Elk River

Goals 

The Elk River is a unique salmon and steelhead stronghold on the Pacific coast, a shimmering gem within a geographical region that has lost many of its original salmon and steelhead runs due to water development projects, antiquated logging practices and the loss of spawning and rearing habitats. The Elk’s status as a trophy salmon and steelhead stream depends upon retaining its healthy, intact habitats by maintaining the forests that grow in this steep canyon country that averages 150 inches of rain per year.

To keep it that way, sportsmen, grassroots volunteers, businesses and local government leaders are asking Congress to designate this watershed as the Elk River Salmon Emphasis Area (ERSEA). The designation would ensure that all of the components that create this outstanding salmon and steelhead fishery remain in the pristine condition they are in today.

 

 

Tactics 

Trout Unlimited, along with the grassroots coalition, Sportsmen for the Elk, is working diligently to:

·       Gain Wild and Scenic status for 22 miles of the upper Elk River and its tributaries

·       Replace the Blackberry Creek culvert with a bridge that will reconnect an additional two miles of important spawning and rearing habitat for both salmon and steelhead

·       Include nearly 28,000 acres of the watershed for management as backcountry area

·       Congressionally designate nearly 60,000 acres of pristine, intact coastal habitats, which include the already-designated Grassy Knob and Copper Salmon  wilderness areas, as the Elk River Salmon Emphasis Area (ERSA),  ensuring the continued productivity of this important fishery well into the future.

Victories 

Local residents in southwestern Oregon recognize that the Elk River Salmon Emphasis Area proposal is a sound idea, both for the fisheries resource and for their economy. Local businesses and governments agree: the Port Orford and North Curry Chamber of Commerce has signed on as a supporter, as has the Port Orford City Council.

 

Staff Contact 

Dean Finnerty

dfinnerty@tu.org

Issues 
Climate Change
Forestry
Mining
Roads + Development
Places 
Elk River
Blackberry Creek
Grassy Knob Wilderness
Copper-Salmon Wilderness
Species 

Steelhead Trout

Steelhead Trout

Rainbow Trout

Rainbow Trout

Cutthroat Trout

Cutthroat Trout

Coho Salmon

Coho Salmon

Chinook Salmon

Chinook Salmon

Solutions 
Protect
Author of this Page 

Joshua Duplechian

Risks to Fishing 
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