The endangered Castle Grove is perhaps the most impressive stand of unprotected monumental ancient redcedars in Canada. The Lower Castle Grove includes the “Castle Giant”, an enormous, 16 foot (5 metre) diameter western redcedar that is one of the largest trees in Canada, and both the Lower and Upper Castle Grove are jam-packed with perhaps the largest density of monumental redcedars in a substantial size grove in Canada.
Marbled Murrelets, screech owls, Queen Charlotte goshawks, red-legged frogs, cougars, black bears, and black-tailed deer all live in the Upper Castle Grove, while steelhead and coho salmon spawn in the Walbran River below the Castle Grove. In the summer of 2012, survey tape for logging was discovered in the Upper Castle Grove, and any attempts to log the area is guaranteed to result in a large-scale escalation in BC’s War in the Woods. The Castle Grove has been featured in numerous media reports on BC’s old-growth forests for over two decades, including the front pages of the Victoria “Times Colonist” and in the “Vancouver Sun”.
The Walbran Valley was the focus of early protests against old-growth logging in 1991 and 1992, playing an important role in the build-up towards the massive Clayoquot Sound protests near Tofino on Vancouver Island in 1993.
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Photography by TJ Watt.