Sediment budget research has been in progress at Tsitika River since the early 1990's. During that period an infrastructure has been built including a network of meteorological monitoring sites and nested automatic streamflow and sediment gauging sites. The most successful phase of that research has been the 1996-99 period of FRBC funded research in which storm-based sediment budgets were constructed for Russell Creek. These sediment budgets indicate that at Russell Creek, the contribution that road related sources makes to the sediment load of the creek varies with storm size, from 0% for a 20 mm storm to 30% for a 150+ mm storm (the sediment budget for the 150 mm storm is tentative). The research needs to be continued to verify the sediment budget for a full range of storm sizes and intensities at Russell Creek, to test the effects of road deactivation on the sediment budget, and to extend the research to Catherine Creek to construct a sediment budget in a more geomorphically active watershed. The specific goal of the forthcoming season's research is to evaluate the effectiveness of road deactivation at reducing unwanted sediment inputs to stream channels, and the effect that the deactivation has on the suspended sediment load as measured at the mainstem gauging site at Russell Creek bridge.
Robert J. Hudson