The Methow Valley recently lost one of its most enthusiastic and promising young naturalist students. Miles Hefker and his parents Amy and Justin Hefker have been pillars of our local tracker/naturalist community for a number of years now. Tragically, Miles unexpectedly passed away this winter. It has been an incredible loss to his parents and this community.
Kathy Merwin and Steve Burtchaell recently shared this reflection with us: “We met Miles Hefker through wildlife tracking classes sponsored by the Methow Conservancy, which he and his father Justin attended over the last several years. As we got to know them, we were fascinated not only by Miles’ growth as a tracker and a naturalist, but also by the bond between this father and son forged in the wilderness and clearly shared with such joy. Miles was the only young person who participated in these classes, constantly reminding us all of what it was like to be young, nimble, and supremely inquisitive. Our thoughts of love and deep respect go out to Justin and Amy and the entire tracking
community as we try to process such a great loss. None of us will forget the sheer joy on his face the day he was presented with his Tracker 1 certificate. He was a true inspiration to us all.”
In honor of Miles, the Methow Conservancy, Miles’s parents, and members of the naturalist community have been working together to create the Miles Hefker Educational Scholarship. The scholarship will pay for a youth ages 10-17 and their significant adult to attend Methow Conservancy classes that require a fee. Our hope is that by lowering the barrier to entry and encouraging youth attendance at naturalist classes we can make a positive impact on local families and secure a legacy for Miles Hefker forever into the future!
If you want more information or are interested in supporting the Miles Hefker Educational Scholarship please email us or call us at (509) 996-2870.