Mosier Watershed Council
2325 River Road Suite 3 The Dalles, OR 97058 Phone: (541)296-6178 x102 Watershed Coordinator Abbie Forrest firstname.lastname@example.org
Meetings are held quarterly on the 3rd Wednesday of the Month.
Next meeting is scheduled for Wednesday
October 24th, 2018
@ the Mosier Grange.
Mosier WC Action Plan
2018 Meeting Minutes
The City of Mosier is located on the shores of the Columbia River just off Hwy I-84. Timberland and orchards make up its economic base. The people of the Mosier Watershed tend to be made up of rugged and self-sufficient individuals with a strong sense of community.
The Mosier Creek Watershed is located on the east slope and in the eastern foothills of the Cascade Range made up of Rowena Creek, Mosier Creek and Rock Creek drainages. The total drainage area is 49,659 acres, or ~78 square miles.
Rowena Creek is a short, high gradient, stream approximately five-mile long, that flows west and then north from Oregon White oak covered hills into the Columbia River near the community of Rowena (RM 182). This short stream drops approximately 2000 feet in elevation from headwater to mouth. Rowena Creek is bounded on the south by Chenoweth Creek, on the east and north by the Columbia River and on the west by Mosier Creek. Mosier Creek originates in the Mt. Hood National Forest near Gibson Prairie. It flows north out of mixed pine/fir forest through fruit orchards to enter the Columbia River at the town of Mosier (RM 176). The watershed is approximately ten miles long and two to eight miles wide. Elevation change from headwater to mouth is approximately 3300 feet.
Mosier Creek is bounded on the south by Mill Creek, on the east by Chenoweth and Rowena Creeks, on the north by the Columbia River and on the west by Rock Creek and the Hood River sub-basin.
Rock Creek originates in mixed pine/fir forest and flows north to enter the Columbia River at the town of Mosier (RM 176). Rock Creek watershed is a much wetter, more west-side eco-type than the other two watersheds. The watershed is approximately seven miles long and one to two miles wide, and drops approximately 2900 feet from headwater to the mouth. It is bounded on the east by Mosier Creek, on the north by the Columbia River and on the west and south by the Hood River subbasin (ODFW, 2000). These three watersheds taken together comprise the Mosier Watershed Council Area
The Mosier Million also referred to as the Mosier Well Repair/Replacement project has been identifying possibly commingling wells in the Mosier area. Thanks to the Oregon legislature and Oregon Water Resources Department, the Mosier Watershed Council and the Soil and Water Conservation District received $1 million to replace those identified commingling wells.
In June 2016 a Union Pacific Railroad train that was transporting Bakken crude oil derailed causing 42,000 gallons to spill extensive damage and devastation to Mosier. The train burned several acre and spilled thousands of gallons of oil near the mouth of Rock Creek and into the Columbia River.
Mosier Watershed Council members have been actively working with the City of Mosier on restoration plans for the site. Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) has also been a regular member at watershed council meetings providing the most up to date information regarding groundwater contamination levels.
Oil Spill Train Derailment and Restoration
The Deep Well project was pursued after OWRD suggested to take the two biggest water users in the Mosier Valley off the system.
The Pomona aquifer is the shallowest of the basalt aquifers in the Mosier watershed and is thus relied upon by several residences for their domestic source of supply. The aquifer is also the source of baseflow to Mosier Creek. Research has shown that pumping is the most significant contributor to recent water level declines and is affecting Mosier Creek during the irrigation season. By removing these two largest irrigators off of the damaged system these programs are benefiting the Mosier Million effort as well as providing extensive information and knowledge on the hydrogeology of the Mosier aquifers.
This has been a strategic project with a two phased approach. Phase 1 was completed in the Spring of 2018 with the first irrigator's well being decommissioned and a new well being drilled. Once funding is secured for the second well, construction will start.
Mosier Watershed Council members have worked tirelessly to provide information to Mosier landowners and gather support and participation of this project. Through their efforts there have been over 20 wells in the area that have been decommissioned and replaced, with many more planned for the coming months. To prevent commingling problems for the future, the council also successfully had new Special Area Well Standards put into place for any new wells that are to be drilled in the Mosier Area. These new standards require drillers to work alongside OWRD to find the best possible drilling location, as well as approximate water depth.