Great Mountain Forest February 2021
In this issue: GMF enters the IUCN, Climate Change Webinar, GMF Weather Observation Anniversary, GMF in the News, and Tom Blagden's GMF on Ice
Great Mountain Forest Enters the IUCN
Membership in International Union for Conservation of Nature Gives GMF a Global Reach
Great Mountain Forest has been granted membership into the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), a global organization dedicated to assessing the status of the natural world and the measures needed to safeguard it. 

Membership in the Union connects GMF to national and worldwide efforts to conserve the natural world and hasten the transition to sustainable practices to aid that conservation.  

The scientific research performed at Great Mountain Forest, its work in promoting sustainable forest management practices, and its entry into carbon credits are now accessible to a global audience.

IUCN membership provides GMF access to best practices, science, and initiatives from around the world. This access can inform future activities, research, and partnerships and confirms GMF’s role as a significant local and global contributor to environmental stewardship and sustainability. 

With her experience in global environmental efforts, Great Mountain Forest’s Executive Director Tamara Muruetagoiena believes IUCN membership validates GMF’s historical commitment to sustainable forest management and points to new possibilities. “Being a member of the IUCN provides an exciting opportunity for GMF to learn from organizations around the world, participate in an exchange of knowledge and science, and gives us a voice in issues that impact forests. This is part of GMF’s effort to expand its national and international reach.” 
The mission of the International Union for Conservation of Nature is to influence, encourage and assist societies throughout the world to conserve the integrity and diversity of nature and to ensure that any use of natural resources is equitable and ecologically sustainable.
How Does GMF Benefit from IUCN Membership?

IUCN membership benefits GMF in at least four key ways:
  • Increases GMF's influence by being part of a global membership organization of over 1,200 states, government agencies, multilateral organizations, and non-profits/NGOs.
  • Gives GMF a voice in important issues that is amplified globally in concert with fellow member organizations.
  • Allows GMF to partner and build relationships with other Union members, experts, and staff.
  • Strengthens GMFs credibility as a respected voice in the world's oldest conservation alliance.
Join GMF's Executive Director Tamara Muruetagoiena for a webinar exploring a local scientific perspective on climate change on Monday, February 22 at 6 p.m.

Muruetagoiena will discuss how GMF’s ecosystems are affected by climate change and explain its compliance carbon credit program, which is part of GMF’s sustainable forest management. She will describe GMF’s membership in initiatives such as Governor Lamont’s Council on Climate Change and the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). These important relationships allow GMF to learn about trends and create relationships with other organizations in environmental conservation, climate change research, and sustainable forest management. 

Muruetagoiena will also make the case that the Forest plays an important role in inspiring the environmental stewardship necessary to combat climate change through the emotional and cultural connection it nurtures in those who engage with the forest for recreation.

This virtual multi-part series on climate change is hosted by the Norfolk Foundation’s Norfolk Hub Talks program in partnership with the Norfolk Library, the Norfolk United Church of Christ Green Group, and the Norfolk Climate Coalition.
Happy 90th Anniversary to a Stormy Relationship
January 1st marked the beginning of the 90th year of weather observation at GMF, as well as the volunteer partnership between the Forest and the National Weather Service (NWS). GMF has been recording the weather every day since that date.

The relationship that Ted Childs began in 1932 is continued today by GMF's Russell Russ, who manages GMF's Cooperative Weather Observer Station--one of about 165 in Connecticut and 11,700 in the country.

Russ meticulously records and compiles this weather data, and it's available on the GMF website. You can also read his monthly weather column in Norfolk Now.
GMF in the News
In January, Main Street Magazine's website focused on promoting health and well-being. GMF published several online articles about fractals, the family-friendly Tamarack Trail, and the health benefits of witch hazel. Click on the captions below to read more.
Freeze Frame: Tom Blagden Captures GMF on Ice
Forest Notices

Welcome to the forest this winter!

GMF is a place of peaceful co-existence for everyone

  • Safely enjoy cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, and hiking by using established trails, maintaining a social distance of six feet or more, and respecting the natural world and your fellow humans.

  • If you're on foot or snowshoes, please reserve the groomed tracks for those on cross-country skis.

  • Keep your dog on a leash and if you pack it in--pack it out!

  • Sign in at kiosks at the East and West Gates.

  • Watch for inclement weather notices on social media.

If you have any questions, email
Stand with the Trees!
Donate to Great Mountain Forest.
Your generosity makes our work possible!
GMF is critical to the environmental and economic sustainability of the region as well as an important contributor to research and education about climate change and environmental health. Help us support the forest as a vital natural resource.