Community campaign to save Nelson, BC’s Cottonwood Lake from clearcut logging has surpassed the $50,000 fundraising goal with over 380 donors.

An effort to protect a wildlife and recreational area near Nelson has surpassed its crowdfunding goal in less than a month. The fundraising campaign is being led by the newly formed Cottonwood Lake Preservation Society, which is trying to save two large parcels of private land surrounding Cottonwood Lake and the Apex cross-country ski area from unregulated clearcut logging.

“The community support for this campaign has been rapid and very strong,” says Andrew McBurney, spokesperson for the society. “Meeting our $50,000 crowdfunding goal so quickly sends a clear message: the community deeply cares about Cottonwood Lake and the Apex area. We hope to multiply the GoFundMe fund by matching it with grants and government partnerships over the next month.”

Benefit concerts are also being planned at the Spirit Bar (January 26) and Bloom Nightclub (February 7), and the Society is also organizing letter-writing events at the Nelson Public Library (January 19 and February 9). In the meantime, the Cottonwood Lake Preservation Society has submitted an expression of interest for the Canada Nature Fund and is pursuing other grant opportunities. The Society plans to make an appeal for support at the next Regional District of Central Kootenay (RDCK) board meeting with the aim of preserving the land as a regional park.

“The ultimate goal is to get the land into public hands” McBurney adds, “So we’ll keep accepting donations through GoFundMe and we have several upcoming fundraising events to keep the momentum going.”

All photos by our buddy Dave Heath.

The highly visible Cottonwood-Apex area contains a sensitive wetland ecosystem that feeds two watersheds and local water licenses, an important wildlife corridor for grizzly bears and other large mammals, and potential avalanche zones above the Nelson Nordic trail system and Cottonwood Lake. It’s also a popular and well-planned recreational area including a mountain biking and cross-country ski trail network, fishing, hiking, and skating.

Details on the campaign and upcoming events can be found at