The City of Independence has partnered with the Luckiamute Watershed Council (LWC) to restore the South Fork of Ash Creek, which flows through Mt. Fir Park. For many years, the South Fork existed as a holding pond for the Mt. Fir Lumber Mill; however during the winter of 2004-05, the dam which created the holding pond was undermined and compromised.
In September 2006, the LWC will coordinate the removal of the compromised dam and placement of approximately 50 boulders to recreate natural stream habitat. In February of 2007, the newly exposed riparian zone will be planted with a variety of native species. Ash Creek is home to steehead, salmon and cutthroat trout, and this project will open up a new strech of river for the fish. The project is being funded with grants from the Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board, The Oregon Wildlife Heritage Foundation, Ash Creek Water Control District, and equipment and labor donations from the city.