Sitka Conservation Society

Wilderness

SCS was born out of the desire to protect parts of the Tongass forever as designated Wilderness Areas. Since then, we continue to be stewards of our Wilderness and advocate for more Wilderness protection. Our Wilderness crew spends countless hours bushwhacking, paddling, hiking, and climbing to chart on-the-ground conditions. We also seek to connect Sitkans and Tongass residents with their wild places by incorporating volunteers on research trips, educating the public of Wilderness values, and sharing the pristine beauty of Wildernesses locally and nationally.  Learn more about Wilderness designation and the history of Wilderness on Wilderness.net.

Community Wilderness Stewardship Project

The CWSP is an effort to get Sitkans out into our Wilderness Areas to help SCS conduct research and monitoring expeditions. Find out how you can help by volunteering on a research expedition or by collecting data on your next hunting, hiking, kayaking, or fishing trip.

 

 

Wild Places

Check out the Wild places in the Tongass with SCS’s wilderness crew.  Here you can see our interactive map, track the Wilderness Crew in real-time via GPS, see video dispatches from the field, scroll through photos, read our reports.

 

 

Advocacy

Wilderness designation has protected some of the most unique and beautiful places in the Tongass, but there are still threats like climate change, mismanagement, and over-use.  SCS constantly works to protect our Wilderness areas from threats and actively advocate for more Wilderness designation of important ecosystems.

 

 

Climate Change in the Tongass

SCS is keeping a close watch on how climate change affects the Tongass through annual summer field work.  This research, which supplements that being done by the Forest Service and other agencies, includes monitoring changes in ice packs, glaciers, and plant and animal population. While we hate to see the Tongass negatively impacted by global warming, having good data on these changes is crucial for climate change advocacy work that could ultimately prevent future harm.

 

Related Posts:

  • Expedition: Outer Island Survey

    Expedition: Outer Island Survey

    This expedition is part of Sitka Conservation Society’s Community Wilderness Stewardship Project.  The Project, begun in 2009, is a partnership between SCS and the Tongass National Forest Service to collect base-line data on the ecological conditions and human impacts to designated Wilderness areas.  The Tongass NF in Southeast Alaska is the nation’s largest National Forest [...]

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  • Trappers Needed: ISLES Study

    Trappers Needed: ISLES Study

        This past week, I checked an usual piece of luggage with me on the plane down to Albuquerque: a box of frozen Marten, Ermine, and River Otter skulls, femurs, and intestinal parasites. I was delivering my parcel to Steve O. MacDonald and Dr. Joe Cook (who literally wrote the book on Alaskan mammals) [...]

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  • Expedition: Lake Benzeman 2012

    Expedition: Lake Benzeman 2012

       Lake Benzeman is located approximately 35 miles SE of Sitka by boat in the South Baranof Wilderness Area. Botanist Jonathan Goff, SCS member Diana Saverin, and volunteer Paul Killian made the trip down late on a Friday afternoon. The following morning they broke down their tents, inflated their packrafts, and set out to paddle to [...]

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  • Take Action: Tell the Forest Service to follow through

    Take Action: Tell the Forest Service to follow through

    Background: The US Forest Service has adopted the Tongass Transition Framework, a program intended to shift forest management away from the out-dated and ill-fated old growth logging paradigm toward management that support multiple uses of the forest, including recreation, restoration, subsistence, and second-growth management.  This is an encouraging recognition of the region’s important natural resources, [...]

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  • My Alaskan Experience: Nora McGinn

    My Alaskan Experience: Nora McGinn

    Nora McGinn is a Junior in the Environmental Studies program at Knox College in Illinois.      

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  • Wilderness Volunteer’s Reflection

    Wilderness Volunteer’s Reflection

    Ricky Sablan is a law enforcement ranger with the Sitka National Historical Park.  He joined the SCS Wilderness crew on a Community Wilderness Stewardship Project expedition to South Baranof Wilderness in the summer of 2012.  Be sure to check out his videos from the trip below. Walking onto a boat called “The Gust”, we loaded [...]

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  • Sitka, AK – Where Theory Meets Practice

    Sitka, AK – Where Theory Meets Practice

    In July of 2012, thirteen undergraduate students from Knox College embarked on a 15-day wilderness expedition into the wilds of Southeast Alaska’s Tongass National Forest.  The trip was part of a semester long course entitled “Alaska: Forest, Fisheries, and the Politics of Wilderness”.  The course entailed an in-depth study of the history of natural resource [...]

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  • Saint Lazaria

    Saint Lazaria

        We sat quietly in the colony struggling not to make noise for fear of scaring the birds.  It was about ten o’clock at night and the sun was still setting.  To the west the sun sank over the horizon and the last few flickers of light colored the approaching clouds.  To our east [...]

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  • Hoonah Sound to Lisianski Strait to Goulding Harbor:  A Chichagof Wilderness Expedition through Intact Watersheds

    Hoonah Sound to Lisianski Strait to Goulding Harbor: A Chichagof Wilderness Expedition through Intact Watersheds

    Anyone that tells you there is a trail between Hoonah Sound and Lisianski Strait because “it’s on the map,” has never been there on foot. This is because there is no trail there!   An SCS Wilderness Groundtruthing team recently explored that area on the Tongass and confirmed that the only trails available are the ones [...]

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  • SCS Wilderness Boat Cruise – Sun. August 5th, 1 – 4 pm

    SCS Wilderness Boat Cruise – Sun. August 5th, 1 – 4 pm

    Join us as we cruise north to the the West Chichagof Wilderness Area.  We’ll travel through Salisbury Sound to Fish Bay and Suloia Bay.  Guest speakers will include SCS Wilderness Coordinator, Adam Andis and Darrin Kelley, USFS Wilderness Ranger. Tickets are $35 and can be purchased with cash or check at Old Harbor Books located [...]

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  • Hungry for Huckleberry Pie, Venison Stew, or Fresh Greens? Come to the Wild Foods Potluck Nov. 2!
  • Stand Up to Corporate Influence!
  • Kayaking Kootznoowoo: Report on SCS’s Final Wilderness Trip
  • Encouraging Local Natural Resource Stewardship on the Tongass: Kennel Creek
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