Save the Ancient Forest
On our recent trip through BC I expected to see rainforest...the coastal rainforest. But the most amazing rainforest we saw was actually about 800 km inland!
The Ancient Forest, about 116 km east of Prince George, is one of the last remaining temperate inland rainforests.
Not only is it an inland temperate rainforest and an ancient forest ( a forest that is older than 200 years) it also is an antique forest. An antique forest is a forest that is older than the oldest tree in it. Considering that the oldest tree in this forest is over a thousand years this forest is really old, well....antique!
How can such a forest grow here? The Columbia Mountain Range to the west and the Rocky Mountains to the east create a so called Interior Wetbelt that makes the growth of this amazing forest possible.
Dave Radies found this hidden gem 2005 while he was studying old groth forest, he noticed the logging markings on the old Western Red Cedars and went into action.
2006 the trail that now leads through the forest was established and by 2008 all logging in that particular area was cancelled. A nearby old growth forest was not so lucky, it got logged just a couple of years ago.
Doesn't this tree look like it has been sprinkled with gold dust? Actually it has...with Gold Dust Lichen that is. This Lichen in only found in this abundance on trees over 250 years old. And by measuring how high it grows on a tree, scientists can determine the age of the tree.
Volunteers of a local hiking group made a huge effort to preserve this ancient forest and are now in the process to get it accepted as a national park and maybe later on as a national historic site.
Not only did they fight for the forests survival, they also put in thousands of hours, to be precise 8000! so far, to build and maintain a trail through the forest. This 2.3 km long trail is not only educational, great effort has been put in to protect the forest from unintentional destruction trough visitors.
If you want to support their efforts please spread the word about this really amazing hidden gem. Share this blog, try to visit the Ancient Forest and encourage your friends to do so, too. Currently volunteers are on site to count and interview visitors in the effort to achieve national park status....in this case the more the merrier!
To help all old growth cedar trees try not to buy product made out of them, cedar mulch for example is often made out of old cedar trees because ironically their are otherwise not very valuable to the logging companies.
For more information and tips how to help please visit these websites:
Northern Wetbelt Forests of British Columbia, the Ancient Forest Trail