ability to conduct scientific research in-house, to apply
research findings on the National Forest System lands,
and to transfer them to others for use on all of the
nation's forest land sets the Forest Service apart as a
natural resource agency. A unique and exceedingly
valuable part of the infrastructure in place to conduct
this research is the national network of experimental
forests and ranges, a land base authorized by Congress
and designated by the Chiefs of the Forest Service over
the last 100 years. These experimental forests and ranges
are not historical relics, but the sites for most of the longterm
research conducted by Forest Service Research and
Development and our partners. The experimental forests
and ranges are living laboratories where Forest Service
scientists not only make discoveries but also demonstrate
research results for cooperators and stakeholders. They
provide the opportunity to conduct the bold, imaginative
research that will be required for the future.
The USDA Forest Service has an outstanding scientific resource in the 77
Experimental Forests and Ranges that exist across the United States and its
territories. These valuable scientific resources incorporate a broad range of
climates, forest types, research emphases, and history. The Pacific Southwest
Reasearch Station currently administers the ten experimental forests in California.
These sites are described here, providing information about history, climate, vegetation, soils,
long-term data bases, research history and research products, as well as
identifying collaborative opportunities, and providing contact information.
For a complete guide to the experimental forests throughout the country,
see the publication cited below.
The overview presented here was originally published in:
Adams, Mary Beth; Loughry, Linda; Plaugher, Linda, comps. 2004.
Experimental Forests and Ranges of the USDA Forest Service.
Gen. Tech. Rep. NE-321. Newtown Square, PA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Northeastern Research Station. 178 p.
GTR-NE-321 - 5.5 mb pdf
1Information has been updated since original publication.