California Demonstration State Forest System adds 2,500 acres

The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (announced today the addition of more than 2,500 acres to its demonstration state forest system. Acquisition of these forested properties increases opportunities for critical research, forest restoration, and public recreation.

These two new properties, comprised of 2,246 acres along South Cow Creek in Shasta County and 267 acres in the headwaters of the Bear River in Nevada and Placer counties, were acquired as part of the Pacific Watershed Lands Stewardship Council’s commitment to permanently conserve watershed lands for the public good. The lands are being donated from Pacific Gas and Electric and will be managed in partnership with the Shasta Land Trust and Bear Yuba Land Trust who will hold conservation easements on the properties.

“The addition of the Cow Creek and Bear River properties to the CalFire demonstration state forest system is another exciting chapter in California state forest stewardship,” said Kevin Conway, CalFire’s State Forest Program Manager. “The properties that currently make up the forest system were first acquired nearly a century ago as clear-cut forests. Since then, we have successfully demonstrated how to re-grow forests, restore habitat, and provide for public recreation, among many other values. These recently acquired acres have not been as extensively logged, and we’re excited to steward these areas for forest health, conservation and restoration, climate and fire resiliency, and the many other values that these special areas provide.”

California’s demonstration state forests serve as a living laboratory for how to care for and manage

California’s forest lands for multiple benefits — recreation, watershed protection, wood products and sustainable timber production, and habitat restoration — given a changing climate and increasingly severe and intense wildfire seasons. The forests provide unique research and demonstration opportunities where environmental scientists, foresters, and other researchers can study the effects of various forest management and restoration techniques to help inform management practices for government, nonprofit and private forestland owners.

“These important additions to our state forest system offer an opportunity to further the valuable research and ecological work underway on California state forestlands while contributing to critical climate goals. Adding these parcels to the California state forest system bolsters CalFire’s continued commitment to providing forest landowners and others with timely, relevant information about forest nmanagement,” said CalFire Deputy Director for Resource Management, Matthew Reischman.