The Chelan County Natural Resources Department (CCNRD) seeks funding from the Rose Foundation to conduct sediment impact analysis and water quality education in Stemilt Creek, an important tributary to the Columbia River just upstream from Rock Island Dam. Working with the Stemilt Partnership, a diverse 26-member community advisory committee, CCNRD will build on existing road mapping data to identify and prioritize roads and road segments that are at highest risk for failure and sediment delivery to Stemilt Creek, its tributaries and the Columbia River. The analysis will follow the Geomorphic Road Assessment and Inventory Package Lite (GRAIP-Lite) protocol, which was developed by the US Forest Service and has been used successfully by CCNRD in other parts of the county. GRAIP-Lite is specifically designed to help land managers assess the impacts of road systems on erosion and sediment delivery to streams. GRAIP-Lite includes methods to analyze the existing road inventory for surface erosion, gully risk, landslide risk and stream crossing failure risks through field verification. The existing road inventory was developed by the Stemilt Partnership as part of a broader landscape evaluation for forest health treatments, which includes addressing sediment delivery to the creeks and streams in the planning area. Upon completion of this sediment delivery analysis, CCNRD will work with the Stemilt Partnership to develop and disseminate outreach materials to encourage responsible land use practices in the basins. The Stemilt Partnership is an ideal forum to perform this work, having been formed in 2006 for the protection of water, wildlife and recreation across a 20,000-acre planning area in response to multiple development proposals that would have jeopardized these values across the landscape.
Chelan County Natural Resources Department
Stemilt Partnership Sediment Reduction and Water Quality Education Project
Columbia River Fund, 2019