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Deschutes Canyon Currents
March 2022
Spring blossom time | Tom Iraci
We work to preserve and restore the wild landscapes of the middle Deschutes and lower Crooked Rivers and lower Whychus Creek through advocacy, stewardship and education.
           -FANs of the Deschutes Canyon Area's Mission Statement

Nature Therapy for Mental Health
By Robin Galloway, FANs President

Our organization’s name is Friends and Neighbors of the Deschutes Canyon Area, or FANs. Personally, I am a fan of the Deschutes Canyon area because it deepens my awareness of nature and feeds my soul.

When you are stressed, how do you mellow out so you can think more clearly? I always rely on the beauty of the natural world which I can experience in any moment. This is easy when I am participating in a FANs activity. Even when it is impossible to get outside, we can take a deep breath and look out the window to see the sky, birds and surrounding mountains. Nature can be a powerful mental and physical healer.

Look out a window, or step outside. Use your senses to see, smell, hear, touch and even taste the air. During the day, look at the color of the sky, the shape of the clouds, and feel the wind. At night listen carefully to the silence or creatures that are active when it is dark. Connecting with nature, even for a few minutes, can do wonders for your mental health.

Rainbow by waterfall | Tom Iraci

Lens on Learning Series 2022 

Managing Invasive Weeds
Presented by Penny Radtke and Marilynne Keyser
Friends and Neighbors of the Deschutes Canyon Area (FANs)
March 19, 2022, 4:00 pm
Juniper Room at Crooked River Ranch                                                          

Seating is limited in the Juniper Room, so registration is required. CLICK HERE to register now. 

Are you frustrated with invasive weeds engulfing your property?  Do you want to know how to identify major weeds and eliminate them?  Have you recently moved to Central Oregon and want to avoid creating a habitat for weeds to grow? Then FANs March program is perfect for you. In addition to a slide presentation by our weed experts, FANs NEW BOOK, Guide to the Common Weeds of the Deschutes Canyon Area, is hot off the press and available to purchase at the meeting. The cost is $12 for FANs members and nonmembers pay $15. This book will also be available at local bookstores for $15.

If you can’t make the program or need a more in-depth weed consultation on your property at Crooked River Ranch, FANs invasive weed team volunteers are available to come to your property, walk it with you, and advise you on how to control the weeds.  In addition, we will point out native plants that you’ll want to protect.  The consultation fee is $30 for FANs members and $40 for non-members.  This fee includes the new weed book. Call FANs Weed Coordinator Penny Radtke at 541-410-0299 or e-mail us at to schedule a consultation.

                                                          Invasive Filaree

 FANs Youth Nest Box Project

Are you looking for a free educational outdoor experience to engage a child in appreciating birds and developing observational skills? Families with children are invited to participate in a FANs project to monitor nest boxes for native cavity nesting birds. 

Youth will select a few nest boxes already placed on trees in the Terrebonne area and regularly visit them during the nesting season. Participants will learn about the birds that occupy nest boxes, and observe how many eggs are laid, how many chicks hatch, and how many chicks fledge. If the baby birds are banded by a wildlife specialist, participants can help with that procedure and hold the chicks. Basic recordkeeping is part of the project.  

Participation is free and whole families may get involved with each child “adopting” a box. The project coordinator is Robin Galloway, FANs President and a former 4-H educator. For information or to sign up, email Robin at, by March 10.

2-day-old mountain bluebirds

Ash-throated flycatcher eggs

5 American kestrel chicks

Newly banded American kestrel

Rockslide Cleared by FANs Volunteers

By Jeff Scheetz, FANs Stewardship Coordinator

During a fair-weather break between storms last month, a small group of FANs members gathered to clear a hiking trail of large boulders and rocks. Maintaining access to public lands is part of our stewardship role. Apparently melt-freeze action, or perhaps erosion of supportive soil caused half a dozen rocks to slide onto the upper bench trail on Hollywood Road. 

This rockslide was discovered by Eric Hanson, a regular trail monitor in the area. He reported the trail conditions to FANs leadership, the landowner and the future land manager in his written report. 

