Tualitin Valley and Clackamas River Chapters of Trout Unlimited
The Restoring the Runs project followed in the footsteps of over a decade of cooperation between the Mt. Hood National Forest and local chapters of Trout Unlimited in the Clackamas watershed. The project accomplished much needed work primarily for wild winter steelhead trout at Fish Creek, wild early run Coho and wild spring Chinook at the Upper Clackamas River side channels, and wild brown trout at Round Lake. The project was designed to provide needed watershed and fisheries restoration at three important locations on the Mt. Hood National Forest: former road crossings of streams, riparian interfaces with the newly obliterated roads, and wetland areas.
1.) Tree planting using hand labor of T.U.volunteers and Forest Service personnel on recently obliterated, formerly paved, riparian area roads and stream crossings in the Fish Creek subwatershed. Smolt trapping studies have shown Fish Creek to be one of the most productive rearing tributaries of the Clackamas River for steelhead trout.
2.) Adding large woody debris and small woody debris (LWD and SWD) to constructed side channels on the main Clackamas River, using a mix of heavy equipment and hand labor. The side channel habitat is currently supporting large numbers of juvenile Coho salmon, Chinook salmon, and smaller numbers of coastal cutthroat trout, and steelhead trout.
3.) Adding large and small woody debris, as well as spawning gravel using hand labor and some repair work to older instream habitat structures on the inlet stream to Round Lake. Round Lake is a natural high elevation lake with a wild, naturally reproducing population of brown trout.
In all, $4,319.21 in Embrace-A-Stream grant funds were used to hire a Spyder excavator for two days, rent a self loading logging truck, and purchase planting materials. TU volunteers also planted 1,000 Douglas fir and western red, placed and constructed large woody debris (LWD) jams and boulders for instream hiding and rearing cover in constructed side channels on the Upper Clackamas River, and installed coarse woody debris placement and spawning gravel Round Lake Inlet.