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Deschutes Canyon Currents
December 2020
December light on Lower Crooked River Canyon / Eric Hanson
We work to preserve and restore the wild landscapes of the Middle Deschutes and Lower Crooked Rivers and Lower Whychus Creek through stewardship, outreach and education.
           -FANs of the Deschutes Canyon Area's Mission Statement

Our Lens on Learning Series Continues Online

Wildfire Myths & Realities:
How Can We Protect Our Communities in the Era of Climate Change?

Presented by George Wuerthner, ecologist
January 16, 2020, 10:00 a.m.
Free event on Zoom

Register Now

George Wuerthner will discuss the factors that contributed to the recent large blazes that charred the western Cascades, and what it means for the future of wildfire in Oregon. He will also address what communities can do to create resilience and safety for residents of Central Oregon. 

George Wuerthner has been studying wildfires for decades, and has written two books on wildfire issues including "Wildfire: A Century of Failed Forest Policy." He has traveled extensively around the West to view the larger wildfires to try to understand how they burned, under what conditions, and what we can learn from these blazes.
  Learn more and register for this event.

Presenter George Wuerthner

New Signs are Up and Weeds are Down at FANs Building
We are grateful to FANs member Diane Nunley for researching, ordering and helping install our new signs on FANs building at Crooked River Ranch.  We are excited to have a presence near the golf course and club house.

Also, much appreciation to FANs members Rhan Fitzpatrick, Chris Gardner, Eric Hanson, Lotte Hermannsson, Marilynne Keyser, Diane Nunley, and Mary Zabilski for removing invasive weeds around the building.  We will be planting native plants around the building in 2021.
Diane Nunley decorates FANs building with holiday lights in early December.
FANs members (L-R) Diane Nunley, Mary Zabilski, and Rhan Fitzpatrick
remove invasive weeds around FANs building.
Middle Deschutes Wild & Scenic River Abuse
FANs has expanded its monitoring area to include the three mile Wild & Scenic River (W&SR) section upstream of Lower Bridge. What we have found is a lovely underutilized and poorly accessed riparian area along the river. But above on the rim within the roadless area, we found devastating abuse.  There are a myriad of unauthorized dirt roads into the area off of Lower Bridge Road.  Most of the native substrate has been replaced by sand from the tread of ATVs, cars, trucks and RVs. There is trash of every kind and encampments of semi-permanent residents.

When we found a “village” of campers along the rim with two RVs that appeared to be running sewage into the ground, we sounded the alarm with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM).  They had law enforcement out that day moving folks and vehicles out. However, within days, another RV was parked in the same spot.  That vehicle appears to be abandoned, but calls and emails with photos to the BLM have failed to elicit a response.

There are no signs alerting people that this is a W&SR and not authorized for vehicular access. There are no big boulders blocking the unauthorized roads.  We have prepared a slideshow on all of our findings for presentation to the BLM. We have asked for a Zoom meeting several times in the past two months to no avail.

We have found such abuse throughout the remainder of the roadless area along the east side of the river, including graffiti, tree harvesting and bullet damage.  On the west side of the river, the very limited access to the roadless area within the W&SR corridor is not signed and has become the personal playground of property owners bordering it who have created their own roads.

In 2021, FANs will focus our volunteer efforts at bringing attention to these orphaned areas under the management of the Prineville District BLM. The unrelenting abuse can’t be allowed to continue.

Trash piles (top), graffiti (middle) and illegally parked RVs (bottom) are
some of the abuses in the Middle Deschutes Wild & Scenic River corridor.
Help Update Our Brochure

It's time to update our trifold brochure.  How can we make it better?  If you would like to review our current brochure and share your ideas on how to improve it, please email  Provide us with your name and mailing address, and we will mail you a brochure and ask for your suggestions.  Thanks in advance for your help!

Friends and Neighbors of the Deschutes Canyon Area
is proud to be a part of

Friends Grassroots Network
Central Oregon Conservation Network

Board Meeting Schedule

Friends and Neighbors of the Deschutes Canyon Area board meetings are usually held at 4:00 p.m. the second Sunday each month.  Copies of the agenda are available before the meetings.  Public comments are welcome at the end of board meetings.

Our next board meeting will be January 10, 2021, at 4:00 p.m. via Zoom. Please email if you would like to participate in this meeting.

FANs Board of Directors
Our all-volunteer Board of Directors focuses on our mission: Preserve and restore the wild landscapes of the Middle Deschutes and Lower Crooked Rivers and Lower Whychus Creek through stewardship, outreach, and education. 

You can read more about our Board of Directors and Leadership Team by clicking here.


FANs is a 501-C-3 Nonprofit Organization  EIN #45-4986167

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Our mailing address is:
Friends and Neighbors of the Deschutes Canyon Area
PO Box 2127
Terrebonne, OR 97760
541.771.FANS (3267)

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Friends and Neighbors of the Deschutes Canyon Area · PO Box 2127 · Terrebonne, OR 97760-2127 · USA

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