Kittitas Chapter

No in-person chapter meetings are scheduled for this time, but virtual (online) educational meetings are being offered to all members across the state.  Please see the State Events on the front page for details.

The Kittitas Chapter meets twice a year, in the Spring and the Fall.  The Fall meeting is a potluck and BBQ at a member's tree farm, with a fund-raising raffle and election of officers.

  • Contact us for chapter information: (If this link doesn't work for you, copy/paste or type it into your email TO field.)
  • Please submit any news items and photos you think appropriate for our page to the above email.
  • To renew your membership, this link will take you to a help page with information and links to the renewal form for your account.  RENEW NOW.
  • Note: Clicking on a photo in the slide show at right will allow for manual viewing.

How to build fire adaptive communities for the future.
Oregon State University Cascades. Speaker: Dr. Erica Fischer | Assistant Professor, Civil & Construction Engineering, Oregon State University College of Engineering speaks about fire adaptive communities. Click Here to watch the video of this lecture.

On-line Forest Characteristics Survey - At our Spring meeting in May, Ryan Niemeyer gave a presentation about the effects of forest thinning on soil moisture and stream flow. Ryan is needing interested members to participate in an On-line Forest Characteristics Survey. The survey is part of the Northwest Forest Thinning Project to better understand forest thinning views and decisions in inland forests of the Northwest US. To fill out a contact information form so Ryan may contact you click and go to the link below. Only one person per household needs to give their contact information. Ryan appreciates your participation. Based on the survey information, Ryan will present the computer simulation results for each land owner at a later date. URL to survey:



The value of homes across the U.S. at risk of wildfire damage is more than  $1.5 trillion. Although not in the top 10, Kittitas County is Included in counties with the highest risk of loss!


This is why we participate in KFACC

KFACC 2020

Kittitas Fire Adapted Communities Coalition. KFACC is meeting once a month. This organization is providing a coordinated approach to assuring that Kittitas County becomes a FAC.   WFFA member Tony Craven has stepped up to be Chairman. KFACC is where the action is in helping our rapidly growing community can deal with the threat of Wildfire. Contact us at the email above for the latest meeting schdule.

The Kittitas County Community Wildfire Protection Plan. If you live or own land in the WUI we suggest you become familiar the CWPP. Click here to see a copy


Chapter Polo Shirts with WFFA Logo Now Available

Lynnea Thibodaux organized the chapter polo shirt/vest project and we are now taking orders. See photo in slide show at the right. To place and order contact us at kittitas@wafarmforestry.comThese are high quality cotton-polyester shirts that come in women and men sizes.


Silvaseed Nursery in Roy, WA is looking for someone to set up a cone buying station for our seed zone. This would be for DF, PP and WL. We are having a good DF cone crop this year. Cone buyers get paid a commission and organize cone collectors. For more details contact us at or call Mike Gerdes at Silvaseed: 253-843-2246 ---  We are seed zone 631. Note: It appears we had a outstanding Douglas Fir cone crop in 2018.


The Nature Conservancy (TNC) is in the process of developing a Community Forest Plan for 28,000 acres of their ownership in  in Kittitas County.  Kittitas WFFA members are part of the TNC planning group.   Click on the link here to see the latest from TNC: The TNC office in Cle Elum is at 110 East First St. Darcy Batura is the local TNC Community contact person. Darcy can be reached at 509-852-2508.



What is Tapash?  Tapash was established in 2007 between major government and tribal landowner agencies in the eastern Cascades of south-central Washington: including USFS, Yakama Nation, WA DNR, WA DFW, and TNC. The Collaborative provides a framework for cooperation and coordination to restore forest resistance &  resilence to wildfire and insect and disease attacks to 1.6 million acres. There are three ongoing restoration projects: Little Naches, Oak Creek, and the latest is Manastash-Taneum. These projects include tree thinning and prescribed burning contributing to wood supply and fire risk reduction.


A good source of Native Trees & Shrubs are available from WA Conservation District Nursery. For details click here.

Another good source is Derby Canyon Native Plants in Peshastin. Google Derby Canyon Native plants for their excellent website.


----- MEMBERSHIP REPORT - Feb 2020 ----
Thank-you all for renewing your membership !

Welcome New members: Ed and Salaha Brighton, John Matava, David Van Wert, Nancy Wagley, Jason Hensley, Barbara & Barnaby Peters, Riock & Susan Steifel, Arnlijot & Dorothyy Wagsholm, Dan and Barb Matlock

We have 62 family and individual forest owners, forest contractors and others that share our values and interest in family forestry.

Thank-you all for your continuing support!

Our Chapter membership represents approximately 8,500 acres.

