Jason Hattersley, the New District Ranger for the Mon Forest Introduces Himself

We spoke with Jason Hattersley, who was appointed in January as the new District Ranger overseeing the Marlinton-White Sulphur and Gauley Ranger Districts of the Monongahela National Forest. Hattersley was excited to introduce himself to our listeners and talk a little about his new responsibilities.

“Hello, this is Jason Hattersley, the District Ranger for the Marlinton-White Sulphur and Gauley Ranger Districts, also known as the South Zone of the Monongahela National Forest,” said Hattersley.” Said Hattersley. “I’ve arrived on the Monongahela National Forest in January, 2023, after serving the previous 21 years just across the border on the George Washington and Jefferson National Forest in Virginia.”

“The Marlinton-White Sulphur and Gauley Ranger Districts comprise of over 400,000 acres across four counties in West Virginia, including the Greenbrier, Nicholas, Pocahontas, and Webster counties.”

“During my brief time on the Forest, I’ve been amazed by the diverse ecosystems, countless recreational opportunities, and inspiring communities we have the privilege of serving.  It is an honor to serve and be a land-steward for the forest in this new capacity as the District Ranger.”

“As the spring season has emerged around us on the south Zone, our district employees have been busy with numerous conservation projects already underway across the district. This includes thinning timber stands for forest health; creation of early secessional habitat through vegetation management; and completing two prescribed burns that will increase secessional habitat within the project areas by increasing open and brushy habitat to provide nesting, foraging and cover for wildlife such as rough grouse, wild turkey, and other small mammals.”

“Our recreation areas across the Marlinton-White Sulphur and Gauley Districts are preparing for another busy season, with the vast majority of our recreation sites already open and ready for forest visitors, and remaining areas scheduled for opening by May 22nd.  For current schedules and more information on recreation opportunities, please visit the Monongahela National Forest website, or contact your local district office.”

“This is a special year for the Monongahela National Forest, as we have been selected to provide the 2023 United States Capital Christmas Tree. Every year the chosen National Forest customizes the project for local communities and the state that provides the U.S. Capital Christmas Tree. This year’s initiative includes selection of the people’s tree, which will be a 60-to-70-foot Red Spruce. Also providing 65 smaller companion trees for federal offices throughout Washington D.C., and partnering with local schools and community groups to create over ten-thousand ornaments, and 65 tree skirts to celebrate West Virginia. The harvested tree will be toured around the state to celebrate with West Virginia, and culminating with the tree lighting ceremony in Washington D.C. Stay tuned for more information about upcoming events and opportunities to get involved with these unique experiences. Thanks for listening, and I hope you are able to get out and enjoy your national forest.”

Hattersley has agreed to speak to our listeners periodically to keep us informed about seasonal happenings in the Monongahela National Forest.

Story By

Tim Walker

Tim is the WVMR News Reporter. Tim is a native of Maryland who started coming to Pocahontas County in the 1970’s as a caver. He bought land on Droop Mountain off Jacox Road in 1976 and built a small house there in the early 80’s. While still working in Maryland, Tim spent much time at his place which is located on the Friars Hole Cave Preserve. Retiring in 2011 as a Lieutenant with the Anne Arundel County Police Department in Maryland, Tim finally took the plunge and moved from Maryland to his real home on Droop Mountain. He began working as the Pocahontas County Reporter for Allegheny Mountain Radio in January of 2015.

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