Sept 6th – Confluence Agenda

The Namekagon Confluence
Coming Together to Preserve Our Water

September 6, 2014, 9:00 – 12:00
Lakewoods Resort, Cable WI
Hosted by the Namekagon River Partnership

Conversation One

JOIN US at Lakewoods Resort on beautiful Lake Namakagon from 9:00-12:00 on, Saturday, September 6, 2014 for the first in a planned series of conversations to unite the multitude of watershed stakeholders surrounding the Namekagon River to preserve its unique beauty and protect its lasting value for the future.

NOW is the time to actively shape our collective plan for the Namekagon River Watershed.

We welcome your collective ideas and support, as we begin the conversation. Our goal is to identify the top six initiatives that bring the greatest benefit to the future of the Namekagon Watershed. Please spread the word. All interested parties are welcome.

Proposed Agenda

9:00     Welcome
9:05     Opening Remarks – Frank Pratt, NRP President
9:15     Introductions – Governmental partners, organizations, attendees
9:25     Sigurd Olson Quote
9:30     Brief Process Description
9:35     Brainstorming Session – proposed initiatives from full group
10:15   Vote to determine six (6) highest initiative choices
10:30   Break, Vote Tally
10:45   Reveal Top 6 Initiatives
10:50   Breakout Roundtables to discuss 6 Top Initiatives – pick your highest priority
11:30   Roundtable Reports
11:50   Closing Remarks

FREE Registration

All attendees receive a Free annual NRP Membership.
Free-will donations are welcome.
Light snack provided by our sponsor Beehive Botanicals, Hayward, WI.

Register at the door or pre-register by sending an e-mail tonamekagon63@gmail.com.

For more information, visit www.namekagon.org or call Scott at 715-520-7732.

Sponsors

Beehive Botanicals, Hayward, WI

Stakeholders

USDA, Forest Service, Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest
National Park Service / St. Croix National Scenic Riverway
Couderay Waters Regional Land Trust
Trout Unlimited (Wild Rivers Chapter)
Cable Natural History Museum

In addition, these informal relationships have been established:

Bayfield County Lakes Forum
Bayfield County Land & Water Conservation Department
Bayfield Regional Conservancy
Down to Earth Tours
Fresh Water Fishing Hall of Fame & Museum
Friends of the St. Croix Headwaters “Canoes on Wheels” program
Hayward Fly Fishing Companyon
Northwest Passage “In a New Light” project
Northwest Wisconsin Waters Consortium
River Alliance of Wisconsin
Sawyer County Conservation Department
Sawyer County Lakes Forum
Sigurd Olson Environmental Institute, Northland College
St. Croix River Association
University of Notre Dame, Department of Biological Sciences An ever-growing group of Regional Businesses and Local Citizens

We look forward to seeing you…

The Namekagon River Partnership Board
Frank Pratt, President
Wendy Williamson, VP
Jim Brakken, Acting Secretary
Scott Peterson, Treasurer
Cindy Ferraro
Mike Gardner
Hobie Hobart

The Namekagon River Partnership (NRP) is a 501c3 organization formed in 2012. We believe the Namekagon River, its tributaries, and the entire watershed are a national treasure. NRP aspires to be a positive and proactive voice striving to increase the awareness of the river, retell its history, and advance a science-based discussion to protect its future.

September 6th – Confluence

The Namekagon Confluence
Coming Together to Preserve Our Water

Conversation One
September 6, 2014, 9:00 – 12:00
Lakewoods Resort, Cable WI

Sponsored by The Namekagon River Partnership

When the National Wild and Scenic Rivers Act was signed by President Lyndon Johnson back on October 2, 1968, the Namekagon River a tributary of the St.Croix River, became one of the first rivers placed on the list. The Namekagon watershed was deemed an integral part of this great commitment in protecting the best of our national resources. Besides government designation and protection the river also became, in large measure, the responsibility of all those who live on or near it. Fish it, paddle it, or simply gaze at its beauty.

As time has passed since its designation many pressures have come to challenge the resolve of its protectors to maintain the integrity of its purity, beauty and, indeed, its existence for all time to come. With the rise in water disputes and the multitude of water-related issues on a global scale, the status of our precious, pristine river and the attending watershed is more important than ever.

The time is NOW to begin to shape our collective plan for the Namekagon River Watershed of the future.

The Namekagon River Partnership (NRP) is a 501c3 organization formed in 2012. We believe the Namekagon River, its tributaries, and the entire watershed are a national treasure. NRP aspires to be a positive and proactive voice striving to increase the awareness of the river, retell its history, and advance a science-based discussion to protect its future.

