Earlier this summer, . DeFazio (D-OR) and Sen. Wyden (D-OR) introduced companion bills, H.R. 2888 and S. 1272, designating the 29,650-acre Devil’s Staircase Wilderness, protecting a large section of the Smith River tributary Wassen Creek. The watershed supports wild coho, Chinook, steelhead and sea-run and resident cutts. Check out the video below.
This is one gnarly section of coast range old growth. Three times this summer already, rescue crews have gone looking for hikers that have tried to find their way in and out of this area. From the recent article:
The Devils Staircase area has no developed trails into the falls and most roads are not signed. All search missions have been due to people over estimating their ability to get in and out of the area in one day.
The Douglas County Sheriff’s Office advises hikers who visit this area that it may take an overnight trip to complete the route; that GPS units do not work very well in the area due to heavy timber and steep canyons; there are no developed trails; and people need to be prepared for an overnight stay and be well equipped and experienced in land navigation.
Cascadia Wildlands is raising money to make sure this legislation gets passed. You can donate here.