Eugene Record of Decision and Resource Management Plan

Acronyms and Abbreviations

Eugene Record of Decision

Eugene District Resource Management Plan Table of Contents:

- Tables

- Maps

- Appendices

Appendix C
Best Management Practices
and TPCC Fragile Code Guidance


This Appendix has 2 major sections: Best Management Practices (BMPs), and TPCC (Timber Production Capability Classification) Fragile Code Guidance. The BMPs described in this document are intended to maintain or improve water quality and soil productivity, and prevent or mitigate adverse impacts while meeting other resource objectives. For any given action, the actual BMPs needed to meet management goals are selected by an interdisciplinary team on a site specific basis. These BMPs are a compilation of existing policies, guidelines, and commonly employed practices designed to minimize water quality degradation and loss of soil productivity and may not necessarily be the best management practices for all other resources. The implementation of these BMPs will be the beginning of an iterative process that includes the monitoring and modification of BMPS. This process is considered the primary mechanism to achieve Oregon State Water Quality Standards.

The BMPs are designed to provide compliance with the Clean Water Act of 1972, as amended in 1977 and 1987. For proposed management actions, BMPs designed and implemented in accordance with a State approved process will normally constitute compliance with the Clean Water Act (CWA). The set of procedures prescribed by Oregon Forest Practice Act is the standard by which all forestry BMPs in Oregon are measured. The BMPs employed by BLM often are different in detail from the Oregon Forest Practice Act but must be equal or more protective of resources in terms of end results.

The iterative process by which nonpoint controls, including BMPS, are to be selected and implemented to achieve water quality standards include: (1) design of BMPs based upon site specific conditions, technical, economic and institutional feasibility, and the water quality of those waters potentially impacted; (2) monitoring to ensure that practices are properly designed and applied; (3) monitoring to determine the effectiveness of practices in meeting water quality standards, and the appropriateness of water quality criteria in reasonably assuring protection of beneficial uses; and (4) adjustment of BMPs when it is found that water quality standards are not being protected to a desired level and/or possible adjustment of water quality standards based upon considerations in 40 Code of Federal Regulations 131.

BMPs would be developed on a site specific basis and consist of a mix of conservation practices such as those listed below and management guidance identified in Chapter 2 of the Eugene District PRMP/FEIS.

Best Management Practices (BMPS)


Timber Harvest

  A. Timber Sale Planning Design
    Objective: Use the planning process to ensure that timber sales are designed to maintain favorable conditions of soil productivity, water flow, and water quality for beneficial uses in the watershed. Selection of some of the following practices will help meet this objective.
    1. Use Watershed Analysis to identify issues, concerns, and beneficial uses.
    2. Use interdisciplinary teams to identify applicable BMPS.
    3. Use Timber Production Capability Classification (TPCC) and field investigation to classify areas as nonsuitable for timber production and/or other resources manipulation.
    4. Use TPCC and field investigations to classify areas as fragile suitable, restricted.
    5. Identify, evaluate, and map potential problems (e.g., unstable areas and landforms, saturated areas, etc.). Design measures to avoid negatively impacting potentially unstable ground.
    6. Design harvest units to avoid or mitigate potential adverse impacts to soil and water. Evaluation factors include the following: soil characteristics, watershed physiography, current watershed and stream channel conditions, proposed roads, skid trails, and logging system design.
    7. Plan mitigation measures, if adverse impacts to water quality/quantity or soil productivity are anticipated from the proposed action.
    8. Analyze watershed cumulative effects and, if necessary, provide mitigation measures that meet water quality standards and the aquatic conservation strategy objectives.
    9. Within a watershed, disperse management activities over time and space in order to meet water quality standards and the aquatic conservation strategy objectives.
    10. Where cumulative effects analysis predicts degradation, reevaluate the watershed analysis to reflect the degradation.
    11. Include on timber sale maps and/or contracts the location of all stream channels and wetlands (springs, meadows, lakes, bogs, etc.).
    12. Locate fragile (nonsuitable and suitable) areas that require special management practices.
    13. Include on timber sale maps and/or contracts the location of protection required for each stream channel, wetland, and fragile area.
    14. Design Riparian reserves to meet the criteria set in the Watershed Analysis.
    15. Select the logging methods that meet water quality standards and soil productivity goals.
    16. Leave large downed woody debris on-site in amounts that are equal to or greater than those designated aquatic conservation strategy.
  B. Riparian/Wetland Protection
    Objectives: To prevent damage to riparian/wetland ecosystems and disturbance to streambanks, protect the natural flow of streams, and preserve nutrient cycling from woody debris. Maintain the integrity and functional ability of wetlands by avoiding disturbance of these areas whenever possible. Selection of some of the following practices will help meet these and the aquatic conservation strategy objectives.
    1. Allow no chemical loading operations or similar toxic pollutant activities within 200 feet of all water bodies.
    2. When operating within a tree length of riparian reserves/wetlands, directionally fall trees in order to meet the Aquatic Conservation Strategy.
    3. Do not fell any snags within riparian reserves. (This BMP will be implemented in all instances where safety and fire hazards are avoidable)
    4. Logs in the riparian reserve that were down prior to a planned management activity will be managed to meet the aquatic conservation strategy.
    5. No skid trails are to be placed in the riparian reserves/wetlands except at designated crossings.
    6. Avoid locating log landings within 50 feet of riparian/wetland areas.
    7. Provide total protection to lands susceptible to mass wasting, for example, unstable or oversteepened streambanks and headwalls.
    8. Restrict use of tractors in and adjacent to water.
    9. When absolutely necessary to yard through riparian areas, restrict yarding to corridors that are perpendicular to streams. Management guidelines for corridors are:

  • Restrict corridors to the minimum number feasible.

