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Tue, Nov 22


Denali Education Center, Talkeetna Campu

Salmon Gold: Fall's Creek Restoration Project

How do you return a former gold claim back to a salmon bearing stream?

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Salmon Gold: Fall's Creek Restoration Project
Salmon Gold: Fall's Creek Restoration Project

Time & Location

Nov 22, 2022, 6:00 PM

Denali Education Center, Talkeetna Campu, 22510 S Talkeetna Spur, Talkeetna, AK 99676, United States

About the event

How do you return a former gold claim back to a salmon bearing stream?

Join the Susitna River Coalition on November 22, 2022 at 6PM on the Denali Education Center Talkeetna Campus as we welcome gold miner Howard Carbone and watershed restoration engineer Corinne Marzullo to discuss a stream restoration project. 

*There will be an option for virtual attendance*

In 2022 a landowner implemented a stream channel and floodplain restoration project on Falls Creek, a tributary to Cache Creek in the Mat-Su Borough, Alaska.

Beginning in 1906, mining operations in the area have adversely affected stream function and habitat. The channels are deeply entrenched creating poor fish habitat, have little sinuosity or large woody debris, few pools and side channels, and are artificially straightened and confined limiting interaction with the riparian and flood plain areas.

To design the new channel, a disturbed reference reach was used as a template. Neighboring miners and their heavy construction equipment were hired to construct a new stream channel corridor that approximated the reference reach morphology. The results were an increase in the overall channel length , channel sinuosity, average slope, the amount of pool habitat, glide type habitat and riffle area along with increased large in-stream wood within the project area.

The Stream Quantification Tool was used to establish a baseline before the project and will be used for long term monitoring. One result was that adult Chinook (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) and Coho salmon (O. kisutch) and fry were observed to be using the project area for the first time since observations began in 2019.

The project was funded as a demonstration project for Salmon Gold, who works with miners to do enhanced reclamation and habitat restoration.

Howard Carbone owns and operates Alaska Nature Guides along with his wife Noelle. He moved to Alaska from Michigan in 1992 after earning a master’s degree in biology. His Alaskan adventures have included fatherhood, hunting, fishing, photography, skiing, snow machining, climbing Denali, and now small-scale gold mining. A desire to leave his land better than he found it led him to partner with miners, conservationists, and a watershed restoration engineer in an effort to restore salmon habitat impacted by mining. He is a Susitna River Coalition board member.

Corinne Marzullo is a Watershed Restoration Engineer with 17 years of experience working on large scale restoration projects across the country. She has extensive experience working on sites that have been heavily impacted by mining operations to restore channel features and improve habitat. Her primary responsibilities have been to conduct site visits to complete the geomorphological and hydraulic studies to assess the overall project conditions, perform site surveys, complete designs using stream simulation, river geomorphology concepts and other restoration methods including large wood structure design and sediment transport. She also oversees the implementation on these types of projects.

To participate via Zoom, Register here:

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