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February 6, 2013 -  3:10 pm

Kitsap County, North Kitsap Trails, Olympic Property Group, Pope ResourcesIt’s called the Beaver Deceiver, and it has nothing to do with any trick plays that Oregon might run against Oregon State during football season.

Instead, it’s an in-water flow device made of wire and wood that prevents beavers from building dams that block culverts and potentially damage property. Kitsap County’s newest Beaver Deceiver was installed recently in the Grovers Creek watershed in north Kitsap County after some industrious resident beavers continually blocked a culvert and created a nearly two-acre pond that threatened to wash out trails and a logging road that is heavily used by hikers, bikers and by Olympic Property Group.

Beavers are plentiful in north Kitsap County and can be found in nearly any area that has lakes, streams or wetlands.

This particular dam site is located on Pope Resources’ land near the White Horse Golf Course, just south of the town of Kingston. The area is adjacent to North Kitsap Heritage Park and the roads and trails are heavily used by hikers, runners, cyclists and other outdoor recreation enthusiasts. The original two-foot culvert was replaced in 2011 with a six-foot culvert that carried the water under the road. However, the beavers have repeatedly plugged the new culvert, causing water to wash over the road. The resulting erosion created a safety hazard as well as threatened to destroy the road.

The situation was expensive as well as destructive and dangerous. The cost to replace the original culvert with the larger pipe was $10,500. Additionally, the new culvert had to be unplugged three times at a cost of $500. OPG contracted with Absolute Nuisance Wildlife to trap and relocate the persistent critters, but to no avail. The state’s Department of Fish & Wildlife has restricted the release of beavers in alternate sites at this time due to high beaver populations in the state. So relocation of the beavers wasn’t an option.

Enter the Beaver Deceiver. After crews removed a 10-foot plug from the culvert, a group of community volunteers led by Evan Stoll quickly stepped in to install the Beaver Deceiver. The trapezoid-shaped fence structure prevents the beavers from building a dam directly in the culvert, thereby enabling water to continue to flow under the road. Yet it also enables beavers to maintain a habitat in the watershed. The installation was approved by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and will be maintained by volunteers from the North Kitsap Trails Association and the North Kitsap Heritage Park Stewardship Committee.

In theory, the new Beaver Deceiver will enable man and beast to co-exist peacefully in north Kitsap County. Of course, time will tell.



November 12, 2012 -  4:14 pm

You may have heard about the controversy surrounding Kitsap County’s proposed Shoreline Management Master Program and its language regarding Port Gamble

The new language assures that Port Gamble can be developed in accordance with the zoning regulations adopted in 2000 by Kitsap County.  It does not expand development rights for the town beyond what is allowed now by law.

To help put the scale in perspective, consider this: the town of Port Gamble is two percent the size of the 7,000 acres that Olympic Property Group has been helping the community conserve.

Contrary to the claims of the Port Gamble S’Klallam Tribe, the Mayor of Poulsbo and other organizations opposed to the Port Gamble project, the town’s redevelopment will not pollute Gamble Bay.  One of the cornerstones of the redevelopment is a new storm water treatment system that will give storm water runoff a level of quality far superior than Poulsbo, Suquamish or any other historic community in the Puget Sound region.

When Pope Resources entered into the voluntary clean-up of Gamble Bay in 2002, we did so with the understanding that we would be entitled under law to develop the town of Port Gamble under the 2000 zoning regulations. Since 2002, the company has spent millions of dollars voluntarily improving the health and quality of Gamble Bay and will continue to do so as we participate with the Department of Ecology in the ongoing clean-up.

We have been engaged in a public/private “partnership” with Kitsap Forest & Bay Coalition and its predecessors for the past six years.  It looks very promising that the public will end up with some significant open space it wouldn’t have otherwise had.