  • Corridors will not exceed 50 feet in width, nor reduce crown cover on a project stream segment to less than 75 percent of predisturbance conditions.

  • Logs will be fully suspended over water and adjacent banks.
    10. Remove all logging slash in streams (resulting from the current timber sale) for a distance of 100 feet above culverts, or the distance necessary to protect the culvert. Place slash above high-water mark.
    11. Plan and implement any activities (e.g., construction, falling and yarding timber, operation of equipment, etc.) in wetlands and permanent high water table areas to meet the objectives of the Aquatic Conservation Strategy.
    12. Manipulate vegetation in order to enhance or create springs and wetland areas.
  C. Yarding Methods
    Objectives: To minimize loss of soil productivity, and reduce potential for surface runoff, erosion, and subsequent degradation due to surface disturbance or compaction. Selection of some of the following practices will help meet these objective.
    1. Cable
      a. Suspend the front end of logs above the ground during yarding. (This BMP is desirable at all times and will be selected when yarding is to be done over streams or highly erodible soils).
      b. Fully suspend logs above the ground during yarding when crossing riparian vegetation, streams with fragile banks and sideslopes, and TPCC designated fragile soils.
      c. Use seasonal restriction, if required suspension cannot be achieved by yarding equipment.
      d. Hand water bar cable yarding corridors immediately after use on sensitive soils where gouging occurs.
      e. Respool cables where necessary to protect riparian reserves or other sensitive areas.
    2. Ground-based
      a. Use existing skid trails wherever possible.
      b. Limit new skid trails to slopes less than 35 percent.
      c. Use designated skid trails to limit area extent of skid trails plus landings to less than 10 percent of the unit.
      d. Restrict tractor operations to designated trails, and limit operations to periods of low soil moisture, when soils have the most resistance to compaction (dry season).
      e. In partial cut areas, locate skid trails so that they can be used for final harvest.
      f. Till compacted trails, including skid trails from previous entries, with a properly designed self-drafting winged subsoiler.
      g. Avoid tractor yarding on areas where soil damage cannot be mitigated.
      h. Avoid placement of skid trails through areas of high water tables or where the skid trails would channel water into unstable headwall areas.
      i. Water bar skid trails whenever surface erosion is likely.
      j. Avoid use of wide track vehicles or more than one machine on a skid trail at any given time to minimize the width. (On multiple pass skid trails, wide track vehicles result in wider skid trails and, after multiple passes, drive the compaction deeper than a regular width track; however, they are good for one-pass operations such as incidental scattered salvage or site preparation.)
      k. If timber harvesting activities will produce slash that covers the skid trails to the extent they cannot be relocated, prior to felling timber and with a property designed winged subsoiler, till existing skid trails that are not scheduled for reuse.
    3. Aerial
      a. Use helicopter, balloon, or skyline yarding to avoid or minimize new road construction, or to provide for complete suspension in sensitive watersheds.
      b. Place landings away from watercourses to prevent petroleum products or other pollutants from entering the water.



