Crooked River National Grasslands Field Headquarters, OR 2024
Crooked River National Grasslands Field Headquarters, OR 2024

Crooked River National Grasslands Field Headquarters, OR 2024

Crooked River National Grassland’s Field Headquarters, OR 2024

 Immerse yourself in the rich history and breathtaking landscapes of central Oregon while preserving a unique piece of the region’s heritage!

PROJECT PARTNER: Ochoco National Forest & Crooked River National Grassland

SESSION DATES: July 14-19, July 21-26, and July 28 – August 2


CREW LEADER: Nicole Gruenig!

Project Site Description & History

The Crooked River National Grassland in central Oregon is a landscape steeped in both natural beauty and historical significance. Established in 1960, this grassland covers over 100,000 acres and represents a critical part of the region’s ecosystem and cultural heritage. Historically, the area served as a pivotal location for grazing and agriculture, shaped by both Native American tribes and later, European settlers.

The management of the land shifted in the 20th century, with an emphasis on conservation and sustainable use. The Field Headquarters, located along Route 26 in the Rimrock Springs Wildlife Management Area between Madras and Prineville in Central Oregon, was developed in the 1930s in relation to grassland road building and homestead demolition after the failure of many of the regions farmers. The complex features a machine shop, barn, and equipment shed, along with a roofed watering stall for livestock.

The grassland offers a refuge for diverse wildlife and a variety of native plant species, contributing to biodiversity and the health of the regional environment. It also provides numerous recreational opportunities, including hiking, fishing, and bird watching, which draw visitors and nurture a connection to the natural world. The ongoing preservation at the Crooked River National Grasslands’ Field Headquarters allows for a deeper understanding of the land’s history and the evolution of land management practices. Such efforts ensure that the grassland not only remains a vibrant part of Oregon’s natural heritage but also serves as an educational tool and a reminder of the need for continued conservation and stewardship.

In 2006 the headquarters became eligible for the National Register of Historic Places as part of a larger architectural complex. HistoriCorps invites you to join us to preserve one of Oregon’s fabled historic compounds for future generations to embrace,

Location and Logistics

SESSION DATES: July 14-19, July 21-26, and July 28 – August 2

Please plan to arrive at the campsite no earlier than 5pm and no later than 7pm on the first day of your session.

LOCATION: Located approximately 50 minutes Northeast of Bend, Oregon!


Tents, truck campers, campervans, and trailers up to 25 feet will have access to our campsite. Dogs are welcomed!

WEATHER:  Anticipate highs in the mid 80s and lows in the mid 40s. Weather conditions may be rainy, cloudy, or sunny. Volunteers are responsible for checking weather conditions before their session begins, and packing appropriately.

ABOUT VOLUNTEERING: HistoriCorps projects are free for volunteers! HistoriCorps will provide all meals, tools, training, equipment, and a campsite. Volunteers are responsible for their own transportation to the campsite, sleeping equipment, work gloves, clothes and boots, and other personal gear.

Scope of Work


HistoriCorps is committed to educating and training volunteers in preservation skills, with an overarching mission of inspiring a preservation ethic in all those involved. Learning and working alongside expert HistoriCorps field staff, volunteers and applying the traditional skills necessary to restore the Machine Shop at the Crooked River National Grasslands Field HQ:

  • Repair sliding garage doors of Machine Shop
  • Repair siding, trim, and windows of the Machine Shop
  • If needed, replace cedar shingle roof of Machine Shop

Please note: Tasks vary by day and by week, depending on a variety of factors including: weather, project priorities, previous groups’ work, and more. Though it is likely you will get to learn and practice most or all of the above tasks, it is not guaranteed. The higher percentage of the scope a particular task is, the more likely you will get to practice it.

Sign Up!

We’re thrilled this project has inspired you to volunteer!


Visit our Job Calendar to see if spaces are available!

*All registrations submitted to projects at capacity will be automatically added to our waitlist.*

CANCELLATIONS effect our ability to complete projects. Please register only if you are certain about your ability to participate.

You will know your registration was successful when you receive a confirmation email. Contact for assistance.

HistoriCorps does not charge for its volunteering projects. HistoriCorps relies on donations to continue engaging volunteers to save significant historical sites across America for generations to come. Your donation of any amount will make an incredible difference! Increase your impact – make a generous gift today.

Volunteer Logistics, Policies, and Advice

We’re so glad you’re interested in joining this project! If you’re new to our community, review the Volunteer FAQ first! Please note the following logistics and policies: 

  • Volunteering with HistoriCorps is free! We will provide all meals, tools, training, equipment, and a campsite or shared indoor lodging. Dinner is not provided on the first night. 
  • Volunteers are responsible for bringing their own gear, work gloves, sturdy work clothes and boots, and appropriate sleeping equipment. Check the average temperatures before you start packing – the nights and mornings may be colder than you anticipate! Then, read this advice about how to stay warm when tent camping in colder places. 
  • Campsite accessibility varies by project. Some projects can accommodate tents only; others can accommodate small RVs. Please review the project site description above for more information, and if you’re still not sure, email for help. 
  • If this project does not offer showers, you might want to consider bringing a solar shower or research other methods to clean up after the work day. 
  • Volunteer crew sizes generally range from 4-8 volunteers, with two HistoriCorps staff that lead and train volunteers in the work. 
  • Safety is one of HistoriCorps’ top priorities, and volunteers can contribute to a safe working environment by ensuring their physical fitness is adequate for the work. See above for this project’s scope of work and difficulty level. Please, call us if you are not quite sure if a project is a good fit for your skills or fitness level. We may be able to suggest a project more suitable and enjoyable for you. 
  • Hard hats, eye protection, ear protection, gloves are standard personal protection equipment (PPE) required on all projects. Hard hats must be worn at all times on the project site, unless working in a designated safe space. Field staff will train volunteers on correct use of PPE. 
  • Dogs are generally allowed to accompany their humans in project campsites (actually, we love having dogs join us around the campfire!). Dogs are not permitted on the job site for everyone's safety. HOWEVER: HistoriCorps also follows the rules and regulations of our project partner. If the project partner does not permit dogs onsite then HistoriCorps is no exception. Please ask HistoriCorps or the project partner directly if you have any questions about whether Fido is welcome.