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The U.S. Forest Service is moving forward with a plan to allow exploratory mining near Mount St. Helens.

The agency issued a draft decision approving Canadian company Ascot Resources Ltd.’s plans to drill for copper and gold in Washington’s Gifford Pinchot National Forest.

Crews demolish a concrete skate bowl on 'Duck Island' in the middle of Green Lake, Seattle, Washington, August, 2017.
Courtesy Seattle Parks and Recreation

Crews with Seattle Parks and Recreation are dismantling an unauthorized skate park on Duck Island in Green Lake this week.

The large concrete bowl was built by a group of skateboard fans in response to a do-it-yourself contest from Nike and TransWorld Skateboarding.

Patrick Lair with the U.S. Forest Service drove into the Ochoco National Forest to see how things looked after hosting thousands of eclipse visitors.

He drove the same road on Wednesday that more than 30,000 people took to get into the massive Symbiosis Festival on Big Summit Prairie – a patch of private land in the middle of the national forest.

"At one point, we had bumper-to-bumper traffic from the prairie out past Prineville," he said. "I'm kind of amazed not to see more trash on the sides of the road."

Aboard fishing vessel Marathon, Nathan Cultee tosses one of 16 farm-raised Atlantic salmon caught after a day of fishing on Tuesday, August 22, 2017, at Home Port Seafoods in Bellingham.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

The scene near Cypress Island is being described as a circus after thousands of farmed Atlantic salmon spilled out of a net last weekend near the San Juan Islands. The company that owns the net, Cooke Aquaculture, has not yet confirmed if the spill is contained.

Two Washington state inmates at the Stafford Creek Corrections Center near Aberdeen have filed a civil rights complaint in federal court over prison shaving policies.

An investigator for the Oregon Department of Justice is getting his job back after a state arbitrator ruled the agency was wrong to fire him.

Deer graze on tall prairie grass. Bushy-tailed foxes chase rabbits across a windswept landscape. Bald eagles perch along cliffs overlooking the Strait of Juan de Fuca and snow-capped Olympic Mountains.

The southern tip of Puget Sound’s San Juan Island is a wildlife-viewing wonderland.

There are more than 60 schools in the U.S. with names tied to the Confederate South. One school, Robert E. Lee Elementary, is right here in the Northwest.

King County Metro bus
Flickr Photo/clappstar (CC BY-NC-ND)

If you ride King County Metro transit, you may soon see fares change. A new proposal would simplify pricing and set a flat rate for all times of day and all destinations.

The U.S. Secretary of the Interior is recommending reducing southern Oregon’s Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument, according to the Washington Post.

The boundary shift comes after a Trump administration review of more than 20 national monuments across the West.

State wildlife officials have authorized the killing of two wolves from a pack in Eastern Oregon after confirming four attacks on livestock.

The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife said non-lethal deterrents failed to prevent the Meacham Wolf Pack from attacking cattle and sheep on private land in Umatilla County.

Portland Public School students will still not be able to use campus water fountains when the new academic year starts next week. 

Instead, students returning to school on Wednesday will continue drinking bottled water while PPS begins the process of replacing non-classroom water fixtures to deal with the problem of high lead levels in its water. The replacements will be installed in six waves of 15 schools at a time. 

Q&A with OPB reporter Kristian Foden-Vencil

Geoff Norcross: So just how bad is this fire now?

Kristian Foden-Vencil: Well, it’s destroyed 20 outbuildings, 13 vehicles and five homes. A Level 3 mandatory evacuation order was in place for 3,400 homes. That's been dropped to level 2 now as firefighters have made some progress and the weather has turned more cooperative. But in total, up to 4,000 people have been affected.

When you call 911 from a mobile phone, software at the carrier and dispatch center triangulates your location. But in places where cell towers are widely spaced, like rural Pacific County, Washington, it doesn't work so well.

View of the Guemes Island ferry dock from the beach. The Guemes Island ferry is Skagit County's only ferry, with 20 runs a day.
Flickr photo/amanda (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0) https://flic.kr/p/8sZuX2

Diesel-burning ferry boats could be a thing of the past for Skagit County. The county plans to replace its passenger ferry with an all-electric model. It would be the first of its kind built anywhere in the U.S.

Critics of a new Oregon law that would make it easier to get guns out of the hands of people suffering from mental health crises are gathering signatures to overturn it.

There’s no way to know for sure how many fishers lived in the Cascades historically, because the small brown mammal was almost entirely eradicated by trappers by 1930.

But this week, there’s evidence that they are reproducing.

It's official: Oregon taxpayers will receive a kicker rebate. Nearly $464 million will be sent back to taxpayers when they file their state income taxes next year.

Ever been stuck in traffic and wished you could just levitate and fly over the crawling cars? Flying cars of various sorts entered the popular imagination more than five decades ago. Think “The Jetsons.” 

And now, a division of aerospace giant Airbus is getting ready to test a pilotless flying air taxi.

Aboard fishing vessel Marathon, Nathan Cultee, right, and Nicholas Cooke, left, unload 16 farm-raised Atlantic salmon into a container after a day of fishing on Tuesday, August 22, 2017, at Home Port Seafood in Bellingham.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

It was a convenient explanation.


Racist graffiti and a possible bomb threat forced the evacuation of more than 100 Washington State University students from their residence hall in the middle of the night Monday.




Seattle's gun tax needs to be higher, according to City Council candidates Jon Grant and Teresa Mosqueda.

Grant announced today that if elected he would propose doubling the tax to $50 per firearm.


Oregonians will find out Wednesday if they'll receive a kicker rebate on their taxes next year.

The kicker is that unique Oregon institution that dishes out money to taxpayers when the state's official economists under-predict how much revenue the state will collect over a two-year period.

Washington lawmakers passed a budget this summer that aims to fully fund basic education.

But some argue it may hurt teacher recruitment in more rural districts, where teacher attrition is high and the local pool of candidates is often small. 

In Cowlitz County, school districts often recruit teachers from places as far away as Vancouver or Portland.

Longview Schools Superintendent Dan Zorn said he relies on hiring teachers from outside counties to fill the 450 teaching positions in his district.

Seattle City Councilmember Kshama Sawant
KUOW Photo/Deborah Wang

Two Seattle police officers who shot and killed Che Taylor, an African-American man, last year are suing City Councilmember Kshama Sawant for defamation.

A count of Oregon's homeless population shows a 6 percent increase in the number of people living in shelters or on the streets. The tally takes place every two years in January and is meant to be a snapshot of a specific point in time.

David Williams, a 20-year full-time resident of Orcas Island, sorts through garbage and recycling in the back of his truck on Sunday, July 30, 2017, on the tipping floor of the Orcas Island Transfer Station on Orcas Island. KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

When writer Knute Berger was a kid in the 1960s, vacationing on Shaw Island, his family had a creative way of dumping some of their trash.

The solar eclipse is in the books, but the scientific analysis goes on. Teams of high school and college students scrambled Monday afternoon to locate and recover cameras and experimental payloads they launched to the edge of space during the eclipse.

Eclipse revelers whooped and hollered as the sun went black at a major encampment in the remote town of Durkee on the Burnt River Ranch in eastern Oregon.

As the sun slipped more and more behind the moon, the revelers whooped and screamed. A black shadow zoomed across the deep valley and people exclaimed as they took off their glasses.

Whether in the path of totality or not, the solar eclipse brought a memorable experience to our reporters across the Northwest. They sent us their audio postcards from Olympia, Spokane and Prosser, Washington, and Portland and Durkee, Oregon.

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