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Gifford Pinchot National Forest, Washington State

Categories: Forests, National Parks, Nature & Parks
Inspirock Rating:
3.8/5 based on 20+ reviews on the web
Gifford Pinchot National Forest is a National Forest located in southern Washington, USA, managed by the United States Forest Service. With an area of 1.32 million acres (5300 km2), it extends 116 km along the western slopes of Cascade Range from Mount Rainier National Park to the Columbia River. The forest straddles the crest of the South Cascades of Washington State, spread out over broad, old growth forests, high mountain meadows, several glaciers, and numerous volcanic peaks. The forest's highest point is at 12,276 ft. at the top of Mount Adams, the second tallest volcano in the state after Rainier. It includes the 110000acre Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument, established by Congress in 1982.HistoryGifford Pinchot National Forest is one of the older national forests in the United States. Included as part of the Mount Rainier Forest Reserve in 1897, the area was set aside as the Columbia National Forest in 1908. It was renamed the Gifford Pinchot National Forest in honor of Gifford Pinchot, on June 15, 1949. In 1985 the non-profit Gifford Pinchot Task Force formed to protect the area. People for over 6,000 years have made an impact in the ecology of the Gifford Pinchot National Forest. Native Americans hunted in high meadows below receding glaciers. The natives then began to manage the forest to meet their own needs. One method they used was to burn specific areas to help in the huckleberry production. About 338 spots more than 6,000 culturally modified trees were identified, of which 3,000 are protected now. Archaeological investigations on the forest continually find new information to this day about the past lifestyles of the Native Americans.
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  • Very disappointing. Drove in the National Forest for 2.5 hours can't really say we saw too much other than very tall trees. Virtually no others vehicles were in the forest. So glad we were out of ther...  read more »
  • Whether it be hiking, camping, riding motorcycles or sitting in the pools at Lower Lewis Falls, this has become one of my favorite places in Washington. A must visit if you like the outdoors. 
  • Well worth the trip, and I didn't even have time to check it all out. Peterson Prairie campground was gorgeous, I would stay again. Make sure to see the natural bridges and the Ice Cave. Just driving ...  read more »
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