Editorial: Invest in Central Oregon’s beauty

Oct 10, 2014

Bend Bulletin

Editorial: Invest in Central Oregon’s beauty Whychus Creek gushes out of the Cascades, passes through Sisters, gouges away at its magnificent canyon and then links with the Deschutes River.

Some summers it used to run dry because of water being diverted for irrigation. But thanks to restoration efforts and piping of canals, it flows again year-round.

The Deschutes Land Trust has launched a new campaign to further its effort to replenish life along the creek. It has already successfully conserved 8 miles of Whychus Creek and 2,200 acres of surrounding land.

The land trust hopes to raise a total of $15 million over the next three years to purchase and maintain the remaining property along the creek as it becomes available. It has raised about $4 million of the $15 million. The goal is to raise about $3.5 million locally and leverage that to bring in more.

The land trust doesn’t just buy land and lock it up. It has worked with other groups to do restoration work. Brad Chalfant, the executive director of the land trust, also hopes to extend the existing trails to include a system all along the creek so Central Oregonians can enjoy it.

Central Oregon has no shortage of dramatic natural beauty. Investing in the land trust’s campaign preserves one of our special places for generations of people and wildlife.

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