AVATAR GROVE BOARDWALK CONSTRUCTION HAS BEGUN – SUPPORT NEEDED
It has begun! Over the May Long Weekend, construction began on the initial phase of the Avatar Grove Boardwalk! As thousands of visitors continue to flock to see the Avatar Grove, the boardwalk is needed to protect its ecological integrity, ensure visitor safety, and help promote eco-tourism for the Pacheedaht First Nations and the town of Port Renfrew to see the economic benefits of keeping one of the last old-growth forests in their region standing.
After working for a year to get the requisite permissions, engaging in numerous discussions with the Ministry of Forests, Pacheedaht First Nation band, Port Renfrew Chamber of Commerce, and various partners, and securing the needed materials, construction finally began a couple weeks ago. The project's start was given a major boost with volunteer help coming from the Hawkeye Tribe Men's Team “Grunt”. The “Grunt” saw 35 skilled and dedicated men come together with the AFA's TJ Watt to help build this community project and by doing so, we were able to complete a large amount of work in some of the most challenging sections. Both entrances have been improved, including a bridge and stairs that now lead into the Upper Grove thus removing the steep ditch climb, various bridges have been added in muddy sections, and the first viewing platform has been built near the Gnarly Tree.
We must give a huge thanks to the Pacheedaht First Nation who generously milled and donated the timber for the project! We also thank the Port Renfrew Marina for hosting the camp for the volunteer team, all the volunteers themselves for their tremendous amount of hard work and dedication, to Slegg Lumber for donating many of the hardgoods needed, and Tim and Jon Cash of Soule Creek Lodge for cooking Saturday night's incredible feast!
There is still more work to be done but we're off to a great start! Construction will continue in stints for several weeks, led by the Ancient Forest Alliance's TJ Watt. Watch for opportunities to volunteer in the coming summer months!
The Avatar Grove (photos
) is a spectacular stand of monumental, lowland old-growth redcedars – some with fantastic shapes – only a 15 minute drive from Port Renfrew on Vancouver Island in the traditional territory of the Pacheedaht First Nation. In early 2012, after an extensive public awareness and mobilization campaign for several years, the Ancient Forest Alliance succeeded in convincing the BC government to protect the Avatar Grove from logging through a new Old-Growth Management Area (OGMA).
Please help this important conservation project succeed by making a DONATION of any amount!
For $100 you can FUND a 1 METRE section of boardwalk in the Avatar Grove, but any amount helps. You can also make a Gift Donation for the boardwalk on behalf of a friend or loved one. DONATE at: www.ancientforestalliance.org/boardwalk-donation.php