New logjams in the Mashel River Ð being built this summer by the Nisqually Indian Tribe Ð will provide habitat for fish and help protect property from damaging floods. The series of logjams will help protect riverside property which sustained damage during last winter’s 100-year flood, while also providing vital habitat to salmon.
“Right now, both people and salmon are in danger because water just flows too quickly through this stretch,” said David Troutt, natural resources director for the tribe. “Bank hardening and logging that have decreased the ground’s ability to soak up water has made the damaging impacts of floods worse,” he said. The logjams will protect the banks while also slowing the flow of floodwaters.
Next summer, the project should extend to another downstream property on which an outbuilding and several hundred feet of bank were lost to the flood. The tribe’s project will also tie into a planned logjam effort by the state Department of Transportation (DOT) to protect a highway bridge. The DOT project to install logjams is planned for 2010.