  A. Planning
    Objective: To plan road systems in a manner that will meet resource objectives and minimize resource damage. Selection of some of the following practices will help meet this objective.
    1. Use an interdisciplinary process to develop an overall transportation system.
    2. Establish road management objectives that minimize adverse environmental impacts.
    3. Avoid fragile and unstable areas.
    4. Minimize the percent of the land base converted to roads and landings; avoid heavy concentrations of roads and landings to minimize impacts from increased peak flows and erosion of the compacted surface.
    5. Develop a District road closure plan using an interdisciplinary team.
  B. Location
    Objective: To minimize mass soil movement, erosion, and sedimentation. Selection of some of the following practices will help meet this objective.
    1. Locate roads on stable positions (e.g., ridges, natural benches, and flatter transitional slopes near ridges and valley bottoms). Implement extra mitigation measures when crossing unstable areas is unavoidable.
    2. Avoid headwalls whenever possible.
    3. There will be no construction on potentially unstable areas.
    4. Locate roads to minimize height of cuts. Avoid high, steeply sloping cuts in highly fractured bedrock or deep soil.
    5. Locate roads on well-drained soil types. Avoid wet areas by rolling the grade.
    6. Avoid locating roads through areas where the geologic bedding planes or weathering surfaces are inclined with the slope.
    7. Locate stream crossing sites where channels are well defined, unobstructed, and straight.
  C. General Road Design Features
    Objective: To design the lowest standard of road consistent with use objectives and resource protection needs. Selection of some of the following practices will help meet this objective.
    1. Road design standards and design criteria are based on road management objectives such as traffic requirements of the project and the overall transportation plan, an economic analysis, safety requirements, resource objectives, and the minimization of damage to the environment.
    2. Consider future maintenance concerns and needs when designing roads.
    3. Preferred road gradients are 2-10 percent with a maximum sustained grade of 15 percent. Use steeper grades in those situations where they will result in less environmental impact. Avoid grades less than two percent.
    4. Outsloping of the road prism for surface drainage is normally recommended for local spurs or minor collector roads where low volume traffic and lower traffic speeds are anticipated. It is also recommended in situations where long intervals between maintenance will occur and where minimum excavation is desired. Outsloping is not recommended on sustained gradients over 8-10 percent.
    5. Insloping of the road prism is an acceptable practice on roads with gradients over 10 percent and where the underlying soil formation is very rocky and not subject to appreciable erosion or failure.
    6. Crown and Ditch - This traditional configuration is recommended for arterial and collector roads where traffic volume, speed, intensity, and user comfort are a consideration. Gradients may range from 2 to 15 percent as long as adequate drainage away from the road surface and ditchlines is maintained.
    7. Minimize excavation.
    8. Locate stable waste disposal areas suitable for depositing excess excavated material.
    9. Endhaul waste materials generated during road and ditch maintenance, if side slopes exceed 60 percent or where unacceptable environmental damage may occur if sidecasting is used.
    10. Endhaul sidecast materials where slopes have been overloaded.
    11. Surface roads, if they will be subject to traffic during wet weather. The depth and gradation of surfacing will usually be determined by traffic type, frequency, weight, maintenance objectives, and the stability and strength of the road foundation and surface materials.
    12. Provide for vegetative or artificial stabilization of cut and fill slopes in the design process.
    13. Prior to completion of design drawings, field check the design to ensure that it fits the terrain, drainage needs have been satisfied, and all critical slope conditions have been satisfied.
    14. Do not divert water directly into headwalls - vary the grade or install cross drains to channel water away from headwalls. Check maintenance on existing roads to ensure water is not allowed to remain on the road and/or diverted into unstable headwall areas.
    15. Unless a road is needed for future entry, use a temporary road and reclaim it after use using methods such as blocking, tilling, seeding, mulching, fertilizing, and water barring. No excavation or minimal excavation with topsoil stockpiling and placement onto road after use could also be utilized.
    16. Minimize potential erosion on a road. If it is dirt surface, reclaim it; otherwise apply rock aggregate to minimize surface erosion.
    17. Select landing locations on the basis of minimal excavation, erosion potential, or slope stability concerns.
    18. Avoid landing locations alongside or in meadows, wetland areas, or other special habitat features.
    19. Shape landings to direct surface water runoff to preselected spots where it can be dispersed to natural, well-vegetated, stable ground.
  D. Design of Cross Drains
    Objective: To minimize concentrated water volume and velocity within the road prism, in order to reduce the risk of slope movement, erosion, and sedimentation. Selection of some of the following practices will help meet this objective.
    1. Design placement of all cross drains to avoid discharge onto erodible (unprotected) slopes or directly into stream channels. Provide a buffer or sediment basin between the cross drain outlet and the stream channel.
    2. Locate cross drains or drainage dips in such a manner as to avoid outflows onto unstable terrain such as headwalls, landslide features, or block failure zones. Provide adequate spacing to avoid accumulation of water in ditches or surfaces through these areas.
    3. Provide energy dissipators or armoring at cross drain outlets or drain dips where water is discharged on loose material, erodible soil, or steep slopes.
    4. Use the guide for drainage spacing according to soil erosion classes and road grade shown in Section II.F.23., Table 1.
    5. Use drainage dips and/or lead-off ditches in lieu of culverts on roads that have gradients less than 10 percent, or where road management objectives result in blocking roads. Avoid drainage dips on road gradients over 10 percent.
