From a lonely outlook in the coastal mountains of Mendocino County, Chris
Kelly takes stock of the dark green ridges of redwood and fir stacked against a
light-blue skyline. It's there that he plans to log roughly two dozen square
miles of forestland in the coming months and years.
Kelly works for the new owner of this stretch of working forest in the Garcia
River watershed, a haven for endangered Coho salmon and threatened northern
spotted owls. But his employer is not one of the timber titans that have pulled
lumber from California's Redwood Empire for more than a century.
He manages the land for the Conservation Fund, a 21-year-old Arlington,
Va.-based organization that strives to balance natural resource protection with
economic goals. And timber sales here will be used to pay for forest and
"People will say, 'A conservation group doing logging?' " said Kelly, who
manages its ...