An Important Conservation Puzzle Piece
At first glance, Straight Fork Forest is an ordinary hardwood timberland property in the mountains of southwest Virginia. Upon closer review, the property not only has attractive timber and recreational qualities, but also features significant conservation attributes.
Straight Fork Forest is encompassed by two important conservation focal areas identified by The Nature Conservancy: the High Knob and Upper Clinch River Priority Conservation Areas (PCAs). The High Knob PCA is a large forest matrix made up of public and private lands considered to be the hub of biodiversity in the Appalachian region. The High Knob summit (elevation 4,228 feet) is just two miles north of Straight Fork and is the highest point along the Cumberland Mountains which divides the Clinch and Powell River watersheds.
The Upper Clinch River PCA is a larger area focused on the Clinch River watershed and the abundant biodiversity it represents. According to the Virginia Department of Inland Game and Fisheries (DGIF), the Clinch River is home to about 50 species of mussels—more than any other river in the world—and over 100 species of non-game fish (minnows and darters) that play a vital role in the survival of other fish and mussel species. Furthermore, the Clinch River is known as an excellent smallmouth bass fishery that, according to DGIF, has recently seen improvement in size and abundance just south of the property near Fort Blackmore.
Straight Fork Forest is also surrounded in large part by federal land with approximately three quarters of its boundary shared by the Jefferson National Forest. The shared western boundary sits along Straight Fork Creek, an important tributary to the Clinch River. Its position amongst federally-protected land and its unique watershed protection make it a target for long-term conservation.
With such strong conservation qualities, Straight Fork gives buyers the opportunity to create a conservation legacy that, most importantly, is compatible with timber management and recreational enjoyment. With best management practices, this property will provide watershed protection to the Clinch River while remaining a strong hardwood timberland investment that offers multiple recreational opportunities.
For more about Straight Fork Forest, contact
Jonathan McGrath, firstname.lastname@example.org, 803.399.7844
or David Speirs, email@example.com, 207.874.4982.