Restoration Leadership Project
A highlight for 2018 was the largest Chinook salmon spawning run in the Mattole River for at least 30 years. It’s been a real joy taking photos of some of this run and sharing the information with many persons and organizations. Another highlight has been recording and sharing information about the restoration work happening in the Usal Redwood Forest—especially in the Anderson Creek tributary of Indian Creek that joins the South Fork Eel across from old Piercy.
Both decommissioning of damaging streamside roads and instream habitat improvements have been a part of this. The documentation of road and stream crossing upgrades has continued—particularly the Briceland Road crossing replacements in the coho and steelhead habitat of Diner Creek, tributary of Redwood Creek that joins the South Fork Eel across from lower Redway. There continues to be a focus on the Usal and Needle Rock Roads—trying to get essential upgrade work accomplished. A mountain bike event in the Usal Redwood Forest in October that covered part of the Usal Road really brought some attention to the deterioration of road conditions.
A lot of work has gone into trying to make the Planning Watershed Pilot Project of the Timber Regulation and Forest Restoration Fund/Program a success. Among other things, the first Pilot Project is supposed to make headway on having credible cumulative impact evaluations and responses in logging plans as well as facilitating actual restoration work from information that is presented in those plans. Some progress has been made, but poor process and key agency personnel called away to emergency fire responsibilities has been a hardship. It’s most likely that the Findings and Recommendations of a Report to be done by the end of the year will be more guidance for what needs to be done in the future, rather than immediate implementable changes for forest and watershed restoration. The Leadership Project is committed to these changes over the long-haul.
A big commitment is also to seeing that the “Why Forest Matter” (WFM) non-profit organization headed by former CDF Director and environmental stalwart, Richard Wilson, makes real steps toward true forest sustainability with the high quality forests intended in the 1973 Forest Practice Act. An example of such a forest that WFM sees as a model is Jackson Demonstration State Forest in Mendocino County. A one day workshop and tour took place this Fall in preparation for a two day event with a range of public and other representatives in April or May of 2019. Jackson averages 55,000 board feet per acre, while most of the region’s industrial lands range between 10,000 to 20,000 board feet per acre. Jackson additionally has high fishery and wildlife values, public recreation and use of forest resources, and a research program that has been going on for over 50 years.
The Leadership Project continues to be supportive of the Institute for Sustainable Forestry (ISF), especially its new workshop/field tours program. Some of the tours this year included the waters and geology of the South Fork Eel River, the incredible terrain around the Red and Black Lassic Peaks just East of Humboldt County, and the Usal Redwood Forest in northwest Mendocino County.
Monthly Monday Morning Magazine shows on KMUD have really helped outreach. Guests such as Richard Wilson, Congressman Jared Huﬀman, David Simpson & Jane Lapiner, and others involved with natural resources and human connectedness are a focus. The Cereus Fund of Trees Foundation makes so much of this work possible. Thank you.