Garry Oak Project
A Gift for Your Grandchildren
For all the great thoughts I have read
For all the deep books I have studied
None has brought me nearer to Spirit
Than a walk beneath shimmering leaves
Golden red with the fire of autumn
When the air is crisp
And the sun a pale eye, watching.
I am a scholar of the senses
A theologian of the tangible.
Spirit touches me and I touch Spirit
Each time I lift a leaf from my path
A thin flake of fire golden red
Still warm from the breath that made it.
Choctaw elder and retired Episcopal bishop Steven Charleston
WE DID IT!
When I say WE did it I really mean it.
It amazes me how many people from our community participated in one way or another, to the success of this project. From large donors to small donors we were able to establish a cash reserve of about $13,000. With the trust and support of the Parks Department we were allowed to develop and submit a plan for the site. County parks sent out requests for bids and procured a pre-manufactured modular bridge.
With the pro-bono or reduced cost help of professionals we were able to complete all the site engineering, surveying, stream analysis and soils analysis.
After gathering all the data and getting all stakeholders (Parks, KC Forester, Suquamish Tribe, WDFW, DNR, park stewards) on board we were issued a permit.
With the help of skilled equipment operators, contractors and volunteers doing some heavy lifting the actual installation of the bridge was anti climactic.
We installed it in less than a month. After six years of planning the project is done.
Now we need some rain and fish.
Silverdale Rotary Presidents Project 2022
Newberry benifited from this years Rotary Presidents Project as Rotarians attacked the Scotch Broom in Paper Birch Meadow and returned a few days later to plant native plants. The removal limits seed production and the plantings will provide shade to keep the current seeds dormant. We use every tool in the box when controlling Scotch Broom with the exception of pesticides. We pull, we cut, we plant cover, we mow and rototill. It is an ongoing project that is long term in finding a resolution. We are encouraged by the recent introduction of the Scotch Broom Beetle Bruchidius villosus. and the The Scotch broom gall mite. Several hundred dollars worth of native plants were procured and planted by Rotarians to benefit the park.
Broom Slayers Attack
A great shout out to the volunteers who attacked the Scotch Broom near the Childrens Forest and along KSS Trail.
A total of twelve trees were down on Old Loop Parkway after the recent storms. A reminder to take care when walking in the woods on windy days. Stewards and Friends spent a total of three days cleaning up the Parkways so far with more to do. A crew of stewards will be out this weekend to sweep all ancilliary trails.
Special thanks to Pat, Mike, Nancy and Karl. Karl's mountaineering/recovery skills were applied to logs using a snatch block to place LWD back into the forest. As Large Woody Debris they will persist in the environment much longer than those we cut into short lengths. This provides long lasting habitat for amphibians and insects.
We started evaluating Culvert 5 about 11 years ago. WNEK Engineering provided us with a Santa Monica basin analysis and determined the culvert should be 36" in diameter. WDFW biologist Gina P decided we needed to do more research. We did a stream analysis and pebble count and here we are, 11 years later culvert 5 has been brought up to current fish passage standards.
The new culvert is zero slope and partially filled with stream bed mix. Thanks to KC Parks forester Arno, WSU Stream Stewards and Friends Karl, Frank, Ralph, Joel and Bill. Special thanks to Ralph for hauling all those buckets into the culvert and Joel for filling them. Several more loads of road fill need to be brought in to complete this project.
Park steward and friend Keith Asbury delivered stream bed mix and will bring in other loads next week. Funding was through FONHHP in-kind donations of culverts, equipment and reduced rate for fill materials. KC Parks rented the excavator.
Culvert 5 Compliance
For those who waded through the water over Old Loop Parkway at culvert 5 this past winter, thank you for your patience. Beaver were foraging north of the parkway and we did not want to disturb them. They extend their foraging range during times of high water in order to feed in areas not accessible during low water. This allows time for willows to recover near the main pond. Culvert 5 will be replaced with a new 36" poly smooth bore to comply with Fish and Forests laws of Washington State beginning on the 13th of September.
