The Tillamook State Forest – a verdant swath of land in Oregon’s Northern Coast Range, straddling the division between the Pacific Ocean and the edge of the Portland Metro area.
It’s home to people, plants, animals, and an incredibly diverse heritage.
Its recreation opportunities are growing, its environment is changing, and the politics that surround it are ever-shifting and complex.
And until now, no one has attempted to comprehensively, ethically, and steadily cover the news surrounding our forest.
Meet the Salmonberry Magazine. An online project that grew out of more than six years of news coverage of the Salmonberry Trail by journalist and publisher Chas Hundley, the Salmonberry Magazine aims to tell the story of the region once known only as the Tillamook Burn.
While still a side project, we hope to keep growing this site as we are able.
About Chas Hundley
Like many in the area, the Tillamook Forest has been an integral part of the Hundley family. Growing up just a few minutes from its eastern edge in Gales Creek, the Tillamook State Forest resides deeply in Chas Hundley’s family history. His great-grandfather, Charles Hundley (Chas’ namesake), and his great-uncles were there when the Tillamook Burn ignited on that fateful August day in 1933, throwing everything they had at the inferno that would change the region forever.
For many seasons, Chas Hundley’s grandfather was stationed on lookout towers throughout the Tillamook Forest, straining his eyes for any sign of smoke. His family survived off of the bounty of the Tillamook Forest through the Great Depression and beyond, working in the timber industry, hunting, trapping, fishing, and gathering enough food to make it through the tough years for their large extended family. In the 1940s and 50s, many members of the Hundley family found work after the devastation of the Tillamook Burn, planting trees for the state forestry department.
Today, Chas Hundley continues the tradition of working in the forest, in a way. He’s the publisher of the Gales Creek Journal and Banks Post, two news publications that cover the far western portion of Washington County, including large swaths of the Tillamook State Forest and the surrounding private forestland. His family, while no longer as active in the timber industry, maintain a small private sawmill and some private forestland in Gales Creek, and are members of the Washington County Small Woodlands Association.
Chas first began writing about the Tillamook Forest fresh out of high school, covering the then-fledgling Salmonberry Trail concept.
When he’s not writing and working at his day job, he can be found hiking, kayaking, and foraging in the Tillamook Forest.