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Surveys show support for Nelson Dam removal and tips on talking about dams

Nelson Dam

Nelson Dam, a century-old concrete structure that outlived its usefulness, spans the Naches River in Yakima, Washington. It blocks fish passage for much of the year and presents safety risks for the City of Yakima. After years of planning, Nelson Dam is coming down this fall. Earlier this year, when the dam’s fate was still […]

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Real collaboration and real progress: the Bear River watershed

Earlier this summer, I spent three days on an inspiring tour of the Bear River watershed, hosted by Open Rivers Fund grantee, Western Native Trout Initiative (WTNI). WNTI is a collaborative partnership of public agencies, conservation-minded organizations, and private individuals focused on protecting 21 species of native trout and char across 12 western states—including the […]

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Chris In The Creek: An Ethnographic Approach To Community Based Monitoring

Western Montana’s Rattlesnake Creek and its many relations – human and more-than-human – are at the heart of our ongoing research-practice partnership between Watershed Education Network (WEN) and the UC Davis Center for Community and Citizen Science. As part of this partnership, I was fortunate enough to visit Missoula this past summer to collect data […]

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A bold plan for salmon, clean energy and jobs in the Pacific Northwest

Two summers ago, I floated the Middle Fork Salmon, in the heart of Idaho’s Frank Church–River of No Return Wilderness. The trip had everything, spectacular scenery, great fishing, wonderful companions. The only thing missing was abundant salmon and steelhead which, before the construction of the four lower Snake River dams, made the 800 mile journey […]

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Restoring waters & building momentum: 4 years of the Open Rivers Fund

Photo of tree-lined bend in Bear River

A free-flowing river has an aura of inevitability. As creeks and small streams merge into one, the river finds its way. Left to its own devices, it goes where gravity says it must – scouring its own banks, starting course changes when obstructed, and moving material to rebuild its bed. On its way, gaining volume […]

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Rattlesnake Dam removal is almost complete

The opportunity for native westslope cutthroat and bull trout to move unimpeded up and down Rattlesnake Creek in Missoula, Mont., is close to reality. Contractors hired by Trout Unlimited, Montana Trout Unlimited, the City of Missoula and Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks, among other partners, have been working this summer to remove Rattlesnake Dam. The […]

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Wildboy Creek Conserved

Kwoneesum Dam splash pool

Columbia Land Trust today announced the conservation of 1,300 acres of forestland in the upper reaches of the Washougal River system in Skamania County, Washington. The Land Trust conserved the land surrounding Wildboy Creek with the goal of removing an outmoded 55-ft. dam on the property and restoring the watershed for salmon and steelhead. The […]

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