Rolling into spring, many locals (river rafters included) are wondering how the predicted La Niña winter panned out, and how it would affect wildfire potential for their prized summer outdoor recreation season.
As the desert heats up and you start preemptively ordering your floaties (better get on that, i.e. COVID goods delays, Suez Canal blockage, general shortage of floaties in Bend over the summer) keep these safety and stewardship tips in mind from Bend Park and Recreation District and the Upper Deschutes Watershed Council.
More than three-fourths of Oregon is in some stage of drought entering May — and forecasters expect it to stay that way into the summer.
Keyser was doing her Earth Day duty of cleaning up the Steamboat Rock Recreation Area, located around 5 miles west of Terrebonne. She was leading a group of around 30 volunteers to restore an area that has been covered in waste left behind by weekend off-roaders and campers.
The Upper Deschutes River Basin Study, jointly funded by the Bureau of Reclamation and the Oregon Water Resources Department, is built on two decades of investigations, planning, and the implementation of projects to address water shortages.
“It is looking to be a pretty dire year, particularly in Southern and Central Oregon,” said April Snell, executive director of the Oregon Water Resources Congress. “It doesn’t look like we’re getting much moisture in those areas where we need it.”
The study focused on four species — coho and chinook salmon, rainbow trout or steelhead, and coastal cutthroat trout — at 16 different sites across five watersheds — Deschutes, Klamath, Rogue, Umpqua and Willamette (the Santiam is one of its tributaries).
The Deschutes County Commission moved toward reversing an earlier decision that denied a proposed hydroelectric project outside of Sisters, a project that was challenged by the environmental group Central Oregon LandWatch.
A canal piping project operated by the Central Oregon Irrigation District near Redmond has boosted levels of the Crooked River by up to 16%, an increase that will benefit fish and other wildlife in the Deschutes Basin.