Kristoferson Farm was protected in February 2023 with the purchase of farm and forest conservation easements, permanently protecting a prominent working farm and the largest working forest operation on Camano Island.
Founded in 1912, Kristoferson Farm is unmistakable to any Camano Island visitor, with its rolling fields, historic red barn, large lake, and classic northwest forest that together comprise the scenic backdrop along Camano Drive, the Island’s main arterial road. The property’s diverse forest is dominated by Douglas fir with scattered western red cedar, western hemlock, grand fir, Pacific madrone, bigleaf maple and red alder, with a wide variety of understory plants. In addition to this lush forest, the working farm produces organic hay, lavender, pumpkins, apples and more. The protection of this property ensures that it will forever be available for farming and continue to be an important community landmark.
The Kristoferson family, who sold the easements to the Whidbey Camano Land Trust, is committed to continue managing the forest sustainably while also maintaining abundant wildlife habitat and protecting water quality. The property includes Kristoferson Creek, the Island’s only salmon-bearing stream, which flows through the heart of the property and Kristoferson Lake, the largest body of freshwater on Camano Island. The wetland and creek buffers provide habitat that supports a high level of biodiversity including Chinook salmon, beavers, river otters, wood ducks, amphibians and numerous bird species that rely on high-quality habitat. Additionally, this property is adjacent to Island County’s Camano Ridge Forest Preserve, together forming the largest protected area on the island.
This project was a complex, multi-year endeavor that involved a robust partnership between local, state, and Federal agencies as well as a dedicated landowner, the Kristoferson family, who were excited to see their family’s legacy protected. Funding for this easement purchase came from Island County, the Washington Recreation and Conservation Office, Oregon Community Foundation and the U.S. Navy, who also hold a separate a restrictive easement on the property.