Next stewards meeting is the 20th of November. Regular work party 22nd of November
The first thinning in the park has been completed and now the cleanup begins. The thinning itself went very well with less damage to underbrush and soils than was anticipated. The North Hills Logging company did a great job of taking only trees that were marked, and used thier experience to enhance the outcome. Only Douglas Fir trees were removed and steps were taken to protect all hardwoods and shade tolerant species. The results of the thinning is a mosaic of openings, clumps and individual trees that should respond well to the increased sunlight. There is much work to be done to restore trail aesthetics and stewards are working with the county forester to remove two roads, stabilize and armor Old Loop and Fire Trail, and replace damaged trail signs. New gates are being installed this week.
3rd Ward Returns
Volunteers from the Church Of Jesus Christ Latter Day Saints and stewards (Dennis, Frank, Pat) worked on Bird Meadow this past Saturday (9-13). This is the third year the 3rd Ward has chosen our park for their Day of Service project. KC Noxious weeds, Lori Raymaker, MTV Home Repair provided weed wrenches, and stewards provided water and logistics for the volunteers. Almost one acre of Scotch Broom was removed from either side of Bird Meadow Trail. This area has benefited from a two pronged approach to Scotch Broom removal. First all the large ones were hand pulled, second germinated seed are plowed under. Each fall the meadow is mowed and rototilled. Volunteers hand pull weeds in areas the equipment can not reach. We are investigating the possibility of using goats with the help of KC 4-H as a new part of the control process.
Thanks to Jessi for introducing me to the potential of QR codes, Nancy for sending me one that links our park map to your cellphone and Lori for helping me debug it. At each kiosk, you will find a QR code on the park map that will allow you to download an e-copy of the trail map. We hope this will reduce the number of maps we need to print. We have big plans for these little gizmos so watch for more of them to show up in the park.
August Work Party
Stewards have focused on Rhodie Hill trail improvements for the last several months. Projects have been designed to reduce siltation and runoff into streams that feed Little Anderson Creek. August's work party pruned this popular trail, cutting back salal and huck that had begun to crowd out the trail. Eagle Scout candidates had built a rest bench on top of the hill,and the Rotary funded Interactive Wetland has an additional attribute of drying the trail . This is a good cardio work out trail and our goal is to keep it open year round.
Restorative Forestry Begins
An abundance of caution, due diligence, training, permitting and several thousand hours of field work has reached fruition. The Washington State Department of Natural Resources granted a permit to begin thinning two areas within the park. The permit was activated on the 22nd of July. Watch for trail closures and temporary disruptions within the park. The park will NOT BE CLOSED, but some trails will be. First order of events will be construction of about 600 feet of new road that will connect Old Loop Road on the west side to Fire Trail.
July Work Party, Interactive Wetland
The teaching wetland project, or should I say the Interactive Wetland is coming along nicely. At the July stewardship meeting, stewards brainstormed a better name for the project and changed it from Teaching Wetland to Interactive Wetland. This change more accurately reflects the wetlands purpose, a place where students can get hands on experience with field work in the environmental sciences without harming macroinvertebrate populations in our wetlands and streams that feed Chico and Little Anderson Creek. With funding provided by Silverdale Rotary Duck Bucks, stewards procured materials and poured the concrete catch basin, that will hold the water level in the pond at 18 inches. They also removed English Ivy that is beginning to spread into our natural rain garden on the downstream side of the new pond. Once the concrete has cured, the forms will be removed and a trash grate installed for safety. This area will also be used as a native plant ID site.
National Day of Caring
A small, but hard working group of volunteers, began the daunting task of removing garbage and noxious weeds from what was once a small wetland. This is the only area in the park that has the invasive Reed Canary Grass. A Volkswagen chassis was removed from the weeds as well as a lot of other garbage. Scotch broom was pulled, releasing a large patch of Nootka Rose plants. Thanks to Lori Raymaker KC Parks, Harrison Hospital for lunch, MTV Home Repair for use of the dump trailer, stewards and Tiffany for your help.
Rose Foundation Grant
FONHHP has received a grant from the Rose Foundation for our Wetland Mapping Project. Check out the project on the Park Projects Page
ICOS stands for Individual, Clumps, Openings and Skips. These are techniques applied to Variable Density Thinning when you are managing a forest for wildlife habitat enhancement and diversification. On the 5th of May and again on the 7th of May, Derek Churchill came to the park and trained several volunteers on how to get the best possible results from thinning operations scheduled for late summer. KC Forester Arno Bergstrom brought Derek in to help us because of his experience and knowledge of current science relating to wildlife habitat, and complex forest structures. Areas to be skipped (no equipment or cutting), as well as all wetlands were delineated and plotted on GPS to protect sensitive areas within the park.
For a new trail map with mileages. click on PARK MAP icon under Useful Links
The most important feature of this park is you, our volunteers and stewards.