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Land trust moves forward on Trillium Woods

An advisory committee has been formed to develop a management plan for the 664-acre Trillium Woods property recently acquired by the Whidbey Camano Land Trust.

The eight-member committee will begin meeting with focus groups and gathering information from the public on the best approach to handling the forest property, which was purchased with $4.2 million in donations and loans this past fall, Elizabeth Guss, land trust director of outreach and development, said this week.

The property north of Freeland is the largest single-owner piece of forest land remaining on Whidbey and Camano islands. It is laced with more than 10 miles of trails, and has been a popular hiking and horseback-riding area.

Members of the new committee are Island County Commissioner Helen Price Johnson; county parks and public works director Bill Oakes; Lenny Corin, a land trust board member who worked for the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service for 30 years; Steve Shapiro, a local businessman and owner of Island Athletic Club; Steve Ellis, president of Whidbey Audubon; and Robin Clark, program manager for Whidbey Watershed Stewards. Jessica Larson, stewardship associate, and Pat Powell, executive director, will represent the land trust on the panel.

Guss said the land trust will post an update on the committee's work on the land trust website in February. Meanwhile, the land trust will offer more onsite tours of the property beginning this month, she said.

Signs and gates also have been installed, and a trail map created, which is available on the land trust website, Guss said.

She said the land trust soon will also come up with a new name for the property, selected from more than 100 suggestions already received.

Meanwhile, the land trust is also looking for more volunteers to help maintain the property. Contact Larson at jessica@wclt.org, or call 222-3310.

The Whidbey Camano Land Trust protects natural habitats, scenic vistas and working farms and forests in partnership with landowners and our island communities. Incorporated in 1984, the land trust is local, nonprofit and non-political.

For more information about Trillium Woods, visit www.wclt.org or call 222-3310.

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