In early October, Rain Shadow was one of several local contractors to work with the Friends of the San Juans on a salmon habitat restoration project on Sucia Island. Located on a major migratory pathway for juvenile Chinook salmon, Sucia’s Mud Bay hosts a spawning bay and salt marsh that provide rare and valuable habitat for juvenile salmon and the fish, birds, vegetation, and marine mammals that are part of their food web. Prior to restoration efforts, an old road across the beach and salt marsh blocked fish passage and tidal exchange, buried spawning habitat, and prevented the site from adapting to sea level changes. During the two-week restoration project, crews removed the road, added sand and small gravel to restore the beach, and constructed a new inland road to allow State Parks staff to access their maintenance buildings.
Friends of the San Juans and Washington State Parks began the initial research for the project nearly seven years ago, with restoration efforts coming to fruition after several years of research, surveys, designs, engineering, and permitting. Coastal Geologic Services of Bellingham provided the restoration design and engineering and Mike Carlson Enterprises was awarded the public works contract. Rain Shadow provided tree removal and tree protection services throughout the restoration process.