Barlow District - Ponderosa Pete spent most of his day in Hipo Unit 7 reminiscing his puppy years when he rounded-up cattle in the forests of Eastern Oregon. Unit 7, an old fenced-off cattle-grazing area, contains ancient douglas firs 3 to about 4 feet in diameter. Unlike Hipo Unit 4 where the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) selected only western hemlocks to be cut; in Hipo Unit 7, USFS left all the western hemlocks marked as leave trees. This leaves only these massive douglas firs to be cut.
Noises of vehicles drive by on U.S. 26 as Ponderosa Pete measures the buffer distance from the highway to the timber sale boundary. "I got a distance that ranges 50 to 100 human feet from the boundary to the highway," says Pete. "With a slope facing the highway and a 150-foot douglas firs that will potentially be cut, I am concerned about driver's safety on U.S. 26."
Another oddity of Unit 7 is that the leaves trees are marked half the circumference in blue. Leaves trees are usually marked in orange. Ponderosa Pete has an assumption USFS used this color to make the unit not look like a timber sale for motorist driving by it on U.S. 26.
Clear Creek also rests near the unit with a 100-foot buffer. Ponderosa Peter visits the creek thirsty for water only to find the stream impaired with algae and high concentrations of sediment.
"This is a clear sign we need to restore the streams in Mt. Hood National Forest," says Ponderosa Pete. "I encourage everyone to write a letter to USFS and BLM to tell them not to modify the Aquatic Conservation Strategy (ACS) of the Northwest Forest Plan."
Comments on the ACS are due July 10, 2003. You can e-mail USFS and BLM at " email@example.com"
To see the past Indymedia story on Hipo Unit 4, visit the following hyperlink below the article.