Orvis/TU 1,000 Miles Campaign Update: Indian Creek

Collapsed Indian Creek culvert before
Photo by Trout Unlimited

The goal of the Orvis/Trout Unlimited 1,000 Miles Campaign is to reconnect 1,000 miles of fishable streams by repairing or replacing poorly constructed culverts throughout the U.S.

Indian Creek Fish Passage Project

TU and Orvis partnered with the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest and the Entiat Ranger District to reconnect 1.5 miles of stream habitat on Indian Creek in the Mad River watershed in Washington State. The Mad River drains to the Entiat River, one of the major tributaries to the Columbia River in the Upper Columbia basin. Salmon and steelhead must navigate 500+ miles and 8 dams to return to their spawning waters in the Entiat River watershed.

Orvis funds helped the Forest Service leverage $60,000 in federal funding for this project, which replaced an undersized barrier culvert on Indian Creek with a 12-foot bottomless arch to restore fish passage and improve stream geomorphic processes. Prior to replacement, this culvert impeded upstream passage of steelhead, spring Chinook and bull trout. Additionally, the culvert was a recurring maintenance problem with debris commonly blocking the inlet.

This project will increase spawning and rearing habitat for Endangered Species Act (ESA)-listed Upper Columbia River steelhead (threatened); rearing habitat for Upper Columbia River spring Chinook (endangered); and migration habitat for Columbia River bull trout (threatened).

Reconnecting habitat for these imperiled fish populations is critical to their recovery and to the maintenance of a robust salmon and trout fishery in the Upper Columbia.

Now bottomless arch provides ample fish passage to 1.5 miles of Indian Creek
Photo by Trout Unlimited

One thought on “Orvis/TU 1,000 Miles Campaign Update: Indian Creek”

  1. We owe theses waterway repairs to the environment to re-establish natural environments as much as possible and prove to ourselves that we are not prisoners of our past. To demonstrate to future carers of our lands and rivers that we can rectify mistakes made in the past and even today. Our actions must reflect the concern we fell when observing obvious mistakes due mainly to the lack of alternatives in the past. Today’s environmental consciousness has spawned alternative and new materials, methods of construction and management that should eliminate the deep embarrassment we fell for our over-riding of natural systems.
    Gary Sharp

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