A look back

Sep 28, 2015
Wondering how the Land Trust was started? When we acquired a certain Preserve? Check out this timeline which features highlights from our 20 years of land conservation in Central Oregon.

Wondering how the Land Trust was started? When we acquired a certain Preserve? Check out the timeline below which features highlights from our 20 years of land conservation in Central Oregon:



20th anniversary_web
20th anniversary_web
20th anniversary_web

1995: Deschutes Land Trust incorporated as a 501c3 nonprofit. The Land Trust consists of a six member Board of Directors and 10 dedicated volunteers. Photo: Jay Mather.








Acquired Indian Ford Meadow Preserve: 63 acre meadow near Sisters with dramatic scenic views, important wildlife habitat, and a portion of Indian Ford Creek.  Acres conserved: 63.

(Photo: Greg Burke)
Protected the Trout Creek Conservation Area: 161 acre conservation easement near Sisters with ponderosa pine forest and the rare Peck’s penstemon. Brad Chalfant became Executive Director. Acres conserved: 224.

(Photo: Greg Burke)
BO. Alder Springs
Protected Alder Springs Ranch: a collaboration with the Trust for Public Land to acquire and transfer 840 acres near Sisters to the Crooked River National Grasslands. Conserved wildlife habitat, Alder Springs, and the confluence of Whychus Creek and the Deschutes River. The Land Trust endowment is established with the Oregon Community Foundation. Acres conserved: 1,064.

(Photo: Brian Ouimette)
2000: Acquired Camp Polk Meadow Preserve:
148 acre meadow near Sisters with critical fish habitat, 1.4 miles of Whychus Creek, wetlands, meadows, and ponderosa pine. Protected the Hopkins Young Special Management Area: a 3,045 conservation easement that protects a working forest of old-growth ponderosa pine near Crescent, Oregon. Acres conserved: 4,257.

(Photo: Greg Burke)
2001: Acquired Thomas Preserve:
7 acre oxbow island in Deschutes River near La Pine State Park. Began long-term bird survey program at Camp Polk to monitor bird populations. Began construction of visitor area and interpretive trail at Camp Polk. First tours offered to provide education about protected lands. Launched the Five Rivers Society—a major giving society of visionary individuals dedicated to protecting local lands. Acres conserved: 4,264.

(Photo: John Williams)
2003: Acquired the 1,240 acre Metolius Preserve
near Camp Sherman after a 2.5 million capital campaign. The Preserve is a forested property with diverse plants and wildlife as well as 3 miles of Lake Creek, the most important salmon spawning tributary to the Metolius River. Acres conserved: 5,504.

(Photo: MA Willson)
Skyine Forest Aerial view
2005: Built trails and installed interpretive signs at Indian Ford Meadow Preserve and the Metolius Preserve. Began partnership to restore Whychus Creek at Camp Polk Meadow. Major forest restoration work began at Metolius Preserve to reduce fire danger and promote conditions for old-growth ponderosa pine. Work to conserve Skyline Forest—a 33,000 acre forest between Bend and Sisters—began. Acres conserved: 5,504.

(Photo: Aerial Images)

BD. RR Whychus fall
Protected Rimrock Ranch with a 1,123 acre conservation easement near Sisters that conserves 1.5 miles of Whychus Creek, scenic rimrock canyon, and shrub-steppe habitat adjacent to the National Grasslands. Protected Boyer Easement: 80 acres of old growth juniper woodland, sagebrush habitat, migratory deer corridor, and scenic views in Cloverdale. Acres conserved: 6,707.

(Photo: Byron Dudley)
 LT.Ranch at Canyons

2007: Protected Canyons Ranch:
a 550 acre conservation easement near Smith Rock State Park that conserved deer winter range and Crooked River frontage. First steelhead fry released in Whychus Creek Camp Polk Meadow. Planted 7,000 native plants at the Metolius Preserve as part of road decommissioning project.
Acres conserved: 7,257.

(Photo: Land Trust)

Land Trust receives National Accreditation. The restored Whychus Creek channel at Camp Polk Meadow is excavated and more than 113,000 new native plants were planted by volunteers and paid crews. Acres conserved: 7,257.

 gm_WC creek kids

2010: Acquired Whychus Canyon Preserve:
450 acres of grasslands and old growth juniper forest outside of Sisters with two miles of Whychus Creek. Protected Coffer Ranch: 492 acre easement near Prineville that conserved 1 mile of Mill Creek, springs and wetlands, and unique rock formations. Acres conserved: 8,199.

(Photo: Gary Miller)

2011: Acquired the Pond Addition
to Camp Polk Meadow Preserve: 6 acres of springs, wetlands, and woodlands. Camp Polk Meadow is now 151 acres. Protected Spring Creek: a 27 acre conservation easement that protects 2/3 of Spring Creek which contains high quality fish habitat, wetlands mixed conifer forest. Winter Nature Night series starts. Acres conserved: 8,232.

(Photo: Jay Mather)
 RM_CPM post restoration

Whychus Creek is returned to its meandering path through Camp Polk Meadow Preserve. Redband trout are found building redds (spawning beds) 3 weeks later! Water table levels rise dramatically! Acres conserved: 8,232.

(Photo: Russ McMillan)
 Whychus Canyon Preserve Hike. Photo by Tyler Roemer.

Thinned juniper at Whychus Canyon Preserve to improve habitat for wildlife and reduce fire danger. Created trail system at Whychus Canyon Preserve that provides the first public access to Whychus Creek downstream of Sisters. Acres conserved: 8,232.

(Photo: Tyler Roemer)
 TR.WCP Addition_046

2014: Acquired 480 acre addition to Whychus Canyon Preserve.
The new part of the Preserve protects two miles of Whychus Creek, juniper and pine woodlands, cottonwood stands, rimrock cliffs, and wetlands. Launched the Campaign for Whychus Creek to protect the highest quality remaining wildlife habitat along Whychus Creek, ensure the permanent care of those lands for years to come, and engage the community in its care. Deschutes Land Trust earns renewed national accreditation. Acres conserved: 8,712.

(Photo: Tyler Roemer)
 JW_Aspen Hollow Preserve

2015: Acquired Aspen Hollow Preserve: 58 acres on Whychus Creek with rimrock cliffs, and pine and aspen stands. Land Trust celebrates 20 years of land conservation in Central Oregon! Acres conserved: 8,770.

(Photo: John Williams)