Upper South Fork Trinity River
Watershed Restoration Implementation
Trinity County Resource Conservation District is implementing a large-scale restoration project in the Upper South Fork Trinity River Watershed. Approximately 2 miles of high-risk road is being decommissioned to reduce the amount of sediment going into the river. Past land management practices have significantly increased the rate and volume of sediment being delivered to nearby streams by erosion. Roads and other management activities have altered natural drainage patterns in a variety of ways to accelerate erosion and increase deposition of sediment into area streams.
The 29N30D road is located on remote lands within the Shasta-Trinity National Forest (Forest Service). The Forest Service has identified no future land management needs for this road, and aquatic risk is considered high. Consequently, the 29N30D road was identified as a road to be decommissioned in the “Upper South Fork/Happy Camp Watershed Restoration Decision Notice” in June of 2000.
This project includes: survey and design; removal of all culverts and hardware; excavation of associated fill material; where feasible, placement of fill material along the existing roadbed with a slope not to exceed 2:1; removal and disposal of all extra fill material to a USFS approved location; outsloping areas without spoil material; and mulching and seeding of all disturbed areas with weed-free straw and native grasses. There are 16 ditch relief culverts and 5 large stream crossings with culverts that are being removed. The total estimated volume of dirt to be moved is 23,000 cubic yards with 20,000 cubic yards coming from the stream crossings.
The project is designed to minimize potential erosion to the streams. The Trinity County RCD has been performing this type of work successfully for a number of years. The work was designed by Lorrie Bundy, a Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) Engineer stationed in Weaverville, in cooperation with the Forest Service and the South Fork Coordinated Resource Management Planning group. Heavy equipment work began in mid-August with a subcontract to John Buick Construction, who hired two Trinity County residents to operate the equipment.
The District’s implementation team for this project is led by Cynthia Tarwater, Project Coordinator, with Arrow Harrington and Scot Lindsey, Restoration Technicians.