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Opportunity for Input on Future Recreation and Stewardship of Sandy River, OR

Posted: 05/19/2006
by Thomas O'Keefe

Four years ago AW signed the Settlement Agreement for the removal of Marmot Dam and PGE's Bull Run Hydroelectric Project (read article). This dam is the put-in for the whitewater run through the Sandy Gorge, one of the area's most spectacular rivers representing a natural retreat just outside the city of Portland, OR. The Settlement Agreement represents a historic opportunity to restore this river for fish, wildlife, and recreation. We were proud participants in the negotiations leading to this removal and remain committed to working out the details of implementation as lands owned by PGE are transferred to public ownership. As part of the planning process for this next step, the BLM and other stakeholders will be hosting a series of workshops to collect input from the public. We encourage local paddlers who enjoy all sections of the Sandy River to take part in this process as it represents an important opportunity to voice your views on needs for public river access and restoration of the river.

The BLM issued the News Release below to announce the upcoming workshops. If you are not able to attend the BLM is also accepting written comments (download form for comments).

Bureau of Land Management
Salem District Office of Public Affairs
1717 Fabry Rd. SE, Salem, OR 97306

SALEM--The public is invited to share their ideas about recreation and stewardship opportunities on Sandy River Basin public lands at three open house sessions in June. In the past 10 years, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has acquired 5,900 acres of public land in the Sandy River Basin. "These lands, when added to the existing Sandy River Basin public lands, offer a great opportunity for the BLM to work in partnership with others on identifying public use opportunities and enhancing long term stewardship in the Basin," said Cindy Enstrom, BLM Cascades Field Manager. For more information about the open houses go to BLM's website at, or contact Laura Dowlan by phone at (503) 315-5908 or by email at

Participants are encouraged to attend any of the sessions scheduled for 6:00-8:30 pm on:
Thursday June 15 Mt. Hood Lions Club, 24730 East Woodsey Way, Welches, OR 97067 (map)
Tuesday June 20 Mt. Hood National Forest Headquarters, 16400 Champion Way, Sandy, OR 97055 (map)
Wednesday June 21 Sam Cox Building, Glenn Otto Park, 1102 E. Historic Columbia Hwy., Troutdale, OR 97060 (map)

The open houses will focus on three topics:
1) river access and recreation
2) community and trail connectivity
3) stewardship of the river and adjacent lands

The open houses are hosted jointly by the BLM, U.S. Forest Service, the Sandy River Basin Watershed Council, the Barlow Trail Association, the Department of State Lands and the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department, with the assistance of the National Park Service's Rivers, Trails and Conservation Assistance Program. The hope is that these open houses will generate ideas and interest from the people who enjoy and live in the Sandy River Basin about the type of projects that the BLM and other agencies and interested entities should explore in future planning efforts.

The Western Rivers Conservancy, in partnership with BLM, has been acquiring new public lands along the Sandy, Little Sandy and Salmon Rivers in an effort to enhance long term fish and wildlife conservation and as a public resource for hikers, floaters, anglers and viewers of salmon and wildlife. A key upcoming acquisition includes approximately 1,500 acres that Portland General Electric will be donating to BLM, via Western Rivers Conservancy, following the removal of the Marmot and Little Sandy Dams.

Associated Projects

Sandy River Restoration (OR)
AW is working to protect the Sandy River Gorge and restore the river through removal of Marmot Dam in Oregon.