Maloney Creek and Forest
Forterra is working to acquire the Maloney Creek and Forest property to permanently protect its old-growth forest and habitat connectivity.
Part of a valley that has been home to the Tulalip Tribes for thousands of years, the 300 acres around Maloney Creek abut the Alpine Lakes, Wild Sky and Henry M. Jackson Wilderness Areas — some of the most rugged and beautiful lands on the continent.
The Maloney Forest abounds in conifers, including more than 50 acres of imposing old-growth. It offers vital habitat to iconic species such as marbled murrelet and northern spotted owl. The crystalline waters flowing off the slopes ultimately feed the South Fork of the Skykomish River, critical habitat for endangered salmon.
Today the land is in private hands, and its fate is uncertain. With your help we can protect the land permanently, together with its many benefits: from habitat, to added resiliency to climate change, to the character of the historic town of Skykomish, which sits just below.
The great news: we’re well on our way.
We need to raise $3.1 million. We’re just $400,000 short. Help us close the gap!
Every dollar you give gets us that much closer to saving this beautiful, irreplaceable spot.
Take action today!
Secure Old Growth & Endangered Species
200 year-old old-growth timber towers majestically above nearly 50 acres of the property. The remainder of the 300 acres is home to mature trees 50 to 70 years old. These valuable trees provide critical habitat and habitat connectivity for more than 50 species of animals including northern spotted owl, marbled murrelet, bull trout, grizzly bear, Canada lynx and gray wolf.
Northern Spotted Owl: These iconic endangered owls find everything they need for nesting, roosting and foraging in Maloney’s old-growth conifer forest.
Marbled Murrelet: Maloney’s old-growth forest provides over 50 acres of potential nesting habitat for endangered marbled murrelets. Marbled murrelets forage near the ocean but fly inland to find large old-growth tree limbs for their nests where they rear their young.
Bull Trout: Threatened bull trout swim in the South Fork Skykomish River and its tributaries, including Maloney Creek. Bull trout have exacting habitat demands, requiring cold water and very low amounts of silt. Protecting Maloney Creek & Forest will allow the creek to continue to provide high quality water to bull trout 1,000 feet downstream.
Keep Pristine Waters
Maloney Creek is home to a variety of fish. The creek flows through the steep forested property before joining the South Fork of the Skykomish River. Rainbow trout swim on the property, and steelhead and bull trout are found just downstream. Securing the property will prevent future road building and other human activities that could harm stream quality.
The Maloney Creek & Forest stands guard above the town of Skykomish, providing a beautiful view and protecting Skykomish families from hazardous floods. Climate scientists predict increased heavy winter rains in the Northwest.
Already, Skykomish has faced increased flooding in recent years. Mature trees intercept and filter water flow to provide a natural measure for lessening the threat of floods.
Revitalize Historic Skykomish
Maloney Creek & Forest is located directly above Skykomish, a small historic railroad town in the Cascade Mountains on Highway 2 between Everett and Leavenworth.
Skykomish is a gateway to the Alpine Lakes, the Wild Sky and Henry M. Jackson Wildernesses, and the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest — all known for year-round outdoor recreation opportunities. People from all over enjoy hundreds of miles of nearby hiking trails. The Iron Goat Trail (along the path of the original Great Northern Railway), the Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail and the Lake Serene Trail are a few well-loved favorites located nearby. Whitewater rafting and kayaking are also popular on the Skykomish River, which flows through the town.
Against the backdrop of the scenic Maloney Creek & Forest, Skykomish features historic buildings, including the Cascadia Inn, the Great Northern Railway Depot, the town hall and the iconic Skykomish Hotel. The Skykomish Hotel narrowly avoided demolition thanks to a last-minute placement on the Washington Trust for Historic Preservation “most endangered properties” list based on an impassioned recommendation from Waylon Robert, a 13-year old student from Ballard.
Recreation-based economic development catalyzes much-needed jobs as the town is growing into a place to stop for food and unique shops on the way to Stevens Pass and other recreation along the Highway 2 corridor. Keeping the forest intact is important to the town’s revitalization plans and the character and beauty of this historic place.
Create Resilience to Climate Change
Conserving Maloney Creek & Forest will protect ecosystems with specialized habitat for species particularly vulnerable to climate change. Northwest forests are increasingly at risk due to fire, insect outbreak and disease—all factors exacerbated by increasing average temperatures. We must avoid further habitat loss and fragmentation as projected warming could greatly increase the rate of species extinctions, especially in sensitive regions home to endangered species.