Metolius Preserve Hunting Update

Sep 06, 2019
This summer the Land Trust began the process of closing the Metolius Preserve to hunting. Learn more about this decision and its impacts on hikers and bikers.

This summer the Land Trust has been busy updating signs and facilities at the South Trailhead of the Metolius Preserve. In conjunction with these updates, we are also closing the Preserve to hunting.

The Land Trust has allowed walk-in hunting at the Metolius Preserve since 2003. When we established the Preserve, visitor use was fairly limited and adjacent Forest Service lands were open to hunting. Over the years, Preserve use has increased dramatically, especially with the introduction of regional trails like the Lake Creek Trail. Today hikers and bikers use the Preserve regularly and hunting is no longer compatible with these uses. This is why we are closing the Preserve to hunting.

The process of closing the Preserve to hunting will take some time. We will be marking boundaries with new no hunting signs and reaching out to notify hunters via agency and regional partners. We hope to complete outreach by spring of 2020. This means, however, that for the current hunting season boundaries will not be marked.

It is extremely important that Metolius Preserve users remember that hunting will likely still occur at the Preserve this year and in future years. It will take time to notify hunters and there will continue to be hunters on all of the public land around the Metolius Preserve. The Preserve is essentially an island of private property surrounded by Deschutes National Forest land. The National Forest allows hunting and therefore hunters or their marks may stray into the Preserve. Visitors who use the Preserve during the various hunting seasons should keep this in mind and always hike or bike with caution.

Let us know if you have questions or concerns!

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