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News, notes, trip reports, and the lighter side (of the wilder side) of the Oregon environmental and conservation movement.

Showing blog entries tagged as: Old Growth
The Lost Forest that I Recently Found

The Lost Forest that I Recently Found

Posted by Elizabeth Medford at May 22, 2012 08:30 AM |

Intern Elizabeth Medford recounts a visit to The Lost Forest is south eastern Oregon

This past weekend consisted of one of the farthest and quickest road trips of my young life. Driving the 250 miles out to Christmas Valley, Oregon and back to Portland again in one weekend might not sound like a good time to everyone but what I witnessed out in Oregon’s south eastern desert made the ride well worth it.

Learn more about forests and fire here

Besides Fort Rock, Crack in the Ground, sand dunes, and a few other geologic features, one of my favorite natural occurrences that I saw was the Lost Forest. This receding 9,000 acre grove of old growth Ponderosa Pines sits in the middle of the desert 35 miles from the nearest forests.

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Just a few big trees

Just a few big trees

Posted by Chandra LeGue at Apr 24, 2012 03:40 PM |
Filed under: Old Growth Oregon Coast

Highlights from a recent hike into Cummins Creek on the Oregon coast.

I can't believe I forgot my diameter tape! I was just going to show a friend a spot I thought he'd enjoy photographing with his new fancy fish-eye lens along Cummins Creek - just south of Yachats on the central Oregon coast. I kind of forgot that the potential for finding really huge Sitka spruces was really high and that people might like to know how big these trees were. You'll have to stay tuned for the next trip...

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Bill's Excellent Adventures - a second route up Black Butte

Bill's Excellent Adventures - a second route up Black Butte

Don't let the snow keep you from exploring a butte-iful Oregon peak.

Snow has wreathed the summit of Black Butte for the season.  But the reopening of a long-forgotten trail on the lower slopes now makes it possible to sample this conical mountain’s charms most of winter. In all, the lower portion of the trail gains 1750 feet in 3.1 miles, so it’s not exactly an easy hike.

To find the new trailhead, drive Highway 20 east of Santiam Pass 10 miles (or west of Sisters 9 miles). Near milepost 91, turn north at a sign for the Metolius River. Follow this paved road 2.7 miles to a fork. Then veer right on Road 14, following a “Campgrounds” pointer. Just 0.2 mile later, turn right onto red gravel Road 1430 for a tenth of a mile. Then turn right again, to a trailhead parking area  ringed by boulders.

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Bill's Excellent Adventures - Crabtree Valley

Bill's Excellent Adventures - Crabtree Valley

In the Hall of Giants on a hike to Oregon's Crabtree Valley.

This remote Cascade vale north of Sweet Home has some of the state’s oldest and largest trees. You can drive to the trailhead almost entirely on paved roads. A moderate 2-mile walk, partly on abandoned roadbeds, takes you to a rarely visited mountain lake surrounded by monstrous trees nine feet in diameter.

In the 1970s this valley was private timberland. Willamette Industries began cutting trees in 1978 after the BLM rejected a land swap. Word spread to the Oregon Wilderness Coalition (now known as Oregon Wild). Cameron LaFollette, an OWC staffer, convinced the Oregon legislature to stop the cutting by offering to trade state forest land for the private valley. That land swap failed as well, but by then there was so much public interest in Crabtree Valley that the BLM decided to acquire the land after all.

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Rootstalk Festival celebrates plants and people

Rootstalk Festival celebrates plants and people

Posted by Chandra LeGue at Sep 06, 2011 03:46 PM |
Filed under: Old Growth Partner Event

Mountain Rose Herbs is putting on quite the festival this September 22-25: Rootstalk celebrates plants, people and planet. Oregon Wild will be there.

What are you doing September 22-25? If you're looking for a unique event with a huge diversity of fun and informative offerings, you should be glad to learn about Rootstalk!

The first of its kind, this festival put on by local organic herbal company Mountain Rose Herbs, seems to have something for everyone. There's live music every evening, a masquerade ball, camping and outdoor activities at a beautiful 300-acre site, local and organic food and brews, and a crafter's marketplace.

Then there are the dozens of classes and hands-on workshops on topics ranging from identifying and using medicinal herbs to herbal brewing to permaculture and wilderness survival skills.

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Justice in the forest?

