New Permit System for Three Popular Wilderness Areas

Due to the sharp increase in people hiking and camping in the Three Sisters, Mt Washington and Mt Jefferson Wilderness areas the Forest Service is implementing a new permit system in 2020.

Central Oregon Daily’s Curtis Vogel has more on how this new system could effect both visiting and local hikers.

The Great Outdoors: Restoring Historic Cabins at Paulina Lake

You often see old buildings within our local forests and many of them have a historic value that may not be apparent from the outside. For this week’s Great Outdoors, Brian Jennings takes us to some historic cabins being restored by HistoriCorps at Paulina Lake.

A special thanks to our Great Outdoors sponsor, Parr Lumber, for giving us the time and resources to explore the lakes, rivers and mountains across our beautiful state every Wednesday night on Central Oregon Daily.

Supper Club: The Importance of Prescribed Burns

Another prescribed burn happened near Sisters this week, which is the latest in a series of controlled burns that are designed to prevent larger wildfires later in the season.

For this week’s Supper Club, Lisa Carton sat down with three fire experts to talk about why these burns are so important to do right now, at this time of the year. The month of May is also wildfire awareness month in Oregon.

Thanks to Deschutes County Forester, Ed Keith, Project Wildfire Program Coordinator, Alison Green, and Alex Robertson of Central Oregon Fire Management Service, for joining us.

A special thanks to our Supper Club sponsors, Selco Community Credit Union, for giving us the time and resources to talk about the issues that impact our region every Tuesday night and Wednesday afternoon on Central Oregon Daily.

Wildhaven Preserve May Become Part of Deschutes National Forest

The Wildhaven Preserve north of Sisters is currently managed by the Nature Conservancy could soon be under new management as part of the Deschutes National Forest.

The Nature Conservancy has confirmed talks with the Forest Service. Catherine MacDonald, the Nature Conservancy’s director of policy and external affairs, said they were excited by the Forest Service’s idea to use the land for environmental education – specifically children’s programs.

However new management could mean more human encroachment on what is currently 160-acres of wilderness.

 

The land is home to elk, deer and wild turkey and, with no hunting allowed on the preserve, those animals only have to worry about natural predators like bear, cougar, coyotes, bobcats and lynx.

This change concerns Mark and Leslyn Grape, who have been caretakers of the Wildhaven Preserve for 20 years. The Grapes said their biggest concern is allowing hunters back on to the land.

Mark Grape said he has had unsavory interactions with hunters and has found skinned or mutilated animal carcasses left on the property.

“Not everyone who comes into the outdoors comes with an open heart,” said Mark Grape.

The Grapes said the land has also maintained natural grasses and boasts old growth juniper trees – some up to 1,250 years old – which are important habitat for local wildlife.

The Grapes added that this isn’t what the land was meant for when it was donated to the Nature Conservancy by Gil and Vivian Staender. The couple who hoped it would be shared with the public but maintained as a natural environment.

This change hits home for the Grapes, who have maintained the land while living in the historic cabin built by the Staenders. The Grapes were told they need to be out by June 18.

“It totally breaks out heart,” said Mark Grape.

The Nature Conservancy has said nothing is final but talks with the Forest Servie will continue next Monday.

The Great Outdoors: Ryan Ranch Restoration Project

Before there was ever a Deschutes County or City of Bend, there was a 70-acre ranch established in the 1890’s near Dillon Falls that was primarily used for cattle. Today, the U.S. Forest Service owns that land and crews are restoring it back to the wildlife sanctuary that it once was.

Brian Jennings takes us to Deschutes National Forest‘s Ryan Ranch Restoration Project for this week’s Great Outdoors, sponsored by Camp Abbot Trading Company in Sunriver.

U.S. Interior Secretary Signs Order to Expand Opportunities on BLM, USFWS and NPS Lands

U.S. Secretary of the Interior, Ryan Zinke, an avid hunter and angler, signed Secretarial Order 3356 on Friday morning to support and expand hunting and fishing opportunities on public lands including areas currently under the jurisdiction of the Bureau of Land Management, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the National Park Service.

Zinke says the goal is to improve wildlife management and conservation, increase access to public lands for hunting, shooting and fishing, and put a new emphasis on recruiting and retaining new sportsmen conservationists with more educational outreach programs.
A recent survey by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service found there are 2.2 million fewer hunters in America than there were in 2011.

Secretarial Order 3356 directs bureaus within the Interior Department to:
—produce a plan to expand access to hunting and fishing on BLM, USFWS and NPS land within 120 days
—amend national monument management plans to ensure the public’s right to hunt, fish and target shoot
—expand educational outreach programs for underrepresented communities such as veterans, minorities, and youth.
—in a manner that respects the rights and privacy of the owners of non-public lands, identify lands within their purview where access to Department lands, particularly access for hunting, fishing, recreational shooting, and other forms of outdoor recreation, is currently limited (including areas of Department land that may be impractical or effectively impossible to access via public roads or trails under current conditions, but where there may be an opportunity to gain access through an easement, right-of-way, or acquisition), and provide a report detailing such lands to the Deputy Secretary.
—within 365 days, cooperate, coordinate, create, make available, and continuously update online a single “one stop” Department site database of available opportunities for hunting, fishing, and recreational shooting on Department lands.
—improve wildlife management through collaboration with state, Tribal,​ territorial, and conservation partners.

Interior Secretary Zinke faced criticism from conservation and environmental groups last month after making recommendations to President Trump on 27 national monuments including the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument, which he wants to reduce in size.

The Great Outdoors: Off-Highway Vehicles and the Ochoco Trails

The U.S. Forest Service is looking at opportunities to give access to off-highway vehicles to the trails of federal wilderness areas, but the latest proposal in the Ochoco National Forest is drawing a lot of criticism. In this week’s Great Outdoors segment, Brian Jennings looks at the ongoing debate between opening public lands to motorized recreation and preserving them for the wildlife that live there.

A special thanks to our Great Outdoors sponsor, Camp Abbot Trading Company in Sunriver, for giving us the time and resources to explore the lakes, rivers and mountains across our beautiful state every Wednesday night and Thursday afternoon on Central Oregon Daily.

Supper Club: Fire Management Policies

Wildfires have been top of mind across Oregon this summer. Although the Eagle Creek fire in the Columbia River Gorge was caused by fireworks, the majority are started by lightning and a bigger issue being debated among experts is whether there should be a wholesale change in our fire management policies. That’s the subject of this week’s Supper Club segment.

Thanks to Nicole, Deana and Chris for joining us and a special thanks to our Supper Club sponsor, Selco Community Credit Union, for giving us the time and resources to talk about the issues that impact our region every Tuesday night on Central Oregon Daily.

U.S. Representative Greg Walden Meets with Forest Service and Public

The U.S. Forest Service-Deschutes National Forest and U.S. Forest Service – Willamette National Forest are considering a plan to limit access to five different wilderness areas in the Central Cascades as concerns grow about the impact of a spike in tourists during the last decade.

As Central Oregon Daily’s Anyssa Bohanan reports, Representative Greg Walden paid a visit to the Cascade Lakes Welcome Station on Tuesday to get an update on the Forest Service’s proposal.