Icicle Creek Flow Restoration
Icicle Creek, a tributary of the Wenatchee River, in Chelan County, WA has ideal conditions for steelhead, bull trout and Chinook salmon. Thanks to the ice-cold water flowing out of high snow-fed mountains, Icicle Creek is one of the most important rivers in the region for fish recovery. It is also an important tribal fishing grounds for the modern-day descendants of the Yakama, Chinook, and Wenatchi First Nations. Icicle Creek is fully allocated to out of stream uses. In 2020, Icicle Creek dipped down to 5 cfs in a reach where 60 cfs has been set as the minimum flow needed to sustain fish production objectives.
This project involves the direct purchase of at least 1,315 acre-feet of the most senior adjudicated water right on Icicle Creek in the Wenatchee watershed, near Leavenworth, WA. This water will be deeded into trust and permanently protected by the Washington State Trust Water Rights Program, administered by the Washington Department of Ecology. This project, combined with separately funded efficiency upgrades and downstream irrigation diversion move, will restore a total of 4,012 acre-feet in the flow-limited lower 4.5 river miles of Icicle Creek. It is a core project of the “Icicle Strategy” and a top-restoration priority for ESA-listed steelhead in the Wenatchee Basin.
* Project supports voluntary transactions to change, reduce or stop water use – either temporarily or permanently – to protect or restore water for environmental benefit