The Salmo-Priest Wilderness
I love the mountains and backcountry of northeastern Washington. From the Okanogan River to the Idaho border some of the wildest and loneliest terrain left in Washington state can be found here. A sparsely populated and lightly visited region, I love venturing to the mountains of Washington's northeast-its Columbia Highlands-for solitude, reflection, rejuvenation and to experience a Washington not found west of the Cascade Divide. Here in the Kettle River Range and Selkirk Range-and especially in the Salmo-Priest Wilderness, some of Washington's rarest and most fascinating fauna roams. Wolverines. lynx, mountain caribou, wolves, and grizzly! The only wilderness area in the state's northeast and within the 1.1 million acre Colville National Forest, the Salmo-Priest must be enlarged to ensure the protection of these wild denizens. And to assure me and other seekers of solitude that portions of our ever-growing Evergreen State will forever remain wild and untrammeled. I'm doing my part to help get this area into wilderness. I'm introducing hikers to the wonders of this region so that they may take an active role in protecting it. I urge you to join Conservation Northwest which is leading the movement for an Eastern Washington wilderness bill. Come visit. Need ideas? My Columbia Highlands book will give you plenty. So will my Best Hikes with Dogs Inland Northwest Book. And my new backpacking book that I am currently working on will also showcase some mighty fine eastern Washington wilds. I'll see you over that way this summer-and in the Blue Mountains too-but that's another story-and one I'll save for a future blog entry.
(photo- view east into Idaho from Round Mountain in the Salmo-Priest Wilderness, Oct 08)