Salmonberry Trail, Tillamook State Forest, Timber

Salmonberry Trail officials seek members for planning committee

Cochran Pond near Timber in February 2019. Photo: Paula Rene Grimes

TIMBER – The Salmonberry Trail Intergovernmental Agency is forging ahead with plans for the Salmonberry Trail, and for the next portion of the trail planning process, seeks members of the Timber community and other members of far west Washington County for the Canyon and River segments of the Salmonberry Trail. 

“The committee will inform the development and refinement of the Master Plan for the River and Canyon segments,” the STIA said in an announcement. 

Called the Salmonberry Trail River and Canyon Segments Plan Review Committee, the group will be tasked with providing input on some of the most wild and difficult to access portions of the Salmonberry Trail. 

The Canyon segment begins near Cochran Pond west of Timber and stretches to the confluence of the Nehalem River and the Salmonberry River, a distance of 18.4 miles, while the River section picks up at the confluence and stretches to the unincorporated community of Mohler in Tillamook County. 

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The Canyon segment was the section most damaged during storms in 2007 that caused the rail line to fall into disuse. With damage and destruction to some of the section’s 24 trestles and bridges and nine tunnels, Salmonberry Officials believe it is likely that the route of the Salmonberry Trail will deviate from the original rail line here due to the extensive damage in the area. 

The committee is headed up by Jennifer Purcell, North Coast Regional Solutions Coordinator, and Mike Cafferata, the Forest Grove District Forester for the Oregon Department of Forestry. These two serve as co-conveners of the committee. 

We are hoping to do a good job of linking the canyon to the valley in a way that best works for the community of Timber and the residents of Washington County,” Cafferata said in an email sent to several Timber community members.

Applications to join the committee must be submitted by 5pm, July 19, 2020 by following this link

According to the STIA, committee members will be selected by Cafferata and Purcell, and will be expected to participate in an estimated 5 to 6 virtual meetings, a process that Cafferata believes will extend to the end of the year or into early 2021. 

Officials plan to select members based on differing demographic, geographic, and trail-related perspectives.

Those with questions can contact Jennifer Purcell, North Coast Regional Solutions Coordinator at [email protected] or Mike Cafferata, Oregon Department of Forestry District Forester at [email protected].

Chas Hundley is the editor of the Banks Post and sister news publications the Gales Creek Journal and the Salmonberry Magazine. He grew up in Gales Creek and has a cat.

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