Sidney Gulch project

A proposed project will improve habitat and accessibility for fish living in the entire creek which runs through Weaverville.

The public is invited to attend the next Weaverville/Douglas City Parks and Recreation District board meeting to hear and comment on a presentation from the 5 Counties Salmonid Conservation Program that promises to make the creek through Sidney Gulch more accommodating to fish.

The presentation will introduce a concept design that will create new fish habitat areas in Sidney Gulch, a creek that runs right through Weaverville, alongside Lee Fong Park and up by Miner Street.

According to a release from 5 Counties, the design will introduce new areas for fish to spawn and hide, while allowing the stream to meander. This will also create new vegetation and reduce the floodplain in some areas. However, major park features and overall uses will not be affected.

Sandra Perez, program manager for 5 Counties, said Sidney Gulch empties into Weaver Creek and is fed by headwaters on Weaver Bally. She said the creek has a definite fish population, but some areas of the creek are hard for them to pass through or lay eggs.

“Lee Fong Park is one of those areas,” she said, noting that eggs simply get washed out of the area and cannot hatch.

She said the project will closely follow the creek’s current course but will introduce some new bends to the streambed. Some riprap in the area will be removed, along with invasive vegetation which will be removed and replaced by native willow and other plants. Rocks will be strategically placed in the streambed to create habitats where fish can hide and spawn.

The project is one of two 5 Counties efforts to improve the creeks and create passable areas for them to live and lay eggs. The other lies to the west of Forest Avenue, where the creek runs through a concrete channel behind the U.S. Forest Service Office.

The full concept design can be found on the 5Counties website, www.5counties.org, under projects/Sidney Gulch.

The presentation will happen during the Park District board meeting, which starts at 5 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 27, in the Trinity Public Utilities District conference room. Public comment is welcome.

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