EFID Diversion Upgrade
The East Fork Irrigation District (EFID) Fish Passage and Diversion Upgrade was implemented in the summer of 2013 to improve EFID diversion operations and ensure fish passage up the East Fork Hood River.
Since the February 1996 flood swept down the Hood River valley, EFID has been challenged with maintaining and operating their push-up dam and irrigation diversion above Tollbridge Park. The near-record flows changed the upstream channel configuration, making the channel less passable for steelhead and salmon populations.
This upgrade involved the installation of a pneumatically operated Obermeyer weir, to replace the existing rock push-up dam, and a new diversion structure. The weir lies flat against the channel bottom during the off season to allow for natural river flows. During irrigation season, the weir plate will be remotely raised and lowered by inflatable rubber bladders, allowing the diverted amount to be adjusted based on water demand. The upgrade also included a fish ladder to provide passage around the diversion when it is raised. EFID has agreed to pass a at least 15 cfs down the bypass reach for the next 5 years. During that time, flow will be evaluated.
Construction of the project was done by Crestline Construction. The company began preparing the site in early June 2013. In-water work, including installation of the Obermeyer weir, connecting the fish ladder to the river, and removal of the existing rock weir, and final construction was completed in the fall of 2013. Erosion control measures were put into place for the winter. The construction site was revegetated in spring of 2014.
Funding and assistance was provided by the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs (CTWS), Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board (OWEB), EFID, Title II, and the Hood River Watershed Group (HRWG).