Forests make up a significant portion of Klamath County, and forestry is part of the region’s industry and history.
On Sept. 20 and 21, more than 700 sixth-graders learned about the forests around them at the 54th annual Klamath County Forestry Tour.
“This is the Klamath Basin’s back yard,” said Daniel Leavell, with Oregon State University Klamath Basin Research and Extension Center, which organized the event. “We camp in the forest, we fish and hunt, and we play in the forest. But not many people understand the habitat or the forest products or the multiple uses we can get out of the forest.”
The goal of the Forestry Tour is to ensure sixth-graders from across the Klamath Basin learn that lesson. At the tour they visit eight stations through the day: Forest products, tree health, tree identification, reforestation, wildlife, wildfire, outdoor survival and soils.
“So we try to teach these things and gain an appreciation, a respect, for the forest resource and the forest environment,” Leavell said.
“They need to know about our renewable resource we have in Klamath County,” said Ron Loveness, who has been participating in the Forestry Tour for 52 years with the Winema HooHoo Club. “It grows back and we can always have it as a sustainable, renewable, biodegradable resource. It’s very important.”
The stations were manned by volunteers from the Winema HooHoo Club, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Oregon Department of Forestry, the U.S. Forest Service, the Great Outdoor Alliance, the Bureau of Land Management, the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, the U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resource Conservation Service and Green Diamond forestry.
Students came from across the region: Klamath County School District, Klamath Falls City Schools, home schools and private…