New Wilderness in Washington – Thunder Creek
Washington State welcomed its newest Wilderness addition to the Stephen M. Mather Wilderness this month – 3,559 acres within the Ross Lake National Recreation Area known as Thunder Creek. Thunder Creek was originally identified for designation as “Potential Wilderness” in the Washington Parks Wilderness Act of 1988 because of its wilderness character, but with an accompanying possible competing use, due to a potential hydropower project on Thunder Creek. After a recent decision by Seattle City Light to abandon interest in the hydropower project on Thunder Creek, the Secretary of Interior was able to administratively implement this area as Wilderness as provided by the 1988 Washington Parks Wilderness Act. To learn more about this exciting designation, read WW’s press release and blog. Washington Wild coordinated a letter signed by 13 other conservation and recreation groups to Secretary Salazar, supporting an administrative decision to designate Thunder Creek as Wilderness. Read the Thunder Creek Potential Wilderness Press Release.