Constructive Influence

The Reserve partners with individuals and families, schools and teacher colleges to create hands-on learning opportunities based in system thinking and practical stewardship of the ecosystems upon which all life depends.

We believe that a wholesome and secure society depends upon inspired, educated and caring individuals. We are encouraged by the constructive influence on the habit and attitude of young people that comes from positive encounters with the natural world. We support an individualized curiosity-based approach to learning about nature –and the nature of responsibility, and believe that practical hands-on experiential learning can have a profound positive influence both on the individual, and how our society relates to resources for future generations.

From the beginning with Cold Spring Farm in 1976, the Patton, Wollan and Pinchot families acquired and protected the Little White Salmon Biodiversity Reserve (LSWBR) overlooking the heart of the Columbia Gorge to support these goals and values, a “learning watershed” for exploring the art and science of sustaining culture. It would not have been possible without the support of Paul G. Allen!

We see our mission having three “legs”: To study & practice sustainable resource management as a partnership with future generations. To protect and manage a working forest & farm retreat for experiential learning in sustaining culture, and for the study and conservation of biodiversity and healthy ecosystems. To provide a safe environment for hands-on learning through college internships, business and organizational retreats, work-study activities about renewable energy, regenerative farming & forestry, wholesome cooking & food preservation, craft, music, theater and the arts.