    6. Locate drainage dips where water might accumulate, or where drainage is prevented by a berm.
    7. Cut all cannon culverts to the proper length, downspout, and provide for energy dissipation if needed.
    8. Design cross drainage culverts or drainage dips immediately upgrade of stream crossings to prevent ditch sediment from entering the stream.
    9. Varying road gradients is a recommended design practice in erodible and unstable soils to reduce surface water volume and velocities, and the necessity for culverts.
    10. Use slotted riser inlets in areas with highly erosive soils to prevent culvert plugging.
  E. Design of Stream Crossings
    Objective: To preclude stream crossings from being a direct source of sediment to streams, thus minimizing water quality degradation and providing unobstructed movement for aquatic fauna. Selection of some of the following practices will help meet this objective.
    1. Pipe arch culverts are appropriate on most fishery streams. Bottomless arch culverts and bridges will be necessary in some instances where gradients greater than 5 percent, stream discharge, and value of the fishery resource dictate that special engineering considerations are necessary to ensure uninterrupted fish passage. A round culvert may be suitable on streams where fish passage is not a concern.
    2. Use the theoretical 100-year flood as design criteria for pipe arches or culverts.
    3. Minimize the number of crossings on any particular stream.
    4. Where feasible, design culvert placement on a straight reach of stream to minimize erosion at both ends of the culvert. Design adequate stream bank protection (e.g., riprap) where scouring could occur. Avoid locations requiring that the stream channel be straightened beyond the length of a culvert to facilitate installation of a road crossing.
    5. Evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of a temporary versus permanent crossing structure. This evaluation should take into account economics, maintenance, and resource requirements for access to the area during all seasons over the long-term.
    6. Reconstruct deteriorating or poorly built stream crossings with bridges or culverts, ensuring proper alignment and grade.
    7. Increase the size of culverts to reduce the amount of highly erosive fill.
  F. Construction
    Objective: To create a stable roadway that will minimize soil erosion and water quality degradation. Selection of some of the following practices will help meet this objective.
    1. Limit road construction to the dry season (generally between May 15 and October 15). When conditions permit operations outside of the dry season, keep erosion control measures current with ground disturbance to the extent that the affected area can be rapidly closed/blocked and weatherized, if weather conditions warrant.
    2. Manage road construction so that it can be completed and bare soil can be protected and stabilized prior to fall rains.
    3. Confine construction of pioneer roads to within the roadway construction limits.
    4. Conduct pioneer road construction to prevent undercutting the designated final cutslope as well as avoiding the deposition of materials outside the designated roadway limits.
    5. Construct embankments out of appropriate materials (no slash or other organic matter) using one or more of the following methods:
      a. Layer placement (tractor compaction)
      b. Layer placement (roller compaction)
      c. Controlled compaction (85-90 percent maximum density).
    6. Do not sidecast where it will adversely affect water quality or weaken stable slopes.
    7. Install surface water drainage measures prior to fall rains.
    8. Clear drainage ditches and natural watercourses of woody material deposited by construction or logging upstream from culvert installations.
    9. Confine major culvert installation to the period of July 1 to September 15 to minimize sedimentation and the adverse effects of sediment on aquatic life.
    10. For larger streams, divert streams around culvert installation work areas to minimize sedimentation during construction.
    11. On streams with important fishery values, install the culvert as close to horizontal as possible (do not exceed 0.5 percent slope). Place culverts on larger nonfishery streams in the streambed at the existing slope gradient. Energy dissipators (e.g., large rock) placed at the outfall of culverts on small nonfishery streams are recommended to reduce water velocity and minimize scour at the outlet end.
    12. Countersink culverts 6-8 inches below the streambed to minimize scouring at the outlet. Increase culvert diameters accordingly to minimize chances of plugging.
    13. Confine activities by heavy equipment in the streambed to the area that is necessary for installation or removal of the structure. Restrict construction equipment to within the approved work area and out of the streambed.
    14. Permanent stream crossing structures are recommended to be in place before heavy equipment moves beyond the crossing area. Where this is not feasible, install temporary crossings to minimize stream disturbance.
    15. Place riprap on any fill material next to culvert inlets and outlets.
    16. Where possible, limit the installation and removal of temporary crossing structures to once during the same year and within the prescribed work period. Installation and removal should occur between June 15 and September 15 to minimize adverse effects of increased sediment on aquatic life.
    17. Use rock that is as soil-free as possible with temporary culverts. Whenever possible, use washed river rock covered by crushed rock as a compacted running surface.
    18. Spread and reshape clean fill material as close as possible to the original topography after a crossing is removed in order that the stream remains in its channel during high flow.
    19. Limit activities of mechanized equipment in the stream channel to the area that is necessary for installation and removal operations.
    20. Remove stream crossing drainage structures and in-channel fill material during low flow and prior to fall rains. Reestablish natural drainage configuration.
    21. Use washed rock/gravel in a low water ford crossing, if frequent use is anticipated. Surface the approaches with rock aggregate within 150 feet of each side of a low water ford to minimize washing and softening of the road surface.
    22. Construct water bars on dirt roads, spur roads, and skid trails prior to fall rains.
    23. Use the following table for water bar spacing, based on gradient and erosion class.

