Tip Toe Through the Humptulips! And what a glorious dance it was! Yesterday, James Johnston and Andy Stahl of FSEEE (Forest Service Employees for Environmental Ethics) accompanied me to lead a dozen plus admirers of ancient forests into the Campbell Tree Grove on the upper reaches of the West Fork of the Humptulips River. It was an introduction hike to the roadless Moonlight Dome Area, a 6,000-acre rugged tract of steep mountains and primeval forest that Andy, James, me and our hiking guests would very much like to see become a federally protected wilderness area. And why? The Moonlight Dome Area represents the last large tract of unlogged, unroaded, unmolested, un-trashed , unprotected coastal rainforest left within the Olympic National Forest. And we want to make sure that it remains unlogged, unroaded and unmolested-for its denizens-the elk, marbled murrlets, spotted owls, flying squirrels, cougars, bear, and a myriad of other species-and for its admirers-hikers and nature lovers here today and those that will follow generations from now.
Keep your eye here for updates on this campaign. I'll keep you posted on how it moves along. In the meanwhile, contact Andy at FSEEE on how you can help make the Moonlight Dome area a wilderness. If you live within Washington's 6th Congressional District, let Norm Dicks know how much you value an Olympic National Forest untrammeled-and how much you'd like to see this area become a federally protected wilderness. If you haven't visited this gorgeous natural area-I encourage you to. Pick up my Day Hiking Olympic Peninsula Book for a description of a hike within this roadless area. My book is the only hiking guide to cover this relatively unknown region of the Olympic Peninsula. And join us for another adventure into the area. Andy, James and I are talking about a summertime scramble up the Moonlight Dome with an apres hike camp out at the Campbell Tree Grove. We'll let you know about it once plans are made. In the meanwhile practice pronouncing Humptulips-it comes from the Quinault word for "hard to pole"-and hard to pronounce too if you're not careful!
(photo-James and Joan tip toe across the West Fork of the Humptulips in the Campbell Tree Grove)