bear river

The 4.8 million-acre Bear River Watershed is a diverse and working landscape. It is the watershed that connects the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem to the Wasatch Mountains and the High Uinta Wilderness. It is the ecological link between the Northern and Southern Rocky Mountain Ecosystems, and is a national conservation priority due to the remarkable wildlife habitat on both public and private ground. It is a landscape rich in native culture and heritage with human occupation dating back 12,000 years to the more recent settlements of European explorers, trappers, immigrants, and pioneers.

The Bear River Watershed is of continental importance for migratory birds and supports vital habitat for conservation priority species; including greater sage-grouse and Bonneville cutthroat trout. The watershed also contains big game migration corridors that are of regional significance in Southeast Idaho, Northern Utah, and Western Wyoming.

Cove Riparian (CE-02, CE-03, CE-04, CE-05, CE-08, CE-10)

Established between 2007 and 2009, the Cove Riparian conservation easements (total: 6) encompass 5 acres of adjoining riparian land along the Bear River in Caribou County, Idaho.

 

Conservation values include:

 

  • Natural habitat for native plants, fish, and wildlife
  • Riparian buffer from surrounding intensive land uses for the Bear River

Mink Creek Canyon (CE-06)

Established in 2007, the Mink Creek Canyon conservation easement encompasses 600 acres of southern xeric shrubland and steppe, cultivated fields and pastures, riparian and riverine habitat, upland deciduous forest, and dry conifer forest along Mink Creek in Franklin County, Idaho.

 

Conservation values include:

 

  • Natural habitat for native plants, fish, and wildlife; including conservation priority species such as the Northern leopard frog and Merriam’s shrew. The property also contains suitable habitat for gray wolf and Canada lynx who may use the landscape as travel corridors for range expansion.
  • Working farm/ranch
  • Wetlands, floodplains, and riparian habitat vital for nutrient cycling, water quality, erosion control, and groundwater discharge
  • Mink Creek supports Bonneville cutthroat trout populations in the Bear River drainage

two creeks (CE-07)

Established in 2007, the Two Creeks conservation easement encompasses 100 acres of southern xeric shrubland and steppe, and ranchland along Mink Creek in Franklin County, Idaho.

 

Conservation values include:

 

  • Natural habitat for native plants, fish, and wildlife; including conservation priority species such as the Merriam’s shrew, and breeding peregrine falcon and lesser goldfinch. 
  • Working farm/ranch
  • Wetlands, floodplains, and riparian habitat vital for nutrient cycling, water quality, erosion control, and groundwater discharge
  • Scenic views from Highway 36
  • Mink Creek supports Bonneville cutthroat trout populations in the Bear River drainage

Riverdale Bear River (CE-09) 

The Riverdale Bear River conservation easement was established in 2008. The 214-acre property is comprised of riparian woodlands, agriculture, and ranchland.

 

Conservation values include:

 

  • Working farm/ranch
  • Relatively natural habitat for native plants, fish, and wildlife; including riverine habitat for Bonneville cutthroat trout
  • Transitional and winter range for mule deer – a species of local and regional importance
  • Scenic views for the public recreating on the Bear River
  • Wetlands, floodplains, and riparian habitat vital for nutrient cycling, water quality, erosion control, and groundwater discharge 
  • Contains soils of statewide significance for agriculture

Gentile Valley (CE-11)

The Gentile Valley conservation easement was established in 2009. The 115-acre property is comprised of sub-irrigated pastureland, riverine habitat, wetlands, springs, and floodplains. 

 

Conservation values include:

 

  • Water quality
  • Working farm/ranch
  • Relatively natural habitat for native plants, fish, and wildlife; including riverine habitat for Bonneville cutthroat trout, a conservation priority species
  • Transitional and winter range for mule deer
  • Wetlands, floodplains, and riparian habitat along the Bear River that are vital for nutrient cycling, water quality, erosion control, and groundwater discharge

Upper Mink Creek (CE-16)

The Upper Mink Creek conservation easement was established in 2012. The 767-acre property is comprised of non-irrigated sagebrush steppe rangeland and irrigated pastureland.

 

Conservation values include:

 

  • Water quality
  • Working farm/ranch
  • Relatively natural habitat for native plants, fish, and wildlife; including riverine habitat for Bonneville cutthroat trout and upland habitat for Columbian sharp-tailed grouse, both of which are conservation priority species
  • Transitional and winter range for mule deer
  • Scenic views for members of the public recreating in the Mink Creek Drainage of the Bear River
  • Wetlands, floodplains, and riparian habitat vital for nutrient cycling, water quality, erosion control, and groundwater discharge

Lower Mink Creek (CE-14)

The Lower Mink Creek conservation easement was established in 2012. The 261-acre property is comprised of non-irrigated and irrigated pastureland.