Dedication ceremonies were held on Saturday the 8th of May at the new fish passage system on Old Loop Parkway. It was a great opportunity to recognize the many volunteers that made this project happen.
Park Use Off the Charts
The COVID Pandemic has created a huge increase in park usage. There are 10 dogs in front of me, mine is with me and there are three more behind me off leash. There are about 50 cars parked at the "K" and 25 at the Holly roundabout every two hours, on sunny days. On New Years Eve, a sunny day, there were 300 cars between 9AM and 2 PM parked at access points to the park. Please stay on trails. We are lucky to have such a nice place to get away from daily stresses. Thanks for bagging your dogs poo. Those of you leaving it bagged but on the trails are helping a bit but not much. Dog poo contains undigested proteins that are sniffed out and eaten by coyotes, birds and racoons among others. This spreads viruses such as Parvo, Distemper and others to other dogs as well as wildlife.
Un-authorized Un-permitted Stream Work
Several state agencies are seeking the identity of the culprits that plugged Culvert 5 on Old Loop Parkway between KSS and Deer Fern Trails. Just kidding, that is an internet trick known as a "click grabber" designed to get you outraged enough to read some more. We know who did it and are glad to have them in our park. During periods of high water, beaver will venture out from their summer foraging area and feed on trees that are not normally accessible due to low water levels. They are feeding on the willows near the culvert and must have water nearby to escape predators. We ask your patience and want you to bring your boots when hiking as Old Loop Parkway will be underwater until spring. If we cleared the culvert, the beaver would not be able to feed in that area. They will return to the large pond when rains stop, and Culvert 5 will be cleared when the water table drops to a safe level. Thank you for protecting our wildlife, water and fish. A very good book on beavers "Eager, The surprising secret life of beavers and why they matter by Ben Goldfarb.
Annual MLK Work PartyFor the past few years, a large group of volunteers from Hope International have blessed us with their labor in honor of Doctor Martin Luther King Jr. This year they attacked the Scotch Broom on Rhodie Hill and cleared it to the crest of the hill. Young and old joined in and made the task enjoyable, or at least as enjoyable as possible for such an odious task.
Habitat Improvement ThinningProcessors and forwarders will be back in the park starting around March 2020. The area near the parking lot is scheduled to be thinned down from 300 trees per acre to around 130 trees per acre. Thinning for wildlife is best at around 100 TPA but this is the best compromise for wildlife habitat that is socially acceptable. Smaller trees, those marked with a blue ring, will be removed and sold with proceeds going to parks. Please be patient and watch for trail closures in the area. Ribbons locating setbacks from wetlands, and timber harvest boundaries are currently being placed on trees. Just prior to starting operations stewards will place ribbons adjacent to each side of the trails to prevent processing and limb dispersal from blocking them. Please do not remove any ribbons. Tree limbs are left in the forest for mushrooms,soil tilth and forwarder weight distribution. If the processed limbs are placed on trails it will take months to clear the woody debris before they can be reopened. For more information contact the parks department.
Bridge Project Completed
All trails are now open. Thanks to all our park users for patience while we installed the bridge. To those who did not care about our trail closure, you complicated our task. This is the culmination of six years of research and engineering. Funding was through donations and forest product proceeds derived from environmental thinning from Kitsap County Parks. Labor was provided by volunteers. Special thanks go to: Tom Coleman, Anjalee Banerjee, Bill and Diane Wasson, Kitsap Community Foundation, Arno Bergstrom, Keith Asbury, Colen Corey, Karl Erickson, WNEK Engineering, Pacific Bridge, Milican Cranes, Dori Leckner, Brittany Gordon, Eileen Nichols, Alison O'Sullivan and hundreds of others.
