Years back the Kicking Horse River fanned the entire area where Golden is now situated. The town is built on this flood plain and as a result of this we channelled and diked the river.
The flow of gravel down the Kicking Horse will never stop short of a dam.
In the ‘70s the Conservation Officers would allow gravel extraction but never allow work in running water, and never allow leaving big holes or banks and the area was contoured to blend with the on-site area. These rules were strictly enforced.
MLAs, MPs, and Town Council with interested groups must lobby Federal Fisheries to obtain permission for a river maintenance plan which will consistently allow for gravel, boulder and silt extraction in the river.
We can beautify the dykes but we cannot keep raising them. If we do, we will be raising the three bridges.
“The gravel consists of larger rocks above Gould’s Island, very good road base gravel form the island on to the railway bridge and silty fill material at the confluence. This silt at the mouth of the Kicking Horse River was bulldozed up but never hauled away. This material should have been placed in low lying areas. The gravel bars above the railway bridge should be lowered and the product stockpiled for road work. There is some larger rock at the top end of Gould’s Island that should be carefully removed to allow the river to enter the overflow channel sooner, taking the pressure off the north side. This product can be used as Well rock, Gabion rock or crushed.”
If the above is carried out we would have less pressure on the dike, giving the citizens of Golden a comfort zone.
Our river system is very unique and we must have a strong lobbying team to convince fisheries of this solution. With today’s equipment and our knowledge of the fish habitat there is no reason we cannot have a plan that will benefit Golden and not harm the habitat or the beauty of our beautiful river system.