Volunteers were rewarded with a beautiful day for planting over 500 cedar and fir trees along property owned by the Resort at the Mountain. The morning event started at 9 am and finished at 1 pm after lunch. The Resort at the Mountain sponsored the Friends of the Forest Day event and provided lunch to hungry volunteers. The Resort is no stranger to restoration. The Resort property borders the Mt. Hood National Forest Salmon-Huckleberry Wilderness and the nationally designated “Wild & Scenic” Salmon River. The Resort has received a number of awards recognizing its good stewardship of the land including recognition as a Certified Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary in 2002, and the 2003 “It’s Not Easy Being Green” award from the Oregon Visitors Association for preserving wild salmon habitat of the Wee Burn Creek, which empties into the Salmon River near the bottom of Resort at the Mountain golf course.
“We’ve had a really great response from the local community, which was something we were hoping for,” said co-organizer Russ Plaeger, from the Sandy River Basin Watershed Council. Sandy Cub Scouts, local landowners, college students and retirees turned out for the day along the Salmon River. Volunteers planted young cedar trees and firs in an area that has been recently restored by the Resort so that it will shade the river and provide better habitat for salmon and steelhead. The area was damaged by both development and the flood of 1964 and saw additional flooding this past fall. “People enjoy taking action for the environment,” said Monica Kearsley, one of SOLV’s program coordinators working the event. “And people find that planting trees can be fun.”
The tree planting project will help the river withstand future floods without as much damage to the surrounding land. “Since cedars grow slowly and have long lifespans, these trees will help with shading the river long after the area’s current stands of alders have died off. Saturday’s Friends of the Forest Day was hosted by the Sandy Basin Watershed Council, the National Forest Foundation, SOLV and the Forest Service. There are more Friends of the Forest Days happening this spring, summer and fall. The events are an opportunity for families to experience their National Forest lands, having fun while learning something new and contributing to the well being of our public lands.
Click here to learn more about other opportunities. Those looking for additional opportunities to work with the Sandy Basin Watershed Council may call Russ Plaeger at 503-668-1646.
Vice President, Conservation Programs
NFF conservation programs, community-based conservation
Ecosystem Services Program Manager
Tree-planting & Carbon Capital Fund programs
Director, Northwest Programs
NFF programs in WA, OR, AK, ID
Director, California Program
NFF programs in CA
Director of Conservation Awards
Grants and grant programs