Saturday, October 10, 2009

Rogue Runs free at Savage Rapids

October 9, 2009- Friday, for the first time since 1918 salmon and steelhead in Oregon's wild and scenic Rogue River were able to migrate unimpeded beyond the former damsite at Savage Rapids. Savage Rapids Dam, a 30 foot tall irrigation diversion known as the most lethal dam to salmon of the four mainstem dams on the Rogue, was dismantled this summer. Yesterday marked the conclusion of the most important step in the dam removal, when workers using backhoes and other heavy machinery removed the last of the earthen fill comprising the temporary coffer dam constructed to contain the waters of the Rogue while the concrete dam was taken down. It has been estimated by biologists that restoring the free-flowing nature of the Rogue at Savage Rapids will result in more than 100,000 additional adult salmon and steelhead returning upstream. With the scheduled deomolition next summer of Gold Ray dam, the fourth and final dam to come down on the Rogue, the river will once again flow free in its entirety, completing one of the most ambitious river restoration efforts ever undertaken, and raising hopes for wild fish advocates everywhere, that the Rogue's once plentiful salmon and steelhead runs, may once again flourish. For complete coverage see the Los Angeles Times:,0,4938332.story

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