Beaver Loop Boardwalk
This project was funded by donations and grants at a total cost of about $5000.00. The very first donation was from the Back Country Horsemen. The geo-tech report Shawn WIlliams WNEK Engineering, the gabion baskets Kitsap County Parks (brush picking proceeds) Quarry Spalls and 2-4 minus, Keith Asbury. Thanks to Silverdale Rotary, Back Country Horsemen, and NHHP Stewards for financing this project. A special thank you to Karl Erickson. This project had been stuck for several years because we could not find a safe, cost effective, environmental design that would satisfy all stakeholders. The first design was to be a pier post design using Diamond Footings. The engineer helping us was worried about lateral shear and wanted us to us a lot of galvanized material. WDFW and the Suquamish tribe were opposed to that. A second design was scrapped because WDFW was opposed to concrete being placed in a wetland. Karl came up with the old school tried and true Gabion Footings supporting a girder and truss design wooden boardwalk. Once we began excavation for footings, we discovered an old Corduroy Road, and a narrow gauge rail bed had been buried in the wetland. The center gabion ended up being 10 feet tall with six feet of it below grade to find soil that would support it. This design would give us the strength we needed on the guardrails and tread to meet equestrian requirements, as well as hikers and mountain bikers. Cedar beams were placed on one foot centers and capped with a waterproof membrane. Thanks to Paul Larsen (NK Steward) and his brother for milling the salvaged cedar logs to make the stringers. Thanks to Arno Bergstrom for saving the cedar logs for us during road building operations. Volunteers from the Navy and CK Schools participated in finishing the approaches and hauling rock. We are 99% complete, and once the Hoof Grid is in place will be done. The boardwalk is open for use.
Annual Rummage Sale
Great sale, thanks to all who donated. Stewards made a record $2000.00!
Student volunteers from CK Schools Transitions program planted willows in the Little Anderson Beaver Pond preparing for the return of the beaver. They have been absent for a few years, and our pond water level has suffered because the dam has not been maintained. We hope these willows are tasty. Live stakes were collected and prepped by friends and stewards from willows along Old Timber Parkway.
Annual Martin Luther King Jr. Work Party
The usual band of suspects showed up to help Hope Worldwide complete the Type II Puncheon work on Bobcat Run. This project has been on going and moving forward with a lot of help from NAVHOSP Bremerton Pediatrics Ward volunteers led by Trey Irwin and stewardship president Tom Coleman. Thanks to MTV Home Repair for loan of the company dump trailer, Dennis, Autumn, Trey, Frank, Nancy, Pat, Joanne, Tom, Colen and Yvonne. Use the link below (Learn More...... Honoring Dr. King) for more information.
We have not had a lot of vandalism in the park but it seems to be on the rise. Several trail signs were torn down along Salish and Bobcat down to Old Loop. The Children's Forest has been plagued with several hits and interpretive signs pulled up and thrown throughout the park. Please keep an eye out for us all and report any vandalism. Thanks
We use any and ALL methods available to control Scotch Broom. We hope to add mulching to our arsenal of control tools and are doing an experimental control project on Coyote Loop Trail. Steward Gail Rase donated bales of hay and stewards spread it over the log landing to prevent sunlight from reaching the seed bank. We will keep you posted.>
Stewards completed the boardwalk on Salal Trail during the monthly work party. The addition of a bullrail and erosion control completed the installation. As a final engineering test, we weight tested it.
After three years on the Work Plan, stewards finally got things moving with the boardwalk installation on Salal trail. This wet spot formed after years of silt erosion from "John Wayne Hill" and Coyote Trail silted out the seasonal stream channel. A large puddle forms each winter and has been causing patrons to make new trails and find other ways to cross without getting wet feet. A great work party with 5,400 lbs of concrete to move by hand we were fortunate to have three great young sailors from NAVHOSP Bremerton Logistics Division. Not only did they load all the concrete, they pulled Scotch Broom between loads. Scheduled for completion soon. Thanks for your patience.
