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  • Creston High School Students Hands On Learning: Environmental Science - Light Detection and Ranging

    Creston Community Forest (CCF) staff recently hosted a field trip for Grade 11 and 12 students studying Environmental Science. Despite getting caught in the rain on one of our field days, students learned about the CCF's wildfire risk reduction program, the reintroduction of cultural burning, types of forest health trees can face and how Light Detection and Ranging (also known as LiDAR) is used in forestry applications. Pictured in CCF's Canyon block is Mr. Erich Meyer's class.

  • Firewood Cutting Do's and Dont's in the Creston Community Forest Area

    Public Notification: Firewood Cutting Do’s and Don’ts The CCF has been experiencing illegal firewood cutting over the past couple of weeks, specifically in the Big Bear Brook wildfire risk reduction treatment area. Let’s work together to ensure these forested areas are safely and sustainably managed for the future of our community. Here are some helpful tips to brush up on when cutting firewood for personal use in the CCF: Do: 1. Request PERMISSION from the Forest Manager, Daniel Gratton of the Creston Community Forest, before cutting a tree within this area-based tenure by email at: dgratton@crestoncf.com 2. On an annual basis read, understand, fill out, sign and carry this free permit at all times while cutting or transporting firewood after you received permission from our Forest Manager, Daniel Gratton: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/.../selkirk_free_use_permit.pdf 3. If you are selling firewood do apply for a Forestry Licence to Cut with the Ministry of Forests, Selkirk District: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/industry/forestry/forest-tenures/timber-harvesting-rights/licence-to-cut/forestry-licence-to-cut?keyword=license&keyword=to&keyword=cut 4. Do work safely, preferably in pairs. 5. Only dead or downed trees may be cut for firewood. 6. Do leave decaying wood in place, they add to ecosystem function. 7. If purchasing firewood, ask where it came from to help keep firewood poachers accountable. 8. Do prevent the spread of insects, fungi, and other pathogens. Do Not: 1. Do not cut any tree that has wildlife habitat characteristics as identified on the permit, or “WT” for Wildlife Tree, painted on it. 2. Do not cut green trees for access. 3. Do not leave garbage in the forest. 4. Do not drive through the ditchline into a treatment area. 5. Do not cut trees in an active treatment area.

  • The Creston Community Forest's Contractors

    A special shout out to the Community Forest's contractors. Without their care and dedication, we wouldn't have the quality of logging and all the other projects that take place throughout the Creston Valley. They are the heart of the company working with community forest staff to make it all come together. (Above photo: Load of logs leaving for Huscroft mill.) Our processor operator Jessie and his "supervisor", Oliver. Our logging contractor Rick working on a partial cut in Arrow Creek. Wildfire risk reduction crew working near Kitchener. Alongside the wildfire risk reduction crew working near Kitchener, our mulcher contractor treating an area on either side of the Big Bear Creek Forest Service Road.

  • Health of our Community Forest

    Angela French (Forest Planning and Development Supervisor) and Daniel Gratton (Forest Manager) carried out an aerial survey of the forest health affecting areas of the community forest. Over the past three years, Douglas-fir beetle has become much more active and the community forest team will be looking at measures to mitigate its impact. This forest pest is visible on Goat Mountain and is also affecting Douglas-fir stands throughout the Kootenays. The forest stands in the head waters of the Arrow Creek watershed have a low level of forest health concerns, which was great to see.

  • Creston Valley Students Celebrated National Forest Week with Us

    With almost 100 local elementary students along with their teachers, we are thrilled to share a glimpse into our most successful National Forest Week celebration held on September 21st. Students were immersed in the wonders of local biodiversity, painted tree 'cookies,' learned about BC wild life, received hands on experience with fire suppression, logging equipment, compassing through the woods, and how using a drone can help forest professionals. The success of the day couldn't have happened without the dedication and enthusiasm of each participating industry member and their stations. We would like to thank Canfor for the compass skills and drone example, BC Wildfire Services - Initial Attack Crew for the interactive fire call setting, Rick and Jessie Polzin for the explanation or hands on opportunity with some of the equipment needed in forestry, JH Huscroft for the silviculture workshop and painting of tree 'cookies' and also WildSafe BC for the workshop of local wildlife. Throughout the day we heard laughter, questions, and examples of the students' favorite aspect of the field trip. But we must also share what we learned from our National Forest Week field trip: our future is bright with the younger generation in Forestry. What a wonderful day we all had.

