Saturday, April 17, 2010

Salmon in the SNRA

The Salmon River headwaters are mostly located in the Sawtooth National Recreation Area (SNRA), a special management unit created by Congress in 1972. Most recreational river usage takes place between Stanley and Torrey's Hole. The bulk of recreational river usage occurs downstream from the Yankee Fork confluence to Torrey's Hole.

All of this portion of the Salmon River lies within the SNRA. The SNRA does have some special considerations and management prescriptions for this stretch of river. Click here to see the Environmental Assessment that addresses some of these issues. We have been unable to find out more detailed information online about how the SNRA administers the Salmon River for non-commercial recreational river users.

Likewise, we have been unable to find any map online (detailed or otherwise) describing the section of the Salmon River that lies within the administrative boundaries of the SNRA.

We would suspect that SNRA officials have some data regarding non-commercial usage of the Salmon in this area. To the best of our knowledge, we believe there is at least some portions of this river area which require a free permit for usage by non-commercial recreationists.

Wild & Scenic Designation

Forty six miles of the Salmon River between North Fork and Corn Creek was officially designated on July 23, 1980, as a "recreational" component of the Nation's Wild & Scenic River system.  As everyone knows, the 79 miles downstream from Corn Creek to Long Tom Bar received the coveted "wild" designation on the same day.
Click here to read a synopsis of these two stretches of river. 

America's landmark 1968 legislation that created the Wild & Scenic River system identified three classifications for potential designation.  They are wild, scenic and recreational.  Recreational river areas are described as, "Those rivers or sections of rivers that are readily accessible by road or railroad, that may have some development along their shorelines, and that may have undergone some impoundment or diversion in the past."
Click here to go the federal webpage for the Wild & Scenic River System.

The North Fork-Corn Creek stretch of the Salmon River is administered by the USDA Forest Service North Fork Ranger District of the Salmon-Challis National Forest (SCNF). Interestingly, the SCNF website has extensive information about the "wild" portion of the Salmon River but contains no information (that we can find) regarding the "recreational" stretch of the Wild & Scenic Salmon River. Several Ranger Districts on the SCNF have their own separate webpages but the North Fork Ranger District does not.

We would suspect that the SCNF Forest Plan includes specific management guidelines for the North Fork-Corn Creek.

Oregon's Rogue River is a classic example of the combination of various components of Wild & Scenic River designations. As one of the original eight rivers included in the 1968 legislation, the Rogue has stretches of all three designations, wild, scenic and recreation. Click here for the BLM's excellent 60-page guide to all of the Rogue River's Wild & Scenic sections.

Friday, April 16, 2010

The BLM's Lower Salmon River Guide

We've added a link in the left column to the BLM's guide for the Lower Salmon River from Hammer Creek to Heller Bar.  The BLM Cottonwood Field Office has these maps on their portion of the overall BLM website. They also have prepared a guide for the Vinegar Creek to Hammer Creek section.

The Hammer to Heller section has 23 individual maps. The Vinegar to Heller features 16 maps. Each map covers a few river miles. You can go to the BLM webpage that shows these maps by clicking on the graphic in the left hand column.

These guides are a great example of a good mainstream approach for a river guide.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Blog created

This blog was created at 10:50 am April 14, 2010.
It was mostly dormant from April 2010 until May 2012 when it was revived and rebranded.
Our profile photo is usednow across all our social media platforms.