So far it is very difficult to see how OPG and Pope Resources have benefited in the pursuit of our economic goals.  This is both disappointing and unexpected given the potential positive economic and social outcomes associated with the town’s redevelopment and the minimal scale of our Port Gamble development.


October 17, 2012 -  10:28 am

The Port Gamble trails have reopened.

Olympic Resource Management (ORM), the subsidiary of Pope Resources that manages the company’s timberlands, announced today that all of the Hood Canal Tree Farm lands in Kitsap, Jefferson and Mason counties have reopened for public use, thanks to the recent fall rains in western Washington.

Port Gamble, trails, joggersThe company’s timberlands have been closed to public access since mid-September due to extreme fire danger. Pope Resources owns and manages nearly 71,000 acres on its Hood Canal Tree Farm in these three counties.

This is good news for the thousands of people who regularly use the company’s property for outdoor recreation. The network of nearly 50 miles of trails and logging roads that crisscross on the Gamble Block south of the town of Port Gamble is particularly popular with area hikers, mountain bikers, trail runners, birders and other outdoor recreation enthusiasts.

The Hood Canal Tree Farm also is abundant with wildlife, making it popular this time of year with deer hunters. Modern firearms deer season opened Oct. 13 in Washington state and runs through the end of October for some species of deer. It’s important to note, however, that the Gamble Block is not open to hunters at any time.

September 28, 2012 -  11:51 am

Fall weather is showing up in western Washington, but all of Pope Resources’ timberlands in Kitsap, Jefferson and Mason counties will remain closed to recreational activities until the rainy season kicks in.

The reason: Extreme fire hazard due to tinder dry conditions.

The closure has been in effect since Sept. 14. Unfortunately, many people haven’t gotten the message and are ignoring locked gates and posted signage about the closure.This weekend is of particular concern with good weather predicted plus expected large crowds in Port Gamble for Old Mill Days, the Forest Festival and a two-day open house for Port Gamble Weddings.

“People are tearing down the signs and blocking emergency access by parking in front of locked gates,” said Port Gamble town manager Shana Smith. “We’re hoping that people will respect the closure and stay off the trails until it rains because we simply don’t have the staff to prevent access.” 

Smith said the town’s maintenance crew is limited its mowing in and around Port Gamble because of the fire danger – an unprecedented step for the town.

The solution: About five inches of rain to soak down the dry conditions.

While fire is the biggest potential danger, parked cars in front of locked gates present an additional threat.

“If emergency vehicles had to get in, the access is blocked,” Smith said. “If you had to get in there because someone was trespassing and got hurt, you couldn’t.”

Pope Resources owns and manages nearly 71,000 acres of forestland on its Hood Canal Tree Farm in Kitsap, Jefferson and Mason counties.

September 14, 2012 -  4:07 pm

forest fire hazard in Kitsap CountyIf you’re planning to enjoy hiking, biking or other outdoors activities this weekend, please keep in mind that all recreational access to timber lands owned by Pope Resources in Kitsap, Jefferson and Mason counties is closed due to extreme fire hazard conditions.

The closure includes the popular Port Gamble block, a 6,500-acre parcel immediately south of Port Gamble that is a magnet for hikers, mountain bikers, horseback riders and other outdoor enthusiasts across the region.

The closure will remain in effect until significant rainfall occurs.

We are sorry for any inconvenience. However, the dry conditions make for extreme fire hazard conditions and threaten private and public resources.

Pope Resources, a publicly traded limited partnership, and its subsidiaries Olympic Resource Management and Olympic Property Group, own 118,000 acres of timberland and development property in Washington. The company and its predecessor companies have  owned and managed timberlands and development properties for more than 150 years. 

Welcome to our website! We hope that this will provide you with enough information regarding Pope Resources North Kitsap properties and the current conservation efforts that are now taking place. If you have questions or comments that can't be addressed through our website, please feel free to contact us directly. Every attempt will be made to answer your request promptly.

~ Jon Rose, President
Olympic Property Group
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