The Corvallis Watershed is located approximately 16 miles west of Corvallis off Highway 34 on Mary’s Peak. It consists of approximately 10,000 acres and supplies the city with almost half its annual water needs. The City owns about one-fourth of the total watershed. The bulk of the remaining acreage is managed by the United States Forest Service (USFS) as part of the Siuslaw National Forest. The City began purchasing properties in the Watershed in the early 1900's and has been using it as a source of drinking water supply since that time. In 1920, the City of Corvallis convinced the USFS to purchase the remainder of the land in the Mary’s Peak drainage. Congress declared it a municipal watershed and closed to the public for the protection of the water supply.
Use of the Corvallis Watershed is limited by the City of Corvallis and the USFS for protection of the municipal water supply and the timber resource. However, a closed watershed provides excellent opportunities for controlled studies in forestry, hydrology, botany and other disciplines which need areas or subjects protected from outside interference. The Corvallis Watershed has been used frequently by local schools and colleges, fish and wildlife researches, and the USFS for these types of studies.
The overall goal of the City for the Rock Creek property is to provide a reliable source of high quality drinking water that surpasses all state and federal drinking water requirements. The Corvallis Forest property includes the Rock Creek water treatment plant, which produced 30 percent of the City’s annual water need, or about 1,040 million gallons of water in FY 10/11. Water quality for domestic use is the first priority for all management practices within the watershed on City land. The Corvallis Forest property also provides an opportunity to manage natural resources by restoring forest lands, terrestrial and aquatic habitats to natural conditions and processes.
The City Council adopted the Corvallis Forest Stewardship Plan on December 18, 2006, and adopted revisions and updates to the plan on July 1, 2013. A copy of the revised and updated Corvallis Forest Stewardship Plan may be downloaded from the links below.
Corvallis Forest Stewardship Plan
1. Executive Summary
3. History & Resource Conditions
5. Management Opportunities
7. Public Involvement
A. Public Participation Legacy
B. Fish and Aquatics Resources
C. Wildlife Habitats
2009 City of Corvallis Final Report
2014 Corvallis Watershed MAMU Report
USFWS Approved MAMU Plan
D. Natural Resources Inventory
Corvallis Forest Natural Resources Inventory Report 2010
Understory Plant Survey Final Report 2010
E. Social Impact Analysis
F. Stream Temperature Monitoring
For more information, contact Public Works at 541-766-6916.