The Cold Springs Fire

The Cold Springs Fire can be seen from a firefighters’ camp burning against the backdrop of Mt. Adams. Credit: Dan Dzurisin

About Mount Adams Ponderosa Pine ReLeaf:

American Forests and Alcoa Foundation are partnering with the U.S. Forest Service to reforest 600 acres of the Mount Adams Ranger District in Gifford Pinchot National Forest with ponderosa pine.

ReLeaf Location:

Gifford Pinchot National Forest, Wash.

Key ReLeaf Activities:

  • Planting 60,000 trees across 600 acres
  • Restoring an ecosystem damaged by wildfire
  • Improving habitat for northern spotted owl populations

Why This ReLeaf Project?

In 2008, the Cold Springs Fire burned through nearly 8,000 acres in Washington State. More than half of those acres were located in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest. This project is reforesting parts of the forest’s Mount Adams Ranger District with ponderosa pine to provide ecological benefits for wildlife and recreation resources, while increasing carbon sequestration over the long term.

Why Ponderosa Pine?

The Cold Springs Fire burned with the highest intensity through stands of lodgepole pine and alpine fir. Nestled within these stands stood iconic, old-growth ponderosa pines — legacy trees that had survived historic fires since the mid-1800s, but could not survive this more intense fire. Ponderosa pine is important habitat for many wildlife species, including the threatened northern spotted owl. The 600 acres being planted in this project have seen virtually no natural regeneration of conifers since 2008.