Table 1 - Water Bar Spacing (in Feet)

    Erosion Class
Gradients (%)   High Moderate Low
3-5   200 300 400
6-10   150 200 300
11-15   100 150 200
16-20   75 100 150
21-35   50 75 100
36+   50 50 50

Spacing is determined by slope distance and is the maximum allowed for the grade.

  G. Road Renovation/Improvement
    Objective: To restore or improve a road to a desired standard to minimize sediment production and water quality degradation. Selection of some of the following practices will help meet this objective.
    1. Change flat gradients to a minimum of 2 percent or provide raised subgrade sections (turnpike) to avoid accumulation of surface water on the road prism.
    2. Reconstruct unstable culvert catch basins to specifications. Catch basins in solid rock need not be reconstructed provided that culvert entrance specifications are met.
    3. Identify potential off-site water problems or excessive flows and add necessary drainage facilities
    4. Identify ditchline and outlet erosion caused by excessive flows, and add necessary drainage facilities and armoring.
    5. Replace undersized culverts and repair damaged culverts and downspouts.
    6. Add additional full-round culverts, half-round culverts, and energy dissipators as needed.
    7. Correct special drainage problems (i.e., high water table, seeps) that affect stability of subgrade through the use of perforated drains, geotextiles, drainage bays, etc.
    8. Eliminate undesirable berms that impair drainage away from the road prism.
    9. Restore outslope or crown sections.
    10. Avoid disturbing cutbanks while reconstructing ditches or catch basins.
    11. Surface inadequately surfaced roads that are to be left open to traffic during wet weather.
    12. When roadside brushing is necessary, require it be done in a manner that prevents disturbance to root systems (i.e., prohibit using excavators for brushing).
    13. Revegetate all cut and fill slopes by seeding and/or planting trees or shrubs (use Native Species Manual 1745 and Eugene District's Implementation Strategy for Native Plants as guides), fertilizing, hydromulching, netting, and/or mulching.
    14. Install stabilization features such as debris racks, binwalls, and rock blankets as needed.
  H. Maintenance
    Objective: To maintain roads in a manner that will provide for water quality protection by minimizing surface erosion, rutting failures, sidecasting, and blockage of drainage facilities. Selection of some of the following practices will help meet this objective.
    1. Provide the basic custodial maintenance required to protect the road investment to ensure that erosion damage to adjacent land and resources is held to a minimum.
    2. Perform blading and shaping in such a manner as to conserve existing surface material, retain the original crowned or outsloped self-drainage cross-section, and prevent or remove rutting berms (except those designed for slope protection) and other irregularities that retard normal surface runoff. Avoid dumping loose ditch or surface material over the shoulder where it would cause stream sedimentation or weaken landslide prone areas. Avoid undercutting of road cuts.
    3. Keep road inlet and outlet ditches, catch basins, and culverts free of obstruction, particularly before and during prolonged winter rainfall. Minimize routine machine cleaning of ditches during wet weather.
    4. Promptly remove landslide material when it is obstructing the road surface and ditchline drainage, and utilize the landslide material for needed road improvements elsewhere or dispose of it in a stable waste area. Avoid sidecasting landslide material where it would overload embankments or natural slopes, or flow into downslope drainage courses.
    5. Retain vegetation on cut slopes unless it poses a safety hazard or restricts maintenance activities. Accomplish roadside brushing by cutting vegetation rather than pulling it out and disturbing the soil.
    6. Patrol areas subject to road damage during periods of high precipitation.
    7. Reclaim/revegetate all roads not needed for future management activities.
    8. Revegetate bare cut and fill slopes.
    9. Stabilize major slope failures (landslides) by subsurface drainage, rock blankets, or other methods.
  I. Road Closures
    Objectives: To prevent erosion and sedimentation of streams from unmaintained roads, and restore site productivity to roads no longer needed. Selection of some of the following practices will help meet these objectives.
    1. Barricade or block the road surface using gates, guard rails, earth/log barricades, boulders, logging debris or a combination of these methods. Avoid blocking roads that would need future maintenance (i.e., culverts, potential landslides, etc.) with unremovable barricades. Use guardrails, gates, or other barricades capable of being opened for roads needing future maintenance.
    2. Follow-up on road closures to ensure they are maintained in accordance with design criteria.
    3. Install water bars, cross sloping or drainage dips, if not already on road, to ensure drainage.
    4. Till with a winged subsoiler, mulch and/or seed for erosion control and site productivity restoration.
    5. Coordinate road closures with the (Off Highway Vehicle) OHV Plan (Appendix F) and the Transportation Management Plan.
  J. Water Source Development
    Objective: To supply water for road construction, dust abatement, and fire protection while maintaining existing water quality and supply. Selection of some of the following practices will help meet this objective.
    1. Design and construct durable, long-term water sources that maintain or enhance aquatic organism habitat.
    2. Avoid reduction of downstream flow that would detrimentally affect aquatic resources, fish passage, or other uses.
    3. Direct overflow from waterholding developments back into the stream.
    4. Locate road approaches in instream water source developments to minimize potential impacts in the riparian zone. Rock surface these approaches to reduce the effects of sediment washing into the stream.
    5. Avoid use of road fills for water impoundment dams unless specially designed for that purpose.
    6. Construct water sources during the dry season (generally between May 15 and October 15).
  K. Restoration of Rock Quarries
    Objective: To minimize sediment production from quarries that are susceptible to erosion due to steep sideslopes, lack of vegetation, or their proximity to water courses. Selection of some of the following practices will help meet this objective.
    1. Wherever possible, prior to excavation of the site, remove and stockpile topsoil for surface dressing to be used in the reclamation of the site.
    2. Use seeding, mulching, and drainage to minimize erosion.
    3. Till, water bar, block, fertilize, and seed access roads to rock quarries where no future entry is planned. Reclaim depleted quarries to enhance other resource uses.



