County Forest Management
The Land Department manages approximately 4,400 acres of County owned forestland dedicated for timber production. In addition, assistance is provided to other County departments such as Parks and Public Works in the management of the forestland under their jurisdiction.
The County forest lands were mostly acquired during the depression era and have been managed for timber production since 1968.
The majority of the County forest, about 3,000 acres, is located near Reedsport. This high-site land is well consolidated and is where much of the timber harvest takes place. The County owned forestland in the interior Umpqua Valley is more scattered and diverse but still provides significant timber volume.
The County forest is inventoried every 10 years and a computer model is used to track growth between cruises. Management activities such as harvests and pre-commercial thinning are entered into the growth model to accurately project the harvest level.
The forest is managed on a sustained yield basis. Each year between 2.0 and 2.5 million board feet of conifer volume is harvested. This harvest level equals the amount the forest grows each year and can be maintained indefinitely. Timber is sold at a public oral auction each spring.
The County forest is intensively managed to yield the most timber volume possible while strictly following the Oregon Forest Practices rules. Management activities include site preparation and immediate reforestation of harvest units, vegetation management and pre-commercial thinning.