Justice in the forest?

Posted by Sean Stevens at Jun 27, 2011 05:05 PM |
Filed under: Old Growth Government

When rhetoric meets the road consistency goes out the window.

As an environmentalist, I've heard it a dozen times. In fact, I saw the accusation in a Facebook post on the Oregon Wild page earlier today. The claim has been leveled so many times, I just may start believing it.

So, here's my admission. I'm a greedy environmental wacko, rolling in hundred dollar bills that I deviously extracted from the government.

Well, at least that's what mining, logging, and other development special interests would have you believe. We only do the work that we do because we can milk taxpayer dollars doing it.

If that sounds a little dubious, read on.

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New way to find spotty

New way to find spotty

Posted by Sean Stevens at Dec 10, 2010 09:20 AM |

Tracking spotted owls isn't always easy, but man's best friend might be able to help.

Great story from Amelia Templeton at the public radio Northwest News Network.

She followed several biologists (some with the US Fish and Wildlife Service) on a northern spotted owl survey recently. Tracking the movements and locations of spotted owls is critical to recovery of the species. Land managers need to know where the owls are living so they can make appropriate choices for what activities can (and cannot) occur on the land.

Owl surveys also allow scientists to get a clearer overall picture of owl populations across the region. Unfortunately, due to continued habitat loss (and competition from its cousin the barred owl), spotted owl populations are still on the decline. The numbers go down by about 4% per year.

But the researchers featured in this story have a new way to track the most studied bird in the world. Dogs.

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MotW 8 - the big fuzzy

MotW 8 - the big fuzzy

Posted by Wendell Wood at Dec 06, 2010 09:20 AM |
Filed under: Mushrooms Old Growth

From small to large, this week's mushroom takes the size prize.

Noble Polypore or the “Fuzzy Sandozi”, Bridgeoporus nobilissimus

This is one of the Pacific Northwest’s largest mushrooms (as contrasted with the exceptionally small “Sedge-Culm Mycena” featured last week).

It is also a very rare mushroom, known from only a few dozen locations in the Pacific Northwest. It was also the first fungus to be listed as an endangered species by any private or public agency in the United States, having been listed as such by the Oregon Natural Heritage Program.

Bridgeoporus nobilissimus, Noble Polypore or the “Fuzzy Sandozi” has massive shelf-like fruiting bodies, reaching up to 300 pounds that grow to five feet across. As such, it associates itself primarily with old growth true fir species (genus Abies) that are at least 3 feet or more in diameter. It grows close to the ground and sometimes resembles a giant clam. A single fruiting body, or conk, may live up to 35 years.

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Deep in the woods

Deep in the woods

Posted by Sean Stevens at Nov 09, 2010 02:45 PM |
Filed under: Old Growth

The University of Oregon is going out on a design limb once again...and this time there's a forest theme.

Just when you thought that nothing could overshadow the #1 ranked University of Oregon football team, the athletic department marketing wing comes up with another wacky idea.

Already well known across the nation for their numerous, and at times outlandish, uniform combinations, the designers are taking it to another level next year. The uniforms have brought all sorts of attention, some of it positive and some critical.

But for the 2011 Pac-Ten basketball season, the attention will shift from the designs on the jerseys to the design on the brand new basketball arena floor.

And while the uniforms have a duck-based wildlife theme, the court is all about the forest.

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MotW 3 - From delicious to dangerous

MotW 3 - From delicious to dangerous

Posted by Wendell Wood at Nov 01, 2010 08:30 AM |
Filed under: Mushrooms Old Growth

It's fall, so you might be out mushroom hunting. Watch out for this one, recently deemed unsafe for eating.

Man on Horseback, Tricholoma flavovirens

What has always been considered a very good wild edible mushroom known as “Man on Horseback” or Tricholoma flavovirens is now regarded as unsafe, or at least not recommended for repeated, ongoing consumption.

This very yellow colored mushroom species is fairly abundant under pine trees along the Oregon and northern California coasts, and I’ve consumed them from time to time all of my mushroom collecting life.  But, I guess I’m going to pass on them from now on.   Apparently, testing began on this species as a couple of years ago there was a very surprising and unexpected fatal poisoning recorded in France from a similar, related species, Tricholoma equestre (also thought to be a safe species), and which is the name Tricholoma flavovirens used to go by in North America.

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