Antelope Creek Watershed Stewardship - Lassen National Forest

Eastside Region

Redding’s Allied Stream Team

  • Location: Streams in the Redding urban area, Shasta County
  • Project Sponsor: Rotary Club of Redding
  • Time Frame: Past 10 Years
  • Project Objectives:
    • Implement projects devoted to habitat restoration, education and stewardship, litter abatement, and nonnative plant control

Antelope, Deer, and Mill Creeks in the Sacramento River Basin are eastside tributary watersheds that support valuable naturally reproducing stocks of anadromous fish. In 1997, the Lassen National Forest received a Phase I CALFED grant to plan extensive restoration work and implement and monitor several demonstration projects in the Deer, Mill, and Antelope Creek Watersheds. A Watershed Analysis for this area found the condition of two key watershed elements (surface erosion and near stream disturbance) differed significantly from the desired condition. Erosion in the upper watershed was estimated to be 60% higher than historical condition. The analysis further determined that roads were a primary source of the near-stream disturbance, and also the primary source of accelerated surface erosion. It was estimated that most (70%) of the accelerated erosion was produced by 5% of the road segments.

In the 1997 Phase I project, Lassen National Forest identified, analyzed, and prioritized more than 80 restoration sites in the Antelope Creek Watershed. That project also included the implementation and monitoring of several demonstration restoration sites. Concurrent with the Antelope Creek restoration work, problem road sites were being identified and restored in the Deer Creek and Mill Creek Watersheds, both on USFS and on private lands in partnership with Collins Pine Company and Sierra Pacific Industries.

In 2002, Lassen National Forest started Phase II of the Antelope Creek Watershed Stewardship Project. This project involved two principal tasks:

  • Task 1—One hundred forty-three individual treatments were implemented at 43 restoration sites. The treatments involved erosion/sediment control projects designed to reduce sediment source production and produce more natural patterns of runoff. These natural processes of runoff, sediment transport, and woody debris recruitment contribute to conditions favorable to salmon, steelhead, and their habitat. The treatments also involved restoring wetlands and riparian areas through decommissioning roads and restoring natural stream morphology, and improving fish passage by upgrading culverts or replacing them with fords. Significant in-kind match was provided by the Tehama County Roads Department.
  • Task 2—This task involved technology transfer and education outreach to watershed partners and stakeholders by packaging the restoration program monitoring results, which included data collection, problem site identification methods, development of restoration techniques, cost/benefit analysis, and before-and-after photographs.

Project work was completed in 2005 along with filming for presentations on erosion control treatments, a discussion of the importance of Antelope Creek (and Deer and Mill Creeks) to Sacramento River anadromous fisheries, and an overview of the findings of the watershed analysis.