In this part of the stream channel, the streambed used to be far below the floodplain. These photos, taken in 2016, 2017, and 2018, show how the bottom of the stream has risen nearer to the top of the bank. It is no longer such a long way down!

Here, volunteers and workers are weaving branches in the posts, creating an interface that slows the water down. This causes sediment to accumulate on the streambed, raising the stream. Also, as the water table rises, our restoration team has measured a rise in the groundwater near the stream.

As of spring 2019, some of the willows planted at Triple Creek have become mature enough to bear catkins, commonly called, “pussywillows.”

The Triple Creek site has undergone dramatic changes since 2016 when the first 26 beaver dam analogues were installed. The first structures were installed in 2016, in the field season before two years of intense flooding, creating optimal conditions for transforming the site. As Myers Creek interacts with the human-made beaver dams, the team's objectives for the stream are being realized more rapidly than expected.  During the exceptionally high flows, the creek was able to do a lot of work.

The restoration team conducts regular topographic surveys of the project, which means that we can measure changes in channel length, shape, and depth. Between 2015 and 2018, we measured an increase in the channel length of 23%, which is 486 additional feet of stream! How does a longer channel help? It means the slope is flatter, and the channel can become more stable. Our team has also measured the bottom of the channel rising over four feet in places. That means the stream is four feet closer to its floodplain in those locations, and on its way to flowing out of its banks once again.

2014 to 2017: Change over time, juxtaposed (slide the white vertical bar)

"The thing that impressed me the most about the project is the amount of change that [occurred] in a short period of time… Working there’s been a pretty amazing transformation really fast, so it’s really encouraging to see that happen."

- Triple Creek volunteer

© Okanogan Highlands Alliance 2019. All Rights Reserved.
Go Back