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Save Our Streams

SOS Comes To Duluth!!

The McCabe chapter has initiated a “Save Our Streams (SOS)” program in the Duluth Area. This  cooperative effort between the Ikes and Lowell Elementary School has had both classroom lessons, and on-the-stream experiences (which the kids loved!). For over 30 years, the Ikes have been using the SOS program to educate youth to be wise stewards of their stream resources. It is a grassroots watershed conservation program dedicated to educating youth in concepts of stream ecology and management. 

The McCabe chapter chose Chester Creek for the SOS program in Lowell Elementary. Chester Creek drains a watershed of 6.6 square miles or 4,200 acres. The creek is contained almost entirely within the city limits of Duluth and runs through a mixture of residential, commercial and undeveloped areas. Only 40% of the watershed is developed and much of that is located below Chester Bowl. Chester Creek is considered a cold water stream and has supported a wild population of brook trout. Chester Creek should provide wonderful opportunities for the education of students from Lowell Elementary.

The Izaak Walton League hopes that this cooperative effort to establish “Save Our Streams” with Lowell Elementary will result in a program that will last for many years. Initially, there were four classroom sessions from January through April, and a field trip in June. Parent participation during the field portion of the program was strongly encouraged, and several moms and dads did indeed show up to lend a hand. Chapter officers John Lindgren, Samantha Webster and Brent Gurtek all played a hand in organizing the program or helping out at the stream-side ecology lesson. Our thanks too to Lowell for incorporating this program into their curriculum.

Duluth is blessed with many trout fishing opportunities within the city limits. Very few United States cities are similarly blessed. Because of this, the McCabe chapter of the Izaak Walton League has a long history of activity focusing on protection and preservation of cold water stream resources in Duluth. The SOS program is intended as an activity to promote understanding and stewardship for our local cold water streams, and build a new generation of stream advocates.