Youth Restore Crooked River Riparian Zone

sobre Jun 25, 2024

Central Oregon is known and loved for incredibly clean and inviting rivers that host endless recreation. However, even some locals are unaware of how luxurious this access truly is. In the city of Prineville, the Crooked River has been mistreated and neglected to the point of abandonment in certain areas. This, of course, is unfortunate not only for the humans who could utilize the space for personal enjoyment and as an outlet to connect with nature but also for the riparian zones and abundance of wildlife that depend on these habitats to survive. 

While this cause remained ignored, the debris and damage along the river continued to grow. It wasn’t until students from Crook County High School took action that Crooked River received relief. Determination and logical thinking resulted in the students’ realization that by working to create a safe river put in zone, the community could relax in the hot summer months by floating in their local river while also repairing a hospitable environment for the biodiversity that resides there. By coexisting respectively and conscientiously, every creature and every plant can benefit. 

From this initiative, the Crooked River Project was born. Since collaborating with Earthwin, we have informed the Director of Crook County Parks and Recreation of our goal, and he was enthusiastic about supporting us. 

To continue onward, we worked with the city of Prineville to identify the perfect plot of land for our desired result: 26 acres of Crooked River riparian zone. 

We are ready to unite and work towards our end goal of fish and wildlife habitat restoration, safe river access, and sustainable recreation! However, we mustn't get too ahead of ourselves.  

Over 200 students, teachers, and volunteers work together in preparing for this project. The work was difficult and the energy was light-hearted and enthusiastic. All types of trash were discarded in the area, and it took a lot of effort to pull acres of noxious weeds and willpower to pick up filthy plastics, cigarettes, beverage cans and caps, rotten food, feces. 

It was a lot of tough and dirty work, and according to all participants... entirely worth it. 

With this effort completed, we are ready to move on to the Planning Phase of the project to build a beautiful park with safe river access for our community. 


Kate Koblegarde 
Director of Strategic Communications, Earthwin™