 

Conservation values include:

 

  • Water quality
  • Working farm/ranch
  • Relatively natural habitat for native plants, fish, and wildlife; including riverine habitat for Bonneville cutthroat trout, a conservation priority species
  • Transitional and winter range for mule deer
  • Scenic views for members of the public recreating in the Mink Creek Drainage of the Bear River
  • Wetlands, floodplains, and riparian habitat vital for nutrient cycling, water quality, erosion control, and groundwater discharge

Riparian Mink Creek (CE-15)

The Riparian Mink Creek conservation easement was established in 2012. The 5-acre property is comprised of riparian habitat along Mink Creek and is situated between two other conservation easements.

 

Conservation values include:

 

  • Water quality
  • Working farm/ranch
  • Relatively natural habitat for native plants, fish, and wildlife; including riverine habitat for Bonneville cutthroat trout, a conservation priority species
  • Scenic views for members of the public traveling along State Highway 36
  • Wetlands, floodplains, and riparian habitat vital for nutrient cycling, water quality, erosion control, and groundwater discharge

Mink Creek Fee-Title (FT-06)

Established in 2019, the Mink Creek Fee-title (owned by the Sagebrush Steppe Land Trust) property encompasses 28 acres of irrigated pasture, hawthorn slopes, and riparian wetland associated with Mink Creek in Franklin County, Idaho.

 

Conservation values include:

 

  • Important habitat for four vertebrate classes: mammals, birds, reptiles, and amphibians
  • Working farm/ranch
  • Scenic open space views of the Mink Creek drainage for members of the public traveling along State Highway 36

Glencoe Mink Creek (CE-26)

The Glencoe Mink Creek conservation easement was acquired in 2019. The 450-acre property is comprised of sagebrush steppe, riverine-riparian forest, and shrubland along Mink Creek.

 

Conservation values include:

 

  • Relatively natural habitat for native plants and wildlife; including several species of greatest conservation need: Northern leopard frog, Columbian sharp-tailed grouse, golden eagle, sandhill crane, and western small-footed myotis, and conservation priority species, Bonneville cutthroat trout and Yuma myotis. 
  • Habitat for big game, including; moose, elk and mule deer
  • Working farm/ranch
  • Wetlands, floodplains, and riparian habitat that are vital for nutrient cycling, water quality, erosion control, and groundwater discharge
  • Scenic view of the Mink Creek watershed for members of the public traveling along Highway 36 or the surrounding public lands, trails and two tracks

East Riverdale Bear River (CE-17)

Established in 2014, the East Riverdale Bear River conservation easement encompasses 65.2 acres of irrigated pastureland and hay production with riparian bottomlands along the Bear River in Franklin County, Idaho.

 

Conservation values include:

 

  • Water quality
  • Transitional and summer range for species of local and regional importance such as mule deer and elk
  • Open space and scenic views for members of the public traveling along State Highway 36
  • Relatively natural habitat for native plants, fish, and wildlife; including riverine habitat for Bonneville cutthroat trout, a conservation priority species
  • Working farm/ranch
  • Wetlands, floodplains, and riparian habitat that are vital for nutrient cycling, water quality, erosion control, and groundwater discharge

Oneida Canyon (CE-23)

Established in 2016, the Oneida Canyon conservation easement encompass 358 acres of sagebrush steppe, grassland, and hardwood and conifer stands along the Bear River in Franklin County, Idaho.

 

Conservation values include:

 

  • Important habitat for mule deer and elk
  • Scenic views for members of the public recreating on the Bear River
  • Borders Bureau of Land Management and another conservation easement property
  • Provides habitat for many species of greatest conservation need: rock squirrel, northern leopard frog, bald eagle, short-eared owl, juniper titmouse, and sandhill crane

Paris North & South (CE-27, CE-28)

Established in 2023, the Paris North and South conservation easements (total:2) encompass 931 acres of sagebrush steppe ranchland in Bear Lake County, Idaho.
 
Conservation values include:
 

    • Natural habitat for native plants, fish, and wildlife; including conservation priority species such as Greater sage-grouse and Long-billed curlew
    • Working farm/ranch
    • Wetlands and riparian habitat vital for nutrient cycling, water quality, erosion control, and groundwater discharge
    • Scenic views of the Bear River Range and Bear Lake Valley
    • Transitional and winter range for big game such as moose, elk, and mule deer
Sagebrush Steppe Land Trust Logo

Sagebrush Steppe Land Trust is a private, nonprofit 501(c)3 charitable organization incorporated in 2004, and a “qualified organization” within the meaning of section 170(h)(3) of the IRS Code. Federal Tax Identification Number: 82-6092501

Photographs throughout this website were donated by Sarah Jackson and various other Land Trust supporters over the years.

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Contact us

Office
109 N Arthur Ave, Suite 300
Spaulding Building
Pocatello, ID 83204

Mailing Address
PO Box 1404
Pocatello ID 83204

Phone
Office: (208) 240-6045
Field Cell: (208) 241-4662

Email
admin@sagebrushlandtrust.org