The North Yakima Conservation District removed the old USGS gauging station weir and concrete apron on the North Fork Ahtanum Creek near Yakima, WA. The project had two objectives, (1) to provide fish passage and (2) to maintain flow monitoring capabilities. Working with the Yakama Nation, engineering was provided by Inter-fluve. After a Yakima Tributary Access and Habitat Program (YTAHP) sponsored technical work group meeting, an alternative that included removal of the gage and installation of a roughened channel was chosen. Demolition of the gage, construction of the roughened channel, as well as a log crib, overflow channel, and site restoration was completed in fall of 2010. Concurrently, and into the winter and spring of 2011, meetings were held with all parties interested in flow monitoring of the site to determine the proper placement and type of equipment to be used. Following recommendations from USGS, a flow bubbler system and associated parts/hardware was purchased and imstalled. Biological effectiveness monitoring occured in fall of 2011 and will be ongoing in future years. This project was a high priority fish passage project on the North Fork Ahtanum Creek (SHEARS index value: 24.45) and opened up approximately 17 miles of high quality habitat to several fish species. Bull trout and summer steelhead utilize this area of the creek, plus resident salmonids including rainbow and cutthroat trout. The area may also see migrations of Chinook and coho salmon.
PARTNER: Ahtanum Irrigation District
SPONSOR: North Yakima Conservation District