AWRA Seattle 2009 Annual Conference
Field Trips

We have several terrific field trips being planned for Sunday, November 8 and Wednesday, November 11.  You will need to register for a trip in order to participate ( even for the free one ). Please check this page again for updates.

d   Sponsored by Seattle Public Utilities  

2009 AWRA Annual Conference field trips :

  Trip Name Date/Time Cost Status
  Pre-Conference Field Trip 1: Duwamish River Tour 8 Nov 9:00am $52 CANCELLED
  Pre-Conference Field Trip 2: Seattle Cedar River Watershed Tour 8 Nov 9:00am $15 OPEN
  Pre-Conference Field Trip 3: Innovative Stormwater Facilities 8 Nov 9:00am $45 CANCELLED
  Pre-Conference Field Trip 4: Hiram M. Chittendon Lock and Dam 8 Nov 12:00pm $0 OPEN
  Conference Field Trip 5: Ferry Excursion on Puget Sound 11 Nov 5:30pm $0* OPEN
  *Ferry trip participants must purchase a $10 ferry ticket      

Trip 1: Duwamish River Tour
Hobble Creek
Sunday, Nov 8, 2009 / 9:00 AM - 3:00 PM
Cost : $52
( lunch included )
Tentative SchedulE
9:00-9:15 Load buses at Red Lion
9:30 Arrive at Herring House Park
9:30-11:00 Tour of Duwamish Superfund site and Salmon Habitat Restoration Area
11:00-12:00 Tour of Duwamish Tribe Longhouse
12:00-12:30 Lunch
12:30-2:30 Volunteer Activity
2:30-2:45 Load buses
3:00 Arrive back at Red Lion

Tour Description
Duwamish River Cleanup Coalition staff will guide participants on a land tour of the Duwamish River Superfund Site, listed by the EPA in 2001 as one of the country's most toxic sites. Participants will learn about the natural and human history of the Duwamish Valley, environmental health, and the future of Seattle's very own Superfund cleanup site.  Part of the Herring House park tour will include a close-up view of the salmon habitat restoration site that was created from land previously used as a lumber yard.  This site now provides off channel refuge for salmon fry transitioning to salt water and adults transitioning to fresh on their way upriver to spawn.  In addition, an ethno botanist specializing in the natural history of the Duwamish River basin will describe how the Seattle Fault affected the river hydrology and ecosystem over the last 7,000 years.

The tour will continue with a visit to the Duwamish Longhouse, a replica of the traditional winter housing used by Puget Sound Native Americans.   The longhouse serves as a cultural center for the tribe, gallery, museum, gathering space, and location for many events open to the public.  The Director of the longhouse and council member of the Duwamish tribe will guide this portion of the tour and provide a historical perspective regarding the tribe’s history and interaction with the river.

Following lunch, attendees will have an opportunity to participate in a volunteer activity (still in planning) that will likely involve planting and/or removal of invasive vegetation.  In addition, a portion of the participation fee will be gifted to the Duwamish Tribe and the Duwamish River Cleanup Coalition to support these worthwhile organizations.

Herring House Park was originally a seasonal and then permanent settlement for the Duwamish tribe for thousands of years before settlement in 1850s. After removal and exclusion of the Duwamish tribal members from owning property in Seattle, the area became the Seaboard Lumber yard and a small riverside neighborhood. The Port of Seattle intended to develop the site as a cargo terminal, but discovered archeological artifacts and had to stop construction. This site is called Duwamish Site 1 and today is a protected heritage site.

In modern history, the Duwamish River was straightened and dredged to become an industrial shipping hub, and 100 years of industrial pollution and ongoing stormwater contamination have created a 'toxic stew' in the sediments of the Duwamish River, impacting human health and the environment. Currently the Port, the City of Seattle, King County, and the Boeing Company are the main responsible parties, working with the EPA on the river cleanup and mitigation.

