Tumalo Creek is Bend’s backyard recreation waterway, including the magical headwater springs, the scenic Tumalo Falls, the challenging canyon trails, the heart of Shevlin Park and the confluence with the Middle Deschutes.
For decades Tumalo Creek has been degraded by the diversion of its waters, sometimes to the point that only a trickle ends up flowing into the Middle Deschutes. The flows in Tumalo Creek at critical periods are far below even minimum instream flow goals.
Increasing flows in Tumalo Creek, to at least the minimum instream flow goals, is essential to restoring fish habitat and preserving the scenic and recreational opportunities the creek provides. Tumalo Creek is the only cold water tributary for more than 60 miles of the Middle Deschutes River and increased flows of Tumalo Creek are essential to restoring and creating a blue ribbon fishery in the Middle Deschutes River.
I call on elected officials in Deschutes County and across the State of Oregon to support water conservation efforts that protect fish habitat and recreational resources in Central Oregon. Especially when it comes to protecting the flows of Tumalo Creek.