"Fly Fishermen Love It, But It Wasn't Built for Them"

Let’s hope the attitude with which Utah undertook the restoration of the Provo River becomes fashionable. After all, what benefits fly fishers usually benefits a large percentage of the population — and the economy. The $55 million Provo River project, scheduled for completion this fall, guarantees flows and has already returned a large portion of the river to its pre-dredged-and-diked condition. Instead of spending money on biking and hiking paths — trusting that visitors will create their own — the Utah Reclamation, Mitigation and Conservation Commission focused on acquiring land that would give them the flexibility to let nature do its work. “‘The river is going to do what the river is going to do,’ [executive director Mike Weland] said. ‘[If] we come back in 20 years and the river is where we left it, we haven’t done our jobs.’ A crucial factor occurs when spring runoff shoves sediment downstream. As waters recede in summer, they leave wet muddy banks where the river bends. These newborn shores offer fertile ground to falling cottonwood seeds and other plants. As older cottonwoods die out, new ones take their place.”

This entry was posted in Conservation. Bookmark the permalink.