Kaitlin Sidhue is doing her Environmental Science Degree thesis field work in Newberry. She is investigating amphibian populations in restored parks, urban parks and using Newberry as a relatively undisturbed park. She has trapped three American Bullfrogs in her amphibian traps. This voracious predator has been decalared a "non native aquatic nuisance" in Washington State. It was introduced into the state prior to 1950. They eat everything from amphibians to ducks.
We can't thank whoever (Turns out it was Dennis!) pulled the Scotch Broom at the junction of Salish and Old Loop Parkways enough.
Several students from Olympic College joined forces with the stewards at our regular work party to collect erratics. These granite rocks surfed a glacier from Canada to Kitsap County about 15,000 years ago. We are collecting and staging them near the proposed bridge site to armor the bridge toe, and roughen the fish channel.
Friends received over $700.00 in donations for the fish passage project during the Day of Giving. These funds will be applied to our goal of $80,000 for improved fish passage on Old Loop Parkway. Thank you to all our donors.
Rummage Sale Wrap Up
Thanks to KC Parks and all who donated items or helped with the sale. Stewards added a little over $1000.00 to their operating/maintenance funds.
Danger at Culvert!
Please watch your toddlers and dogs when on Old Loop Parkway where it crosses the outlet of the large wetland. There is a high velocity and volume of water through the culvert this time of year, that must be respected. We have installed a security fence to REMIND you to be careful. It is NOT designed to keep you or your dog out, you are responsible for that.
Tree Planting On 3 March
We will be planting Western Redcedar and Western White Pine in the extreme south end of the park. We could use your help. We will show you how and provide tools. We start around 9:30 AM.
Recent improvements to the park include: MAPRIKA update with rescue coordinates installed at all trail intersections, fire fuels reduced by chipping crew from USS Nimitz Advance Planning Team. Litehouse students and job coach helped install new trail sign at Coyote and Salal junction.
Our trails are sustainable and will allow recreationalists to enjoy the park without damaging the park. This is only true if we all stay on designated trails. We have over 20 miles of designated trails to explore.
Rhodie Tread Work
Thanks to all who helped on Rhodie Hill with the tread work and wet spot repair. A great team effort on this 2017 Work Plan project with Tom and Jo flagging the reroute, Colen, Frank and Bill roughing in the new trail with the excavator provided by Arno, and the April work party polishing the tread. The new descending turns have stopped silt from entering Little Anderson Creek and the old fall line trail is gone for good. Dan Ring and his two sons, potted the remaining Western White Pines so that they can survive the summer in the nursery. These will be planted in October along Coyote Loop.
It wouldn't seem like a work party without some wind and rain. Trails cleared on Monday the 13th of March were blocked again Tuesday when winds gusted to 35 mph tipping root rot infested trees. The regular workparty was started early in order to clear trees from Old Loop, Bird Meadow, Rhodie Hill and KSS. Other volunteers arrived at ten to install benches on Overlook Trail, work on trail tread and obliterate an unauthorized trail. Thanks to Colen, Frank and Jo for building benches, volunteers from Naval Hospital Bremerton, and stewards who braved the rain....again. We are hoping spring gets here soon.
CK Schools Litehouse Program
Once again we have had great support from CK Schools and the Litehouse Program. Students come in on Mondays to help with park projects as they learn life skills required for the job market. This years crew has been pulling Scotch Broom, planting Western White Pines, equestrian pruning Rhodie Hill, removing blowdown from trails and removing litter from a riparian area near the gun club. They have learned about teamwork, personal protective equipment, safety, native plants, punctuality and much more. Special thanks to Mr G. for his support with this activity, as well as Bill, Dusty, Ami, Michael, Matthew and Joe.
January Work Party
Stewards cleaned the foot traffic only trail that leads from Wildlife Trail up to the ridge overlooking the Heritage Site Wetland. Please stay on the trail, and enjoy the view. There are several unauthorized trails in this area that stewards will be obliterating in the coming months. We ask park patrons to respect this area as it is listed as a Kitsap County Critical Area and listed as habitat suited to the Marbled Murrelet, and is within the Urban Wildlife Easement established by the Washington State Recreation and Conservation office. This 320 acre portion of the park was purchased with funds provided by RCO.
