February Riverscape
From The Riverkeeper
(photo: Our River Discovery Paddle Trip from earlier this month, resting in view of the BNSF railroad bridge in Portland Harbor, which may soon carry more trains hauling crude oil from the Alberta tar sands)

Mid-February, the snowpocalypse passed, but the rain is coming down. As a result, the Willamette is rising fast. Even in a time of below normal snowpack, the wallop of these storms can be significant to the river, sending flow into the floodplains and making side channels big and fast.

In relation to growing storms, recently WR picked up on the expansion of an oil-train terminal in Portland Harbor. While technically legal due to a permit provided in 2014, just before the City of Portland outlawed such expansion in 2015, it is somewhat ironic that crude from the tar sands of Alberta (see image below, courtesy of Patagonia) is likely being exported to China. Research by OPB, WR and our partners has shed additional light, fact by fact, on what is happening. 
The irony for me is that in a time of working to curb our emissions, such crude is being exported, and on top of that it is one of the most destructive processes to the landscape of the watersheds in Alberta. Multiple documentaries have been made about the Peace River and other areas where tar sands are scraped from the earth, leaving a wasteland behind and creating local water quality issues. 

It doesn’t make much sense to be exporting this material, given the source, the increased carbon emissions in China, and the potential for a spill en route to Portland of a substance that is heavier than most oil types. WR will be tracking this issue and working with our partners to remedy the situation on a variety of levels. 

For the River,


Riverkeeper & Executive Director
Mussel Mania Presentation- 2/19
What:  Mussel Mania Presentation
When:  Tuesday, February 19th from 6:30pm to 8:00pm
Where:   WildCraft Cider House in Eugene

The western pearlshell mussel can be found in many rivers in Oregon, but like other river species they are under threat from dams, pollution and habitat destruction. Join Travis Williams, Willamette Riverkeeper Executive Director and long-time Riverkeeper, for a presentation about the health and our current understanding of this amazing species.

Remember - $1 from every WildCraft cider sold goes back to support Willamette Riverkeeper's mission to protect, restore and celebrate our river! Come raise a glass for freshwater mussels!
Volunteers Needed- Trashy Thursday- 2/14

What: Corvallis River Guardians Trashy Thursday
When: Thursday, 2/14 from 8:30am - 1:30pm

Let's show our mighty Willamette some LOVE this Valentine's Day and give the gift of Clean River! Afterwards, please join PEAK Sports at the take out for lunch! PEAK Sports is also offering 75% off water sports rentals to those participating in Trashy Thursday - if you want to paddle your own boat, this is a great opportunity! (You must be an adequate paddler in moving water as this is not an instructional opportunity.)

Details: Join Willamette Riverkeeper, along with our partners at Corvallis Parks & Recreation, Marys River Watershed Council, Oregon State Park, and American Canoe Association - come volunteer with the Corvallis River Guardians as we float the Willamette River from Crystal Lake Boat Ramp to Michael's Landing to pick up trash and debris from the urban riverbanks. This month we're set on picking up trash between the bridges, starting at the Mary's River Confluence. Limited seating in rafts, or Bring Your Own Boat (BYOB).

For further details including meet up times, and what to bring, visit our registration page . Questions? Contact michelle@willametteriverkeeper.org or 541-913-4318.
River Discovery Scappoose Bay Paddle- 3/9
What: River Discovery Scappoose Bay Paddle
When: Saturday, 3/9 from 9:30am to 1:30pm
Where: Meet at Scappoose Bay Marina

Details:  Breaking from the mainstem Willamette a few miles before the confluence with the Columbia, Multnomah Channel eventually spills into the low, tidal estuary of Scappoose Bay. Adjacent to Sauvie Island National Wildlife Area, the bay teems with wildlife. Here, juvenile salmonids seek refuge from strong river currents before migrating to the ocean, and bald eagles, herons, and tundra swans grace the skies. The Scappoose area claims a compelling Northwest history that includes thriving Chinook villages. We'll explore the Bay's many back channels as the water levels allow, and perhaps even visit the remains of an old wooden ship.  

Bring:  $5 for the Marina parking fee, your camera, binoculars, water, lunch, and a hot drink. Dress WARM; tall rubber boots are suggested to keep your feet warm and dry. It can be very muddy here when stepping out of your boat. We also recommend packing a hat, gloves, extra warm/dry layers. Splash wear such as a rain coat and pants with fleece underlayers is a good choice for those using our canoes.

Need a Boat?  Riverkeeper canoes are available upon request for $20 (per canoe) for non-members, or FREE for current members. You must recruit your own paddling partner.  

BYOBoat?  Non-members are welcome to participate with a $10 donation, or choose to become an active Riverkeeper member for a one time fee of just $50. 

Your support makes our work and outreach possible!  Become become a member today !  
Nurturing Our Floodplain
We are at it again! Planting continues this month as part of our landscape-scale restoration project Willamette Mission State Park . This year we are working on some infill planting in the North Forest and Beaver Island, as well as some new planting in some old abandoned agricultural fields in the South Forest Management Unit. Altogether we plan to plant 63,000 native trees and shrubs this year . Come visit the park to see all the amazing progress we’ve made!

What does it take to get this massive job done? Watch the newly released short 6 minute film titled " Roots ," produced by One Tree Planted, which shares the daily work, hope, and perspective of one professional female tree-planter working at our Willamette Mission project site.
Paddle Oregon 2019- Registration Open
Get ready folks!!!
REGISTRATION and TRIP DETAILS at www.PaddleOregon.org
Take advantage of our Early Bird Discount now through May 1st!
NEW Pinot Paddle- Registration Available SOON!
The first ever Pinot Paddle will take place on June 15-16, 2019. Celebrating some of our regions great winemakers, this is a leisurely paddle trip from Salem down to San Salvador. We will camp along a beautiful side channel on an Oregon State Parks Greenway property. 

Several premier winemakers (such as Arcane Cellars , Cramoisi , Goodfellow Family Cellars , Winderlea Vineyard & Winery ) will join us for a tasting of their Pinot vintages, as well as other wines. The event will be fully catered after lunch on Saturday, and participants simply have to paddle, set up their tents, and prepare to enjoy a beautiful late spring evening! Details and registration will be available on our website soon!
BYO Bag To Support Clean Water
We are super excited to announce several ways you can support clean water and healthy habitat while you run your errands! Five, that's right FIVE different stores and 3 different companies are currently offering to donate 5 cents to Willamette Riverkeeper when you shop and choose to bring your own bag! 

Please support these stores and your river JUST by bringing your own bag!

Yoga For Good- Wednesdays in Portland
When: Wednesdays @ 4:30pm
Where : Central Lutheran Church, ( 1820 NE 21st Ave, Portland 97212)
Cost: $10 donation recommended

Come join our own Development Director and yoga guru, Heather King, each Wednesday afternoon in Portland for an enlightening hour-long yoga session. Everyone, no matter your experience level, is invited and welcome! Please bring your own mat and props.

The class is a suggested donation of $10 and all money raised will be donated directly to Central Portland, 350PDX and Willamette Riverkeeper! It is a wonderful way to get past hump day, get your zen on and give back to some amazing organizations!