What do we do?

The South Gifford Pinchot Collaborative (SGPC) participates in the development, facilitation, and implementation of projects that enhance forest ecosystem health, economic vitality, recreation, and public safety on the south end of Gifford Pinchot National Forest and in surrounding communities. Click on the plus (+) sign on the items below to learn more about some of our projects and use the minus (-) to minimize an item.

The Forest Service increasingly uses watershed level planning and Integrated Resource Timber Contracts to combine commercial and non-commercial vegetation management along with road work and restoration projects to achieve landscape level restoration objectives.

The Little White Salmon is the FS’ current planning area of focus. This diverse watershed exemplifies a transitional zone with both westside and eastside forest characteristics, which present a unique set of challenges (e.g., access) to FS planners. 

The Wind River Watershed was the previous planning area for the Mt. Adams Ranger District. The watershed has been split into the Middle and Upper Wind River planning blocks, and the forest planning and National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) process across these blocks occurs on a roughly two year cycle.

In 2017, the Forest Service and SGPC initiated work on a Landscape Assessment designed to engage the collaborative earlier in the planning process than has occurred previously. This process included a number of milestones:

  • Wind River Watershed Values Workshop
    • In May of 2017, the FS and SGPC held a joint meeting to identify key places and activities that collaborative members value within the watershed. These included ecological, economic, and human interaction (e.g. recreation, subsistence, special forest products, etc.) values.
    •  Field Trip to Wind River Restoration Sites
      • In August of 2017, the collaborative and FS coordinated a public field trip that looked at several restoration projects in the Wind River watershed including a previously decommissioned road and an instream habitat restoration site.
        • In the Summer of 2021, the collaborative and FS coordinated a second field trip into the Upper Wind to discuss issues associated with the watershed and observe early seral habitat. 
      • Development of Wind River Desired Future Conditions
        • In January of 2018, FS specialists shared how they are integrating collaboratively-identified values and science to develop Desired Future Conditions for the Wind River watershed. These will help guide proposed restoration projects and vegetation treatment design.

        The SGPC is hard at work on Zones of Agreement (ZOA) documents that provide the FS with a record of current areas of agreement within the GPNF South Zone planning unit, while memorializing the group’s work on past projects. These documents are intended to help the FS and SGPC accelerate the pace and scale of forest restoration by eliminating the need for repeated discussion of topics with broad collaborative agreement and allowing increased focus on contentious management topics that lack agreement and those that must be addressed on a case-by-case basis.

        • Road decommissioning 
        • Plantation thinning 
        • Early seral habitat creation (2019-2021)
        • Post-disturbance vegetation management (2022-present)

        As the SGPC has grown and expanded since its formation, there has been an increasing desire to work with the Forest Service and other groups on recreation issues. In the Spring of 2017, the Collaborative formed a Recreation Subcommittee to explore how to incorporate recreation as part of the collaborative’s ongoing work. During the same time period, the Forest Service began work on a Sustainable Recreation Strategy (SRS) initiative. 

        The Collaborative is especially interested  in addressing the increased recreation demand on the Mt. Adams Ranger District as a result of growing interest in the area and the fire closures of many of the trails in the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area. The SGPC looks forward to continuing conversations with the Forest Service about recreation in the coming years. 

        • Visitor use trends and associated impacts
        • GPNF Sustainable Trails Plan
        • User fees on GPNF
        • Lewis River Recreation Area Plan
        • OHV access and e-bike use 

        The SGPC completed a Strategic Monitoring Plan in 2018 with the goal to apply an evaluative lens to the Collaborative’s work and incorporate a feedback mechanism across different projects. We will focus on vegetation and retained receipt restoration projects, while also providing science learning opportunities to better inform our overall monitoring strategy.

        We implemented our first project in 2019 monitoring temporary roads restoration effectiveness, and provided recommendations to the Mt. Adams Ranger District from what we learned.

        We are currently building our next monitoring project focusing on early seral habitat creation in the Upper Wind watershed.

        The SGPC is responsible for overseeing the call for retained receipt project proposals, managing the project review meeting, and providing project funding recommendations to the Forest Service for projects on the South half of the Gifford Pinchot National Forest (GPNF). To learn more about the retained receipt process, visit our Stewardship Authority and Retained Receipts page.

        In 2017, the SGPC was responsible for recommending $250,000 in retained receipt funds for 10 projects that requested over $500,000. To learn more about some of the projects that have been funded visit our Retained Receipts in Action page.  

        In 2021-22, the collaborative helped the FS streamline the retained receipts process and provided a prioritized list of South GP roads in need of maintenance for allocation of FY22 funding. 

        SGPC Project History

        The SGPC has been involved in a diverse array of projects since  2011 when the Lewis River Collaborative and Mt. Adams District Collaborative combined to form the South Gifford Pinchor Collaborative (SGPC). Click the timeline below to view a larger format timeline that includes a description of the projects.