Three Sisters Irrigation District: Cloverdale Lateral

Salmonid Habitat Restoration and Acquisition

Instream Flow
Project IDOWEB 220-8200-18650
Recovery DomainsInterior Columbia
Start Date03/12/2020
End Date12/31/2022
Last Edited07/21/2022
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Whychus Creek is located in Deschutes and Jefferson counties in Central Oregon and is a tributary to the Deschutes River, upstream of Lake Billy Chinook. This project occurs in Deschutes County near the City of Sisters, and involves the piping of the Three Sisters Irrigation Districts (TSID) Cloverdale lateral, north of TSIDs main canal.Historically, irrigation diversions dewatered Whychus Creek annually during the summer months, hampering resident fish populations and limiting the viability of efforts to reestablish anadromous fish populations in the upper Deschutes Basin. Since 2005, the Deschutes River Conservancy (DRC) and TSID have partnered to restore streamflow to Whychus Creek by piping TSID’s open earth canals to reduce seepage and evaporation loss. TSID transfers all water conserved from piping to instream use through Oregon’s conserved water statute with an 1895 priority date. The resulting instream water right helps meet the state instream water right—and DRC’s streamflow target--from April to October each year and improves conditions for reintroduced steelhead and native redband trout. Project partners include the Upper Deschutes Watershed Council, Deschutes Land Trust, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, Confederated Tribes of Warms Springs, Portland General Electric, National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and the U.S. Forest Service.

PCSRF FFY 2017 funds will be expended on project costs incurred during the PCSRF FFY 2017 contract award period and State funds will be used to complete the project. Because the projects scheduled end date is after the PCSRF FFY 2017 award closes, no funds allocated for this project are reported as match to PCSRF funds.

Project Benefit    

Flow restoration in Whychus Creek plays a critical role in the success of the salmon and steelhead reintroduction efforts currently underway in the Deschtues Basin and the broader effort to de-list and recover Mid-Columbia steelhead. It is one of several streams that comprise the Deschutes River Westside Population identified by the National Marine Fisheries Service in their Middle Columbia River Steelhead Recovery Plan.

Based on the most recent progress report published by the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife in 2011, the Deschutes River Westside population is a high risk population. High risk is defined as having a greater than 25% probability of extinction over a 100-year time period. The Recovery Plan and progress report identify primary limiting factors for viability and recovery. The habitat-related factors include altered hydrology (low flows), degraded water quality (high water temperature), degraded channel structure and complexity, degraded floodplain connectivity and function, and impaired or blocked fish passage.

Based on the population goals of the Recovery Plan and the primary limiting factors that it identifies, flow restoration in Whychus Creek is an essential action necessary to achieve viability thresholds within the major population group and achieve de-listing of Mid-Columbia steelhead. The proposed TSID Cloverdale lateral piping project and the broader suite of DRC flow restoration actions in Whychus Creek will improve each of the limiting factors for habitat. Enhanced flows help maintain cooler stream temperatures, support healthy riparian plant communities, provide necessary flows to connect off-channel habitat and floodplains to the stream, and ensure adequate water depths for migrating smolts and adults so they can access the habitat they need to satisfy their various life history requirements.


Metric Completed Originally

Funding Details

In-Kind Other$419,000
Report Total:$1,185,913

Project Map



  • Worksite Identifier: 18650
  • Start Date:
  • End Date:
Area Description

No Area Description data was found for this worksite.

Location Information

  • Basin: Deschutes
  • Subbasin:
  • Watershed:
  • Subwatershed:
  • State: Oregon
  • Recovery Domain: Interior Columbia
  • Latitude: 44.30556649
  • Longitude: -121.42811496


  • Middle Columbia River Steelhead DPS
  • Mid-Columbia River Spring-run Chinook Salmon ESU




  • C.0 Salmonid Habitat Restoration and AcquisitionY (Y/N)
    •      . . C.0.a Habitat restoration and acquisition funding
    •      . . C.0.b Length of stream treated/protected
    •      . . C.0.c
      Project identified in a Plan or Watershed Assessment
    •      . . C.0.d.1 Project Monitoring (LOV)
    •      . . C.3 Instream Flow ProjectY (Y/N)
      •      . . . . C.3.a Instream Flow Funding
      •      . . . . C.3.b Length of stream 'protected' for adequate flow
      •      . . . . C.3.c Change in water flow (cfs)
      •      . . . . C.3.e.1 Irrigation practice improvementY (Y/N)
        •      . . . . . . C.3.e.4 Initial start date of action or agreement (mm/dd/yyyy)
        •      . . . . . . C.3.e.5 Final end date of action or agreement (mm/dd/yyyy)