Spokane District Office
The majority of BLM public lands in Washington are east of the Cascade crest in the central Columbia Basin and in the highlands of northeastern Washington along the Canadian border. In addition, public lands are found in northern Puget Sound, north of Seattle in San Juan County, which have been designated as the San Juan Island National Monument. A full range of habitats are found on the public lands in Washington and include the maritime Puget Sound lowlands, the central Columbia Basin sagebrush regime, many riparian zones, and the coniferous forest and sub-alpine areas of northeast Washington.
The public lands in eastern Washington are managed pursuant to plans prepared in 1987 and updated in 1992 and are located in ten management units. The lands include one wilderness area, one wilderness study area, 15 ACECs, and numerous areas managed principally for their recreational, riparian, and wildlife values. These areas include recreation sites in the Yakima River Canyon (more than 600,000 visitor days each year), the Juniper Dunes Wilderness and nearby off-highway vehicle (OHV) use area outside the Tri-Cities, and the Channeled Scablands riparian areas just west of Spokane.
In addition to the several hundred thousand acres under direct BLM jurisdiction, BLM administers the mineral resources across another several hundred thousand acres of split-estate lands, more than one million of withdrawn and acquired lands, and mining and reclamation activities on several Indian reservations. There are more than 2,700 mining claims and 312 grazing leases on the public lands in Washington. Major current initiatives include the creation of a management plan for the San Juan Islands Monument and an updated management plan for BLM lands in eastern Washington.
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