  A. Riparian Protection/Enhancement
    Objectives: To comply with the Aquatic Conservation Strategy. To prevent damage to riparian ecosystems, disturbance to streambanks, deterioration of water quality, and accumulation of slash in streams. Selection of some of the following practices will help meet this objective.
    1. No cutting of vegetation within Riparian reserves except to meet watershed and/or aquatic conservation strategy objectives.
    2. When cutting vegetation within a tree length of any stream or riparian zone, fell trees to meet objectives in the Aquatic Conservation Strategy.
  B. Mechanical Methods
    Objective: To maintain soil productivity and water quality while meeting the silviculture objectives. Selection of some of the following practices will help meet this objective.
    1. When using tracked equipment for site preparation, limit the use of such equipment to areas of less than 35 percent slopes.
    2. Do not compact skeletal or shallow soils.
    3. Till all compacted areas with properly designed equipment. This could be waived if inspection reveals that less than 2 percent of the area is compacted. Compaction of less than 2 percent is considered to impair less than 1 percent growth loss.
    4. On sites that do not annually dry out enough to provide resistance to traditional tracked equipment, use low-ground-pressure, track-type excavators. The narrow window for dry soils on these sites presents a high risk for impacts, as they do not offer the consistency needed for contract administration. These sites are located in the Udic moisture regime, which is dry less than 45 days within the 4 months following June, in 6 years out of 10.
    5. Restrict tractor operations to dry conditions with less than 25 percent soil moisture content in the upper six inches of soil.
    6. Construct small diameter piles or pile in windrows.
    7. Avoid piling large logs and stumps.
    8. Pile small material (3-8" diameter size predominantly).
    9. Burn piles when soil and duff moistures are high.
  C. Chemical Methods
    Objectives: To protect water quality from chemical pollution and to enhance soil productivity. Selection of some of the following practices will help meet these objectives.
    1. Refer to Vegetation Management EIS.
    2. Select areas for fertilization listed as TPCC FNR (low nutrient).
    3. Target fertilizer for areas that have been impacted from past practices (e.g., intense burns) for possible mitigation.
    4. Avoid aerial application of chemicals when wind speeds would cause drift.
    5. Locate heliports and storage areas away from stream channels.
    6. Do not apply chemicals within 100 feet of perennial streams, or channels with beneficial use(s) recognized by the State.
    7. Do not apply chemicals directly into intermittent streams or channels with beneficial use(s) recognized by the State.
  D. Broadcast Burning
    Objectives: To maintain long-term soil productivity, organic matter, duff, and water quality when burning is used as a management practice. Selection of some of the following practices will help meet this objective.
    1. Evaluate need for burning based on soils, plant community, and site preparation criteria. Burn under conditions when a light burn can be achieved (see guidelines below) to protect soil productivity. The following standards should not be exceeded.
      a. Category 1 Soils (highly sensitive) - Avoid burning.
      b. Category 2 Soils (moderately sensitive) - Reduce disturbance, fire intensity, and duration by using the following methods:

  • Burn under conditions that result in low intensity fires.

  • Burn when soils and duff are moist.

  • Avoid burning sparsely vegetated areas on slopes greater than 65 percent.

  • Pull slash and woody debris adjacent to landings onto landings before burning.
      c. Category 3 Soils (least sensitive) - Write prescriptions to protect a large percentage of the nutrient capital and other beneficial properties in the soil and the forest floor (low and moderate intensity burns).
    2. Burn within Riparian Reserves only to meet aquatic conservation strategy objectives.
    3. Fire Trails
      a. Construct tractor fire trails utilizing a brush blade with one-pass construction during periods of dry soil moisture.
      b. Where the fire trail construction has resulted in compacted surfaces, till and water bar the fire trail (use property designed equipment).
      c. Avoid the placement of tractor constructed fire trails on slopes in excess of 35 percent.
      d. Avoid the placement of any fire trails where water would be channeled into areas of slope instability.
      e. Water bar all fire trails that may carry water in order to minimize surface erosion.


