The "Exit 31" project represents the largest and most involved project the chapter has undertaken to date. In May of 2012, we put the final touch on the project - planting a pair of "Liberty" Elms at the site. In the fall of 2012, the project was approved by the EPA as NH's 6th EPA Success Story.
The project involved restoration of approximately 2900 feet of the Pemigewasset River in Woodstock, NH, west of Exit 31 off I-93. This area of the river was listed as impaired per NH Department of Environmental Services definitions and was characterized by on-going bank erosion leading to widening of the river channel and formation of multiple channels. In turn this degraded the cold water fisheries habitat.
Preparation of the restoration plan was funded under a NH Department of Environmental Services Watershed Restoration Grant awarded to the chapter in 2003. The implementation project was being funded by NH DES, the NH State Conservation Commission, Davis Conservation Foundation and others. Todd Baldwin, past chapter president, was the key leader in spearheading this project for the chapter. In turn the chapter participated with volunteers and other organizations, as well as state and federal agencies to achieve the following goals: stabilization of the river's flow, reduction of bank erosion and land loss, enhancement of the in-stream and off channel fisheries habitat and restoration of a former 30 acre pond which had filled into a 19 acre spring fed pond.
This marks the culmination of 5+ years of hard work by the chapter but mainly by Todd Baldwin, past president, who has nurtured this from the beginning. All total this project was near $750,000 in cost and resulted in stabilization of river bank, restoration of the main channel, work to control future bank erosion and land loss, enhancement of fish habitat and restoration of a former 30 acre pond fed by a cold water aquifer that will help maintain healthy water temperatures that trout thrive in.
In the fall of 2012, the project was approved by the EPA as NH's 6th EPA Success Story. nh_pemig.pdf