There are over 1.6 million acres of national forests in Western North Carolina. From its founding, MountainTrue has stayed committed to the protection of our public lands and forests by helping to shape the Nantahala-Pisgah National Forest Management Plan and advocating for our national, state, county and city parks.
Forest Management Plan
MountainTrue works to help shape the National Forest Service’s Forest Plan for the Nantahala and Pisgah National Forests. MountainTrue and its members advocate for conservation and sustainable public access through our participation in coalitions such as the Conservation & Recreation Coalition and the Nantahala-Pisgah Partnership.
Why Does This Matter?
Forest Keeper Volunteers
MountainTrue’s volunteer base of Forest Keepers works to keep WNC forests and public lands protected and healthy. The Forest Keepers’ work begins at the intersection of environmental science and environmental stewardship. This group collaborates with other non-profits in North Carolina to promote active stewardship in protecting, managing and maintaining the forest of Southern Appalachia. Forest Keeper volunteers work in conjunction with North Carolina Forest Service, Southern Appalachian Highlands Conservancy, Hemlock Restoration Initiative, Appalachian Trail Conservancy, and the City of Asheville Parks and Recreation Department as the eyes, ears and helping hands of the forest.
The Forest Keepers protect, manage, and maintain the health of our Southern Appalachian forests through volunteer workdays, hosting skills workshops and giving science presentations. Forest Keepers have the opportunity to work within our forests and network with other people in Western North Carolina who are dedicated to forest protection and ecosystem vitality. This dedicated group of volunteers does hands on work through projects like hemlock restoration workdays, Richmond Hill Park non-native invasive removal, Sandy Bottom wetlands restoration, OM Sanctuary restoration and our annual bioblitz. For more information about the Forest Keeper Volunteers and to get involved, contact Bob Gale at email@example.com or Josh Kelly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
MountainTrue conducts an annual bioblitz every year in an area of our WNC public lands. A bioblitz is a biological inventory of an ecosystem in order to record all the living species within a particular area. MountainTrue staff, scientists, wildlife experts, naturalists and community volunteers gather together and explore a selected area to catalogue living species and learn more about our unique mountain ecosystems.
Our first bioblitz was conducted in 2016 on Bluff Mountain. Read more!
Public Lands News
The Forest Service has proposed a new plan, Alternative G, for the Buck Project in Nantahala National Forest. While we support some improvements in this plan – like some watershed repairs and controlled burns in the Buck Creek Serpentine Barrens – Alternative G still does tremendous harm to wild places, soil, water and old-growth forest, and goes against the wishes of hundreds of people that commented on the project.
The U.S. Forest Service has released an extreme set of proposed changes that would cut the public almost entirely out of decisions affecting our public lands. Speak out against the Forest Service’s proposal and protect the public’s role in public lands here.
The Buck Project in Nantahala National Forest has the potential to be one of the most destructive timber sales in WNC in a century. Take action here to protect the vibrant ecosystems, pristine waters and old-growth forests that are on the chopping block.
Join MountainTrue, Nantahala Outdoor Center and Nantahala River Lodge for the Nantahala Gorge BioBlitz – a citizen-science program that will pair residents with more than a dozen expert naturalists to document one of the exceptional natural areas of Nantahala National Forest. The Nantahala Gorge BioBlitz is an opportunity for people who love the great outdoors and want to learn more about the plants and creatures who call Nantahala Gorge their home. Despite its outstanding character, the Nantahala Gorge has never had a systematic biological inventory and the BioBlitz is likely to turn up new records for the area.
For six years, MountainTrue members kept the pressure on Duke Energy and the state Department of Environmental Quality. You are part of that legacy. Your support held Duke Energy accountable. Recent victories are an important reminder that your activism can change the course of history.