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The Scott River Water Trust is the first active water trust in California, obtaining its first water leases in 2007. Located in the middle of the Klamath River Basin, the Scott River watershed supports both family farms and annual runs of salmon and steelhead. Our purpose is to improve streamflow in priority fish habitat of the Scott River and its tributaries through voluntary leases with agricultural water users in the Scott Valley.

To help improve the survival and growth of young coho salmon and steelhead, we focus on leasing water during irrigation season in the late summer months primarily in the cooler, westside tributaries. In the fall when water is primarily used to water livestock, the Trust’s emphasis is on obtaining leases during dry years to increase mainstem Scott River flows for upstream migration access by spawning fall Chinook salmon, steelhead, and coho salmon.

Scott Valley is a community of about 6,500 people in western Siskiyou County, encompassing the cities of Etna and Fort Jones and the towns of Greenview and Callahan. The Trust is a community-supported organization that operates with the cooperation of local farmers, ranchers, agencies and businesses.


News & Updates

ABC Nightline Covers Scott River Coho Rescue & Relocation Effort, July 2014, with interview of Preston Harris, Executive Director of Water Trust. Program aired on August 29th.


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Young coho salmon and steelhead in upper Scott River, late July 2014.

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