Since we cannot tell the river’s story and continue without your ideas and your support, we welcome your participation as we begin the conversation. The more voices contributing to the conversation, be they from the Namekagon Watershed or the intricately-connected surrounding watersheds, the better able we will be to identify our common vision of how we might best discharge our responsibility to this essential endeavor.

We invite you to join us for this conversation from 9:00-12:00 on, Saturday morning September 6, 2014 at Lakewoods Resort on Lake Namakagon (the source of the Namekagon River). It is our hope that representatives from all lakes, riparian landowners, non-riparian land-owners, and users of the water and land resources within the watershed will attend. All interested parties are welcome.

FREE Registration
A light lunch will be provided.
All attendees receive a free NRP membership.

Register at the door or pre-register by sending an e-mail to namekagon63@gmail.com.

For more information, visit www.namekagon.org or call Scott at  715-520-7732.

We look forward to seeing you…

Gratefully,
The Namekagon River Partnership Board
Frank Pratt, President

Stakeholder Strategic Partners include:

Cable Natural History Museum

Couderay Waters Regional Land Trust

National Park Service / St. Croix National Scenic Riverway

Trout Unlimited (Wild Rivers Chapter)

USDA, Forest Service, Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest

 

In addition, these informal relationships have been established:

Bayfield County Lakes Forum

Bayfield County Land & Water Conservation Department

Bayfield Regional Conservancy

Down to Earth Tours

Fresh Water Fishing Hall of Fame & Museum

Friends of the St. Croix Headwaters “Canoes on Wheels” program

Hayward Fly Fishing Company

Northwest Passage “In a New Light” project

Northwest Wisconsin Waters Consortium

River Alliance of Wisconsin

Sawyer County Conservation Department

Sawyer County Lakes Forum

Sigurd Olson Environmental Institute, Northland College

St. Croix River Association

University of Notre Dame, Department of Biological Sciences

An ever-growing group of Local Citizens

Spring River Cleanup Event

Hello Everyone,

The 3rd Annual Namekagon River Cleanup scheduled for early May 2014 has been canceled due to continued high water!
Last year was a huge success and we anticipate another great cleanup event. Note:  The cleanup was rescheduled this year due to high water conditions.
We will be gathering at the DNR boat landing in Hayward (on Highway 27).
Whether you can spend an entire day or just a couple of hours we need your help.  We are looking for volunteers to:
  • Clean up the river (8AM-3PM)
  • Shuttle other volunteers and gear (8AM-10:30AM)
  • Assist signing in volunteers and distributing equipment (7:30AM-9:30AM)
  • Be a morning and/or afternoon lead for a landing (8AM-11:30AM and/or 11:30AM-3:00PM)
If you are interested in joining us, please register no later than April 16th by calling Hayward Fly Fishing at (715) 634-8149.  A limited number of canoes, lifejackets, and paddles are available. Please share with anyone who may be interested in volunteering on the Namekagon River.
**If we need to cancel due to weather or unsafe river conditions the cleanup will be held Saturday, May 3rd.** 
Thank you,
Branda Thwaits
St. Croix Natonal Scenic Riverway
Wendy Williamson
Namekagon River Partnership
Hayward Fly Fishing

October 19th Watershed Tour

On Saturday, October 19th, the Watershed Team hosted a tour of the upper Namekagon River for watershed stakeholders.  Dave Thorson, Down to Earth Tours, kindly provided a van to facilitate discussions.  A tour map and list of sites can be downloaded NRP 10-19-13 Tour Sites (requires Adobe Reader).

Click on images (below) to enlarge.

Tour Objectives:

  • Meet and greet stakeholders; promote stakeholder communication
  • Familiarize stakeholders with selected sites within upper Namekagon River Watershed
  • Introduce NRP proposal for watershed study (hydrology, water quality, etc.)
  • Sound out interest in fall 2014 Namekagon Watershed Stakeholder Roundtable

IMG_0975On this tour, we had representatives from Bayfield County, Couderay Waters Regional Land Trust, Namekagon River Partnership, Sigurd Olson Environmental Institute, Trout Unlimited (Wild Rivers Chapter), Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, and WOJB join us.

 

The first of nine tour sites wIMG_0977as the source of the Namekagon River at the dam at Lake Namakagon. This dam is owned by United States Forest Service. At this site both the river and the lake are warm-water fish habitat.  During the summer months the river below is usually too warm for even brown trout.

 

IMG_0979Lake Namakagon is a large natural, drainage lake, but the water level is enhanced on the order of 3 feet by the dam.  There has been a dam at or near this site since the early 1880s. The lake and surrounding area are extraordinarily important to the Namekagon River and its watershed.

