LEABUEG: The Eugene Water & Electric Board has closed Leaburg Lake to all boaters following the failure of one of three roll gates at Leaburg Dam on Tuesday.
The unexpected shutdown of the gate closest to Highway 126 on Dec. 23rd leaves the run-of-the-river dam with one functioning roll gate. The middle roll gate experienced a failure in January of 2012 and is currently being repaired at the 73-year-old hydroelectric facility on the McKenzie River. The three 16-feet-tall by 100-feet-wide gates regulate the volume of water spilled from the dam on the river east of Eugene.

Engineers investigate Leaburg Dam gate problem

Eugene Water & Electric Board engineers and operations personnel are looking into why one of three roll gates at Leaburg Dam stopped working on Tuesday, Dec. 23.

Flying toiletModular restroom swings into Hendricks Wayside

WALTERVILLE: Passersby may have been surprised last week if they noticed a big crane set up in the parking area at the Hendricks Bridge Wayside Park. Those who timed their passing right got to see parts of a building being hoisted high in the air. The work involved workers from Lane County Parks who tore down an old building and constructed a new restroom facility, along with replacing sidewalks at the popular site. The project, in cooperation with the Oregon State Marine Board, was the first phase of improvements to the Hendricks Bridge Wayside. That initial work was part of grant financed improvements fueled by the Oregon State Marine Board with funds provided by boat registrations. The second phase, according to Mike Russell, Parks and Animal Services Division Manager, is hoped to be completed by the end of 2016. It is designed to expand the parking lot and reconfigure the boat ramp into the McKenzie River. The reconfiguration would orient the ramp at more of a downstream angle to help make it a bit more “maintenance friendly,” Russell noted.

Heavy Rain, Wind and Flooding Predicted: Visitors Discouraged from Visiting Forest this Weekend 

Forest Supervisor Meg Mitchell is encouraging folks to stay home this weekend and avoid traveling in the Willamette National Forest.

Mobile dentistryFINN ROCK: The Tooth Taxi makes history every day. Last month the converted motor home’s trip to McKenzie Schools added to its lore. Those visits, on November 22nd and 23rd, amounted to over 8,000 screenings and 4.5 million dollars in donated services since the dental van’s inception in 2008.
Inside the 38-foot shell is a high-tech dental office with two fully-equipped operation units that include digital X-rays. With a full-time dentist and staff, the Tooth Taxi visits schools throughout Oregon to treat uninsured and under served children who have limited access to dental care. The Tooth Taxi can stay at a school for up to a week at a time, providing comprehensive and preventive care to children.




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Forest streamBLUE RIVER: A long term research program at the HJ Andrews Experimental Forest will continue for another six years, thanks to a $6.7 million grant from the National Science Foundation. The Long-Term Ecological Research Program (LETR) is focused on understanding ecological phenomena that occur over a long time span. More than two dozen sites around the country are part of the program.
The Andrews LETR project is designed to understand how climate and land use changes interact to affect forest and stream ecosystems. It will continue to build upon past work by using records from weather stations and stream gages scattered throughout the watershed to reveal how temperature and precipitation vary across the landscape, and how they have changed over time. Researchers will also study how air, water, and nutrients flow through the landscape.


McKenzie River Reflections is the weekly newspaper serving Oregon's McKenzie River Valley. Available by mail for $23/yr in Lane County, $29/yr outside Lane. Digital subscriptions are $23/yr. Subscribe at: Purchase copies online at: Read about area communities including Cedar Flat, Walterville, Camp Creek, Leaburg, Vida, Nimrod, Finn Rock, Blue River, Rainbow and McKenzie Bridge.