Culvert replacement is for the fish

Six weeks of construction to re-open an Olympic Peninsula stream to salmon, steelhead and other fish is captured in this 1-minute and 25-second time-lapse video.

Upper sections of this unnamed tributary to the Hoh River had been blocked for years by an old, under-designed culvert beneath a forest road in the Olympic Experimental State Forest, managed by DNR. The project, completed September 2015, replaced a 60-inch culvert and an adjacent 42-inch culvert with a 60-foot concrete bridge, opening up 1,500 feet of fish habitat.

culvert removed
A 60-foot span (right photo) replaced culverts (left) that had blocked migrating fish from reaching upstream areas of this unnamed tributary of the Hoh River. Photo: DNR

Over the past 15 years, DNR has corrected more than 1,400 of these barriers to migrating fish, opening up more than 700 miles of habitat.

This $276,000 project was paid through the agency’s Access Road Revolving Fund, which is funded by fees paid by logging contractors that remove the timber DNR auctions. The department sells timber and other forest products to support county services, public school construction and other beneficiaries of state trust lands.