IMG_0984

 

The second tour stop was Cap Creek, the most important site pertaining to the cooling effects of groundwater. This  area (also known as Schultz Springs), once was a private trout hatchery complete with ponds and a total re-channelization of the original Cap Creek.  IMG_0981

There is some indication that Namekagon was even diked off on the south bank.  Massive amounts of cold groundwater finds its way to the surface here. The Namekagon really is not a trout stream above here.  Due to Cap Creek and similar cold-water tributaries and springs, the next 18 miles of the river are up-graded to “ trout-water.”

 

IMG_0983 

This is an image of Cap Creek as we face the Namekagon River (the river is flowing right to left). In 2003-04 the WDNR and NPS worked jointly to restore the stream to a facsimile of its old bed, resulting in a tremendous increase in brook trout habitat. Techniques used had been field-tested on Hatchery Creek in Hayward, almost 20 years earlier.

IMG_0990
At our next stop, the real-time Namekagon River telemetry gauge is located at a bridge site on Leonard School Road. The on-going operation of this gauge is critical to watershed-level studies of surface and groundwater hydrology that are anticipated. Flow volumes and water temperature can be seen here: http://waterdata.usgs.gov/usa/nwis/uv?05331833

IMG_0986This is the nearby equipment cabinet.  The river gauge is automated and runs 24/7.  River data is communicated to USGS (United States Geological Service), a science organization that provides impartial information on the health of our ecosystems and environment. USGS maintains this equipment on an on-going basis.

IMG_0993This USGS facility needs to be kept up and running “forever.” The flow and temperature data which it generates are just that valuable – especially in the face of the impacts of climate change. It costs $11,500 per year and it will run for 2014, even though we still have to come up with $2500 more. After 2014, we need a long-term plan.

IMG_0994At the last tour site included in this post, we visited Pacwawong Lake Dam and the adjacent campsite.

 

 

 

IMG_1001

 

 

There has always been an extensive natural lake and wetland complex here – very important  to the Ojibwe wild rice harvest

 

 

IMG_0998

The dam is slowly being eroded and with it about two feet of water level supplementation.  It has been in place (at least) since early logging times.  As it goes, cold-water fishery may benefit. The impact on the wild rice in Pacwawong Lake is unknown.

IMG_0995

 

Thanks to all of the participants for joining our tour. We greatly appreciate your interest in our wonderful Namekagon River Watershed.  Given sufficient interest, additional tours (both by road and water) are planned.

2013 Photo Contest

A Day in the Life of the Namekagon – 2nd Annual NRP Autumn Photo Contest

Important NotePhoto entries are due by October 15, 2013.

Photo Contest Entry Form: (requires Adobe Reader)
NRP Photo Contest 2013 Entry Form

Photo Contest Update: (requires Adobe Reader)
Photo Contest 2013 Update

Photo Contest News Release (requires Adobe Reader)
NRP Photo Contest News Release 2013

Watershed Map (click to enlarge)
Namekagon River Watershed Map

NRP_PHOTO_CONTEST_POSTER_2013

 

Leonards Gage Update

This station will likely be discontinued October 1, 2014 due to lack of funding.

This is the message that now appears on the USGS Leonards Gage site: http://waterdata.usgs.gov/usa/nwis/uv?05331833

We are making some progress, as the Leonards Gage will be operational for another year, but only if we can come up with $2,500 in funding within a “reasonable” period of time. Thank you USGS for your willingness to work with us.

This is the only automated river gage on the upper Namekagon River. This gage on Leonard School Road bridge provides vital data retention and real-time telemetry used by many: fishermen, paddlers, researchers, etc.  Note:  gage = gauge.  By tradition, hydrologists use this spelling for devices that measure stream flow and temperature…..so we will honor their spelling preference.

To keep this gage in operation through September 30, 2014, NRP has pledged to raise $2,500 of the $11,500 annual operating cost.

To help, please send a generous contribution to:

Namekagon River Partnership
Leonards Gage Fund
PO Box 1349
Hayward, WI  54843

If you have questions, please contact us at: namekagon63@gmail.com

Save Leonards Gage

This station will likely be discontinued October 1, 2013 due to lack of funding.

This is the message that appears on the USGS Leonards Gage site:
http://waterdata.usgs.gov/usa/nwis/uv?05331833

We need your help!

The only river gage on the upper Namekagon River is in danger of shutting down.  This automated gage on Leonard School Road bridge provides vital data retention and real-time telemetry used by many: fishermen, paddlers, researchers, etc.  Note:  gage = gauge.  By tradition, hydrologists use this spelling for devices that measure stream flow and temperature…..so we will honor their spelling preference.

To keep this gage in operation for the 12-month period starting on October 1, 2013, NRP has pledged to raise $2,500 of the anticipated $11,500 annual operating cost.

To help, please send a generous contribution to:

Namekagon River Partnership
Leonards Gage Fund
PO Box 1349
Hayward, WI  54843

If you have questions, please contact us at: namekagon63@gmail.com