Washington

More than half of Washington is forested. About 22 million acres of forest cover the total land area of 43 million acres, almost evenly divided between east and west of the Cascade crest. Most forest land in Washington is productive timberland, most of it occurring in the Okanogan Highlands, Northern Cascades, Washington Coast Range, and Western Cascades.

Map of Washington showing forested and non-forested areas

  • About 86 percent of Washington’s forests are dominated by coniferous forest types, predominantly Douglas-fir (39 percent of all forested land area), fir/spruce/mountain hemlock (18 percent), and western hemlock / Sitka spruce (15 percent).
    • Hardwood forest types cover an additional 2.6 million acres (12 percent of forested land area). The major hardwood forest type is alder/maple (1.9 million acres).
  • Washington has approximately 95 billion net cubic feet (413 billion board feet) of wood volume on forest land with a mean volume of about 4,231 cubic feet (18,433 board feet) per acre.
  • The greatest proportion of wood volume is found in softwood tree species such as Douglas-fir, true firs, and western hemlock, which collectively make up 73 percent of all live-tree volume on Washington forest land.
  • Total estimated biomass in live trees and dead wood across Washington is 107 tons per acre.
  • The federal government manages about 44 percent of Washington’s 22.4 million acres of forested land.
    • The National Forest System (NFS) and the National Park Service (NPS) administer most of this acreage.
    • The state also has substantial holdings, mostly managed by the Washington Department of Natural Resources with about 2.5 million acres.