San Juan National Forest

February 7, 2015--Aerial survey shows pine beetles waning, but spruce beetles continue to spread across Colorado forests (Summit Voice)

There’s good news and bad news from Colorado’s forests. Mountain pine beetle activity has faded to the lowest level since 1996, but spruce beetles continue to spread in the San Juans and in northwestern Colorado. The spruce beetle outbreak was detected on 485,000 acres in 2014, compared to 398,000 acres across the state in 2013, according to the U.S.

December 13, 2014--Hermosa Creek area protection included in military spending bill (Grand Junction Sentinel)

It required pairing two unlikely bedfellows of national defense and public lands, but western Colorado apparently will see new wilderness designated under a military spending bill passed by the U.S. Senate on Friday, which is headed to President Barack Obama’s desk.

Fitzgerald Award

Healthy forests directly contribute to healthy watersheds. Related to this, a local forester, Gretchen Fitzgerald, with the San Juan National Forest, recently received a distinguished Regional Forester’s Honor Award for her work to restore burned areas and help design for mitigations for potential stresses from climate change. Gretchen acquired two grants totaling $1.2 million through the National Forest Foundation. Funding came from Chevrolet and Disney corporations in exchange for carbon offsets.

June 19, 2014--McPhee breakwater now has a plan (Cortez Journal)

The fate of the long-stalled breakwater project is finally inching forward, and officials are cautiously optimistic it may be ready for installation soon. A constructed breakwater at the McPhee boat ramp was supposed to be floated into position last summer, but it is still languishing near shore.

April 7, 2014--McPhee breakwater plan stalls (Cortez Journal)

It was supposed to be floated into position last summer, but a new breakwater system for the McPhee Reservoir boat launch is still lying on shore. Engineering snags for the structure’s anchor design have delayed the project indefinitely, according to officials with Montezuma County and the San Juan National Forest.

March 5, 2014--Spruce beetle epidemic expands in 2013 (Telluride Daily Planet)

U.S. Forest Service officials and others are concerned after a new survey shows increasing spruce beetle activity in southwest Colorado. According to the aerial survey, which was conducted in the summer of 2013, spruce beetles were detected on 398,000 acres in Colorado, which includes 216,000 acres of new beetle activity.

February 14, 2014--San Juan forest names new forest supervisor (Pagosa Daily Post)

Kara Chadwick, Assistant Director for Forest Management for the U.S. Forest Service in Washington, D.C., will report to the San Juan National Forest as its new Forest Supervisor in April, 2014. Chadwick began her U.S. Forest Service career in 1985 working on fire and timber crews in Montana and Idaho for the Kootenai National Forest.

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