Legacy Trails Program Awardee


Bandit Springs Trail System

While improving access for users, the proposed work on BSTS will also improve conditions for local wetlands and habitats. Tread work, drainage, and crossings, will all work to reduce the erosion and water contamination that comes from overburdened trails. Similarly, rerouting trails will make them more sustainable while reducing the impact on wetlands and streams. Reducing access by unauthorized motorized vehicles will also reduce erosion, contamination of waterways, and the impact on sensitive habitats. Lastly, USFS Aquatics staff have identified the water crossing hardening as a way to improve habitat for the Columbia Spotted Frog.

Applicant: Heart of Oregon Corps
Project Location: Lookout Mountain Ranger District, Ochoco National Forest, Oregon
Amount Awarded: $19,998.00

First, the HOC conservation crew will focus on converting 6.47 miles of non-motorized winter trails to allow for summer use. This will be the primary focus of the 2023 season. While the winter trail corridors are cleared, no tread work has been performed. Creating a tread,18-36” wide, will allow access for hiking, biking, and equestrian use. The conversion of these winter trails would greatly expand the summer options, adding to the existing 5.6 miles of non-motorized all-season trails. Upon completion, Bandit Springs will offer 12.07 miles of multiple use all-season trails.

This process will also include establishing or rerouting the trails to avoid impacts on seasonal wetlands and riparian areas, as well as the creation of crossings and drainage to foster natural water flows. These sensitive areas have been flagged by the Forest Service, and recommendations made on how best to manage key issues.

Next, the existing 5.6 miles of all-season trails need retread work completed to mitigate erosion, flooding, and impacts to streams and wetlands. While crews will use BMPs as directed by Forest Service staff, some issue areas have been identified, which will require the construction of new crossings, eliminating social trials, and restricting access by unauthorized motor vehicles. This work will be implemented in the 2023 season, if feasible, but may likely extend into 2024. Heart of Oregon Corps operates year-round, which allows for crews to start early in the season and extend into the late season until winter conditions will not allow for any more progress.

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265 views • posted 05/24/2023