We are open for new members! Please invite; forest ownereship is not a requirement.  If you do not own forestland, you can join as an Associcate member. Click here for membership application:

WFFA Signs - if you do not have a WFFA sign or want another, send an email to the above chapter email.


Member News

One of our members is using goat grazing for managing vegetaion in a shaded fuel break.  See in slide show at the right. This is in a area where there is no usual livestock grazing. Contact us for more details

Bill Hall has figured out a creative method for planting styro #10 PP plug seedlings on tough/rocky ground. He is using a cordless drill with a 1/14" Irwin Speedbore twist drill. Bill says it works great and a lot easier than a planting shovel or bar.  For more details See Bill's technique. For browse protection he uses a 2' Max Grow tube installed with a 2', 1/2" PVC stake pounded into the ground with a 1/2", 3' steel bar driver with a head on one end for driving in the PVC stake. Pretty clever Bill! As of 2017 after 4 years, Bill reports about 50% survival which is good for this tough site.

Several of our members are conducting forest health and FireWise fuels reduction projects this summer.  This means commercial and pre-commercial  thinning, ladder fuel pruning, slash disposal and log sales. See Examples in the slide show.

Factoid -  Kittitas County is 61% forested. There are 914,469 forested acres, mostly federal and state. There are 2,600 family forest owners representing 58,000 forest acres (source: UW State Forestland Database, 2007).

Other Kittitas Chapter Hot Topics - Winter - Spring 2020
Cost Share Assistance Available: Our local DNR Landowner Assistance Forester is Jason Emsley. Jason is the go to person for the DNR Forest Health/Fuels Reduction Cost Share Program and other forestry assistance.  You can contact Jason at 509-899-9671 or email:

LOG MARKETS - There is a local place to sell your logs: Western Wood LLc  has a log yard near Cle Elum. For information and log prices contact John Tortorelli at 206-310-2599 or Michelle Zaun at 360-825-1342. 

NEWS FLASH: Western Wood is now buying small logs: down to 5" top on DF, 6" top on PP and GF. This by the ton. They are still buying the usual 8" to 20" MBF sorts. 

The majority of the logs on every load must be cut to the preferred 38' + 12" trim. 

Willis Enterprises chip mill at Bullfrog (I-90 exit 80) is buying small logs. This is a big plus for those of us that are generating small logs from forest health and fuels reduction harvest entries.

Remember: To harvest trees you need a FPA (Forest Practices Application) from WA DNR. It is advisable to have an active FPA to take advantage of fluctuations in log prices and contractor availability. A Long Term Application (LTA) is recommended. A LTA is good for 15 years vs the standard 3 year FPA.

FPA exceptions are: 5000 BF per year for personal use on the property and trees within a tree length and one-half of a structure.


WOOD TO ENERGY News -- October, 2018

The new biofuels plant in Lakeview Oregon is expected to convert 136,000 tons of woody biomass and forest by products in 15 million gallons of renewable fuels annually !!!

Forest BioMass is also being used for generating electricity!
For example: a 25 megawatt plant takes 600 BDT (bone dry tons)
A 25 MW plant requires 40 chip van loads per day.
A chip van roughly = 30 green tons or 15 BDT

Learn more about the benefits of joining Kittitas Chapter.

Contact Us


President:    Phil Hess

Sec./Treas:    Patty O'Hearn


More information

The Kittitas Chapter meets twice a year, in the Spring and the Fall.  The Fall meeting is a potluck and BBQ at a member's tree farm, with a fund-raising raffle and election of officers.

Please submit any news items and photos you think appropriate for our page to the above email.


Archived Content

The Era of MegaFires multimedia presentation was shown in Cle Elum on Thursday, June 27th, at the Swauk - Teanaway Grange Hall. Chapter President, Phil Hess was the Moderator for a crowd of 35 people. If you haven't seen it yet, it's an excellent documentary about the current state of our forests and the rationale behind new forest management techniques. Take Home Messages: "The forest will burn -- The only decision space we have is how and when it will burn." "We have choices: If we're smart we will choose periodic mechanical thinning (commercial & pre-commercial) followed up with prescribed fire where it is practical". "The alternative are future forests that will look nothing like what we have been enjoying for the last 60-70 years." "Prior to Euopean settlement, 20% of North America burned each year" (Adapted from Dr. Paul Hessburg - Era of Megafires)

Kittitas WFFA 2019 Annual Meeting, potluck and BBQ was held on Saturday, September 7th,  hosted by the Monahan Family Tree Farm near Easton. Over 40 members and guests attended. It was a informative meeting including Vic  demonstrating his pre-commercial thinning shear/buncher processor. Even though our Chapter has only 2 meetings a year, Chapter members are heavily involved volunteering on local and state committees. Click here to see our 2019 activity highlights.