  • Celebrating National Forest Week, September 17-23

    With the national 2023 theme of “Canada’s Forests: Supporting Biological Diversity," the Creston Community Forest invites the community to learn more about the forest sector and its significance to not only Creston’s culture, history, and future but Canada’s as a whole in supporting a greater recognition of forests as a valuable, renewable and green resource. THIS WEEK: National Forest Week Celebration, September 17-23, with the theme of “Canada’s Forests: Supporting Biological Diversity." The Creston Community Forest invites the community to learn more about the forest sector and its significance to not only Creston’s culture, history and future but Canada’s as a whole in supporting a greater recognition of forests as a valuable, renewable and green resource. National Forest Week is a yearly celebration that highlights the significance of forests in our daily lives and underscores the need for their careful stewardship. This year's theme, "Canada’s Forests: Supporting Biological Diversity," reminds us of the interconnectedness between forests, people, and the environment. From September 17-23, National Forest Week aims to raise awareness about the importance of responsible forest management, conservation, and the numerous benefits our ecosystems provide. We are excited to announce engaging and educational opportunities celebrating the rich biodiversity and sustainable forestry practices that define Creston’s forests. The Creston Community Forest, together with Canfor and JH Huscroft will be hosting a field trip that will include a biodiversity walk, painting tree cookies, interactive workshops on sustainable forestry practices, and informative talks by local experts in the field. "We always enjoy hosting National Forest Week. Given the rich history that the Creston Valley has with forestry, National Forest Week showcases British Columbia's forests and fosters a deeper understanding of the vital role forests play in our communities," said Daniel Gratton, Creston Community Forest Manager. "This week serves as a platform to connect schools, inspire improved forest stewardship, and promote a greater understanding of what forest professionals do.” Local schools are encouraged to participate in educational programs designed to ignite students' interest in the environment and encourage them to become future advocates for responsible forest management. Additionally, families and individuals can enjoy recreational activities such as sharing their photos on social media, hikes on the Creston Community Forest trails, and picking up one of the Creston Community Forest Trail Guide Books at the local tourism centre or at the trail kiosks on the trails they maintain. Residents and visitors alike are invited to take part in National Forest Week celebrations by joining the events and sharing their experiences on social media using the hashtags #NationalForestWeek and #BCForestWeek2023. To help you participate in this week's celebrations from home or in schools, we attached easy-to-apply curriculum based activities, art templates, and so much more by clicking this link: https://www.cif-ifc.org/get-engaged/forest-education/#

  • Summer Students, Erich Endersby & Ashlyn Yanciw, share their 2023 experience with us.

    Many people ask what role we play in Forestry and more specifically, in the Creston Valley. Today's answer is through these two examples. We asked our Summer Students, Erich Endersby & Ashlyn Yanciw who are returning to school, to leave us this season with short articles about their experience and what they will take with them in the future. You can read both articles below in this post. Not only do they explain their experiences of the summer, but both make us proud to know that the generation following us are insightful, based in action, and are community focused. They make us very proud and we hope, will also make you. "I’ve learned many new skills while working with the Creston Community Forest, all of which are practical to my Forest Technology studies at Selkirk College. It has been an honour getting to know the community better and to see the same passion I have towards the forest in those around me. Improving forest health and education within the Creston valley has been a fundamental part of my job, from contributing to wildfire risk reduction, site restoration and public consultation, these are all valuable skills which are transferable to other aspects of my life and future job prospects. One of my favourite aspects of my job has been the variety of roles and responsibilities, no two days were alike, and I learned something new everyday. I met a lot of great people while working with the community and I am thankful for the opportunity to work with the Community Forest Corp." - Erich Endersby "My experience working with the Creston Community Forest has been broad and eye-opening. Between silviculture surveys, site restoration, block boundary painting, to farmers markets with the Firesmart program, I enjoyed every aspect of the job. The community forest is vastly different from any other forestry company I’ve encountered and gave me a whole new perspective on the forestry industry. Being community driven is one of the most important values with this company, and it really shows in all avenues of their operations. Forest health, education, regeneration, forest fire mitigation and sustainable recreation were huge topics over the summer, and something that the Community Forest heavily prioritizes. I had the honour of attending the community forest AGM in Kamloops this spring and was able to meet with all the community forests in British Columbia. There I was shown how important the community aspect of forestry is, and what future directives are being implemented to revamp forestry in a whole new, sustainable way. Forest regeneration and fire mitigation are some of the most imperative topics with how the climate is changing and the new normal of annual fire evacuations throughout the province. I was able to learn and grow from so many caring and intelligent individuals as part of the Community Forest and am so thankful for my experiences this summer. I learned so many new things and was really shown how much the Community Forest not only cares about the community itself, but for the wellbeing of the forests around us. The Creston Valley Forest Corp. truly puts the community in Community Forest." - Ashlyn Yanciw

