Strap on your snow shoes and join us for a guided forest health tour on Saturday, January 28th! Forestry thinning is scheduled to take place in late February on about 19 acres of the East Moraine Community Forest. This guided tour will teach you about forest health and why maintaining the tree stands in the area is critical to the forest's overall well-being.
Date: Saturday, January 28th Time: 9am – 11am Location: Meet at Turner Lane side of the East Moraine Community Forest. We will be snowshoeing / xc skiing a short distance to the thinning area. Bring: Warm layers, snow shoes or xc ski’s, water. Who: Tour will be led by local forestry and wildlife experts Larry Nall, Nick Lunde, Janet Hohmann, and Mike Hanson. All are invited to join in the tour, spread the word! RSVP: Please email email@example.com ahead of the tour date.
Larry Nall shows Wallowa Lake Moraines Partnership members the tree stand near where thinning will take place.
About the forest health project on the East Moraine Community Forest:
To protect a forest stand’s destruction on the East Moraine Community Forest a thinning project is planned to reduce the spread of an outbreak of bark beetles near the Turner Lane trailhead.
Known as scolytus or “fir engravers” the insects are threatening forests across the Blue Mountains. Recreationists hiking, biking, riding or cross country skiing on the Community Forest may have noticed dead or dying trees or trees with dead tops.
This winter, managers of the Community Forest will be addressing this issue on approximately 19 acres with the goal of slowing the spread of beetles and improving forest health. Treatment will begin in late February.
Local forester Larry Nall works with the Community Forest’s management team on its forestry plan. He said removing insect-riddled trees is key to controlling the spread of Scolytus, a bark beetle that kills entire stands of trees, and will improve the overall health of the stands on the east side of the East Moraine.
Mike Witherite who owns “Mr. Timber”, a Joseph-based logging company, will harvest the trees over snow to reduce soil compaction and disturbance. The work will be completed by late March, ahead of the migratory bird season and the spring thaw.
The harvest method will be “whole tree logging” – bringing trees to a landing near a road for further processing. Nall said some slash debris will be left behind, which provides habitat for small mammals, birds, amphibians and insects. Once the area has been thinned, it will also provide better food sources for keystone species such as elk and deer by opening up the forest canopy and allowing shrubs more sunlight for growth.
The public is invited to an over snow tour of the project Jan. 28 from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. beginning at the Community Forest’s Turner Lane parking lot. Snow shoes or cross country skis will be necessary to access the stand.
The tour will be led by Nall, who serves on the Wallowa Resources board of directors as well as the Wallowa Land Trust’s land’s committee. He will be supported by Nick Lunde, retired Forest Service fire management officer and Wallowa Land Trust board member, and Mike Hanson, retired wildlife biologist who helped write the Community Forest’s habitat management plan.
Image of the back side of the East Moraine Community Forest taken by Kendrick Moholt.
Forest Health Tour
Date and Time
Saturday Jan 28, 2023 9:00 AM - 11:00 PM PST
Saturday, January 28th, 2023
Meet at Turner Lane side of the East Moraine Community Forest. We will be snowshoeing / xc skiing a short distance to the thinning area.
RSVP: Please email firstname.lastname@example.org ahead of the tour date.