Guild Houghton County Lands

by Michael Lynch 

The Forest Stewards Guild owns seven parcels of land in Houghton County Michigan totaling 410 acres. The parcels were gifted to the Guild in 2016 from the estate of Fred Prince and his organization, Forest for the Future, of Harbor Springs, MI. Guild staff worked with an intern from Michigan Tech University (Russel Lipe) and a local forestry consulting company Green Timber Consulting Foresters to inventory the properties and develop a management plan in 2017. The land was subsequently enrolled in The Nature Conservancy’s Forest Stewardship Council Group Certificate in 2018 along with Michigan’s Commercial Forest Program. These parcels have been incorporated into the Guild Model Forest Program with a focus on demonstrating ecological forestry on small ownerships – all parcels are less than 80 acres and spread across a large area. Forest types, conditions, and history vary between the parcels which has great demonstration value for a range of silvicultural prescriptions on a landholding of this size. Several of the parcels are scheduled for treatment in the next few years. A 2021 Lake States Guild Gathering focused on Forestry for Michigan Birds offered a great opportunity to discuss these goals, objectives, and strategies.

Forest Stewards Guild Property Goals 

  • Provide a foundation to build and expand on our work promoting sustainable forestry and forest conservation in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.
  • Maintain, restore, and enhance the biological diversity, water quality, and ecological integrity of the managed parcels and the broader landscape context through long-term, sustainable, forest management practices.
  • To provide a laboratory for learning and research for students and faculty at Michigan Technological University.
  • To demonstrate silvicultural and forest practices that balance ecological, social, and economic values.
  • To demonstrate application of climate adaptation best practices in partnership with the Northern Institute of Applied Climate Science.

Forest Stewards Guild Property Objectives 

  • Enhance the diversity of species and age classes in primary forest types and incorporate Structural Complexity Enhancement (SCE) into silvicultural practices and forest management.
  • Generate regular net income from management.
  • Consider risks and opportunities from climate change within each parcel and develop management actions to address priority risks.
  • Meet the requirements of Michigan’s Commercial Forest Program and Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certification.
  • Develop plans and begin active management activities by Fall 2017.

Forest Information

  • Acreage: 410
  • State: Michigan
  • Nearest Community: Houghton, MI
  • Forest Type: Northern Hardwoods, Hemlock, Oak, Pine, Lowland Conifer
  • Model Forest Manager: Michael Lynch, Forest Stewards Guild
  • Primary Uses: Education, Outreach, Demonstration, Restoration, Timber Production
    Other Designations, Recognitions, Honors: FSC Certified, Enrolled in MI’s Commercial Forest Program

Documents and maps

Stay Informed

about our recent projects and upcoming events.