The Duwamish River Cleanup Coalition is the Community Advisory Group to the EPA, working to empower the communities surrounding the Superfund sites to become involved in the river cleanup planning and the future of the river. In 2008, DRCC and community leaders created the Duwamish Vision, a comprehensive community-based framework for the future of the cleaned up river. During 2009-2010, DRCC and community leaders are enacting the vision as the EPA and the responsible parties develop their cleanup plan of the river.


Trip 2: City of Seattle Cedar River Watershed Tour
Hobble CreekRegistrations must be made by October 19, 2009 Sunday, Nov 8, 2009 / 9:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Cost : $15
( lunch included )
Tentative SchedulE
8:45 AM » Celese Spencer will meet tour participants at Red Lion Inn.
9:00 AM » Bus departs Red Lion Inn. Bus will follow I-90 east to Exit 17 in Issaquah (Front Street Exit). Bus continues south from Issaquah to Landsburg.
10:00 AM » Bus arrives at Landsburg, which is the fish passage facility at the entrance to the Cedar River Watershed. Rand Little of SPU will talk about the fish passage facility.
11:15 AM » Bus departs Landsburg. Bus continues on a well-maintained gravel road up the watershed (no 4-wheel drive vehicle is necessary, as many school buses use the same road).
12:00 PM » Bus arrives at the Cedar Rive Education Center. AWRA will provide tour participants with box lunches.
12 - 12:45 PM » Lunch and tour of the Education Center
12:45 » Bus continues to the masonry dam
1:00 - 1:30 PM » Participants tour the dam facility
1:45 PM - 2:30 PM » Tour Chester Moser Lake – Tom Fox of SPU will discuss use of this lake for the City of Seattle water supply.
3:00 PM » Bus arrives at scenic Cedar Falls
3:30 PM » Bus departs Cedar Falls
4:30 PM » Bus returns to Red Lion Inn.

Tour Description
The City operates a 90,000 acre area covering the headquarters of the Cedar River in the Cascade Mountains, southeast of Seattle. This closed watershed provides two-thirds of the water supply to Seattle and many of the surrounding communities.

The tour will start with a visit to the special fish passage facility at the lower end of the watershed. It features a unique device for selectively moving Coho and other native salmon runs past a former migration barrier. The tour will then pass through a major portion of this pristine watershed, including scenic Chester Morse Reservoir and Lake Young, with stops at several archaeological sites.

Box lunches will be served at the Visitor Interpretive Center at Rattlesnake Lake where participants can view fascinating water chimes. The tour will emphasize watershed management and river flow enhancement for fishery and recreational purposes, as well as water supply. Several examples of river restoration projects will be viewed along the lower Cedar River. The tour will be lead by Celese Spencer of Seattle Public Utilities (SPU).

This tour may be cancelled if there is snow on the watershed. The participants should dress in warm clothes and bring rain gear.

The tour will leave Red Lion Inn at 9 Am on Sunday morning, returning at 4:30 PM.


Trip 3: Innovative Stormwater Facilities
Sunday, Nov 8, 2009 / 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Cost : $45
( lunch included )
Tentative SchedulE
9:00 AM » Leave Red Lion Hotel in Downtown Seattle
9:30 AM » Arrive at Site 1: SeaStreet - 2nd Ave. NW and NW 102nd Street, Seattle
10:15 AM » Leave Site 1
10:45 AM » Arrive at Site 2: Ballard Library Green Roof – 5711 24th Ave. NW, Seattle
11:30 AM » leave Site 2
Noon Arrive at Site 3: Highpoint Project – SW Graham Street and 32nd Ave. SW, Seattle
1:30 PM » Leave Site 3; Eat box lunches on bus
2:30 PM » Arrive at Site 4: Puyallup Extension Service Office – 2606 West Pioneer, Puyallup
4:00 PM » Leave Site 4
5:00 PM » Arrive at Red Lion Hotel in Downtown Seattle

Tour DescriptioN
Green Infrastructure has been recognized as an important approach for reducing the impacts of urban development.  Low impact Development (LID) is a vital component in this strategy to guide development in a manner which more closely mimics nature.  For more than a decade, Seattle has been a national leader in testing and promoting LID measures.  This tour will offer an in-depth view of a variety of LID measures. 

