South Fork Of Prospect Creek
Plate 171X. South Fork of Prospect Creek 1943 - 1946 - 1953 - 1959 - 2003 The Photo Plot Transect on the South Fork of Prospect Creek was established in 1943 and reread in 1946, 1953, and 1959. Initial range conditions were described as poor and all plant communities were very heavily grazed. According to early narrative reports, the creek channel was “gutted by erosion” and dead willows were common. “Sheet erosion [was] severe over most of the sagebrush type and even into the fringes of the aspen.” The small meadow at the transect crossing was described as “very depleted” and native grass cover was minimal. In 1953, mule deer were described as “numerous” and gullies showed “considerable recutting due to recent summer storms….Alluvial deposits [were] conspicuous where gullies terminate on flat [areas] at the base of the slopes or empty into the main drainage channel…The condition of this range is very poor or poor”. By 1959, there had been “a slight upward trend” but soil erosion was still widespread (unpublished reports in range files, Panguitch Ranger District, Panguitch, UT). Plate 171x is viewed northeast up the transect centerline from its starting point at the rock carin in the foreground. Conifers, primarily limber pine, Douglas fir, and ground juniper (Juniperus communis) have increased. Grass cover appears to have increased in the sagebrush community, despite the recent drought. Sagebrush has declined where it has been overtopped by conifers. The aspen stand successfully regenerated during the 1970s when mule deer numbers were low (Kay and Bartos 2000), but in 2003 all suckers were repeatedly browsed by wildlife and livestock. Parts of the hillside were burned by the Sanford fire in 2002, but not the Photo Plot Transect.
U.S. Forest Service photographs (unnumbered) taken by Ray J. Davis on August 24, 1943; Walter Cottam on August 22, 1946; I.H. Johnson on August 13, 1953; and I.H. Johnson on August 20, 1959; retake by Charles E. Kay on July 12, 2003 - - Photo No. 5182-25. Original photographs, negatives, and narrative reports held in the range files on the Panguitch Ranger District, Dixie National Forest, Panguitch, UT.
Riparian, Sagebrush, Aspen, Conifer
South West: On both the USGS 1:24,000 Adams Head (1971) topographic map and the 1995 Dixie National Forest map, this area has not been surveyed, thus there is no Section, Range, or Township; UTM of transect starting point 396600E, 4196400N; elevation 9,140 ft.