Winter Wildlands Alliance is dedicated to preserving winter wildlands and quality human-powered snowsports experiences on public lands. We represent a growing community of backcountry and Nordic skiers, splitboarders, snowshoers, climbers, climate researchers, and other human-paced winter explorers, from Maine to California to Alaska. Our members, and the members of our 32 different grassroots groups in 17 states, deeply value natural winter soundscapes and the opportunity for refuge and respite afforded by the last remaining places across the American West where solitude, fundamental wildness and non-motorized experiences are preserved. From the backcountry to Washington D.C., Winter Wildlands Alliance works with land managers, elected officials, grassroots groups and other partners to pursue a balanced, adaptive and collaborative approach to winter recreation management for the long-term protection of the places where we recreate and seek adventure.
Many National Forests across the country are undertaking forest plan revisions. Forest plans are guiding documents that set general management direction for a national forest for 15-30 years. Participating in forest plan revision is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to shape the long-term future of national forests.
Much of our work directly supports efforts led by our grassroots groups at the local level. We assist by providing policy expertise, organizing tools, and/or amplification of issues and projects they are working on. Here are some examples:
Working on and supporting legislation to protect public lands and improve recreation opportunities and management
Advocating for permanent reauthorization and funding for the Land & Water Conservation Fund
Advocating for adequate and sustainable appropriations for land management agencies
Working for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in the Outdoors
Defending the Roadless Rule in Alaska, Utah and beyond
Working on National Environmental Policy Act reform
Working on Forest Service Environmental Assessment and Decision Making reform
The human-powered winter sports community, one of the fastest growing segments of the recreation economy, is on the front lines of climate change. Our members—backcountry skiers and snowboarders, Nordic skiers, polar explorers, mountain guides, ice climbers, winter fat bikers, snowshoers and snow scientists—live and work and play in some of the most climate-impacted regions on the planet. Working with land managers, outdoor industry partners, and 39 grassroots groups in 17 states, we advocate for public lands policies that mitigate and respond to a shifting climate, protecting threatened winter ecosystems, accessible non-motorized snowscapes, critical watersheds, healthy forests, and sustainable mountain town economies. We are also committed to climate education and outreach through our national SnowSchool program, engaging more than 33,000 kids annually across 65 outdoor education sites, and our Backcountry Film Festival, which tours 100 communities nationwide and reaches more than 30,000 people each season.
In 2015, in part because of our work, the Forest Service issued new national guidelines for planning how and where winter motorized use can occur on our National Forests. This new rule was a huge step forward for human-powered recreation, because for the first time the Forest Service is required to implement a “zoning” approach to the backcountry, with some trails and areas designated for motorized use and other areas set aside for non-motorized users or wildlife. Please visit our Winter Travel Management page to learn more.
Check out this beautiful film by one of our grassroots groups, Friends of Plumas Wilderness. "Visions of the Lost Sierra" is about the Wild & Scenic Middle Fork Feather River. The Middle Fork was one of the first eight rivers in the country protected by Congress through the National Wild & Scenic Rivers Act in 1968.
https://winterwildlands.org/wwa/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/Screen-Shot-2019-11-25-at-12.41.23-PM.jpg7551500Winter Wildlandshttps://winterwildlands.org/wwa/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/WWA_Logo_OrangeBlue-300x89.pngWinter Wildlands2019-11-13 11:22:472019-11-25 13:43:31Watch: Visions of the Lost Sierra
Together as an outdoor community, we are powerful, and we have a responsibility to stand up to protect public lands and waters. We will not be divided. Together we can achieve our vision of a system of protected public lands that works for everyone, not just a handful of entrenched interests.
https://winterwildlands.org/wwa/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/Tetons.jpg7211500Winter Wildlandshttps://winterwildlands.org/wwa/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/WWA_Logo_OrangeBlue-300x89.pngWinter Wildlands2019-11-11 11:35:422019-11-13 11:00:44Winter Wildlands Joins Outdoor Alliance for the Public Lands Pledge
If there’s one thing that every backcountry skier needs to be clear about as they head into winter, it’s the parking situation at their local trailhead.
https://winterwildlands.org/wwa/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/IMG_2621.jpg15001500Julie Brownhttps://winterwildlands.org/wwa/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/WWA_Logo_OrangeBlue-300x89.pngJulie Brown2019-11-06 10:39:282019-11-06 10:41:49Why It's So Hard to Get to the Mountains
Winter Wildlands Alliance just wrapped up a weekend full of events: the world premiere of the 15th Annual Backcountry Film Festival, the Snowball fundraiser for SnowSchool, and the three-day Grassroots Advocacy Conference. In Boise, Idaho, the “Wild Weekend” was a chance to showcase all that happens in the Winter Wildlands Alliance office. But it was also an opportunity to connect people with each other, to share knowledge and experience, and to inspire.
https://winterwildlands.org/wwa/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/IMG_9304.jpg10001500Julie Brownhttps://winterwildlands.org/wwa/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/WWA_Logo_OrangeBlue-300x89.pngJulie Brown2019-10-31 13:55:112019-11-26 13:01:38Wild Weekend Recap: Grassroots Advocacy Meets Film Festival Meets Snowball
Winter Wildlands Alliance is a national nonprofit organization promoting and
preserving winter wildlands and a quality human-powered snowsports
experience on public lands.