will be on the cusp of planting season, we will focus our efforts on pulling the invasive scotch broom. This site is one of Whatcom Land Trust’s premier restoration projects, and volunteers will have the chance to learn about its history and help accelerate habitat restoration at the site. By participating in this work party, you will help us establish forests that can naturally stabilize the river and improve habitat for all five Pacific Salmon species that utilize the site.

Directions: Go east on Mt. Baker Highway (SR 542) past Maple Falls. The property is on the right (south) side of the road, about ½ mile past Maple Falls just past Maple Creek bridge.

 

Invasive Control, partnered with Fourth Corner Fly Fishers – Ladies of the Lake

Saturday, May 5th (9 AM – Noon)

We will be partnering with dedicated volunteers from Fourth Corner Fly Fishers to remove blackberry on our Ladies of the Lake property. This approximately 100-acre property is in the Lake Whatcom Watershed and contains riparian habitat along Fir Creek, a stream utilized by Kokanee, an open field, and a steep forested hillside.

Directions: From Bellingham, head out Lakeway Drive and continue through the Geneva and Sudden Valley Neighborhoods. At the fork in the road near Wildwood, stay to the left and continue on S Bay Drive for another 2.5 miles. The property will be on the right, just before crossing the railroad tracks.

 

Stimpson Nature Reserve Bio Blitz and Invasive Plant Control (max 25 each day)

Friday and Saturday May 18th and 19th (9 AM – 1 PM)

Most Bellingham residents have walked the Stimpson Nature Reserve loop, but very few have had the opportunity to walk off-trail through the center of the property. With sandstone slopes, small wetlands, and diverse second-growth forest, the interior of the Reserve provides a beautiful picture of what the Lake Whatcom Watershed may have looked like prior to human settlement.

As a volunteer, you will have the opportunity to see the true biodiversity of the park, and help us keep invasive plants in check.

Join us for our third Bio Blitz at Stimpson Nature Reserve! Be prepared for off trail adventuring, as we will be traversing the park to take biological inventories and remove invasive plants along the way. The last two years have been a roaring success with volunteers raving about the experience. With updated monitoring protocols and some skilled Bio Blitz veterans, this year is bound to be even more exciting! With so much interest, we have decided to offer this great opportunity on both Friday and Saturday. Note that this event runs from 9 AM to 1 PM. Please bring a sack lunch and some good hiking boots!

Directions: Travel east on Lakeway Drive. Continue onto Terrace and then onto Cable Street. Turn right on Austin Street, then follow Lake Louise Road for 1.5 miles. Trailhead and parking lot will be on the left.

 

Trail Building with Whatcom County Parks – Lookout Mountain Park

National Trails Day! – Saturday, June 2nd (9 AM – 3 PM)

Details are TBD; Check back as we get closer to the date!

For additional information please contact Jennifer Mackey or Dennis Conner  at the Whatcom Land Trust Office

 

Download a PDF of our 2018 Work Parties

 

Field Fridays – Spring 2018

What are Field Fridays?

Want to spend some time with the Stewardship Team and learn a bit more about some of the land trust conservation sites? Sign up for a Field Friday adventure held on the first Friday of the month! We have three to six seats open for volunteers to ride along for property monitoring, maintenance, and other stewardship activities. These are working days, and are generally more difficult than our work parties! Volunteers should be prepared for all weather conditions and have tough, weather-appropriate footwear ready to traverse rugged, uneven terrain. While the traversing may be challenging at times, the rewards are immense!  Volunteers will have the opportunity to visit parts of properties rarely (if ever!) seen by the public, learn about Whatcom Land Trust’s stewardship goals and processes, and participate in restoration activities.

 

Transportation to and from the site is provided. The truck will leave from the WLT office at 8 AM and will return no later than 4 PM. Please pack a lunch, water, weather-appropriate layers, and rain gear.

 

RSVP is required to participate on these Field Fridays, especially as the exact schedule may change due to weather conditions. Because we plan our activities around the volunteers expected, we must receive 48 hours’ notice for any cancellations.

 

Our Field Friday at the new property along the Middle Fork of the Nooksack River was a huge success! We had amazing volunteers armed with pulaskis and handsaws to cut English ivy off of more than 20 large trees, and to cut down a dozen holly trees.

When and Where are Field Fridays?

March 2nd at Bajema – This floodplain property along the Middle Fork Nooksack has been seen by few people as you must have a WLT representative present. We will be bushwhacking through a great deal of salmonberry, climbing over some blowdown, and crossing several side channels to traverse through the site to plant native trees, cut blackberry patches, and tour the remainder of the property. So please bring rubber boots and hardy outerwear!

 

April 6th at Wildcat – Help us remove plant protectors that are no longer needed while exploring the wildness of this 270-acre property along the North Fork Nooksack River. We will be primarily working in a salmonberry forest, so bring tough outerwear! Along the 1-mile route one-way, which crosses Wildcat Creek, we will clear the path of any fallen debris.

 

May 4th at Elk Flats – This 80-acre property is along the upper South Fork Nooksack River, which is located in Skagit County. After about an hour drive, we will make our way to the corners of the property to complete our annual monitoring. We will also be accomplishing cleanup of the site by removing tires and other remnants from when the property was occupied. Dependent upon weather, we’ll be able to cross the river and explore more of the property; bring boots! If we’re lucky, we’ll see a large herd of elk as well!

HELP US PLAN!  RSVP to jennifer@whatcomlandtrust.org

Please help us prepare and RSVP at least 48 hours in advance (unless otherwise noted) if you plan to attend an upcoming work party. RSVP to jennifer@whatcomlandtrust.org.

 

Past Field Friday work parties

We inter-planted almost 100 coniferous trees and conducted our annual site visit of the 105-acre property. The two in the photos are Solvei and Carl Franz.

Our new Washington Conservation Corps (WCC) Individual Placement, Julianne (on left), with two determined volunteers, Solvei and Janet. Behind them is the pile of cut holly trees.

Volunteer, Solvei, with a cut stem of English ivy removed from the Cottonwood tree behind her.

 

 

 

RutsatzSalmonWorkpartyOct2015  RutsatzWorkParty2015

Volunteers Make a Difference

Whatcom Land Trust Volunteer Land Stewards

Our Volunteer Land Stewards are our eyes and ears on the ground.  They don’t need years of outdoor experience or a natural science degree, a love of the natural environments in the Pacific Northwest, basic documentation skills and the ability to act as an effective ambassador for Whatcom Land Trust are all we ask.

We currently have no openings in this program. Click HERE to sign up for our monthly e-news to stay informed of other opportunities.  There are lots of ways to participate!