Events: Cleanup of the Duncan parcel is scheduled for Sept 30 with volunteers from GOOD Cannabis.
Chinook Conservation Park: Board voted 5-0 to contract with Design Alaska for the plan for footings for a bridge connecting trails in the CCP.
July Board Meeting
Stewardship: Our most recent acquisition is a 2 acre parcel off Farmer’s Loop Rd. We requested the Borough rezone it “Outdoor Recreational”. Got a story in the paper!
The shed on the Farmer’s Loop property is for sale, first come-first serve. Contact Seth for information
Land: Brendan plans to fly up to Wild Lake for a site visit next week. He will gather information and photographs for the baseline documents for the parcels.
Cripple Creek: Board voted to approve the contract with Jon Underwood at Happy Trails and proceed with the work rerouting and hardening the ATV trail on the west side of the property.
June Board Meeting
Land: A 5-acre parcel on Chena Hot Springs Road was designated for conservation in Charlotte Davis’ will. Her sister, Cindy, decided to donate the land to IALT and provide stewardship fees from the remainder of the estate. Thank you Davis family!
Negotiations for the parcel covered under our NAWCA grant fell through, so we are looking for another parcel in the Cripple Creek watershed of high conservation value and around 150 acres.
Callen Christensen from the Chaga Cooperative requested permission to conduct research on birch tree inoculation on IALT land, board requested Callen scout sites and return with a more specific proposal.
IALT is sponsoring the Fairbanks Fungi Fest by providing event insurance. The event will promote the study and conservation of mushrooms in Interior Alaska, and will be held August 28 at the Ester Community Park.
Trails: Tako and Seth met with John Underwood to talk about a plan for the Chinook Conservation Park trails. We have about 30k to spend on the project. We don’t have enough to complete the trail, but we should be able to fix the big wet spot at the beginning.
May Board Meeting
Land: Board approves the acquisition of a 40-acre wetland parcel in Goldstream Valley by a vote of 5-0. The landowner will retain life tenancy and does not wish for public access.
A 10 to 17 acre parcel in North Pole is part of an estate that is being liquidated. The executors want to donate it to us. It is off the road system, and not of high conservation value due to its small size and lack of connectivity. It is mostly wetlands, not connected to any of our other properties. Andy will see if the donation includes stewardship funds. If yes, then Andy and/or Owen will see if the property is of interest to the Conservation Fund.
Wilbur Trails: As part of the sale, we agreed to make specific trailhead improvements according Don Duncan’s wishes. The first step is to remove the small structure on the east side of the property.
William Hawryluk of Wilson & Wilson went over the audit paperwork with the board and answered questions.
April Board Meeting
Land: Discussed possible rezoning of the parcel adjacent to Creamer’s Field trails, as well as surrounding properties, to rural recreation.
Accreditation renewal: Contractor Katja has created a roadmap for completing the reaccreditation process, needs the Board to fill in required info.
Annual All-Alaska Land Trust meeting in King Salmon next month– Andy Keller and Christin Swearingen will represent IALT.
March Board Meeting
Land: We acquired a small, new parcel that is adjacent to the Creamer’s Field Trails! Many stakeholders made this possible, and we are reaching out to each group personally before making more details public.
February Board Meeting
Grants: We were approved for the NAWCA grant! This is a $100,000 Federal grant that was possible thanks to matching funds from supporters like you. Many steps are required before we can accept the funds, including extensive environmental reviews of our proposed project. Expect to hear more about the NAWCA grant in the coming months.
Stewardship: Monitors are needed for the 2022 season– please email Andrew Keller if you would like to volunteer: email@example.com
Events: Earth Day is April 22, and IALT will have a booth at the Earth Day fair on April 23 at Pioneer Park.
January Board Meeting
Grants: We did not receive the Alaska Sustainable Salmon Grant, but the reviewers provided helpful suggestions for next time.
Stewardship: The Engel and Parrish parcels are due for annual review in fulfillment of the Army Corps of Engineers ‘and The Conservation Fund’s wetlands mitigation plan. Andrew Keller, our new Conservation Coordinator contractor, gave an update on monitoring.
Budget: We had a net income of $12,363.62 in 2021.
We are seeking new Board members! If our mission resonates with you and you would like to get involved, please email Owen Guthrie at firstname.lastname@example.org
December Board Meeting
Grants: We passed the first round of review for the NAWCA grant, which would be a $100,000 match for land acquisition at the headwaters of Cripple Creek. Given past application submission numbers, we stand a good chance of getting it. We received a special $15,000 donation towards this project from an anonymous donor.
Delivered the Land Conservationists of the Year award to Jack Wilbur at Design Alaska. Congratulations Jack and Carol Wilbur!
Discussed the planned trail reroute at Chinook Conservation Park.
November: Annual Member meeting!
Introduction of board members.
Owen provided an introduction to IALT.
Martha provided an update on current land acquisitions in the Goldstream Area. Thank you to the Wilburs for their generosity!
Chena Ridge Area – update on Chinook Conservation Park trail work, bridge project and clean up. Presentation on culvert work and failed blocks/geotextile dam work.
Brendan presented on Bailey bridge donation and current project.
October Board Meeting
Still doing outreach for contractor position– receiving few applicants.
Submitted application for NAWCA grant. With NAWCA funding, we could put together up to $150,000 for an easement on the land at headwaters of Cripple Creek. That would be less expensive than purchase and simpler as it would not involve subdivision. The mineral rights were retained by the University, so this will have to be addressed in the NAWCA grant.
