Terry Richard at The Oregonian wrote a great story about our continued work on the John Day River—and its value for fish, wildlife and anglers, hunters, hikers and other recreationists.
"Western Rivers Conservancy has done it again.
The Portland-based land conservancy, which made Oregon's Cottonwood Canyon State Park possible, has bought another large ranch on the John Day River of east-central Oregon.
Western Rivers recently completed purchase of the Rattray Ranch on Thirtymile Creek in Gilliam County near Condon. The ranch had been owned for three generations by the same family that homesteaded in the 1880s, passing it down to the six sisters who sold it."
This month, Western Rivers Conservancy completed its second land acquisition on Washington’s Big Sheep Creek, placing 1,440 more acres surrounding this critical stream on the path toward conservation. Now that we own all 2,440 acres of the Bennett Meadows Tract, we can focus on transferring this incredible assemblage of riverland, meadowland, wetlands and conifer forest into the long-term care of a conservation steward.
"Western Rivers Conservancy, the Bureau of Land Management and the U.S. Forest Service have now completed conservation of a historic property at the confluence of the Yampa River and Sarvis Creek.
The project conserves outstanding fish and wildlife habitat and opens new public access to a prime stretch of trophy trout water and elk hunting grounds only 13 miles from Steamboat Springs.
The property, which WRC calls Hubbard’s Summer Place, lies three miles downstream from Stagecoach Reservoir on the banks of a classic tailwater fishery. According to local anglers, this stretch of the Yampa River is coveted for its large rainbow and brown trout and native mountain whitefish. Until now, Hubbard’s Summer Place was closed to the public."
Success on the Salmon! Western Rivers Conservancy recently completed an exciting project on Idaho’s “River of No Return,” one of the West’s most iconic rivers and its longest migration pathway for salmon and steelhead. We conserved 1,284 acres spanning a spectacular viewshed above the river and guaranteed the popular Pine Bar Recreation Site will remain open to the public. The project also conserves a series of high-gradient creeks that flow into the Salmon River and nourish habitat for the river’s imperiled fish.
"Public access to one of the most productive trout fishing stretches along the Yampa River south of Steamboat Springs was enhanced this week with the acquisition by the Bureau of Land Management and the U.S. Forest Service of 45 acres of private property in upper Pleasant Valley known as the Hubbard Summer Place.
The $1.25 million purchase helped to realize an 18-year-old goal of the local Yampa River System Legacy Project Partnership. The conservation organization Western Rivers Conservancy, based in Portland, Oregon, facilitated the acquisition by making an intermediate purchase of the private land in order to secure it until the federal agencies could go through their own approval process.
The BLM contributed $1 million to this week’s transaction, and the USFS contributed $250,000."