The proposed Goodfellow/Chotzen Floodplain Reconnection Project (Sunnyslope side channel) utilizes natural processes to restore floodplain functions in an approximately 5-acre area located along the left bank (north side) of the Wenatchee River at RM 1.4. The project will remove a low earthen berm from the floodplain, allowing water from an existing side channel to access a larger portion of its historic floodplain during high flows. Additionally, a ~375 foot-long backwater channel will be excavated into the floodplain to serve as a reconnection point for water flowing across the newly opened floodplain area. All disturbed areas will be revegetated with native riparian species.
Removal of the earthen berm will improve function for the river and existing side channel through natural processes. The excavated backwater channel at the reconnection point will be accessible to juvenile salmonidsusing the Wenatchee River mainstem, and will function as high-flow refuge and offchannel foraging area. The project will allow the Wenatchee River mainstem to better access a larger portion of its floodplain during high flow periods, while also increasing the quality/quantity of vegetation in the riparian corridor.
Goal: 0.25 mile
The Sunnyslope side channel project is located on the Wenatchee River at RM (river mile) 1.4. This excavated side channel is approximately 1,350 feet in length. It is connected to a natural side channel of the Wenatchee River at the upstream end and flows into the mainstem of the Wenatchee River at the downstream end. This project goal was to create a groundwater-fed side channel with an upstream connection during high flows (approximately 7,000 cfs). The ground water will provide a cool refuge during hot summer temperatures creating juvenile anadromous salmonid rearing habitat. Based on the natural side channel connected at the upstream end, adult salmonid spawning may also be a possibility within the new channel.
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