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Wilderness Stewardship and Restoration

ONDA hosts restoration trips in Eastern Oregon in which volunteers pull obsolete barbed wire fences, plant trees and inventory potential wilderness areas in places such as Steens Mountain, the John Day River and Hart Mountain.

Getting Our Hands Dirty in the Desert

Volunteers pulling Fence
A volunteer pulls fence at ONDA's Annual General Meeting.
Photo: Marilyn Miller
ONDA carefully selects restoration projects to ensure projects provide significant, long-lasting benefit to public natural resources while providing and inspirational and education experience to participants. Read more about current focus areas. An active network of supporters has led to the restoration of fish and wildlife havens such as Hart Mountain, the John Day River and other important desert landscapes across central and eastern Oregon. Hard-working volunteers have planted thousands of trees, restored dozens of miles of streams, decommissioned old roads and removed enough barbed wire to stretch from one end of Oregon to the other.


ONDA’s Wilderness Stewardship Program annually engages more than 600 volunteers in hands-on field projects that restore desert ecosystems across Central and Eastern Oregon. This work aims to reverse years of misuse, and the benefits are many. Of these, the most tangible benefit is the direct and measurable ecological improvements found in field project work areas. Of equal importance is the cadre of dedicated conservation advocates that this volunteer work creates.The results of this restoration work are vast and far-reaching. For example, the removal of barbed wire fence that no longer serves a purpose is critical to restoring habitat for important species like the sage grouse and pronghorn.

Blood, Sweat, and Desert from SOJC on Vimeo.

Take a look at the 2016 season volunteer work trip offerings HERE . Each year we publish our volunteer work trip list in mid-February. Sign up for SageNet email alerts and you will be notified as soon as it is available.

Fence free landscape
Admiring a landscape newly freed of fences.
Photo: Cregg Large

An Award-Winning Program

ONDA volunteers are a dedicated group and an effective work force who readily take on challenges, bolstered by the knowledge that the work they are doing has many amazing benefits. The outstanding attributes of ONDA’s Wilderness Stewardship Program and its volunteers was recognized in 2011 with the Oregon Governor’s Award for Outstanding Volunteer Program in our region.

THANK YOU REI, Clif Bar Family Foundation, The Clabough Foundation and all ONDA members and supporters for supporting vital conservation and restoration work in Oregon's high desert.

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Oregon Natural Desert Association
50 SW Bond Street, Suite 4,
Bend, OR 97702
Tel: (541) 330-2638

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