2019 Year in Review

December 30, 2019

As we ring in the New Year we want to thank you for all that you have done to help protect natural places throughout the Inland Northwest that bring us joy, sustenance, connection and wonder. Thanks to our community’s investments of time, treasure and talent, 2019 has delivered many conservation successes worth celebrating.

Thank you for the part that you are playing in these inspiring accomplishments. We are already looking forward to all that 2020 will bring.

Happy New Year from the whole team,

Dave, Chris, Vicki, Jolene, Todd, Rose, Eric, Tom, Catherine and our Board


Here are nine pieces of good news from 2019. Together we are changing lives for the better.

1. Lower Coeur d’Alene River: Tundra Swan habitat protection and restoration

With help from our partners, we’ve protected essential lands in the Canyon Marsh area – ripe and ready for the creation of restored wetlands for majestic tundra swans and other migratory waterfowl. You can take a ride on the Trail of the Coeur d’Alenes to enjoy these beautiful waterways and habitats.

2. Rimrock to Riverside: wrapping up the land protection phase

Generous support and willing landowners have allowed us to make exceptional progress towards our goal of protecting and connecting the lands between Palisades Park and Riverside State Park. When finished, this will complete an 11 mile contiguous trail and habitat corridor between downtown Spokane and the shores of Long Lake.

3. Stewards on the land: engaging the next generation

Conservation heroes come in all shapes and sizes! By participating in the enhanced stewardship of conservation lands we learn more about the natural world that we are working to protect, we improve our own health by being physically active outdoors, and we help steward our environment during this era of climate change. You, too, can participate!

4. Shorelines of Long Lake – a vital habitat corridor

In Partnership with Avista, your conservancy is permanently protecting the lands that buffer Long Lake. These lands bring immense habitat, water quality, cultural and recreation value to our region. With your help, in 2019 we conserved 900 acres and over 6.5 miles of shoreline. 2020 will bring even more success!

5. An evening with Kris Tompkins – Local=Global

Our efforts to conserve the lands and waters essential to life in the Inland Northwest are connected to urgent conservation work being done all over the planet. Earlier this year Kris Tompkins, one of Earth’s heroes joined us for an evening of shared inspiration. You can watch her talk here.

6. Patsy’s Place – rest and contemplate the views

As part of the Rimrock to Riverside project, we are bringing park enhancements to Palisades Park, including two benches at scenic vistas along the Rimrock bluff trail. Patsy’s Place commemorates project supporter Larry Small’s dear wife. In the coming year our project campaign to protect and enhance these lands will bring you more opportunities like this.

7. Private land protection = Public environmental benefit

This year your conservancy has had the privilege of working with numerous families throughout our region to permanently conserve a range of vital lands. From forested sanctuaries to resplendent wetlands, spawning grounds to farm ground, these lands provide clean drinking water, carbon storage, and scenic views for us all.

8. Grounded in nature – building lasting connections

Thanks to your support we were able to engage with hundreds of community members of all ages on our hikes, walks, ambles, snowshoe outings, and paddleboard adventures. We know that engaging people outdoors on the lands and waters we love helps deepen our shared commitment to their protection. We encourage you to join us for these outings in 2020. Following us on Facebook is a great way to stay connected.

9. Over 21,000 acres protected and stewarded. More to come!

Thanks to your support, this year’s conservation successes tipped us past the 21,000 acre-mark. We are thrilled about this milestone, but we also know that in order to keep up with our growing regional population and our changing climate, we need to accelerate our pace of work. With an engaged and growing membership we are looking forward to even more in 2020!

Thank you, again, for partnering with us in the protection of the best of the Inland Northwest.

Happy New Year!