Make the McKenzie Connection!

Improvements coming for Finn Rock landing

Land Trust acquired 278 acre site in 2016

FINN ROCK: One of the most popular boat landings on the upper McKenzie River will be getting some upgrades. Over 200 people a day have been using the Finn Rock Landing during the peak summer season.

The McKenzie River Trust (MRT), which owns the landing, is working to raise grants and private donations to make infrastructure improvements to the highly used minimal boat landing.

In 2015, Realty Marketing Northwest of Portland auctioned off three Finn Rock area properties owned by Rosboro Forest Products, including the boat launch and a former logging camp for Rosboro employees until the 1980s. According to the sales literature, the parcel included an estimated 2,280 MBF of Douglas-fir, white woods, red cedar, and hardwoods, and might allow a new owner to build up to three cabins or homes..

The property was purchased by the trust from Rosboro Forest Products in 2016 aided by financial support from the Eugene Water & Electric Board for conservation planning and restoration of the "McKenzie Camp" parcel, as well as up to $500,000 as a matching challenge grant toward long-term stewardship of the site.

The area is now called the Finn Rock Reach. The trust says it's committed to keeping the landing open to the public and free for all river users to enjoy.

"The Finn Rock Landing is the only privately-owned public access landing on the McKenzie. Safe river access is key to the upriver tourist economy and we want to be good stewards of this vital community asset.," says Brandi Crawford Ferguson, AD of Philanthropy and McKenzie Community Liaison. "Having the proper infrastructure in place is good for people and the river too."

When MRT took ownership they first installed two ADA-accessible vault toilets, an information kiosk, and a dumpster.

The new design will create a highly needed parking area with designated boat trailer parking, which was identified as a high need by local guides and in a user survey conducted in 2017.

This project will add picnic tables, benches, a McKenzie River orientation map, an ADA-accessible trail, and more.

The landing improvement project was originally scheduled to happen winter of 2020, then the Holiday Farm Fire happened and the Trust needed to focus its capacity on watershed recovery. The prefire project cost was $450,000 and due to increased construction costs, is now estimated at $650,000.Financial support includes a $200,000 grant from Oregon Parks and Recreation, a $100,000 donation from Kathy Jones, former owner of Seneca, and other private donations. Over $432,000 has been generated so far. The remainder needs to be raised by September 15th to allow the project to happen this winter.

Plans call for the landing to be closed during construction..

"We know the guides rely on this landing so we don't want to close it during peak river season. We are working hard to raise all the money needed now to make this community project happen this winter" says Crawford Ferguson.

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