2020 NPSO Annual Meeting Cancelled

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and in the best interests for the health and safety of our members, the Cheahmill Chapter has decided to cancel the Annual Meeting this year. While the number of new cases should decline over the next several weeks and months, subsequent waves of COVID-19 are likely to recur once social distancing is relaxed. We are exploring hosting the meeting next year (2021) at Spirit Mountain Lodge and offering much the same program.

If you have already sent in your registration form and payment, your checks will be shredded. Those whose checks were already deposited will receive a refund.

We look forward to seeing all of you in 2021, hopefully at Spirit Mountain. Please stay safe and healthy through this difficult time.

NPSO 2020 Annual Meeting

May 29 - 31     Spirit Mountain Lodge, Grand Ronde, Oregon

Field Trips

Saturday May 30, 2020    9 a.m. - 4 p.m.                    Field Trip # 26

Salmon River Estuary

Photo: Kami Ellingson
Salmon River Estuary, view to Cascade Head

Difficulty:     Easy - Walk short distances on flat but uneven and wet terrain.

Elevation:     Negligible

Group Size Limit:     12

Map of planting zones in the estuary

Trip Description:     The Salmon River Estuary is approximately 2,000 acres, with a tidal influence reaching to River Mile 4. The estuary sits in the middle of the Cascade Head Scenic Research Area and United Nations Biosphere Reserve; the mouth of the river is a Marine Reserve. It forms a bay between two basalt headlands - The Nature Conservancy's Cascade Head Preserve to the north, and Camp Westwind's High Meadow to the south.

The estuary salt marshes were diked in 1960 to exclude salt water to create pastureland. Administered by the U.S. Forest Service, the estuary restoration project began in 1978 with the goals of establishing natural processes by rebuilding native plant communities, controlling erosion, and controlling noxious weeds. Dikes and tide-gates were removed, which allowed salt water to return to the marshes, killing pasture vegetation and allowing native salt marsh plants to reclaim the land naturally. Extensive plantings of native shrubs and trees stabilized the marshland perimeters. Recovery and restoration of wetlands that were modified to support an old amusement park and a trailer park were completed by 2011.

We will visit the two largest restoration projects and discuss what we learned about recovery of the native vegetation and the return of juvenile salmon to the estuary and creeks feeding it.

Appropriate Clothing and Footwear:     Warm clothing, layers, knee-high or other sturdy footwear that can get wet are advised.

Special Considerations:     Drive to sites. Your trip leader will monitor the tides and ensure that the group avoids deep tidal channels.

Meeting Place and Time:     Trip # 26 leaves at 9 a.m. from Spirit Mountain Lodge entrance. Plan to arrive 30 minutes before departure time to meet your group and arrange carpools.

Alternate Meeting:     Participants may also meet the trip at 9:30 a.m at Knight County Park Boat Landing, 2341 N. Three Rocks Road, Otis, Oregon 97368. If you choose this option, be sure to notify your trip leader in advance.

Driving Miles and Time from Spirit Mountain Lodge:     26 miles, 32 minutes to the Knight County Park boat landing

Driving Directions:     Trip leader will provide detailed driving instructions.

Leader:       Kami Ellingson

Hydrologist/watershed program manager, Suislaw National Forest

Plant Lists and Other Information:     Clink on the links below for more information about this trip.

Photo: Barbara Ellis-Sugai

The estuary before restoration

Photo: Tamara Quays-Kellingson
View of the estuary during a King Tide