  • An Education, What a Forest Area Offers

    As we cleaned up a new trail system, we noticed how logging and fires were part of the Creston Valley area decades ago. Most professional foresters become part of the industry to protect and enjoy the education a forest area offers all of us for generations.

  • Forest Management Technique - Hand Thinning

    When a forest is overcrowded just like a community, it becomes unhealthy. 'Hand Thinning' seen here is primarily undertaken to remove small diameter trees (sometimes called ladder fuels) from forest areas that are too dense. The benefits of hand thinning: improved wildlife habitat. The grueling task of Hand Thinning is an effective prescription for sustaining a healthy forest by removing the dry dead trees and allowing space for the healthy trees to maintain moisture. This is another Fire Mitigation practice we use to keep the forest thriving and our community safe.

  • Welcome Angela French, our new Forest Planning and Development Supervisor

    We would like to welcome Angela French to our team! She is the new Forest Planning and Development Supervisor for the Creston Community Forest. She started her career in forestry in the West Kootenays in 2013 after deciding to leave her home town of Langley, where she received her Bachelor of Arts Degree from the University of the Fraser Valley. Over the past decade she experienced a diversity of roles and functions, including forest development, planning, silviculture, community engagement, and most recently in wildfire mitigation and community resilience. She worked in a variety of organizations including consultancy, a privately owned veneer mill, provincial government and local government. Since her time in the forestry program at Selkirk College in Castlegar, community forestry has been a passion of hers. To be able to be a part of managing a forest based on the values that stem from the community itself, though these values can sometimes be competing, provides so much purpose to what she does. With the goal of working with the community to try to find positive solutions as an essential objective, she is looking forward to building connections and working to continue to manage the community forest from a community-centric perspective. She resides in what is now known as Salmo on a small sustainable commercial vegetable farm with her partner and several fur-kids. In her spare time, she does as much horseback riding as possible, camping, hiking, and music festivals. She enjoys traveling and experiencing diverse cultures and perspectives. A big welcome to Angela. We are thrilled to have her as part of the team and the community.

  • The Sullivan Creek Trail History and Experience

    The Sullivan Creek Trail. HISTORY: Also called the Pack Trail, built in the 1920’s to ascend to the fire lookout located on the top of Mount Thompson. Sullivan Creek Trail is a decommissioned logging road spurring off of the 2km point on Mt. Thompson Forest Service Road. EXPERIENCE: This trail provides hikers, runners, bikers, and horseback riders with a 10 km back-country adventure along beautiful alder and cedar-hemlock forests. Not only does this trail serve as a lovely day hike, but it also provides non-motorized users access to our hiking trails that spur off of the Sullivan Creek Trail’s switchbacks. One of the trails that spurs off the Sullivan Creek Trail is the West Ridge Trail. It allows hikers access from the 4km switchback up the Sullivan Creek Trail all the way to the top of Mount Thompson, eventually connecting hikers to the Thompson Rim Trail. This trail will run up and along the western face of Mount Thompson, and passes through multiple scenic viewpoints, as well as beautiful old growth forests. Photo: The person seated in the photo is taken at the top of Mt. Thompson.

  • Forest Management Technique: Cable Logging

    Forest Operations includes 'cable logging' and shown here you can see how this selective process allows for diverse operations in forestry. Our cable logger recently completed another wildfire risk reduction block on Goat Mountain. Once again, we thin the forest leaving a more open stand, followed by slashing the understory to clear combustible forest debris.

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