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Reel Time Fishing Northwest

Mark Yuasa covers fishing and outdoors in the Pacific Northwest.

August 12, 2012 at 11:28 AM

Small Southwest Washington dam will be demolished to possibly restore fish runs

Another rather small dam blocking fish passage is about to bite the dust this month.

The Mt. Adams Ranger District in Southwest Washington is demolishing and removing Martha Creek Dam to see if they can restore fish runs by reconnecting it to a more natural habitat.

The abandoned concrete water diversion dam is located within the Wind River Work Center Compound north of Stevenson about 1.5 miles upstream of the mouth of Martha Creek, a tributary to Trout Creek in the Wind River watershed.

The structure is approximately 40 feet across by a maximum of seven feet high, and the hope is for the recovery of Lower Columbia River steelhead that are listed as an endangered species.

Martha Creek Dam was built in 1924 to serve as the intake for the Wind River Nursery water system, but has not been in operation for several decades.

The project will happen Aug. 13-24, and includes rock drilling and blasting with explosives, and a helicopter will assist with the project by transporting equipment since no road leads to the dam area.

An environmental assessment of the project was completed last year, and can be viewed on the Gifford Pinchot National Forest website.

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