Officials want Green Mountain lookout to stay

EVERETT — Members of Congress are asking the U.S. Forest Service to delay plans to move the Green Mountain forest fire lookout out of the Glacier Peak Wilderness.

Rep. Suzan DelBene, Rep. Rick Larsen, both Democrats who represent portions of Snohomish County, and a member of the House Natural Resources Committee sent a letter Friday to the chief of the Forest Service describing their intent to pass legislation to protect the lookout where it sits.

In July, Darrington Historical Society member Scott Morris joined DelBene and Larsen in testifying before the congressional committee in support of the Green Mountain Heritage Protection Act, which could be heard by the full House of Representatives in September. Sens. Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell, also Democrats, also are pursuing identical legislation in the Senate.

At a cost of about $100,000, the Forest Service is planning to use a helicopter to haul away the lookout from the 6,500-foot mountain and put it down eight miles away at the top of Circle Peak, also in the Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest. The plan follows an order by the U.S. District Court in Seattle to remove the lookout. The court sided with a lawsuit by Montana-based Wilderness Watch against the Forest Service for using a helicopter to shore up the lookout, a violation of the federal Wilderness Act.

Kitty Craig, Pacific Northwest regional representative of the Wilderness Society, said in a statement last week that her organization is pleased that the House committee approved the proposed bill.

“We believe the Green Mountain lookout provides outstanding benefits to the preservation of Glacier Peak Wilderness and the education of wilderness visitors and does not detract from the qualities we seek in wilderness,” Craig said.

“Time is running out for the future of the lookout as the Forest Service has started its first phase of planning for the removal of the lookout from Green Mountain.”

Gale Fiege: 425-339-3427; gfiege@heraldnet.com.

More in Local News

Grief for the planet is real, and students are feeling it

“They’re losing sleep,” says a UW Bothell lecturer. She leads a seminar on environmental anxiety.

Herald photos of the week

The latest collection of top images by Herald photographers.

Special election Tuesday: Libraries, schools, fire districts

Property levies are on the ballot for the Sno-Isle Library District and Darrington schools.

Final feedback of future of Marysville’s schools

Officials now begin to prepare recommendations on high school reconfiguration and other issues.

Cougs beat Dawgs — and the Hawks

WSU boasts the No. 1 specialty license plate, and the money that comes with it.

Man pleads guilty to assault in Christmas Eve stabbing at mall

“Good Samaritan” who tried to break up fight ended up hospitalized with a knife wound to his back.

New support group for those whose loved ones battle opioids

“I remember when my dad told me that every time our family member relapses, we relapse.”

Panel tackles question of IDing who could be next mass shooter

Lawmakers want the group’s analysis to cover a lot of ground.

Vacant house fire in Everett deemed suspicious

There were no injuries reported and the cause of the blaze is under investigation.

Most Read