Teanaway Forest near Cle Elum gets 5 new advisory committee members

Maple Valley’s Kathy Young is one of five new members of the Teanaway Community Forest Advisory Committee.

Young, who represents the Back Country Horsemen of Washington, was appointed by the state departments of Natural Resources and Fish and Wildlife. The 20-member committee is helping the two agencies implement forest management plan for the first community forest in the state. According to a recent statement from the Department of Natural Resources, “the committee ... represents the interests of local property owners, ranchers, tribes, environmental groups, and recreationists, including hikers, anglers, hunters, horseback riders, and off-road vehicle users.”

The Teanaway Community Forest near Cle Elum is 50,241 acres at the headwaters of the Yakima River. The land was purchased in 2013 with funding provided by the State Legislature. The forest includes nearly 400 miles of streams, according to the DNR website. The goal of the forest is to protect the watershed, maintain working lands for forestry and grazing, maintain and enhance recreation opportunities, conserve and restore habitat, and support community partnerships.

The other new members include Rosyln city councilman Scott Gray (representing the Evergreen Mountain Bike Alliance); Cle Elum’s Lara Gricar (The Nature Conservancy); Ellensburg amateur geologist John Littel; and Carnation’s Andrew Cromarty. Cromarty’s family has owned Teanaway land since 1963.

The committee’s next meeting is 4-6 p.m. Sept. 17 in Cle Elum and it is open to the public.