South Fork Forest Camp (SFFC) is a minimum-security work camp located approximately 28 miles east of Tillamook, just off of Highway 6 along the Wilson River Highway. SFFC was established in 1951 and is a satellite facility to Columbia River Correctional Institution (CRCI), a minimum-security facility located in Portland. SFFC is managed jointly with the Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF).
Inmates support up to 15 ODF crews and one Oregon Parks and Recreation Department contract crew. They also provide support in SFFC’s physical plant, kitchen, laundry, and boot room. Some of the work done in conjunction with ODF is pre-commercial tree thinning, trapping of mountain beavers, tree planting, and chemical treatments for insect and disease control. The ODF cost to supervise and support an inmate field crew is $730 per crew, each day.
Part of SFFC's mission is to supply a ready work force to combat forest or wild fires throughout the state. Crews provide critical support for statewide fire operations, recreation, and reforestation, as well as support for special projects such as sign making, metal fabrication and tool or equipment repair.
Crews also provide treatment for about 10,000 acres of young tree stands each year; build or maintain up to 105 miles of hiking trails; and maintain campgrounds, day use areas, and trailheads within the Northwest Oregon Area (NWOA).
The first buildings at the camp were built at the Oregon State Penitentiary, brought in and set up at what is now SFFC. These first cabins were quite primitive, with tar-paper walls, no plumbing or heat and offered little in terms of comfort for the inmates initially assigned to the camp. Fifteen inmates were assigned to each cabin.
The cabins in use at the camp today are constructed out of wood, all are fully plumbed, have showers and forced-air gas heat. Until October of 1996, they were heated with wood stoves, but to cut back on wood consumption, they were retrofitted with gas heat. Each cabin now houses twelve inmates.
The road which runs along the front of the camp was the old stage coach road which ran from Forest Grove to Tillamook.