Hoh River Trust Programs
Our lands are open to recreational use, including rafting, photography, hunting and fishing. We are actively involved in habitat restoration and have accomplished a majority of the "backlog" of silvicultural work that needed to be done Now we are almost ready to move on to establish habitat core areas. We are in need of both operating funds to allow us to compete for public grants and some specific project funding, such as informational roadside kiosks with better signs and long term invasive weed control. Our summer internship program is a good example of an unfunded program which fine tunes natural resources work skills, our stores of baseline information and is always great experience for college juniors and seniors.
Recent Successes and Current Challenges
Since its founding in 2004, the Hoh River Trust has made significant progress in meeting its goals. Below are highlights of our accomplishments:
- $12mm in Federal Grants for land acquisition
- 6,800 acres under HRT ownership * $2.5mm in grants for restoration projects
- 29 river miles protected
- Most fish barriers and blockages removed. We're down to the last few on newly purchased lands.
- Actively doing forest restoration to deal with insect infestations and overcrowded plantations; over 1350 acres thinned for better growth and increased species diversity,
- 4.5 miles of unstable and unneeded road decommissioned.
- We now have several "habitat core areas" which are roadless, pre-commercially thinned and that have all culverts removed for salmonid passage. We'll let these develop on their own now.
- We are active in WRIA 20 salmon restoration planning.
- 12 or more tributary miles opened for fish passage
- 1066 acres controlled per year for invasive plants
- We are now Forest Stewardship Council certified and need to build a forest database. This will be a major internship project. It would help immensely if we had a modern copy of arc view.
- We are beginning commercial thinnings of monotypic and overstocked 45-65 year old stands. These will be thinned just enough to allow ground vegetation and a second level of trees to develop. Snags and down wood counts will be increased.
Over the next decade, these lands will require a higher level of restoration and stewardship. We are nearly finished repairing the initial condition of the lands. Now we are moving on to larger projects that require more partnerships and greater scope: to deal with the effects of public road infrastructure which may include LWD placements in the river, climate change, increasing recreational use and the beginning of an educational program. To continue this work, we will need ongoing general support to pay for our land management overhead as well as specific project funding.