Northern Arizona Forest Fund
The Northern Arizona Forest Fund (NAFF) is a partnership between the National Forest Foundation and SRP that takes an active role in restoring forested lands and waterways on the Salt and Verde rivers watersheds.
The foundation provides a way for businesses and individuals to contribute to this work both financially and through occasional volunteer projects.
Healthy forests are critical to the well-being of the Salt and Verde rivers and their tributaries. Years of mismanagement of the state's forests have left them overgrown with small-diameter trees that act as kindling and vastly increase the risk of the massive fires that have become a signature of the 2000s.
NAFF projects focus on four key areas: forest thinning and burning, stream and wetland restoration, sediment and erosion management and revegetation projects.
In 2016, NAFF spent $495,175 — nearly $350,000 of which was spent in direct, on-the-ground restoration work. These projects included:
- Oak Creek Erosion Control Project – Schnebly Hill Road: Project to reduce runoff of sediment from this popular four-wheeling road. Sediment decreases the water quality of Oak Creek, a major tributary to the Verde River. The project, which will be completed this year, will improve habitat and water quality for downstream users.
- Red Flat Meadow Restoration and Sediment Reduction Project: A comprehensive package of watershed improvement activities that are designed to restore this natural meadow 10 miles northwest of Cottonwood, and reduce severe erosion in the headwaters of the Verde River. Activities have included removing juniper trees encroaching on approximately 110 acres of the natural meadow, treatment of noxious weeds, and implementation of erosion control measures and gully stabilization activities.
- Black River Stream and Riparian Protection Project: Fencing project to protect roughly 2,000 acres of riparian habitat from trampling by livestock approximately 20 miles south of Greer. This will restore riparian vegetation, improve water quality, and prevent further degradation in a headwater stream of the Black River.
2017 projects include:
- Upper Hell Canyon Forest and Watershed Health Project
- Aspen Creek Watershed Health and Aspen Restoration Project
- Jacks Canyon and Banfield Spring Forest Health Project
- Chino Valley Grassland Restoration and Erosion Control Project
- Oak Creek Erosion Control Project – Schnebly Hill Road
- Black River Headwaters Wetland Protection Project
- West Pinto Creek Erosion Control and Trail Drainage Improvement Project
Reports on all planned and completed NAFF projects are available.
These projects are made possible by the numerous partners that contribute funds, volunteer hours and other resources to the projects. A complete list of NAFF's strategic partners can be found on Page 29 of NAFF's annual report .