What's New

Leaburg HatcheryAngling success is higher when fishing for hatchery raised trout than it is for trout grown in a more natural setting, even when that more natural environment is created in a hatchery.
A recent study in Finland found that brown trout grown in a normal hatchery environment are more vulnerable to anglers because they have a greater tendency to explore and to grab at any food supply they see.
In the study, scientists created two rearing environments: a normal hatchery environment with concrete pens and a more natural or enriched hatchery environment that provided fish with cover, a rocky bottom and real insects during their early lives. Both types were fed pellets prior to release, but natural insects were also available in the enriched environment.

Leaburg DamLEABURG: Crews from Knight Construction and Wildish Construction are nearing completion of a project that will allow workers to inspect roll gates on the Leaburg Dam without having to drain the lake.
Passers-by may have noticed concrete panels Wildish has been assembling in the parking lot. When the Knight crew lowers them into slotted beams along the face of the dam they will create sort of a “dam within a dam,” according to Eugene Water & Electric Board senior civil engineer Steve Celeste. “That will allow us to test the gate and equipment to make sure it is working properly without draining the lake,” he noted.

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.

Inside chopperMIDDLE SISTER: Benjamin Newkirk, a 39-year-old climber from Bend, was found deceased late Sunday morning after a multi-day search that was complicated by extreme weather.
Newkirk was climbing the 10,047 foot Middle Sister with another climber when he fell off the west side of the south-east ridge of the mountain on Wednesday, November 12th, at approximately 10 p.m.
On Thursday, searchers were able to hike in seven miles from the Obsidian Trailhead but had to turn back around 2 p.m. when they were at the 6,200 foot level due to heavy snowfall and poor visibility. On Friday a fixed wing aircraft patrolled the area, reporting they could not see the mountain due to a low cloud ceiling.
The search team that found Newkirk included 15 volunteers - from Eugene Mountain Rescue and Corvallis Mountain Rescue, two Incident Command staff in Bend assisting with communications, and Command staff managing the mission from Eugene.


Bridge reconstruction mapRAINBOW: Local drivers will need to change their normal routes next year due to restoration work scheduled for the Belknap Covered Bridåçge. Theå Lane County Board of Commissioners was scheduled to approve a work schedule this week calling for preservation work to occur from April through September of 2015.
According to Lane County Public Works, the proposed closure is in the public interest so that the bridge rehabilitation work can be done safely and more efficiently.



LCSO mapUpdating Lane County’s computer aided dispatch system had the unexpected side effect of blocking easy access to reports on calls for police services. November 19th of 2013 marked the last time the public could find information about when and where the Lane County Sheriff’s Office was responding to things like robberies, harassment or traffic accidents.
Last week the Sheriff’s Office launched a new Crime Mapping/ Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD) Public Log. The system allows both the media and the public to have a short report on what’s occurred. In addition, the Sheriff’s Office can now provide McKenzie River Reflections with the more detailed reports that have been part of the newspaper for years, according to publisher Ken Engelman.

Search & Rescue teamMIDDLE SISTER: Benjamin Newkirk, the 39-year-old climber from Bend, Oregon, was found deceased late this morning (11/16) after a multi-day search that was complicated by extreme weather.
Newkirk was climbing the Middle Sister with another climber when he fell off the west side of the south-east ridge of the mountain on Wednesday, November 12th, at approximately 10:00 pm.

Weather conditionsMIDDLE SISTERS: The search is continuing for Ben Newkirk, a 39 year old Bend, Oregon resident who is reported to have fallen to the west off the south-east ridge of the Middle Sister in the Three Sisters Wilderness around 10:00 pm on Wednesday, November 12th. Search and Rescue Teams from Deschutes and Lane County responded. The climbing partner of Newkirk was able to walk out to Camp Lake where their camp was established. He was assisted out and back to Bend by Deschutes Search and Rescue personnel.




CulvertSALEM: Officials are saying taxpayers and native fish will both benefit under a new culvert repair pilot program agreed upon by the Oregon departments of Transportation and Fish and Wildlife, and recently approved by the Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission.
The three-year pilot program will make it easier for ODOT to make short-term repairs to culverts within its highway system. In return for including site-specific improvements in fish passage at each site, ODOT will receive a temporary reprieve from the state’s fish passage requirements that often involve more extensive repairs to provide full passage to native migratory fish.



Green IslandGREEN ISLAND: A million dollar project to recreate the way water used to flow has been underway this summer on the lower McKenzie River. The site formerly was home to gravel pits.
Crews from Wildish Construction Company moved over 110,000 cubic yards of gravel as they worked to recreate habitat for fish as part of the Coburg Aggregate Reclamation Project. Until the McKenzie River Trust purchased this 56-acre parcel in 2010, the site was mined for sand and gravel. The mining left behind steep gravel pits with few places for native plants to take hold.


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: http://mckenzieriverreflectionsnewspaper.com/catalog/subscriptions-0. Purchase copies online at: http://mckenzieriverreflectionsnewspaper.com/catalog/back-issues-0. Read about area communities including Cedar Flat, Walterville, Camp Creek, Leaburg, Vida, Nimrod, Finn Rock, Blue River, Rainbow and McKenzie Bridge.