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Mossy Updates

* Third Tuesday of every month at 7pm – Elwha Legacy Forests Meeting – Join our mailing list for details!

* September 19-22, 2024 – Port Townsend Film Festival featuring Last Stand: Saving the Elwha River’s Legacy Forests

* September 26-29, 2024 – Gig Harbor Film Festival featuring Last Stand: Saving the Elwha River’s Legacy Forests



The Elwha Forest Fund was created to protect forests within the Elwha River Watershed. Earth Law Center manages the fund. Visit the site to find out more information.

New Documentary!

Watch the Earth Law Center’s 20 minute documentary Last Stand: Saving the Elwha River’s Legacy Forests featuring the work of the Elwha Legacy Forests coalition to stop the “Power Plant” timber sale and protect the Elwha River Watershed.

The film includes Dave Upthegrove, candidate for WA State Public Lands Commissioner along with local officials — Port Angeles City Councilmember LaTrisha Suggs and City Manager Nathan West.
Upthegrove, who visited the “Power Plant” timber sale with coalition members, shares his opposition to logging legacy forests near the Elwha River. He’s endorsed by the Sierra Club and Washington Conservation Action and is the only candidate who has committed to a moratorium on logging of legacy forests across Washington State!
The film will be featured in the following upcoming Film Festivals:

Amazing Legacy Forests on the Olympic Peninsula

These WA State DNR forests are scheduled to be auctioned off to be logged or have been saved by the community's hard work!

Alley Cat

– Elwha Watershed –

Shore Thing and By a Whisker

– Elwha Watershed –

TCB23 and Power Plant

– Elwha Watershed –


Power Station

– Dungeness Watershed –


Doc Holliday

– Twin Rivers Watershed –

The page for each forest has more photos, videos and action you can take to help save it!

Zoom in on the interactive Google Map to see where the DNR plans to log legacy forests in the Elwha River Watershed.

Elwha River Watershed

With the removal of the 2 dams on the Elwha River, there’s over a $320 million dollar effort to restore the Elwha watershed. This includes work to restore salmon access to the Little River, Indian Creek, Lake Sutherland and other tributaries.

Legacy forests play a crucial role in protecting water quality. Trees in these forests act as natural filters, removing pollutants and contaminants from the water before it reaches streams, rivers, and lakes. They also help to prevent soil erosion and sedimentation, which can clog water sources and decrease their quality. Additionally, the root systems of trees in legacy forests help to regulate water flow and reduce the risk of flooding. Cutting down this forest would impact the quality of water sources in the area.

Because the Elwha River watershed is a primary source of water for the city of Port Angeles, the Port Angeles City Council requested that the Aldwell auction be put on hold, but the DNR ignored the request and the forest was logged.

The Port Angeles City Council also requested that the TCB23 and Power Plant auctions be paused.

Notable Quotes

Given in Support of the Campaign to Protect Elwha Legacy Forests

As Indigenous Peoples - stewards of the lands and rivers here since time immemorial – we know that all life is interconnected. A river needs a healthy forest, and salmon need a healthy river. As Wy-Kan-Ush-Pum or “Salmon People”, we know that our own well-being is inseparable from healthy ecosystems. This is why you see First Nations in BC creating “salmon parks” to protect critical forests in watersheds. We need visionary leadership who will respect our knowledge and see that protecting our legacy forests is an investment that will sustain present and future generations mentally, physically, spiritually, and economically.

Honorable Paulette Jordan (Coeur d’Alene)Native American Politician and Business Woman, who served in Idaho House of Representatives and ran for Idaho Governor and US Senate

The world is relying on us to protect the forests of the Pacific Rim because of their crucial role in stabilizing climate, supporting biodiversity and maintaining hydrologic integrity. Clearcutting the precious Elwha forests for short-term profits would be a massive blow to the health of current and future generations. We need birds singing, salmon spawning, and food growing more than money in the pockets of a few. The Elwha forests are worth more standing.

Dr. Suzanne Simardbestselling author of 'Finding the Mother Tree'

The Aldwell legacy forest is a critical part of the tributaries on the Elwha River. Legacy forests, like Aldwell, not only provide biodiversity, recreation opportunities, and aid in reducing climate impacts in our community, but also protect the water supply for every resident and visitor in Port Angeles. Our city's water supply is solely supplied by the Elwha, and negative impacts to the larger Elwha ecosystem affect our water citywide. We already experience drought conditions each year and logging these important forests will likely worsen the already existing challenges we are facing. Logging the Aldwell legacy forest will lead to the permanent destruction of a valuable forest on the Olympic Peninsula

Navarra CarrPort Angeles City Councilmember

Trees, they are our sisters, they are our brothers, they are a part of us. These trees around us are a part of who we are. They're a part of our community. Those legacy forests and the creatures that need those are relying on those legacy forests. This is about legacy forests and this is not about stopping all timber harvests because we know timber families need the jobs. And we support those timber families.

La Trisha SuggsJamestown S’klallam tribal member and Port Angeles City Councilmember

Our old growth forests are undervalued – we should not be deceived that short term gains in selling lumber accurately reflects the value of the intact biodiversity resident within these ancient stands... Once we lose these libraries, we may lose remedies for protecting ourselves from pandemics, which most scientists agree, will be coming with increasing frequency and severity. Our old growth forests are critical, in my opinion, for our national defense.

Paul Stamets, D.Sc. (Honaris Causa)Invention Ambassador for the American Academy for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), Member, Mycological Society of America & North American Mycological Association

What is a Legacy Forest?

They are naturally regenerated 2nd growth forests and aren’t monoculture plantation forests, generally harvested prior to 1945. They contain large diameter trees, complex forest canopies & understories, biodiversity and old forest characteristics, including standing snags and large wood on the forest floor.

Comparison between a diverse and naturally grown forest (left) and a monocrop tree farm (right).

We should not be logging these critical resources. According to analysis by Legacy Forest Defense Coalition, just 13.2% of DNR managed lands in Western Washington are home to legacy or old growth forests and of that, roughly half are available for timber harvests. In the next 5 years (between 2024-2029), at least 17,000 acres of legacy forest are scheduled for logging!

Conserving mature and old-growth forests is one of the most affordable and effective tools for fighting climate change. No human-made technology can match big trees for removing and storing climate pollution. If they are logged, most of that pollution is quickly released into the atmosphere and it takes many decades or centuries for younger trees to recapture it.

We have lost most of our mature and old-growth forests across the country due to past logging. This is a serious problem because healthy mature and old-growth forests provide drinking water to communities, protect fish and wildlife, and absorb and store vast amounts of climate pollution. To protect what we have left and recover what has been lost, it is critical that we protect both mature and old-growth forests from being cut down in the future.


We’re a local and volunteer grassroots coalition of people and non-profit organizations, inspired by protecting the Elwha Watershed and legacy forests on the Olympic Peninsula of Washington State.

Territories of the chalá·at (Hoh), kʷoʔlí·yot’ (Quileute), qʷidiččaʔa·tx̌ (Makah), nəxʷsƛ̕áy̕əm̕  (Klallam), & t͡ʃə́mqəm (Chemakum) peoples