Cougar Mountain’s rich forest and wildlife corridor represents the best of the Pacific North West. The following photographs are just a sampling of what Cougar Mountain has to offer Issaquah and the greater Seattle communities.
Twenty-seven acres of wetlands are home to 3 streams, some which feed salmon runs and nurture the surrounding wildlife. The current proposed 57 home development crosses 2 streams and requires a stream buffer encroachment to accommodate roads.
Just minutes from Seattle, Cougar Mountain could provide much needed low elevation trails for the whole family. Easily accessible old growth forests with looping trails enhance the existing King County Cougar Mountain Regional Parks trail system.
Cougar Mountain is an important wildlife corridor between the three mountains flanking Issaquah: Cougar, Squak and Tiger Mountains. The location is home to Bobcats, owls, bears, deer, nesting eagles and more.
Cougar Mountain Park
Bergsma’s 45 acres adjoins the existing Cougar Mountain Regional Wildland Park. The Big Tree Ridge Trailhead is located on one side and the Issaquah City Harvey Manning Park joins the north side. With a future pedestrian bridge over Tibbetts Creek, it would be a short walk from the Issaquah Transit Center to nearly 4000 acres of Public Park and open space owned by the county, Issaquah, Bellevue and Newcastle!
The current property has been left untouched for the last 30 years due to steep slopes and steams combined with wetlands. However current land values have made it affordable to develop 57 homes even though steep slopes will need to be graded and the removal of 8,800 truckloads of earth has to occur. Significant tree canopy and vegetation will be replaced to build four retention vaults and roads.
Loss of Habitat
Large parts of Cougar Mountain have experienced explosive growth in the last 15 years. Decreasing sustainable habitat for the native wildlife such as the black bear has created issues for both our communities and animals. Destroying this important corridor would be a substantial loss to the area.
The wild and lush forest of Northern Cougar Mountain with its underground streams and dense forest canopy are hard to tame. Homes will be built on steep slopes in an area where over 50 percent of the land has been identified as High Risk slide potential. Nearby Cougar Mountain neighborhoods have experienced recent landslides and they were categorized “low” risk slopes.
All Season Trails
Wetlands and small streams flourish during the winter months adding to the open space and easy to access year round hiking and walking experiences.
A view of Issaquah's Lake Sammamish from Cougar Mountain. There is a clear opportunity to bring together resources and energy to save this significant swatch of Cougar Mountain.