Restoring Fish Habitat on Upper Squamish River

Project Year: 2016-2017

View Provincial Database Record

Chinook Salmon: James Baxter

Project Lead

Squamish River Watershed Society


Coastal Region


Project Type

Habitat-Based Actions

FWCP Contribution


Action Plan Alignment

Cheakamus Salmonid Action Plan

Project ID


Upper Squamish River Habitat Restoration Project

This project involves restoring several important salmonid watercourses in the upper Squamish River Watershed, including High Falls Creek (adjacent to the Daisy Reservoir Penstocks), Branch 100 Creek, and Mile 22 Creek, to improve access for salmon stocks (including Coho, Chum, Pink, Steelhead, and Chinook) and provide overwintering, rearing, and spawning habitat.

The project will also increase habitat features, such as boulder clusters and Large Woody Debris (LWD) structures. The habitat values in this area have become reduced and impacted in recent years, as a result of large storm events and changes to the Squamish River mainstem.

Final Report: Executive Summary

The Upper Squamish River Habitat Restoration Project is a multi-year project that was divided into four major components during the fiscal year. The project fits direction within the directives identified in the Cheakamus Watershed Salmonid Action Plan as noted in Table 2 under Habitat Based Actions: a) Maintain existing constructed habitat enhancements for all salmonids; and b) Improve existing side channels and off-channel areas for all salmonids. These works included:

  • Culvert upgrades on High Falls with changes to the outlet location and improved access into the spawning channel;
  • Culvert replacement on Mile 22 Creek including redirecting flows along the east side (ditch) of the Forestry Road to increase flows downstream into the overwintering and rearing pond, converted 75m of the roadside watercourse into spawning habitat and constructed a 110m long spawning channel on the downstream (west) side of the road;
  • Improvements to Branch 100 Creek including reconstructing the spillway to re-water the 12,000 m2 wetland and improve flow and spawning habitat and construct a berm to maintain water levels in the over-wintering and rearing pond; and
  • Modifications to the Ashlu off-channel habitats including cleaning out the four culverts along the Forestry Road, construction of 4 new spawning channels on the north side of the road (upstream of the culverts) to improve water conveyance to each of the 4 culvert crossings and deter beaver dam activity, riparian planting of native species to provide shade and habitat complexity, and the installation of beaver control fencing.

These works all provide important improvements to habitat for salmonids including chum salmon, coho salmon, pink salmon, steelhead salmon, and juvenile Chinook salmon as well as other fisheries and wildlife.

Click the provincial database link below to read the full final report for this project.

View more about this project on the provincial database