Written and Photographed By Washington State Director, Mike Stevens

Last week, I traveled with a group of staff and trustees to Clayoquot Sound to explore the area with our hosts and partners from the Ahousaht, Tla-o-qui-aht and Hesquiaht First Nations. 

On our last day, we spent the day touring the coast by boat. In the fjords, we watched black bears flipping rocks for crabs and we saw aboriginal rock carvings on cliffs. Once out to sea, as our boat rocked up and down in six-foot seas and navigated through rock islands, we watched a grey whale surface and then dive, otters and marbled murrelets foraging, and sea lions basking in the sun. 

In the midst of this abundance of life, native traditions, and wildness, I realized: this is the Emerald Edge. It was an inspiring and informative trip โ€“ and a reminder of the impact we are striving to achieve as we work with First Nations and support indigenous leadership and stewardship in Clayoquot Sound.