Mission: Restoration

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Post-fire restoration with the North Central Washington Forest Health Collaborative (NCWFHC)  in partnership with the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest

Written & Photographed by Lloyd McGee, Eastern Washington Forests Program Manager

Last week, we toured “the donut hole,” a 6,000 acre area of forestland the Carlton Complex burn surrounds. The tour participants were the North Central WA Forest Health Collaborative (NCWFHC) and the Methow Valley Ranger District of the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest (OWNF). 

To support the OWNF in the aftermath of the worst fire in Washington’s history – the 250,000 acre Carlton Complex fire – the NCWFHC has been actively working on post-fire restoration in partnership with the OWNF staff by re-packaging the South Summit Restoration Project in which 70% of the landscape was burned just two weeks prior to the implementation of the project. 

The quick response by the NCWFHC and OWNF to this drastically altered landscape was remarkable. The NCWFHC kept the forest service on schedule by taking the lead role in planning the 50,000 acre Mission Restoration Project on the western perimeter of the Carlton Complex fire. 

It was incredible to see the areas which the fire by-passed because of previous forest treatments.