Sinlahekin Ecosystem Restoration – Phase 1

Category Overview

The State Lands Restoration and Enhancement category provides funding to two state agencies to help repair damaged plant and animal habitat. These grants focus on resource preservation and protection of public lands. Projects in this category help bring important natural areas and resources back to their original functions by improving the self sustaining and ecological functionality of sites.

Project Highlights

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife used this grant to thin, prune, pile, and burn areas in the Sinlahekin Wildlife Area, which is dependent on fire for a healthy ecosystem. Fire, a key ecological process, has been excluded for nearly 100 years. Fire and its byproducts help maintain a mosaic of plant communities, in various stages of succession across the landscape. The project has improved conditions for many wildlife species, including flammulated owls, pygmy nuthatchs, and white-headed woodpeckers. Also, the project reduced the risk of catastrophic wildfire, rejuvenated mule deer winter range, improved forest health, and provided jobs. The project began implementation of the recently completed Sinlahekin Fuels Reduction and Fire Regime Restoration Plan and complimented ongoing cooperative efforts with the Bureau of Land Management and US Forest Service, whose lands respectively intermingle and adjoin the Sinlahekin Wildlife Area.

Quick Facts

WWRP Applicant: Fish & Wildlife Dept of Category: State Lands Restoration & Enhancement WWRP Grant: $778,344.77 Applicant Match: $74,972.35 Project Type: Restoration County: Okanogan Legislative District: 7 Status: Closed Completed RCO Project # 08-1524

Location Details

From Riverside north on SR 97 to about Mile Post 304.6. Turn left (west) on the South Pine Creek Road. Proceed west about 7 miles where road enters SWA, proceed north to the north end of Blue Lake - the area on the west side of the road from this point to the North boundary of the SWA is the worksite . From Tonasket west on 4th Ave across Okanogan River to the Hwy 7 Junction. Turn right (north) on Hwy 7 and proceed north to the Loomis Hwy Junction continuing on (west) to Loomis. Drive through Loomis and proceed straight (west) into a sweeping left turn onto Sinlahekin Road. Proceed south on Sinlahekin Road about 3 miles where the road enters SWA - the area on the west side of the road from this point to Blue Lake Dam is the worksite.

What is the WWRP

The Washington Wildlife and Recreation Program (WWRP) is a state grant program that creates and conserves local and state parks, wildlife habitat and working farms. The Washington State Recreation and Conservation Office administers WWRP grants, and the legislature funds the program.