Restoring clean water and healthy rivers

Many of Central Oregon’s iconic rivers and streams – the Deschutes, Metolius, Whychus, Tumalo – provide abundant recreational opportunities, clean water, and critically important habitat for native fish and wildlife.

Over the past 150 years, however, water management, the construction of dams and diversions, and the growth of local communities has changed these ecosystems by altering wetland and riparian conditions, decreasing water quality and reducing the availability of fish and wildlife habitat.

Without restoration and management over the long term, the communities of people and wildlife that depend on these ecosystems will not be able to flourish and thrive.

Restoration Shovels

At the Watershed Council, we believe that collaborative efforts can restore the overall health of local rivers and streams by protecting and enhancing clean water, improving native vegetation and promoting the kinds of stewardship activities that seek to balance the human and ecological needs in our communities.

Our projects, implemented collaboratively with numerous local, state and federal partners, seek to enhance and restore Central Oregon’s world class rivers.  And, over the past decade, measurable improvements have been made and sections of river are cleaner, healthier and more resilient than at any time over the past century.   Read more to learn about our restoration projects throughout the region.

To learn more about our restoration priorities in each watershed, click here. For information about specific restoration projects, please follow the links below to the three main areas where we work in the Upper Deschutes Watershed.