Named in memory of a well-loved dog (Lola), the Lola-Hasslacher Conservation Easement was protected in February of 2014. Landowners Jacob Hasslacher and Chris Antemann completed a project with Wallowa Land Trust that conserves 40 acres of mature ponderosa pine and mixed conifer woodlands on the back (east) side of the east moraine of Wallowa Lake. This land will now remain forever undeveloped and protected for wildlife habitat and sustainable timber harvesting and grazing.

 “From the moment that I first saw this place, I knew it was something special that I wanted to see safeguarded,” says Jacob. Together with his wife, Jacob runs a non-profit ceramic artist-in-residence program, the LH Project. The program draws qualified and well-respected artists from around the world.

Jacob says, “The beauty of the property, particularly the open forest now protected, is part of what attracts artists to the program. Nowhere else is there a place where ceramic artists can go to learn and practice their craft in such a beautiful, rural setting. Its intimacy and remote, unspoiled backdrop gives the LH Project a unique voice in the world of ceramic residency programs.”

According to Jacob and Chris, the artists take with them an experience that they will never forget, primarily because of the opportunity to have made their work out here on the secluded slope of the east moraine in Wallowa County. “The surrounding National Forest, Eagle Cap Wilderness Area and nearby Wallowa Lake also inspire and motivate artists to take their work in new, creative directions.”

This project is part of a much larger effort that Wallowa Land Trust is leading with the Wallowa Lake Moraines Partnership to conserve the east moraine of Wallowa Lake. We established the Partnership in 2011 together with Wallowa Resources, Wallowa County and Oregon Parks and Recreation Department. The Partnership’s goals include: maintaining sustainable working landscapes of farms, forests and rangeland; providing public access respectful of the landscape and its scenic beauty; and, protecting important wildlife habitat and the ecosystem health of the moraines.

Jacob and Chris’s property is the first stepping stone of this larger vision of a protected east moraine. Our heartfelt thanks and gratitude go out to this far-sighted couple who have made a lasting gift to the community and left an unparalleled legacy for many generations to come. This corner of northeast Oregon is a spectacular gem, with the moraines of Wallowa Lake perhaps the most spectacular of them all.

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Photo © Kendrick Moholt