Honoring Doctor King
"Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that." Dr Martin Luther King.
On Monday January 16th members of the South Sound Church of Christ volunteered a day of service in memory of Dr. Martin Luther King. An eager group descended on the large root rot pocket at the base of Rhodie Hill and began preparing it for planting. Limbs from the dead trees were piled for use by amphibians and to allow access for maintenance crews when watering the trees the first summer after planting. Garry Oaks and Western White Pines will be planted here as they are usually not affected by Laminated Root Rot. Thanks to South Sound Church of Christ, Lori and stewards.
3rd Ward Silverdale
Members of the Third Ward, Silverdale Latter Day Saints came out to help with the Scotch Broom removal along the new parkway. This is their third trip in as many years to help us in the park. They completed removal of mature plants along the entire length of Deer Fern Trail last year. The environmental thinning has been a huge success but increased sunlight has encouraged germination of dormant scotch broom seeds all along the new parkways. Windfall tree removal from trails and noxious weed control contributes to about 90% of park maintenance. Thank you to all our friends and neighbors who volunteer in the park.
CK PTSA Council 5k Run
It was wet and windy but that didn't slow down a lot of runners. The park was host to a 5k run on Old Loop Parkway from Klahowya down to old loop all the way back to the school staff parking lot. This is a great example of community value added by the heritage park system. Next year FONHHP will provide more support for this event. PTSA volunteers cleaned up after the race and not a trace can be found that they were ever there.
Culvert 13 Installed
Culvert #3 was the first in 2013 and the last scheduled culvert installation for this year (Culvert 13) has been completed. The wetland above culvert 13, is one of the best "ponding" wetlands in the park. That means it stores peak surges of water by ponding them up to three feet. That reduces flooding in the Chico watershed. The outfall of this wetland does not start flowing until December or January of each year. We had to wait for it to dry out before we could replace the culvert, and this year that was in August.
It is great to see progress when it comes to protecting fish and wildlife in our beautiful park. With funding from the restorative forestry project, stewards replaced all the failing culverts on the east side of Old Loop Parkway, installed a new one on the new stretch of Old Loop Parkway on the north west side, one on the vacated haul road, one on Green Mountain Parkway and one on Rhodie Hill. The old corrugated metal pipes have been dissolving for the past 50 or so years and sending heavy metals in solution into the woods. They were undersized and to comply with the Fish and Forests Law were increased to a minimum of 18" in diameter. The new pipes should last at least a hundred years, and can safely carry emergency equipment. There are only a few of the old CMP pipes left to replace. Culvert 13 could not be replaced at this time, as the hydroperiod there still has surface water . We will replace this one when the water table drops in July or August. The remaining culverts requiring replacement include: 4, 5, 14-18. 14-18 will be removed and replaced with a bridge when funding is available. An old DNR logging road we know as Coyote Loop Trail was abandoned and a sustainable descending turn trail built to replace it. Stewards trained in trail siting flagged the new route and roughed in the trail with an excavator. The old logging road dropped straight downhill to the main stem of Little Anderson Creek. It has been depositing silt at the base of the hill and disrupting channel formation for a long time. Two vacated haul roads have been fenced off to discourage people from using them as they are not trails, but maintenance/emergency access. Trees that were blown down in March, were cut with stems still attached to roots for use as fish habitat in Little Anderson and Big Beef creeks. They were staged on Old Timber Parkway for later use this summer.
Well Done! Thanks to Park Staff Arno, Aleghsha and Rachel, Stewards: Tom, Joanne, Colen, Frank, Pat Mike, Dennis, Bob, Bill, Olympic College Environmental Studies and Geography students. All materials and equipment were purchased or rented using restorative forestry proceeds. NO TAX DOLLARS!
