Western Rivers Conservancy has been working for years to create a county park at Punchbowl Falls, on Oregon’s Hood River. The park would protect both the falls and the confluence of the West and East Fork Hood Rivers, which is immediately downstream from Punchbowl. The Hood River is one of the Columbia Basin’s unsung gems and has the greatest diversity of fish species in the entire basin. Its location on the northern slopes of Mount Hood also make it very important in terms of cold water.
We’re closer than ever to seeing this project come together. Tom Kloster at Mount Hood National Park Campaign blog wrote a great post about the Hood and WRC’s efforts to create a park on this cherished stream. It’s well worth a read.
Our continued efforts on the North Santiam River were recently covered by the Statesman Journal. It’s well worth a read. We are very proud of our work on this outstanding tributary to the Willamette River and thankful for all the support we’ve received. We couldn’t have done it without you!
"Western Rivers Conservancy and the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde, in partnership with the Bonneville Power Administration and the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, have completed “Chahalpam,” an assemblage of land that conserves an outstanding stretch of the lower North Santiam River, approximately three miles southwest of Stayton.
The purchase of a 91-acre farm previously owned by Bill and Dianne Tucker finishes a program already in progress.
“The Tucker property was the second of two properties that WRC conserved in partnership with the Tribe,” said Danny Palmerlee, communications director for the conservancy. “The first was the adjacent 338-acre farm, which was conveyed to the Tribe in June 2013. The Tribe renamed the property Chahalpam (meaning “Place of the Santiam Kalapuya people” in Kalapuyan). Now that we have conveyed the Tucker farm to the Tribe, it will become part of Chahalpam.”
We were excited to see this recent article in Steamboat Today about how our recent efforts at Sarvis Creek will benefit the Yampa River watershed as a whole.
"The U.S. Forest Service has the privilege of managing public lands for multi-use, and a key indicator as to the overall condition of those lands is the health of the watersheds on National Forest. Watershed health has many public benefits, including importance for drinking water, agriculture and recreation, to name a few.
Management of public land and their associated watersheds is complex to begin with and can be made even more so when privately-owned inholdings within forest boundaries add another layer of complexity.
The USFS thinks that contiguous land ownership lends itself to consistent management, and so the agency’s lands program works to consolidate blocks of public lands whenever opportunities arise. Management becomes less complicated when land ownership is not fragmented, and thus implementing on-the-ground projects — which benefit overall watershed health — is easier and more efficient."
The Associated Press picked up the recent story about our work on the John Day River at Thirtymile Creek. This is an exciting project on what is truly one of the great rivers of the West.
"A conservation group has bought a second large ranch along the John Day River in Central Oregon that could eventually provide public access to a remote, scenic part of the state.
The Western Rivers Conservancy bought the Murtha Ranch at Cottonwood Canyon in 2008 and then sold it to the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department for what’s now the second-largest state park, at 8,000 acres.
The organization recently bought a ranch 40 miles upstream, at Thirtymile Creek in Gilliam County, near Condon."
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."