All is Revealed—3 Smith Rock State Park Master Plan Concepts Shared With the Public

October 26, 2017

Courtesy of ANDERSON KRYGIE R , I N C.

Courtesy of ANDERSON KRYGIE R , I N C.

Over the last 2 days, Oregon Parks & Rec Dept (OPRD) shared the culmination of months of surveys and assessments of Smith Rock State Park's cultural and natural resources and analysis of the facility in 3 separate visions of the park's future.

With the goals of protecting and preserving natural and cultural features while balancing the impact on those resources by all user groups of the park, capacity assessments were made by a Portland landscape architecture firm engaged by OPRD.

While these assessments formed the basis of the planning for the plan concepts, OPRD is open to feedback on the basis of those assessments.

At the Bend meeting, members of the climbing community challenged some of the assumptions and were encouraged to provide input to this "living document."
 

 

 


One of the most contested assumptions was that of keeping the amount of parking into the next 20 years a constant with today's capacity. This was determined on the basis of the ratio of Physical Capacity vs Parking Capacity being in line with each other.

Questions about the obvious growth trend of increased tourism in Central Oregon and its impact on Smith Rock were addressed in the plans by decreasing choke points with various bridges and entrances. Does this resolve the parking issue? Let us know what you think when you look at the plans below.


Here's a synopsis of each plan. link to the detailed maps to show them in context:


Option A:  Limited updates |  existing entry

  • change the campground bivy system to reservation based; add group tent area, new cooking area and small cooking shelters

  • improve trailhead visibility and access from bivy to rope-de-dope trail

  • add visitor center by current RV parking area and improve trailhead visibility, with 30 minute parking spaces for short-term visitors

  • KEEP EXISTING PARK ENTRY BUT ADD A SMART GATE* TO THE BIVOUAC AREA AND VISITOR CENTER AREA (*Provide smart gate at entry that can track when the park is full; sign updated and posted on the website)

  • ADD PARKING LOT just past the current RV Parking Lot on the right side of Crooked River Drive TO ACCOMMODATE FOR ALL PARKING REMOVED FROM THE ROAD

  • REMOVE ROAD SIDE PARKING by the northern point across from the Park's "Rex House" on the gorge TO REDUCE CONGESTION AND ALLOW VIEWS TO THE ROCK; COMPLETE ADA TRAIL

  • ADD CXT (double) VAULT TOILET AT NORTHern POINT parking area AND TWO WORM COMPOSTING TOILETS IN THE CLIMBING AREAS

  • ADD FENCING ALONG WILCOX AVE

  • Online training program and registration system for a designated number of guides in the park



Option B:  southern tip bivouac

  • LOCATE BIVOUAC camping AT A NEW SOUTH ENTRANCE (across from 17th and wilcox) OF THE PARK WITH ITS OWN RESTROOM/SHOWER BUILDING, SMART GATE* AND TRAILHEAD, with reservation system in the campground

  • ADD SMART GATE* AT NE CROOKED RIVER DRIVE ENTRY ALLOWING PARK USERS DAY USE ACCESS ONLY AND NEIGHBORS 24/7 ACCESS

  • CONVERT OLD BIVOUAC INTO A DAY USE PICNIC AREA AND TRAILHEAD WITH PARKING TO ACCOMMODATE FOR THE LOSS OF ROAD SIDE PARKING

  • ADD A VISITORS CENTER WITH PICNIC AREA, TRAILHEAD AND ADA TRAIL CONNECTION AT THE CURRENT OVERFLOW PARKING LOT AREA AND VISITOR CENTER AREA, with 30 minute parking spaces for short-term visitors

  • REMOVE ROAD SIDE PARALLEL PARKING past the existing trailhead to the chute trail, just before the northern point

  • COMPLETE ADA RIM TRAIL CONNECTION TO NORTHern POINT across from the "rex" house

  • ADD CXT (double) VAULT TOILET AT NORTHern POINT parking area AND TWO WORM COMPOSTING TOILETS IN THE CLIMBING AREAS

  • ADD FENCING ALONG WILCOX AVE

  • ADD A PEDESTRIAN BRIDGE AT THE SOUTHERN TIP OF THE PARK (new trail off the river trail and what appears to be a connection off the canyon trail)

  • Online training program and registration system for a designated number of guides in the park

 

Option C:   new park entry and north point bivouac

  • ADD MULTI-MODAL TRAIL FROM TERREBONNE WHILE REMOVING OPTION FOR ROADSIDE PARKING ON WILCOX

  • ADD NEW PARK ENTRY ROAD WITH SMART GATE* FOR DAY USE ONLY TRAFFIC off of 17th and wilcox

  • ESTABLISH TRAILHEAD PARKING LOT after new park entry WITH CXT VAULT TOILET

  • REMOVE ROADSIDE PARKING ON NE CROOKED RIVER DRIVE AND EXISTING RESTROOM of current main day use parking lot

  • CONVERT EXISTING BIVOUAC campground INTO A DAY USE AREA AND TRAILHEAD WITH PARKING TO HELP ACCOMMODATE FOR THE PARKING SPACES REMOVED FROM THE ROAD

  • create PARK STAFF AND EMERGENCY ACCESS ONLY off of new parking lot and visitor center area by current rv lot, adding 30min parking spaces at Visitor Center for short term visitors

  • ADD TWO WORM COMPOSTING TOILETS IN THE CLIMBING AREAS AND A BRIDGE AT NORTH (from new trails off wolf tree trail and homestead trail) AND SOUTH POINTS (from new trail off the river trail and what appears to be a connection off the canyon trail)

  • MOVE BIVOUAC TO NORTHern POINT, ADD RESTROOM/SHOWER FACILITY AND EXPAND PARKING TO ACCOMMODATE APPROPRIATE NUMBER OF OVERNIGHT VISITORS, with reservation system in the campground

  • USE NE CROOKED RIVER DRIVE FOR NEIGHBOR, OVERNIGHT, AND TEMPORARY VIEWPOINT PARKING

  • Online training program and registration system for a designated number of guides in the park


What comes next? Here's what Park Manager Scott Brown had to say: “The draft plan comes at the next round. There are three rounds of public meetings. We’re on the second round. So the draft plan has not been drawn up. We have some ideas and some concepts. Some ideas of how we could change things. But we are seriously considering public input.”

Got something to say about all this? NOW's your chance. Feel free to discuss below with the SmithRock.com Community. We'll take your (constructive) comments and be sure to share with the OPRD! 

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