The tour will begin at the nationally famous SEAStreets Project, installed a full decade ago. Attendees can see, first-hand, the aesthetic value that a well-designed LID project can bring to a neighborhood. Another stop will be the Highpoint Redevelopment Project, featuring large-scale LID at a watershed scale. The tour will include a visit to the Ballard Library to view the building's functioning green roof. Finally, the tour will visit the LID demonstration facility currently under construction in adjacent Pierce County. This project is located at the Washington State Extension Service and the tour will be hosted by Curtis Hinman, a regional leader in LID applications.

The tour will leave Red Lion Inn at 9 AM on Sunday morning, returning by 5 PM.


Trip 4: Tour of Hiram M. Chittendon Lock and Dam, Seattle WA
Hobble Creek
Registrations must be made by October 19, 2009
Limited to 20 participants
Sunday, Nov 8, 2009 / 12:00 noon - 4:00 PM
Cost : Free of Charge
(Transportation on local bus - $3.50 Roundtrip fare – must have exact change of $1.75 each way )
Tentative SchedulE
12:00 Noon »   Meet local AWRA guide in the Red Lion Inn lobby then take local bus to the locks.
1:00 – 3:00 PM »  The US Army Corps will provide guided tour of the locks.
3:00 – 4:00 PM »   Return to Red Lion Inn or participants can extend the tour by exploring nearby gardens after 3 PM and return on their own.

Tour Description
The US Army Corps of Engineers is pleased to provide a tour of the Hiram M. Chittendon Lock and Dam.  The tour will include both an enhanced public tour (behind the scenes) as well as an “Under” the scenes view.

The Project was built almost 100 years ago.  The 8-mile long Lake Washington Ship Canal connects Lake Washington to the Puget Sound.  A 2-foot operating range for the Lake allows control for navigation, fish passage, and salinity control.  Two floating bridges and many private and commercial structures are dependent on this highly-controlled lake level.

Challenges associated with an aging structure include updating facilities, meeting maintenance requirements, improving water quality and fish habitat, balancing increased need for water for fish passage, and planning for the effects of climate variability.


Trip 5 : Ferry Excursion on Puget Sound
Hobble Creek Wed, Nov 11, 2009 / 5:30 PM - 9:00 PM
Cost : free of charge
(participants are responsible for purchase of $10 ferry ticket)
Registrations must be made by November 11

Tour DescriptioN
Washington State Ferry System offers a number of walk-on ferry rides on Puget Sound.  Your guide for this popular activity will be Pete Sturtevant who will accompany you on one of the loveliest rides - the Seattle-to-Bremerton Ferry.  This route leaves from downtown Seattle, crossing Seattle’s busy Elliott Bay and the central portion of Puget Sound.  

The ferry passes through scenic Rich and Sinclair Inlets before docking at Bremerton.  Returning aboard the same ferry, this 2+-hour roundtrip boat ride provides a great opportunity to relax and chat with other conference attendees.  Aboard the ferry, on the way across to Bremerton, we’ll have an informal discussion about the origins of Puget Sound (carved by glaciers a mile thick), our local population of Orca whales and the present-day challenges of maintaining water quality and migrating salmon populations in the face of large population increases. 

The trip will culminate with an incomparable view of downtown Seattle at nighttime, as the ferry docks a final time.  You get all this for the cost of a $10 round-trip ferry ticket (purchased before boarding the ferry).  You’ll arrive back in downtown Seattle around 9 PM and still have time to explore the city’s nightlife (if you so choose).

Meet at 5:30 PM – Red Lion Lobby.  We will walk a bit less than one mile to the ferry terminal.