The proposed Wild and Scenic River segments of the South Fork Eel and its tributaries support threatened and endangered populations of salmon and steelhead and rare plants. They also provide outstanding research opportunities of nearly pristine undeveloped watersheds.
The BLM found the East Branch South Fork Eel River and its Red Mountain tributaries to be eligible for Wild and Scenic protection because of their important anadromous fish habitat. Because of its water sources in the sponge-like serpentine soils of Red Mountain, extensive forest shading, swift flowing waters, and deep pools, the East Branch provides suitable conditions for salmon and steelhead even during drought. Federal officials recently identified the river as essential for the recovery of threatened salmon and steelhead. Peregrine falcons nest along the river. The East Branch South Fork is proposed as a “Potential Wild & Scenic River” – to be designated once sufficient lands are acquired by the BLM to make a manageable addition to the system.
Management Agency: Bureau of Land Management ~ BLM Arcata Field Office
Location: Mendocino County, CA 2nd Congressional District
Watershed: South Fork Eel River
Potential Wild & Scenic River Miles: 23.1 miles