DRAFT 10-year Recreation Strategy for WDFW-managed Lands (2022)

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Published: January 6, 2022

Pages: 56

Executive Summary

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Individuals who need to receive this information in an alternative format, language, or who need reasonable accommodations to participate in WDFW-sponsored public meetings or other activities may contact the Title VI/ADA Compliance Coordinator by phone at 360-902-2349, TTY (711), or email (Title6@dfw.wa.gov).

March 2022 Update: Next steps for the 10-Year Recreation Strategy for WDFW-Managed Lands

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) manages over a million acres of land in Washington state offering unique opportunities for exploration and recreation within intact and recovering ecosystems.

Like many public land managers, WDFW faces complex challenges in managing visitor access and recreation on department-managed lands. WDFW provides recreation access within the bounds of its steadfast commitment to protecting fish, wildlife, ecosystems, and tribal treaty resources now and into the future.

The goals of this 10-year strategy are to increase protections for cultural and natural resources, offer quality recreation opportunities on WDFW-managed lands, and strengthen relationships with tribal governments, partners, and stakeholders.

To achieve these goals, WDFW will pursue six strategic initiatives:

  1. Use and Impact Monitoring: Develop and manage data systems that support recreation planning and management decisions.
  2. Recreation Planning: Plan to accommodate outdoor recreation where it is compatible with conservation and other management priorities.
  3. Rulemaking: Regulate recreation uses of WDFW-managed lands to protect the health and safety of fish, wildlife, habitat, department personnel, neighbors, and other visitors.
  4. Travel Management: Develop a sustainable multimodal travel management program that addresses the designation, development, decommissioning, maintenance and monitoring of roads and trails on WDFW-managed lands.
  5. Education and Engagement: Engage targeted populations in planning and managing recreation and encourage the development of a stewardship ethic in all visitors to WDFW-managed lands.
  6. Capacity and Funding: Develop the tools, workforce, and sustainable funding to deliver on the vision of the 10-year Recreation Strategy for WDFW-managed Lands.

Prioritized near-term actions include: making WDFW-managed lands more welcoming, developing data and systems to support planning and management, curtailing illegal activity, piloting expanded recreation planning processes in priority areas, and ramping up department capacity for planning and managing recreation.

This strategy will require significant near- and long-term investment. The estimated non-capital cost for implementation is $40 to $60 million. WDFW invites our partners and visitors to join us in this effort to enhance recreation opportunities on WDFW-managed lands while preserving these special places for generations to come.