Other Activities

  A. Firewood
    Objective: To prevent erosion from road use and water quality degradation during firewood operations. Selection of some of the following practices will help meet these objectives.
    1. Seasonal restriction on firewood cutting when access to cutting area is on an unsurfaced road.
    2. Clean all road surfaces, ditches, and catch basins of debris from wood cutting.
  B. Wildfire Control
    Objective: To minimize water quality degradation and maintain soil productivity while achieving rapid and safe suppression of wildfire. Selection of some of the following practices will help meet these objectives.
    1. Develop a fire contingency plan for sensitive areas.
    2. Limit use of heavy equipment near streams and on steep slopes when possible. Where fire trail entry into a riparian area is essential, angle the approach rather than have it perpendicular to the stream.
    3. Attempt to keep fire retardant out of water sources.
    4. Utilize information from burned area surveys to determine if watershed emergency fire rehabilitation is needed.
    5. Develop a fire rehabilitation plan through an interdisciplinary process.
    6. Select treatments on the basis of on-site values, downstream values, probability of successful implementation, social and environmental considerations (including protection of native plant community), and cost as compared to benefits.
    7. Examples of emergency fire rehabilitation treatments include: (1) seeding grasses or other vegetation as needed to provide a protective cover as quickly as possible; (2) mulching with straw or other suitable material; (3) fertilizing; (4) channel stabilization structures, (5) trash racks above road drainage structures; and (6) water bars on fire lines.
  C. Watershed Restoration and Fish Habitat Improvement Projects
    Objective: To minimize damage to riparian vegetation, streambanks, and stream channels. Selection of some of the following practices will help meet this objective.
    1. Use an interdisciplinary team.
    2. Use corrective measures to repair degraded watershed conditions and restore to predisturbance conditions with a vegetative cover that will maintain or improve soil stability, reduce surface runoff, increase infiltration, and reduce flood occurrence and flood damages.
    3. Carefully plan access needs for individual work sites within a project area to minimize exposure of bare soil, compaction, and possible damage to tree roots. Utilize existing trails to the extent practical.
    4. Schedule the timing of work in stream channels in accordance with the Memorandum of Understanding with Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife to minimize the area of the stream that would be affected by sedimentation during the low flow period.
    5. Keep equipment out of streams to the extent possible.
    6. Limit the amount of streambank excavation to the minimum that is necessary to ensure stability of enhancement structures. Place excavated material where it will be stable and will not cause adverse stream effects.
    7. Whenever possible, obtain logs for habitat improvement structures from outside the riparian zone or at least 200 feet from the stream channel to maintain integrity of riparian habitat and streambanks. Riparian zone management actions will comply with Aquatic Conservation Strategy.
    8. Inspect all mechanized equipment daily to help ensure toxic materials such as fuel and hydraulic fluid do not enter the stream.
    9. Utilize water bars, barricades, seeding, and/or planting to stabilize bare soil areas.
    10. When needed to meet Aquatic Conservation Strategy objectives, place woody debris in RMAs and streams, create snags and plant conifers and woody riparian vegetation where previous management activities have removed them.
    11. Design water source developments and improvements to protect riparian values.
    12. Manage livestock use of riparian areas by fencing, other water source development, livestock numbers, season of use, and in accordance with the Aquatic Conservation Strategy.
  D. Mineral Exploration and Development
    Objective: To minimize unnecessary disturbance to soils, riparian ecosystems, streambanks, and stream channels within constraints of applicable regulations. Selection of some of the following practices will help meet this objective.
    1. Require that operator obtain all required State and Federal operating permits.
    2. Locate, design, operate, and maintain sediment settling ponds in conformance with State Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) guidelines.
    3. If possible, design, locate, and construct stream crossings in conformance with practices described in Sections II.D and II.E and the Aquatic Conservation Strategy.
    4. Use existing roads, skid trails, and stream crossings whenever possible.
    5. Adequate drainage of surface runoff will be necessary for roads that are constructed or reconstructed for vehicular access to the operating area. If roads are to be utilized during winter months (October 15 - April 15) rock aggregate should be used to surface those roads.
    6. As appropriate, till, water bar, seed, mulch, and barricade according to BLM specifications, all roads and trails constructed for exploratory purposes that are not needed for the operation.
    7. Reclamation of the disturbed area, access roads, and trails shall be conducted at the conclusion of operations.
    8. Construct a berm or trench between disturbed areas and water courses when needed to protect water quality.
    9. Stockpile topsoil for use during reclamation of the site. In the interim, stockpiled topsoil must be stabilized to prevent erosion and contamination of other resources in the area.
    10. If erosion is predicted to occur during the period from October 15 to May 15, contour and mulch disturbed areas that will not be utilized for at least 30 days.
    11. If possible, retain an undisturbed riparian buffer strip between mining operations and water courses to protect integrity of streambanks, provide for water temperature control, and for filtration of sediment from surface runoff.
    12. Whenever possible, confine operations to areas above the high water line of streams.
    13. Locate and maintain sanitation facilities in accordance with State and local regulations and District policies.

TPCC Fragile Codes/Guidance

The Timber Production Capability Classification (TPCC) inventory is designed to identify sites capable of sustaining intensive timber management without degradation of their productive capacity. Factors such as soil depth, available moisture, slope, drainage, and stability are evaluated to determine the degree of timber management activity on a particular site. This would include sites capable of sustaining standard timber harvest practices, special practices or limitations to prevent degradation, and sites too fragile to tolerate any timber management without long-term loss of productivity.

A complete description of the system can be found in BLM State Office Handbook 525 1- 1, Timber Production Capability Classification. This is available at the District office.

This section describes the fragile codes used in the TPCC, identifies the concerns associated with each code, and recommends potential practices for management of such areas. The recommended practices listed in this section are measures necessary to avoid unacceptable soil productivity loss for lands classified in the TPCC as fragile. The goal of the practices listed is to prevent or mitigate adverse impacts while meeting other resource objectives. Practices listed in this section are not all-inclusive. The actual practices used for land classified as fragile are selected by an interdisciplinary team on a site specific basis.

A. Fragile Nonsuitable Woodland - Soil Moisture (FSNW)

  Soils on these sites are excessively well drained. Soils have a very low Available Water Holding Capacity (AWHC) and are subject to being dry for long periods during spring and summer months. Vegetation communities are primarily uneven-aged, open-grown Douglas-fir with a low vigor ground cover of salal. Soils typically have sandy or gravelly textures with coarse fragments consisting of more that 70 percent of the top 12 inches of the soil. AWHC is generally between 0.5 and 1 inch.
  Because of the limited soil resource, survival of newly planted vegetation is low. Any site disturbance severely reduces the future productivity potential. These losses cannot be mitigated even using best management practices.
  Recommended Practices:
  These sites should be managed for nontimber uses.

B. Fragile Suitable Restricted - Soil Moisture (FSR)

  Sites with thin, light-colored topsoils and gravelly, often shallow soils with low moisture storage capacity. Available water holding capacity in the top 12 inches ranges from 1 to 1.5 inches.
  Because of low moisture supplying capacity and thin topsoil, soil displacement or compaction significantly impacts the growth of biomass. Soil compaction or displacement further reduces the soil's ability to absorb and store moisture, reducing survival and growth of conifer seedlings.
  Recommended Practices:
  1. Avoid ground-based logging equipment.
  2. Avoid wet-season yarding, except with suspension of logs.
  3. Avoid scarification or tilling of soil.
  4. Avoid tractor constructed fire trails.
  5. Do not prescribe burn or, if burning is absolutely necessary, burn only when fire intensity and duration will be low (see burning guidelines).

