Stout Creek Restoration

Restoration began on the lower section of Stout Creek in 2011

The North San­tiam Water­shed Coun­cil has selected Stout Creek as a pri­or­ity sub-basin for restora­tion and enhance­ment. Stout Creek is an impor­tant trib­u­tary of the North San­tiam River, enter­ing the main­stem just above the town of Stay­ton and above the Geren Island Water Treat­ment Facil­ity, where the City of Salem gets all of its drinking water. Thus, the input from Stout Creek helps to provide clean drinking water for City of Salem residents.  Approx­i­mately 11 square miles of land, pri­mar­ily rural res­i­den­tial and commercial forestry, make up the land area that drains into Stout Creek.

In 2009, Stout Creek was selected to be a part of the Willamette Model Water­shed Pro­gram, a regional pro­gram designed to improve water­shed health. Since 2009, 20 landowners have partnered with the Council to treat invasive Japanese Knotweed along the creek and an additional 8 landown­ers have part­nered with the Coun­cil to restore approx­i­mately 30 riparian acres of native veg­e­ta­tion on Stout Creek. Restora­tion in Stout Creek has included clear­ing of inva­sive species, plant­ing of native trees and shrubs, and a robust main­te­nance sys­tem to ensure that plants can be “free to grow.” Through con­tin­ued main­te­nance, the Coun­cil hopes to cre­ate a mature ripar­ian buffer of native trees and shrubs that can pro­vide shade and habi­tat for fish and other wildlife. Root sys­tems of native plant species also pro­vide some sta­bil­ity to stream­banks and fil­ter water enter­ing the sys­tem through the subsurface.

Restora­tion and con­ser­va­tion efforts along the Stout Creek trib­u­tary to the North San­tiam River are part of a larger regional ini­tia­tive to improve water qual­ity. Restora­tion efforts in Stout Creek are ongo­ing. The North San­tiam Water­shed Coun­cils hopes to con­tinue to part­ner with landown­ers in the Stout Creek water­shed on restora­tion projects.


Watershed Quick Facts

Size of land area that drains into Stout Creek – 11.6 square miles

Length of Stout Creek – 8.9 miles

Elevation range in Stout Creek – 561 ft -3297 ft

Land use in the Stout Creek water­shed – Land uses on Stout include commercial forestry, forestry managed for wildlife, rangeland, and predominately rural residential in the lower two miles.