Conserving land along our waterways protects important habitat and helps keep our rivers healthy, clean, and more resilient to drought. Riparian Protection projects conserve and restore fresh and saltwater habitat while protecting fish habitat. In doing so, the grants help provide our families, farms, and fisheries with clean water across the state.
This project seeks to acquire fee title to up to 614 acres, using an envelope/phased approach, in the Skookum Valley adjacent to SR 108, near Shelton, in Mason County. The project encompasses multiple tax parcels over four ownerships, all contiguous and bisected by Skookum Creek. The goal of this project is to acquire as much of the 614 acres as funding allows, depending on landowners’ willingness to accept the appraised value offer for their land. Priority will start with the downstream property and work upstream. This project will protect over 4 miles of Skookum Creek and an additional 4.4 miles of tributaries, as well as wetlands, riparian, forested and grassland habitats. Skookum Creek is used by coho, steelhead (ESA listed), chum, and cutthroat. In addition, there is a large elk herd that overwinter in the fields along the creek. If this project is successful, 68% of all streams and 77% of mainstem Skookum Creek will be in held in conservation or long term forestry.