aerial view 
of the Mattole Watershed

Mattole Defense
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From NCEF! update list 01-13-2000

No Logging In 6 1/2 weeks

Mattole Forest Defenders Blockade Going Strong

It's been since November 28th, that Maxxam/Pacific Lumber sent in Columbia Helicopter loggers accompied by Humboldt County Sherriffs to log old-growth doug-fir in the Mattole. Since then Mattole Forest Defenders have moved almost 2 miles up Long Ridge to create the Mattole Free State, a blockade complete with several lockdowns, and hanging pods across the road. The idea is to stop Maxxam's crews before they can get their chainsaws in the forest. Clearly Maxxam is choosing not to challenge the blockade and the near constant presence of 30 non-violent forest defenders in the woods, has effectively shut down their operations for the time being. Mattole and Humboldt Residents are holding off on the outer gate blockades for now, but ready to moblize when Maxxam chooses to go back in. Forest Defenders spent Hanakuah, Christmas and New Years at the blockades.

The much needed rain for the Mattole River has been happening lately after a lengthly drought. The spawning cycles for species like the Coho Salmon(Oncorhynchus kisutch) and Chinook Salmon(Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) were at incredible risk due to a low water flow in the river from the dry weather.

"The upper portions of the watershed just haven't had the normal rain for this time of the year, until very recently." said a forest defender.

The recent rains make it so the forest defenders are bearing witness in some harsh Northcoast storms within 10 miles of the Pacific Ocean. The cold terrential downpouring rains have started to happened enough lately to create overland flow on the roads. This is only causing a temporarily delay in logging for now.

Mattole Forest Defenders Needs

Please come to the Mattole for a few days and help defend the 3,000 acres of incredible old growth Doug-Fir forest. We prefer those with direct action experience. Please call the hotline first at 707-441-3828. We need folks to help block gates or head into the backwoods. Come prepared for very cold, rainy conditions. The hike into the area is over 12+ miles. There is no basecamp so please call the hotline to get invloved. We also have a wish list: backwoods food (high protein pocket foods such as clif bars, dried fruits, nuts, dry soup mixes, falafel mix, etc), vitamin C, rain gear, warm clothing (non-cotton polypro and fleece preferred), wool blankets, batteries (AA, AAA), radios, backpacks, tarps, video cameras, and of course money... One can mail donations to the addresses list below.

John Campbell, Pacific Lumber Co., 707-764-2222, FAX-707-764-4269
Charles Hurwitz, Maxxam Corp, 713-975-7600, FAX-713-952-4795

Ask them to hold off logging in the Mattole for one year so the community can assess and raise the funds to purchase the entire 14,000 acre holdings. Also demand that they treat non-violent activist as humans beings and stop endangering their lives with falling trees.

Humboldt County Sherriff Dennis Lewis, (707)-445-7251

Demand they stop endangering non-violent activists by allowing Pacific Lumber and Columbia to fall trees recklessly and so close to activist. Ask them how much of our taxpayer dollars they intend to spend to protecting Maxxam's logging of ancient forest in the Mattole. Remind them the situation in the Mattole is no different from the circumstances that led to the murder of David Gypsy Chain two years ago. The penalty for trespassing is not death.

Mattole Forest Defense at 707-441-3828.
Donations can be sent to:
POB 117, Petrolia, CA 95558.


Mattole Defense
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