Rogue River cleanup is set for Saturday

Starthistle, Scotchbroom and Dyer's woad will join monofilament, worm cartons and beer cans on Saturday as targets of the 19th annual Rogue River Cleanup downstream of Grants Pass.

The invasive plant species will be identified and pulled by volunteers during the annual riverside cleanup from the mouth of the Applegate River to Grave Creek.

This area is the Recreation Section of the Wild and Scenic Section of the Rogue managed by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, which is organizing the cleanup, says David Ballenger, the project coordinator for BLM.

The invasive plants being targeted are the most common found in the area, where they compete with native plants for space and nutrients. Information and handouts on noxious weeds and how to treat them will be available.

Volunteers can register beginning at 9 a.m. at the Hog Creek boat ramp on the Merlin-Galice Road five miles west of Merlin. Crews will be sent to areas along the Rogue for cleanup.

The event will take place regardless of the weather, and volunteers are encouraged to bring snacks and water.

Volunteers will get trash bags, gloves and a T-shirt. A barbecue will follow later in the day at Josephine County's Indian Mary Park.

Agness Road closes Monday

Rafters and anglers taking the long route to the Rogue River outpost of Agness can expect delays along the Agness Road beginning Monday because of a road reconstruction project there.

Delays of up to 30 minutes can be expected through October while work is done on the $5.6 million road stabilization and culvert replacement project.

The work will be done on a 21-mile stretch of the Agness Road from milepost 9.6 near the Lobster Creek bridge to milepost 31.2 at the intersection of Ilahee Road.

During the work, the road will be down to a single lane of travel.

The work was funded through the federal stimulus package.

The Agness Road, also known locally as Jerry's Flat Road, is the main lower-Rogue roadway and the most common way to reach Agness until Bear Camp Road is plowed and opened.

Bear Camp Road was scheduled to be plowed and open for motorists by Memorial Day weekend.

Popular campgrounds open for the summer this week

Two popular Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest campgrounds opened this week for the summer camping season, while two more are set to welcome campers next week.

Whiskey Springs and Forbit Ford campgrounds along Forbit Creek near Willow Lake opened Wednesday. Both are accessible off Butte Falls-Fish Lake Road.

Union Creek and Farewell Bend campgrounds along Highway 62 near Union Creek will open Wednesday.

The four campgrounds are run for the Forest Service by the Prospect-based concessionaire Rogue Recreation Inc.

Reach reporter Mark Freeman at 541-776-4470, or email

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