MULE DAYS CLIPPITY CLOP INTO ENTERPRISE // 9 Enterprise, Oregon Wallowa.com Issue No. 21 September 12, 2018 $1 No one pleased with forest plan revision Wallowa County leaders see big problems ahead By Steve Tool Wallowa County Chieftain The 26-pound 5,600-page Blue Mountains Forest Plan Revision, released in late June of this year by the U.S. Forest Service, could par- tially determine the economic direc- tion of Wallowa County for the fore- seeable future. The plan covers the Wal- lowa-Whitman, Malheur and Uma- tilla national forests. The revision pro- cess took 14 years to accomplish and the plans were last updated in 1990. Although the revised plan called for nearly twice the amount of tim- ber harvest, other parts of the revi- sion, including wildlife management, reduced and more stringent grazing regulation and road access, are giving county leaders cause for concern. At a public forum in Septem- ber, Wallowa County Commission- ers Todd Nash and Paul Castilleja explained the county’s response and sought input on the plan. Around 25 people attended. Specific citizen objections included the wolf management directives that seemed to treat all wolves as endan- gered species, even though wolves in Wallowa County were removed from the endangered species list. Nash noted that no one from the conservation community attended the meeting. “They weren’t precluded from coming to make comments,” he said. “It would have been nice to have an eclectic mix of Wallowa County rep- resented there, but that’s what I see at these meetings unless (senators) Wyden and Merkley show up.” Nash also gave credit for the coun- ty’s stance and knowledge of the plan to Bruce Dunn, the recently deceased commissioner-elect and president of the county’s Natural Resources Advi- sory Committee. “He probably spent more time than any two people on the plan, which says a lot, because a lot of people have dedicated a lot of time to it over the 14 years,” he said. Commissioner Susan Roberts called the revision a long-run- ning process in which the county See FOREST, Page A17 State parks master plan to be unveiled By Paul Wahl Wallowa County Chieftain Wallowa County residents are invited to come out and help chart the course of Wal- lowa Lake State Park and two other parcels next week. Oregon Parks and Recreation Department has updated its 2001 master plan for the park at the lake, as well as Minam State Recreation Area and the Wallowa Lake Highway Scenic Corridor. The document is designed to help chart recreational use and resource manage- ment over the next several decades. The two largest projects are both slotted for Wallowa Lake –– an events center at the marina and reconfiguration of the marina park- ing lot. The events center is described as an “event space with views overlooking the lake and east moraine.” Estimate cost is $1.2 million. Reworking the parking lot is tagged at $700,000. “In general, the large amounts of park- ing at the marina are underutilized,” the plan states. “Therefore ... there is an opportunity to See PARKS, Page A17 Joseph sewer rates may be on the rise Council eyes installing new lagoon system By Kathleen Ellyn Wallowa County Chieftain Paul Wahl/Chieftain Nearly 2,000 bicyclists streamed into Wallowa Lake Monday afternoon, part of the Cycle Oregon Classic. The ride began earlier in the day in Half Way. Participants were treated to showers and a hot meal Monday evening at Wallowa Lake State Park. They rose ear- ly Tuesday morning and departed for Elgin, with a lunch stop in Minam. Joseph is facing up to $4.2 million in improvements to its wastewater facilities. That’s the bad news in the long-awaited updated Department of Environmental Qual- ity permit process. Joseph has been living on borrowed time for nearly 10 years since its old wastewa- ter discharge permit expired in 2009. It has taken DEQ until now to come up with new requirements. See SEWER, Page A17 VOSSES EARN TOP ‘GRASSMAN’ HONORS Much of their work is unchanged from what it was 100 years ago By Kathleen Ellyn Wallowa County Chieftain If you want to measure the depth of range- land knowledge a Wallowa County grassman, has, you’ll need a very long plumb line. Plenty of ranchers across the state have learned their land, but Wallowa County growers face unique challenges due to a landscape that ranges from 9,262 feet to 840 feet. The 2018 Wallowa County Grassman of the Year selected by Wallowa County Stockgrowers Association is a prime example of a successful rangeland manager and cattleman. Dwayne (1955) and Carol (1957) Voss run 600 mother cows plus yearlings and bulls on land in Joseph, rangeland at Horse Creek on the Lower Imnaha, land on Sheep Creek halfway to Imnaha, the Horse Creek Ranch on the Lower Imnaha, Vance Meadow in Buckhorn and other land — mostly steep hillsides. “Our land ranges from 4,200 feet to 1,700 feet,” Dwayne said. Dwayne got a good education when he stud- ied for his degree in Forestry and Rangeland Man- agement at Central Oregon College in Bend back in 1975 — and he spent three summers working for the U.S. Forest Service before he discovered he preferred cowboying. His academic education was fleshed out with reality –– long hours in the saddle. “I’d spent time in those canyons,” Dwayne said. “The day I walked out of Joseph High School in 1973, I had my bedroll in my pickup, and I went to Horse Creek (the Jim DuPratt ranch in Imnaha) and went to work driving cat- tle out of there clear up to the Divide.” See GRASSMAN, Page A18 Kathleen Ellyn/Chieftain The Wallowa County Stockgrowers award 2018 Grassman of the Year went to Carol and Dwayne Voss of Joseph. Dwayne manages thousands of acres from high desert to forest.