Oregon FNAWS
News - Deschutes Habitat 2010
Lower Deschutes River
Summer 2010
"Hands On Weed Project"
June 12 & 13, 2010
On June 12th and 13th, 2010, OR-FNAWS is planning another "Hands on Project". We are returning once again to the Lower Deschutes River, just a ways south east from The Dalles. The leadership team from OR-FNAWS applied for and was successful in obtaining, another Noxious Weed Grant from ODA in the amount of $25,000.00 and an added $12,000.00 that Jeremy skillfully had donated by the BLM.
The funding is being carefully applied to hiring a licensed weed control applicator / contractor (Modern Weed Control of Prineville), to treat Scotch Thistle and other noxious weeds with an approved herbicide in parts of the Lower Deschutes Wildlife Area and other applicable areas (on both sides of the river) as specified by ODF&W team, in The Dalles. The first two segments for herbicide application went very well. The applicator is on the Deschutes this week making his third and last float and herbicide application for this year's grant period. Hopefully more grant funding to come in later years, as we sustain the effort! The contractor mapped the locations with his GPS. Hopefully this process will lead to an even more effective and longer lasting control of the Scotch thistle and other noxious weeds on site. Hopefully this will be a multiple year program, as additional grant funds are available. There are restoration activities planned to plant native forbes and grasses on the treated sites, post treatment, to cover and hopefully over grow the thistle seed beds as time goes by.
Members from Oregon Fresh Water Trust are very interested in our projects on the Lower Deschutes and have been again been invited to join in our activities this year hopefully we may again have new participants from Oregon Freshwater Trust joining us! The ODFW staff seems eager to have the new members from Oregon Freshwater Trust adopt another adjacent part of the river for treatment and supplementary planting! The Oregon Freshwater Trust team is already planting more than 118,000 White Alder trees along the river for shade and riparian restoration activities. On the float trip this year we hope to again find much of the thistle has already been killed by the herbicide. Our main tasks then will be to eliminate the thistles that were missed or partially treated by the contractor. What a super opportunity to float the river, view the bighorns (Hopefully a terrific new lamb crop), have fun fishing and spot some Bighorn sheep. This year's efforts should really improve the upland habitat along the river.
You get to the Mack's Canyon boat ramp by taking Highway 197 south from The Dalles, to Tygh Valley. From Tygh Valley you take Hwy. 216 to Shearers Falls. Approximately one mile after crossing the Deschutes you will turn onto the Mack's Canyon road, which follows the river down to Mack's Canyon.
Another alternative will be to meet up with the ODFW crew Saturday morning just south of the I-84-Hwy 197, Exit #87, interchange in The Dalles at 7:30 am. The fewer vehicles that are taken to Mack's, the easier it will be for the crew to shuttle vehicles to the mouth, so meeting up in The Dalles is highly encouraged. The plan will be to put the boats and rafts in at the Mack's Canyon boat ramp on Saturday, about 9:30 a.m., work along the banks at your own pace. We will plan on camping overnight at Locust Grove on the East side of the river (across from Fall Canyon). Dinner will hopefully be ready soon after you make your landing. After a night of camaraderie, enjoyment, and hopefully a good night's sleep, we will eat breakfast and be on our way down river for more weed abatement! The boats should arrive at the mouth of the river between 1-2:00 p.m. on Sunday afternoon. Everyone willing to help is welcome. The food, again this year will be coordinated thanks to Larry Jacobs, and is really terrific! A great opportunity to get to know both our members, ODFW staff members, and possibly new Oregon Freshwater Trust members better!
We can use help working along the river, shuttling rigs to the mouth of the river, and a few trucks to haul all of the team's gear to the campsite! Essential gear would be rugged work gloves, sturdy work boots or shoes, a sharp and sturdy shovel, tent and sleeping bag, a change of clothes, extra socks, warm coat, personal gear, binoculars, spotting scope, fishing gear. Having a large "dry bag" to stow all of your gear in would be a terrific idea. OR-FNAWS and ODFW will supply dinner on Saturday night, a continental breakfast on Sunday morning and makings for lunch both days. We will also supply soft drinks.
If you are able to attend, please contact Larry Jacobs at (503)-784-1358 or George Houston at (503)-826-9109. We need to effectively plan on the number of boats and rafts available and the amount of food and support gear necessary! If you have your own boat or raft that is suitable for floating the Deschutes and has a Personal Flotation Device (PFD) - (life jacket) for all aboard, we encourage you to bring and plan on safely using it! If you are not personally familiar with the Deschutes from Mack's Canyon to the mouth, a river guidebook may be helpful. Because of the heavy snow pack this year, the warmer weather is causing quite a substantial runoff this year. River flows are way up at the present time and will probably be similar on the outing. We really welcome everyone's help and active participation! This is one of the most substantial projects that we try to accomplish annually. We would really appreciate your support and good company this year along the banks of the Deschutes!
We are looking forward to hearing from you!
Larry, Jeremy, and George
Deschutes Habitat A group of die-hard thistle choppers
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