Chris Wood's posts

About Chris Wood

Before coming to Trout Unlimited in September 2001, Chris Wood served as the senior policy and communications advisor to the Chief of the U.S. Forest Service where he helped protect 58 million acres of publicly ... Read more about Chris Wood

The decade of recovery

I often think of my life in decade intervals. The first ten years was the goofball phase; 11-20 years old involved anything with a ball; 21-30 was consumed by conservation—you get the idea. If we are lucky, we will get eight or nine of these opportunities to think about the new decade in front of … Read more

Mark and his dad

Mark looks different, but the same. Twin swatches of grey hair above his ears. Still fit, his full mane of hair—something he, his Dad, and older brother, David, share—maybe thinning just a tad. His eyes are red.  Mark was maybe my best friend in college. He was a tight-end. I was a wide receiver. We … Read more

Connecting science and conservation

At a recent gathering of our scientists and other staff at Trout Unlimited, I recounted how one of my happiest days was when I was hired as a fisheries biologist—for three days—by the Bureau of Land Management. My vision of being a fisheries biologist was informed by the John Steinbeck novel, Cannery Row. Even more … Read more

We fish here so you can fish there

“We fish here so you can fish there.” So read the note that I sent to all of TU’s staff on Christmas Eve several years ago. The note included two photographs. One showed my colleague, Keith Curley, standing on a shopping cart and casting into a tributary of the Potomac River in Washington, D.C.; another … Read more

Companies that give back

I am 20 years old; sitting cross-legged on the floor of my dorm room. The words on the page are so freaking clear, but their application remains elusive. “Fly casting makes it possible to deliver a relatively weightless lure or imitation of a living creature on a target, using line weight to develop momentum.” After … Read more

The Clean Water Act: An American success story

Editor’s note: This column was originally published in the Washington Post on Sept. 23, 2019 The announcement that the Environmental Protection Agency was scrapping Obama-era rules designed to protect small streams and wetlands made me recall a misty morning this spring on the Potomac River above Georgetown. I brought a striped bass, locally known as … Read more

The Amazon forest isn’t the only one in peril

Editor’s note: This first appeared in the Los Angeles Times. By Mike Dombeck and Chris Wood In the faraway Amazon, politics and commercial exploitation are fueling fires that threaten the world’s largest tropical rainforest. Closer to home, in Alaska, the Tongass National Forest, which represents the largest intact temperate rainforest, is facing a serious threat … Read more

Renewable energy, climate change, public lands and bipartisanship … Oh my!

Photo: USFWS/Joshua Winchell In this age of boundless partisanship, something remarkable happened this summer. A smart, forward-thinking piece of legislation addressing climate change was introduced that is sponsored by two Arizona congressmen from opposite ends of the political spectrum: Republican Paul Gosar, who rode the Tea Party wave into Congress in 2010, and Democrat Raul … Read more

Working with nature

America has such a well-earned reputation for innovating our way out of problems that we sometimes miss the obvious natural solution. In a series of open houses this summer in Great Basin communities, the Trump administration revealed a plan to reduce wildfire risk by constructing 11,000 acres of fuel breaks across public lands in parts … Read more

Why diversity matters

In the natural world, diversity creates resilience. For example, grasslands with a greater variety of native plants are more resistant to drought. They also bounce back faster from disturbance caused by insect infestations and fire. Diversity also makes organizations more resilient. And relevant, too. The more connections to people with different backgrounds that we share, … Read more