The smaller rocks were levered off the trail tread using rock bars. The two large boulders, estimated 800-1000 pounds, required the additional use of a hand winch to pull them off the trail. Luckily there were abundant nearby trees to use as anchors for the winching operation. Eric was assisted by FANs members Wendy Fink and Jeff Scheetz.

FANs members often report hiking conditions and can form the basis for a fast response work party. Such observations include trail tread conditions, interfering brush, trail obstructions, hazards, nearby invasive weeds, motor vehicle abuse, and litter. 

In addition to these emergency responses, FANs schedules work parties several times a year, typically using many volunteers to pull invasive weeds, haul trash, and restore land features after damaging illegal activities on public lands. You can check our website ( and sign-up to participate in these events.


Eric Hansen and Jeff Scheetz

Wendy Fink and Jeff Scheetz

Eric Hansen and Jeff Scheetz

Native Plants of the Month
Early Spring Wildflowers
By Marilynne Keyser, FANs Native Plant Coordinator

Woolly Phlox (Phlox hoodii ssp. canescens )
Woolly phlox, also known as Hood’s phlox, is a low, compact perennial growing from a woody base. The small, five-petaled flowers vary in color from white to pink, and are sometimes blue. The flowers grow close together at the ends of stiff, sharply-pointed dark green leaves. Both the flowers and the leaves are woolly at their base. Woolly phlox prefers dry, gravelly soils. 
Low Pussytoes (Antennaria dimorpha)
Low pussytoes is a very low circular mat of tiny, spoon-shaped, fuzzy, gray-green leaves. The tiny dull white flowers, mostly hidden in the leaves, are set in a cup of brown bracts with tips that extend beyond the flower. Pussytoes are characterized by having separate male and female plants. The flowers of the female plant tend to protrude farther out of the leaves, giving them a brighter look. This perennial is often found in dense populations in open rocky habitats, often with clay soil.
Sand Lily (Leucocrinum montanum)
Sand lily is a perennial with six-petaled, fragrant, white blooms that grow seemingly out of the ground.  Each bloom has six protruding yellow stamens. The blooms are surrounded by a rosette of long, grass-like green leaves. Sand lily prefers sandy or clay soils and is often found on the canyon rims.
Broad-fruit Lomatium (Lomatium triternatum)
Broad-fruit lomatium, also known as nine-leaf lomatium, received its original name from its basal leaves which generally come in three sets of three long, narrow segments. The erect, mostly leafless flower stem is topped with a spreading umbrella-like collection of tiny, yellow flowers that, clustered together with other umbels, appear flat-topped.  The new name, broad-fruit lomatium, is based on the shape and size of its seed pods (known as fruit). This perennial likes open, sagebrush habitat that is particularly moist in the spring and dries out by early summer. 

Woolly phlox

Low pussytoes

Sand lily

Broad-fruit lomatium (blooming)

Broad-fruit lomatium seed pod           

Lens on Learning Programs for Spring 2022

You will notice that there is a definite focus on plants for our spring Lens on Learning Series.
Our first program of the year was Landscaping with Natives given on Zoom by Rick Martinson from Wintercreek Restoration and Nursery in Bend, Oregon. This was a perfect prequel to our March and May programs.
Our March program is Managing Invasive Weeds, and FANs new book, Guide to Common Weeds of the Deschutes Canyon Area, will be available for purchase. Our May program is Identifying Native Plants, and the new and expanded edition of the sold-out Guide to Common Native Plants of the Deschutes Canyon Area will be available for purchase.
The best attended FANs Zoom program in 2021 was Central Oregon’s Beautiful Birds!  We have asked Chuck Gates, who is president of the Prineville Bird Club, to follow up with a program on how to get started birding.  He has agreed to lead a birding field trip a few days after the April talk for those who are interested.
Get these events on your calendar:
March 19 at 4:00 pm:  Managing Invasive Weeds by Penny Radtke, FANs Weed Coordinator and Marilynne Keyser, co-author of our new common weed guide
April 30 at 6:00 pm:  Birding Basics by Chuck Gates, Prineville Bird Club President
May 14 at 6:00 pm:  Identifying Native Plants by Marilynne Keyser, FANs Native Plant Coordinator and author of our new native plant guide
FANs intends to have these programs in person at the Juniper Room at Crooked River Ranch.  We reserve the option of switching to Zoom if the Covid situation changes. You can register for these programs using Eventbrite at our website: Registration opens one month before the program date.  As we will be attending in person, registration will be limited, so sign up as early as you can.

