FLSRV heronFLSRV.org
  • To preserve and sustain the unique character of the Little Spokane River Valley, including it's open space and natural setting.
  • To maintain lower density zoning.
  • To protect the area's ecosystem including water quality, wetlands, priority habitat and wildlife, and dwindling native vegetation.
  • To encourage the development of area parks and natural areas.
  • To educate public officials of the concerns of the Friends of the Little Spokane River Valley, and be pro-active when major issues are at the forefront.



  •   Search
    Welcome to the Friends of the Little Spokane River Valley

    Water Quality
    by Tina Wynecoop
    A team of four women, who just happen to be FLSRV members, volunteers to monitor the water quality of Little Spokane River, Deadman Creek and Little Deep Creek. We've been meeting once a month for nearly a decade at our team leader's home to run tests which the Spokane Conservation District (SCD) considers to be credible and useful data in helping guide management decisions about our region's watershed.



    With monitoring equipment supplied by SCD, the team measures pH, temperature, dissolved oxygen and conductivity. We also note wildlife, including birds, on the data sheets, and report anything unusual, such as the observations of repeated contaminants in Little Deep Creek generated by the combination of heavy rain events and construction of the WSDOT freeway interchange at Shady Slope/Hwy 2 in 2010.



    During the April 28th FLSRV litter pickup, two people were assigned to work a segment of Little Spokane Drive -- one member, Julie Ross, who resides near Indian Trail/Rutter Parkway, and the other, newly elected Board member, Jack Bury, a long-time resident of this valley. Julie Ross found it intriguing that Jack and his wife, Ro, relied on the Little Spokane River as their sole source of indoor water (except for drinking) for many years. It caught my attention too, since I am one of the volunteer water quality monitors, and I asked Jack and Ro if I could interview them for this article about water quality, and this is what I learned:



    The Burys purchased their home in 1980 from a plumber who had built the house in 1961 (it is situated north of Colbert Road on the west side of the Little Spokane River.) The original owner had used technology called 'double plumbing' which involves a series of pipes and valves that allowed each faucet and outlet to draw either from the 125' deep well or from the river. The well produced minimal gallonage and the underground water supply was 'oranger than Hi-C punch' due to the iron particles suspended in the well water.



    Jack said, 'We moved into the house in 1980 and after several failed and frustrating attempts with iron removal systems, turned wholly to using the river's water from shower to sink. Only our drinking and cooking water came out of a 5 gallon bottle atop a commercial dispenser. The river water was fresh, and just during spring runoff, unclear. We installed a small silt and sand filter and were satisfied year 'round. The garden and vegetables seem to thrive on river water - perhaps it contains some broader range of elements, at least benign if not mildly beneficial.'



    I asked Jack if they still relied on river water and he replied, 'When Whitworth Water District later extended service to the intersection of Colbert Road and Little Spokane Drive (between 5 and 10 years ago) they ran a spur up Little Spokane Drive and we connected to it. No more frozen pumps in the winter.'



    Clearly water quality impacted the Bury family and continues to do so for all the residents who live along the Little Spokane and its tributaries.



    Continued monitoring is an important volunteer activity for our team leader, Lindell Haggin, and her team: Chris Dudley, Jeanne Dammarell, and me.

    © 2009 - 2019 Friends of the Little Spokane River Valley
    admin|