RDG was retained by The Freshwater Trust (TFT) to evaluate restoration opportunities on two miles of Rudio Creek, a steelhead stronghold and critical spawning tributary to the North Fork John Day River near Monument, Oregon. During the early and mid-1900s, Rudio Creek was straightened and channelized in order to drain wet meadow floodplain habitat and create livestock pasture. This channelization coupled with agricultural development of the floodplain led to the loss of beaver dam complexes and hardwoods and a complete alteration of historic stream function.
RDG worked with the landowner, TFT, the Confederated Tribe of Warm Springs and regulatory agencies to develop a restoration design that could be permitted and built to meet multiple objectives. RDG integrated GPS data into a LiDAR/bathymetry data set characterizing the project area. Existing and proposed condition hydraulic models were developed from the data set. Design components included reactivating abandoned meanders, placing large wood for aquatic habitat enhancement, constructing new channel and augmenting the riparian zone. Over 2 miles of stream was restored to fully functioning spawning and rearing habitat with immediate results seen from monitoring the overall project.