If the Owens River in California was allowed flow freely would there be enough waterflow to permit river rafting?

A little background– right now the City of Los Angeles takes most of the water from the Eastern Sierras that would otherwise replenish Mono Lake, the Owens River, and Owens Lake. I’m specifically wondering how big the water-flow on Owens River would be if LA didn’t take the water? Would it be enough to support activities like river rafting? What about the river and lake ecosystems? Would fish and other creatures thrive?



  1. 0 Votes

    The Owens River essentially ran dry because the water supply was diverted to the LA aqueduct.  There is a project that began in 2006 to restore water to the Owens river in order to replenish a holistic environment for native plants and wildlife.  It’s replenished from the aqueduct through a pump at 50 cubic feet per second.  The rate of replenishment has been chosen as such to simulate the natural habitat.  Fish and other wildlife are already beginning to re-emerge.


    Though it wasn’t explicitly written that rafting would be excluded, it seems unlikely public rafting would be allowed since it can interfere with the environment (primarily through pollution, left-behind objects, sunscreens, etc). However, the project is designed to establish recreation opportunites for hikers, boaters and bird watchers.


    The links below provide additional information on the project and an extensive list of wildlife which it will help foster.



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