College of Natural Resources, UC Berkeley

California's New Experimental Forest (with video)

August 15, 2006

The U.S. Forest Service has dedicated the first new experimental forest in California in 40 years. The Sagehen Forest is in the Lake Tahoe Basin, eight miles outside of Truckee. Bay Area ABC affiliate KGO-7 looks at what it is all about.

See the KGO story (text & video)

Under the guidance of Jim Kirchner, faculty manager for Sagehen Creek Field Station from the UC Berkeley Department of Earth and Planetary Science, and Jeff Brown, the field station’s resident manager, this NRS site has recently become the focus for a growing number of UC-based research projects.

CNR Professors John Battles and Scott Stephens are conducting a major, multi-year investigation into the impacts and effectiveness of the Strategically Placed Area Treatments (SPLATS) used by the Forest Service to reduce the chance of high intensity / high severity fires.

Another example is a multidisciplinary research group, led by UC Berkeley’s Inez Fung, that has just embarked on the $1.6-million Keck HydroWatch Center designed to investigate each phase of the water cycle and track the flow of water through watersheds. A major focus of the project will be to compare water movement in the Sagehen watershed to that at the Angelo Coast Range Reserve, another UC Natural Reserve System site, located in Mendocino County.

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