C. Fragile Suitable Restricted - Nutrient (FNR)

  Soils on this site are typically well to excessively drained. They occur primarily on ridges, ridge noses, and steeper convex hillslopes, at elevations above 2,800 feet. Soils typically have thin topsoils. Organic matter turnover rates are slow and a high proportion of site nutrients is stored in the aboveground biomass.
  The highest demand for plant nutrients occurs during the first 15 to 20 years after a plantation is established. Removal of nitrogen on sites already below optimum levels for growth would have an immediate impact on new plantations. Although natural precipitation supplies small amounts of nitrogen, it must be emphasized that nutrients in deficient soils will not be available in sufficient quantities during the period of maximum need by the young stand of trees.
  Studies indicate that scarification and burning that result in high biomass removal on nutrient-deficient soils could have an immediate detrimental impact on growth.
  Recommended Practices:
  1. Avoid burning on these sites when possible. Burning is often not needed to control plant competition on low fertility sites.
  2. Avoid burning on steeper slopes and southerly aspects.
  3. Encourage nitrogen-fixing vegetation.
  4. Use fertilizer to increase nutrient levels.
  5. Avoid use of ground-based yarding equipment such as tractors and rubber-tired skidders.
  6. Avoid scarification and tractor slash piling.
  7. Consider extended rotations.


Fragile Nonsuitable Woodland - Slope Gradient (FGNW)

  Slopes/areas that have been determined to be potentially unstable.
  Slopes greater than 80 percent adjacent to streams and in headwalls of drainages.
  Logging or road construction activity is likely to accelerate surface erosion and/or trigger slides or debris avalanches into streams.
  Recommended Practices:
  1. Manage for uses other than timber production with a primary emphasis on maintaining water quality.
  2. Avoid and buffer these sites whenever possible, especially if there are indicators of instability.
  3. If included in timber sale units, fall and yard away or use full suspension. Buffer the headwalls of streams.


Fragile Suitable Restricted - Slope Gradient (FGR)

  Steep hillslopes of greater than 70 percent, adjacent to streams or in headwalls of drainages. Soils are shallow to moderately deep, noncohesive and gravelly.
  Disturbances of logging or road construction may accelerate soil erosion, ravelling, and sliding, and may contribute to debris avalanches. When such materials enter streams, there are serious impacts to water quality and to riparian (streamside) vegetation.
  Recommended Practices:
  1. Avoid placing roads in headwalls steeper than 70 percent and minimize sidecasting of excess road construction materials.
  2. Avoid practices that add water to headwalls or disrupt the natural drainage.
  3. Patrol culverts in high-hazard areas during high runoff events.
  4. Avoid placement of new materials into landslide areas.
  5. Direct road runoff into ditch lines by insloping or use of dips.
  6. Place downspouts on culverts where they discharge onto steep slopes.
  7. Utilize full suspension yarding.


Fragile Suitable Restricted - Mass Movement Potential (FPR)

  These sites occur primarily in undulating topography containing depressions and sag ponds. Parent material is primarily volcanic rock. Slopes of the slump scarp may be steep but the average hillslope is on gradients of less than 70 percent. Soils are typically deep and highly productive.
  These sites are subject to slow mass movement. Any practice that increases weight or soil pore pressure, or reduces support at the toe, accelerates movement. Run-off from compacted soil on roads and skid trails that diverts water into unstable areas is a common cause of increased instability.
  Recommended Practices:
  1. Avoid unloading toeslopes of landslides.
  2. Avoid placing waste material on landslide features.
  3. Divert road drainage away from unstable areas.
  4. Maintain or reestablish natural drainage after harvest operations.
  5. Evaluate unstable slopes and design measures to enhance their stability.


Fragile Nonsuitable Woodland - Groundwater (FWNW)

  Very poorly drained areas with water at the surface for much of the year. Vegetation includes scattered alder and cottonwood with an understory of salmonberry, skunk cabbage, sedges or rushes, and devils club.
  Commercial conifer trees are unable to survive on these sites except on scattered hummocks or mounds with better drainage. The high water table makes it easily damaged by timber management or other activities.
  Recommended Practices:
  Manage for uses other than timber production with primary emphasis on water quality and wildlife.


Fragile Suitable Restricted - Groundwater (FWR)

  These are very moist, imperfectly drained sites, usually in depressions or adjacent to streams or unstable areas where the water table is near the surface much of the year. (Soils have high-chroma mottles or greying within 6 to 14 inches of the surface. Slough sedge and skunk cabbage are absent.) The vegetation is dominated by alder and western hemlock overstories, and oxalis, vine maple, and sword-fern understories. Salmonberry and devils-club are minor components.
  These sites may or may not contain water-tolerant species, but removal of trees could reduce transpiration rates. Yarding may disrupt surface water flows. This can raise the water table and increase the time in which soils are wet. In turn, this could reduce production, increase competition of unwanted vegetation, and change the adapted species.
  Recommended Practices:
  1. Minimize practices that disrupt natural drainage, such as dragging logs through wet areas or leaving skid trails that block natural drainage.
  2. Avoid use of ground-based logging equipment when soils are wet.
  3. Avoid scarification.
  4. Plant species adapted to the site, such as western hemlock, western red cedar, or alder.