The Blue Mountain Land Trust has purchased a 278-acre parcel outside of Prairie City.
With help from the Confederate Tribes of Warm Springs and funding from Craft3, a regional nonprofit, the organization purchased Phipps Meadow, according to an Aug.11 press release.
The press release noted that the Malheur National Forest surrounds the property “from an ecological point of view” and is made up of wet meadows, pine forests and lies over a mile and a half of the John Day River. The press release says this is an important ecological feature for native fish and wildlife in the area.
“Phipps Meadow is a remarkable property in the upper reaches of the Middle Fork John Day River. The John Day River Basin contains one of the last completely wild runs of salmon and rainbow trout in the Columbia River Basin. This section of the river provides critical habitat for wild spring chinook salmon, mid-Colombia summer rainbow trout, bull trout, red banded trout, Pacific lamprey and a host of other native fish other than salmonids, ”said Amy Charette, watershed restoration coordinator at the John Day Basin Office of the Confederate Tribes of Warm Springs.
Alyssa Martinez Neumann, communications and marketing specialist for Blue Mountain Land Trust, told Eagle that the acquisition of the land is just the start of the project.
Martinez Neumann said the land trust is just starting to meet with technical conservation stakeholders over the next few months to discuss what land use would look like in the future.
“What should be remembered with this type of project is that it is a multi-year project,” she said. “It’s a marathon.