Cripple Creek Restoration Project: the current plan is to build one larger diversion mound on the upstream, Happy Creek diversion site. The Corps of Engineers declined to use The Conservation Fund money for this project. DOWL is working on final scope of work, to be submitted as addendum to the existing USF&WS project. We expect construction next summer.
Bailey bridge onsite meeting to discuss options with Tom Williams, Clark Milne, Patty Peirsol to decide on geotechnical bridge design.
September Board Meeting
Discussed potential mining of Mental Health Trust land on Ester Dome. Area in question is quite massive – likely cannot afford to conserve the land. IALT confirms that we are a partner in the community that can provide a vehicle for conservation of land, but we will not be speaking as an organization in opposition to the activities on the Mental Health Trust lands.
Cripple Creek project – issues with structure washout. About $500-600k for rebuild.
Discussed the parcel on Farmer’s Loop/ Shuros subdivision.
August Board Meeting
We closed on the 122 acre Ardahill property! Huge thank you to Jack and Carol Wilbur for financing this acquisition.
Discussed Eielson Farm Road easements.
Baseline for Wild Lake parcels is almost done, but the landowners are out of communication range for the next month.
Unexpected ice on diversion structures in Cripple Creek Restoration Project.
Our contractor, Christin, started a new job with Northern Alaska Environmental Center.
July Board Meeting
A landowner in North Pole is interested in conserving their 160 acre homestead. We plan a visit to discuss with them and see the property.
The owners of some extremely remote parcels on the shores of Wild Lake, south of Gates of the Arctic, would like to place a conservation easement on their land. We discussed stewardship costs.
Former Board member and past president Merritt Helfferich wrote a memoir, which was published by his widow April Crosby and generously donated to IALT. The publishers will ship 1,000 copies of the book to us this month, and the public can order one online by clicking the “Shop” tab above. All proceeds will go directly to IALT.
June Board Meeting
Stewardship: DOWL Engineering is investigating the diversion structure failure on Happy Creek, and hopes to have it fixed this summer.
Land: We began due diligence on a land acquisition in upper Cripple Creek (close to Little Shot Rd.), starting with 122 acres of forested wetland and riparian area.
Grants: We did not receive the Acres for America grant. We were awarded the REI Local Co-op grant ($5,500). We are applying for the Sustainable Salmon Fund grant from Alaska Fish & Wildlife Service.
May Board Meeting
Stewardship: The Happy Creek diversion structure failed this spring, so most of the water is still flowing into the drainage ditch instead of the original Cripple Creek channel. The upper Cripple Creek diversion did not fail, but is too low– water is flowing over it instead of into the original channel.
Land: Landowners of a few extremely remote parcels (Brooks Range) are interested in conservation options.
Grants: We received the Proactive Conservation grant from the USFWS to continue funding the conservation coordinator position! This is critical to support our core mission, we are very grateful to receive full funding.
For the good: In order to reclassify the conservation coordinator as an employee, we will need someone with experience with payroll tax and worker’s insurance. There was a closed discussion to come up with options.
April Board Meeting
Stewardship: Discussion on the planned bridge for Chinook Conservation Park– we need engineering design approval.
Land: 152 acre parcel in Goldstream Valley has been acquired– good job everyone! Appeal of property tax assessment for two parcels was postponed.
Fundraising: Raised $2,810 in our online auction fundraiser. Thank you participants and sponsors! Especially Sierra Club Alaska Chapter, who donated $1,000.
Grants: Applying for “Acres for America” grant. Would fund the conservation of upper Cripple Creek, making a continuous corridor to the headwaters. Also applying for REI Co-op Local grant. Funding for IALT’s one paid staff position is expiring in May, so we are applying for the Proactive Conservation grant from the USFWS to continue that core support.
For the good: We added an annual donation option on our membership page!
March Board Meeting
Stewardship: Volunteers had a clean-up party at the Steffensen cabin. Hoping someone will move or demolish the cabin before the snow melts. Goldstream Valley Lions gave us info on how to use public snow groomers. Discussed new Borough trail plans– may be able to add Goldstream Creek as a water trail.
Land: Christin is drafting the deed to acquire the 152 acre parcel in Goldstream Valley, earnest money has been paid. Agricultural easement off Eielson Farm Rd. in the works. Discussed consolidating parcels in western Goldstream for management purposes. Appealed the tax assessment for eastern portion of Parrish, which was valued much higher than the western portion.
Fundraising: Online auction coming up March 15-20! Working with web developer to improve our permanent donation page.
For the good: Discussion on invasive bird vetch. So far the new Cripple Creek channel is bird vetch free, but there is vetch in the parking area and meadow. Public is invited to pull any bird vetch they see! We have applied for a $5k Cornell Land Trust Bird Conservation Grant, mostly for outreach and education.
February Board Meeting
Discussion on Bailey Bridge project for summer at CCP.
Owen Guthrie discussed tree cutting in Goldstream and potential management issues and opportunities for greenbelt.
A brief discussion on a potential adjacent Conservation Easement or acquisition for trail continuity and access maintenance followed.
Discussion on trapping on IALT lands and CE lands. Traps that have recently appeared on IALT lands and trails are very close to trails and recreation users.
Discussion on two spring parcel purchases – appraisal on one property has been started/requested!