REI grant to shore up Beaver Lake

The map shows Beaver Lake sits north of the Bass Lake area in Enumclaw.

In late 2010, the Middle Green River Coalition received a grant from national outdoor retailer, REI, Recreational Equipment, Inc., that will help restore the shoreline along Beaver Lake, which sits between Enumclaw and Black Diamond.

Through a partnership with Green-Duwamish Watershed Alliance, MGRC, which was formed in 2000 to protect the Green River Gorge and Middle Green River Watershed, plans to use the grant to support restoring a 10-acre parcel of shoreline along Beaver Lake.

Located off the north side of Southeast 380th Street between Bass Lake and Dandy Lake, Beaver Lake is part of a complex of land with three lakes that protect an important sub watershed of lakes, Cristi Creek, and wetlands that feed the Green River. The lakes complex connects to the larger Green River Gorge Mountains to Valley Greenway.

According to Lisa Parsons, MGRC executive director, the REI grant is for $5,000 and the group also received a matching grant of $5,000. She said REI has a program where employees nominate groups they think should apply for one of their grants. MGRC was nominated by an REI employee and asked to apply.

With the funding, MGRC will remove invasive plants, replant with native plants and improve an existing trail along the lake. The funding will also help leverage additional resources to provide for birding opportunities, interpretive signage and trail linkage to adjacent open space areas including the Green River Gorge.

According to the MGRC, the lake complex provides the highest bird species diversity in King County, including bald eagle, pileated woodpecker, wood duck, bufflehead, great blue heron, common loon, and band-tailed pigeon, as well as green heron, osprey, and kingfisher. Mammals include elk, cougar, black bear, bobcat, mink, and river otter.

The wetland associated with Bass Lake is one of the largest in the county and is State Priority Habitat. It is also an important amphibian site with northwestern salamander, Pacific tree frog and red-legged frog.

The grant is a result of nominations made by local REI stores and the REI headquarters in Kent and REI Distribution Center in Sumner. MGRC was one of 18 nonprofit recipients. Others include EarthCorps, Duwamish Cleanup Coalition, Friends of the Cedar River Watershed, Greater Metro Parks Foundation, Mountains to Sound Greenway and Washington Wildlife and Recreation Coalition.

The Middle Green River Coalition is a group of community members, regional organizations, recreationalists, private land owners, government and others. Through conservation, restoration and education, MGRC preserves key natural areas to protect wildlife and support recreational outings.

Cleanup opportunities with the Middle Green River Coalition abound April 30.

Friends of the Green Ground Cleanup Crews

Hosted by Middle

Green River Coalition

Sign in between 9 and 11:30 a.m. Pick up trash bags at Flaming Geyser, picnic shelter No. 3 from cleanup leaders.

Old Historic Town of

Franklin Cleanup

Hosted by Black Diamond Historical Society

Come help clean up the old historic town of Franklin with the Black Diamond Historical Society, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Beaver Lake Restoration

Hosted by Middle Green River Coalition and REI

From 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.  clean a 10-acre site along Beaver Lake that is part of a conservation area called the Bass/Beaver/Dandy Lake Natural Area and Green River Gorge. There are plans to connect this to the Green River Gorge Rim trail.

State Route 169 Bridge Recreation Area Cleanup

Hosted by Middle Green River Coalition

10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Fun in the summer leaves its mark on the land around both sides of the state Route 169 bridge. Check in at Flaming Geyser Picnic Shelter No. 3 and tell them you want to cleanup the SR 169 site.

Whitewater Rafting

Hosted by Middle Green River Coalition

As always, Washington Recreational River Runners and boaters from the Northwest will be rafting the Green River, picking up trash along the way. The cost includes rafting, shuttle, wet suit, life jacket, booties and helmet, 10 percent of the proceeds support the conservation, recreation, and restoration efforts of the Middle Green River Coalition.

Opportunities for Tabling and Sponsoring with Friends of the Green

Organizations that want to have a table with literature to hand out on environmental or river recreation issues are welcome.

For directions, contacts or  information, go to

www.mgrc.org.