Pine Creek Project
Lead Trustee: Bureau of Land Management (BLM)
The Pine Creek watershed covers approximately 79 square miles in the St. Joe Mountains and feeds the South Fork Coeur d’Alene River at Pinehurst. It includes both the East Fork and West Fork of Pine Creek.
TSince the end of the 19th Century increased bedload, partially due to hard rock mining and partially due to the removal of large cedar trees, has led to channel instability. On many reaches of Pine Creek, channel width has increased by over 50% since 1933. This instability is not beneficial to the variety of fish species that are supported here. Pine Creek has been a Trustee project and is listed in the 2007 IRP.
The Pine Creek project was designed to complement remedial and restoration activities in an effort to allow for channel stability and improved habitats for fish species. The BLM is the Lead Trustee on this project which targets 13.6 stream miles. To date, two culverts have been installed, two major streamside sediment sources have been treated, several stream reaches and floodplains have been treated to increase stability, over 21,000 riparian plants have been placed, 5,000 nursery plants were trench planted, and numerous flow deflectors have been installed.
Both riparian plants and flow deflectors reduce sediment runoff and result in bank stabilization. The plants provide shade for cool water while the flow deflectors provide pools and riffles. All these characteristics are important for quality fish habitat.
BLM is the primary partner on this project as the lead Trustee. Shoshone County also provided equipment and personnel for some work on this project.