Previous studies have examined the effectiveness of best management practices (BMPs) in protecting forest streams across North Carolina's mountains and coastal plain, but data from the region in between, the Piedmont, have been lacking. In partnership with the North Carolina Forest Service, scientists from the Forest Sevice’s Eastern Forest Environmental Threat Assessment Center led a study to quantify sediment loads at Piedmont forest harvesting operations with a variety of soil types, watershed sizes, and road and trail slopes approaching stream crossings. The scientists measured sediment in 808 water samples upstream and downstream of stream crossing sites before, during, and after harvesting operations. They found sediment concentration ranged from 56 milligrams per liter to 127 milligrams per liter across sites. Although these concentrations are low and will not harm aquatic species, the results help to define the range of stream sediment variability at road and skid trail crossings and are needed to adequately address water quality and sediment export concerns and to help further refine statewide BMP guidelines. Results also assure forest managers that BMPs applied at stream crossings are part of sustainable operations that can provide forest products for people now and in the future while simultaneously protecting forest ecosystems.