The Next National Scenic Area?

  • By cvbizz
  • April 27, 2020
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photo by Steven McBride

Rural neighbors build a national coalition to protect a wild, ancient forest as the Craggy National Scenic Area

Four years ago, a small group of Appalachian farmers, teachers, and carpenters sat around a wobbly table in their community center. They were worried: logging threatened the old-growth forest that surrounded their valley. So they began spitballing ideas about how to save it. They sketched out a plan that included door-to-door conversations, flyers at the local gas station, and a community meeting later that month. “We didn’t know what we were doing,” admitted Steven McBride, one of the neighbors around the table. “But we had to try. We just decided to go for it and got to work.”

They were hoping to protect the 16,000-acre Craggy section of Pisgah National Forest in western North Carolina.  It includes ancient forests, waterfalls, pristine streams, 6,000-foot summits, world-class trails like the

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