Smart Phone Map Now Available
Accurate mapping is essential to the safety of park patrons, and assists county emergency response personnel when attempting to locate people in need of help. To that end, we have been working with AES Consultants on a downloadable map for people with smart phones using the free MAPRIKA app. Over a period of several years, Steve Ottmar mapped all the trails with a piggyback GPS system and created an accurate exhibit of the park and all trails. The map includes topographical contours created from Kitsap County LIDAR images. Known landmark coordinates were used to geo-anchor the map. If you want to download it to your phone run the MAPRIKA app, tap MORE MAPS, Search Maprika collection, and type in NHHP North in the search bar and download the map to your phone.
Newest Stream Stewards
After completing WSU Extension classroom and field trip requirements, Stream Stewards are required to volunteer for a minimum twenty five hours to complete their training. Karl Ericson, has elected to contribute his hours to Newberry Hill. Karl rebuilt the staff/crest gauges that monitor hydro periods in the park. The original design is courtesy Suquamish Tribe (Tom Ostrom) and the original gauges were built by Klahowya Secondary School environmental science students. After sitting in the weather for three years, they needed a little attention. Karl replaced the rulers with ones that are easier to read from a distance, and repaired the wooden frame that holds them to the post. After a jaunt on his mountain bike in Green Mountain Forest, he helped install them at Culvert 5 and 18. I hope we can get Karl involved in another hydrology monitoring project in the park.
March is "In like a lion"
Strong winds gusting as high as 60 miles per hour knocked down many trees in the park. P weirii, Laminated root rot, is the reason for almost 90% of the windfalls. The saturated ground caused several of the tallest Doug fir trees to fall. So far over 40 have been removed from the trails, and more remain. Bobcat Run is still a mess and we will have to go back in with bigger chain saws than we brought today. The regularly scheduled work party was well attended and thanks to all who helped. We were able to get Old Timber Parkway, Wolf Ridge, Beaver Loop, Alder Pass, Big Cedar, Flying Eagle, Deer Fern and Old Loop Parkway back open. We will stick with it until all are clear.
CVN 68 USS Nimitz Volunteers
Welcome to Kitsap County, and thank you!. The USS Nimitz has recently been reassigned to home port in Bremerton. As a way of getting to know a bit about our community, and to become contributing members of our community, many sailors from the Aircraft Intermediate Maintenance Department showed up for two huge work parties. On Tuesday the 9th of February they pulled Scotch Broom at the NHHP Parking Lot. This quick growing invasive plant displaces native plants. The removal project started at the Klahowya gate, and went down both sides of the entrance to Klahowya Secondary School. Once that was completed, they continued to pull along Newberry Hill Road all the way west to the Chevron station. On the way back to the parking lot they picked up litter along the parks northern boundary.
On Wednesday a second AIMD crew of volunteers returned to plant native plants in the Interactive Wetland on Rhodie Hill. This old gravel pit is being converted into a wetland and native plant area. Washington State University provided the plants (over 400) and delivered them to the site on Monday. The volunteers planted Kinnikinnic (Bearberry), Woodland Strawberry, Blue Eyed Grass, Native Crab Apple, Tall Oregon Grape, Oregon Grape (Mahonia), Rhododendron, and Pacific Waxmyrtle trees, Most of these plants are ground cover and will help control noxious weeds and invasive plants. Several are soft mast producers and will add to our mix of edibles for birds. This site is being developed as an educational asset for students and adults interested in native plants, water quality, macroinvertebrates and amphibians.
A special thank you to Ensign William Garske. His leadership style and hard working volunteers made for a productive two days. Thanks to the NHHP stewards for providing the Porta-Potti, to Parks Volunteer Coordinator Lorie Raymaker for the VIP trailer full of tools. Thanks to Renee and Ann from WSU for the quick response on the native plants.
Friends Of Newberry Hill Heritage Park 2018
Please keep dogs on leash and stay on trails.