Boulder Placement Habitat Protection Project
Boulder Placement Begins to Protect
the Wild and Scenic Corridor of the Middle Deschutes River

By Marilynne Keyser 

The Prineville office of BLM has agreed to place boulders to block vehicle access to the Wild & Scenic Middle Deschutes River south of Lower Bridge Road. This action came after FANs leadership team entered into discussions with the BLM office in Prineville regarding illegal roads and habitat destruction in that area. There are now boulders in place at eleven illegal entry sites. FANs has been working with BLM Recreation Planner Nick Weber to get this done. We are grateful to Nick for seeing the project through despite the pandemic and staffing shortages at BLM.

This area has seen significant abuse in the recent past. Motor vehicle usage close to the river threatens the health of the riparian environment inside the corridor. Boulders provide an economical physical barrier to large motor vehicles. Boulder placement followed a public education effort of signage and law enforcement messaging.   

Unfortunately, there are still access points off the legal road which tracks the eastern boundary of the wild & scenic corridor.  FANs will continue to monitor the area and look for opportunities to close more illegal access roads. Any concerned users who witness abuse (motor vehicle trespass, illegal campfires, trash disposal, etc) may report such activities to the BLM Prineville office directly (541-416-6700).  

Illegal road

Informational sign and new boulder placement

There is a Lot You Can Do!

Many of you volunteer for specific stewardship projects throughout the year, and we deeply appreciate your commitment. FANs leadership is looking for volunteers for very specific needs.  If your are interested in volunteering for one of these roles, please contact Marilynne Keyser at

Communications Coordinator:  Coordinate our diverse media needs. You will have a strong committee to work with, each handling different areas of FANs media: 

Sue Combs—FANs website
Marilynne Keyser—FANs Facebook page
Ilene Smith—FANs online newsletter
Phyllis Carlin—outside media, including Crooked River Ranch Telegraph

FANs Storefront Coordinator:  This is a perfect opportunity for someone who lives at Crooked River Ranch. We need volunteers to check that our outside brochure racks are stocked.  Volunteers would be at FANs building for a few hours per week to answer questions and sell merchandise. We are planning to spruce up the outside area, develop a medicinal garden, and create a meetup area. Other ideas are welcome!

Your Membership Keeps FANs Strong

Your membership, participation and financial donations are vital to the health and success of FANs…. your local conservation organization!

FANs membership begins at $10 per person per year.  We are grateful to so many FANs members that generously give more.

To renew, print this form and mail it with your check to:

FANs,  P.O. Box 2127,  Terrebonne, OR 97760

Or visit our website,, to donate online and complete an online membership form.  

If you have membership questions, please contact Sue Combs, FANs Treasurer and Database Manager, at 541-604-0280 or

Support FANs with
Tru Earth
Eco-Friendly Products


FANs members can now order from Tru Earth, a provider of ECO-FRIENDLY LAUNDRY DETERGENT STRIPS.... and MORE.  If you are interested in reducing plastic waste and using earth-healthy products, check out Tru Earth supporting FANs website.

FANs receives 20% of the retail sales price whenever you order from this website.  You can access it by clicking on the Get Involved and Support FANs Through Purchases tabs at


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

Friends Grassroots Network


Board Meeting Schedule

Friends and Neighbors of the Deschutes Canyon Area board meetings are usually held on 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 March 13, 2022, at 4:00 p.m. at the home of Marilynne and John Keyser, with current COVID protocol in place. Please email if you would like to attend this board 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 advocacy, stewardship 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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