The Ausable River Association last month wrapped up the construction phase of work to restore a 3,000-foot-long stretch of the East Branch of the Ausable River in Jay, the nonprofit’s biggest project to date.
The restoration project aims to reinvigorate the river channel in an area where Route 9N follows the river along a gradual bend near the Ice Jam Inn. The river had become “overwidened,” reducing its ability to move sediment and rock through the river system and exacerbating flood and ice jam risks.
By building out a wider stream bank, narrowing the channel and constructing a series of rock structures across the river, AsRA hopes to restore the stream’s natural flow and function, improving trout habitat and easing flood risks. The project faced delays in July and August thanks to rainy weather and high water levels, requiring a one-month extension on AsRA’s work permit.