Saturday, April 17, 2010

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.

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