In 1999, the Interior Alaska Land Trust received our first conservation easement, from Mary Shields. Mary donated an easement on 20 acres in lower Goldstream Valley, where she had built a cabin. She asked the Interior Alaska Land Trust to help keep the property, with its impressive old-growth forest, it its relatively undisturbed condition. Mary retained the right to keep using her cabin and outbuildings as she has for decades.
Mary said, “This Old Forest has taught me many things. Most importantly, the patience to stay in one place and know that place intimately. During the past 26 years, I have grown to become a part of this place – to anticipate the swing of seasons and the pattern of years. Nature helps me understand the world and my tiny part of it. I am overwhelmed and grateful. I ask the Interior Alaska Land Trust to care for this forest in the future, so others may also come here and watch and listen and feel and learn and love. I ask that all decisions considering this land favor this request.”