Alsea Falls Recreation Area Planning Effort
Alsea Falls Planning Webpage Update January 2014
The Salem District has been working with stakeholders to develop an appropriate management strategy for the Alsea Falls Special Recreation Management Area. The area incorporates 6,598 acres of public land in Oregon's Coast Range, approximately thirty miles southeast of Corvallis. The recreation area features opportunities for camping, picnicking, swimming, angling, hiking, horseback riding, mountain biking, hunting, recreational driving, and forest product collection, within an hour drive of the Corvallis and Eugene metropolitan areas.
Final Alsea Falls Recreation Area Management Plan Released
The Bureau of Land Management made a final decision and issued a final Recreation Area Management Plan for the Alsea Falls Recreation Area in January 2013. The Plan articulates a strategy for the management of recreation resources within the planning area for the next 15 years.
The final Management Plan outlines direction for the management of overnight use, day use, trails, visitor information and administration. It also lays out specific development projects and management actions that may be taken during the 15 year lifespan of the plan. Major actions include:
- Development and expansion of the Alsea Falls Non-Motorized Trail System, with ten to twelve miles of trail planned for the phase one. Future expansion opportunities will be based on user interest and demand.
- Improvement and expansion of the Alsea Falls campground, including conversion of some picnic sites to overnight use.
- Reconstruction of the trail accessing Alsea Falls.
- Improved visitor information, including river interpretation.
The Management Plan establishes the following recreation "niche" for the area, which identifies its role in the regional recreation market:
The Alsea Falls Recreation Area provides non-motorized trail opportunities, developed camping and day-use activities, and environmental education and interpretation in a forested backcountry byway corridor between the Willamette and Alsea Valleys. Developed recreation sites, non-motorized trail systems and targeted interpretive information allow for a relatively natural experience close to rural communities and about an hour's drive from Eugene and Corvallis urban population centers.
An Environmental Assessment (DOI-BLM-OR-S050-2013-0001-EA) was available for public review from October 9 to November 7, 2012. The document, which analyzed a range of alternative strategies to determine their potential effects, is available for public review.
For more information about the planning effort, contact Field Manager Rich Hatfield at 503-315-5968 or Project Lead Tim Fisher at 541-574-3142.
January 2014 Project Update
Several elements of the plan are currently being implemented by the BLM and partner organizations.
In 2014 the BLM, in partnership with local trail user groups, will be overhauling the shared use trail system near Fall Creek for improved use by hikers, mountain bikers and equestrians. Current efforts are focusing on re-routes of the existing system as well as new trail construction. For questions on trail work and plan implementation, please contact Adam Milnor, Outdoor Recreation Planner at 503-315-5935.
In early 2014, the primary trail between the day use area and Alsea Falls is being reconstructed. The final product will offer safer, more enjoyable access to the area's signature feature.