Musings on a Trip to Mt Adams

By Jurgen Hess, September 2021. (click/tap image for an enlarged view and to read the full article) Final Mt. Adams Musings Jurgen Hess is an award winning photo-journalist. His photography specializes in wildfire. He gives talks to help people understand … Continue reading

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People in Nature: Interactions on Mt Adams in a Warming Earth

A Virtual Seminar in the early 2021. The Friends of Mt Adams originally planned to present this in-person community seminar to coincide with Earth Day last April 2020.  But the best laid plans of mice and meeting planners can go … Continue reading

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Snowmobiling Prohibited

  Special Notice The Yakama Nation has closed their Mt. Adams Recreation Area to the public for the entire summer season because they are reconstructing their road and will have no other personnel in the area. Snowmobiling Prohibited Snowmobiling is … Continue reading

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Winter 2019 Newsletter

Winter 2019 Newsletter (View/download full PDF). 

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  Winter 2018 Newsletter (click image to view/download full PDF) The Winter 2018 newsletter features a review of Ever Wild by Darryl Lloyd. He writes about the human uses of the Mount Adams, its native plants, and the science of this … Continue reading

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Cascade Carnivore Project Update


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Presentation: Rare Carnivores of Mt Adams

Nearly 100 people packed the library meeting room at the White Salmon Library to watch a presentation on the carnivores of Mt Adams. Presenters were two biologists with expertise in the region. Jocelyn Akins, PhD., of the Cascade Carnivore Project presented on the Cascade red fox and and Jeff Lewis, PhD. from Olympia spoke about the reintroduction of the fisher in southern Washington.

FOMA board member Laurie Wilhite welcomes attendees


A packed house for the presentation

Jocelyn Akins (FOMA board member)

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Bird Creek Meadows: good, bad & the ugly

Cry the Beloved Meadows 

by Darryl Lloyd

[NOTE: This article dates from years ago. Friends of Mt Adams is happy to report that both the Forest Service and the Yakama Nation have erected solid fences at the legal boundary for cattle grazing as of 2021. These fences are monitored frequently and we have accompanied these Forest Service monitoring trips. There is no evidence of cattle intrusion into Bird Creek Meadows as of 2021.]


The Bird Creek Meadows—largely within the Yakama Nation Mount Adams Recreation Area—is one of the most treasured subalpine parklands in the Cascades. Its spectacular wildflower displays are well-known to botanists and nature lovers across the country. The Native Plant Society lists 162 plant species, including 10 conifers. On the mountain’s southern slope, over 100 glades and meadows form a triangular area between 5,700 feet and 7,100 feet. Tumbling down through the beautiful meadows are about a dozen spring-fed streams, most of which flow into Bird Creek.

On Sunday (9/3/17), Darvel and I checked out trails and documented extensive cattle trespass and adverse impacts in the Bird Creek Meadows within the Yakama Reservation boundary. (Note: Friends of Mount Adams are partners in the Washington Trails Association’s trail-maintenance project. Access by road to Bird Lake and the meadows has been closed to the public for the past two years, but we went in as part of the WTA group.)

The Good
WTA volunteers did a wonderful job of repairing and improving the Bird Lake Tr., Bluff Lake Tr., Round-the-Mountain Tr. and Trail of the Flowers.
The Bad 
(1) The Bird Creek road (Rd. 285) to Bird Lake is in, by far, the worst condition we’ve ever seen it. The road is very nearly impassable. (2) The Yakama Nation drift fence was in disrepair. Only part of it had been put up as of September 3rd. However, cattle have been passing through it freely all summer—as they did during the 2016 grazing season.
The Ugly
We counted at least 17 trespassing cows, yearling calves and a large bull in two different parts of the meadows. Most of the cattle were seen along Crooked Creek above the falls. Evidence clearly shows that cattle have grazed heavily throughout the Bird Creek Meadows for the past two years. Parts of the meadows look and smell like beaten-down cow pastures. Riparian areas are being trampled and severely impacted in a number of ways. For example, along streams nearly every clump of late-blooming Lewis’ monkeyflower has been eaten. Plant processes important for survival will undoubtedly be affected, because very few blooms or seed pods remained.
What now?
We immediately called and reported the trespass to the owner of the cattle, Neil Kayser family of Centerville, Washington. They refuse to chase out their cattle until the Yakama Nation puts up their fence properly. The Bird Creek Meadows parklands are being severely degraded from repeated, illegal grazing. For the last two years the Yakama Nation has failed to keep them cattle-free.
– Darryl Lloyd

Approaching the Yakama Nation Mount Adams Recreation Area by the Bird Creek road (Rd. 285), Sept. 3, 2017

New sign at trailhead near Bird Lake

Washington Trails Association volunteers work on the Bluff Lake Trail

New bridge over Crooked Creek, on the Bird Lake Trail

At least 12 cattle—cows, yearling calves and a bull—near Crooked Creek


Wetland below Round-the-Mountain Trail

Trampled bank of the frog pond, also heavily grazed meadow

Clumps of late-blooming Lewis’ monkeyflower and other plants trampled and eaten by cows

Cows ate monkeyflowers during their blooming stage

Almost no monkeyflower blooms or or seed pods clusters remained along the many streams

Amazing widflowers on August 21, 2013

Cattle impacts & erosion, done during the 2016 season—15 cow pies counted within about a 25-30 ft. radius

Grazing impacts along Round-the-Mountain Trail

Yakama Nation drift fence on 9/3/17

Broken cattle guard on Bird Creek Road, 9/3/17

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FOMA Continues to Monitor Cattle on Mt Adams

FOMA Board member Jocelyn Akins visited Bird Creek Meadows on August 5, 2017 and took this picture of grazing cattle in subalpine meadows near Crooked Creek. It has been a continuing project of FOMA to monitor these intrusions and to … Continue reading

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Bird Creek Meadows Bench Lake Trail Camp

Join Work Party Overview Volunteer for one or more days, enjoy Saturdays Potluck dinner and stay for an extra day of hiking on Labor Day! Help WTA and Friends of Mount Adams restore trails at Bird Creek Meadows and Bench … Continue reading

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