Canoe
9 Images

Lower Owens River restoration

Canoe
Scientist David Varner of Ecosystems Sciences paddles a canoe on the Lower Owens River, taking in the riparian and wetland ecology. The riverbed was very nearly dry until more than a year ago when aqueduct water began being redirected into the channel in an ambitious restoration project. (Brian Vander Brug / Los Angeles Times)
Shore grass
Wispy shore grass bends in the breeze along the banks of the Owens River near Lone Pine. Man-made flooding has helped kick-start the ecosystem and scientists are hoping that seasonal flooding will create a lush forest along the 62-mile-long river. (Brian Vander Brug / Los Angeles Times)
Aerial
The 77,657-acre restoration project runs on 55,000 cubic feet of Sierra snowmelt a year. (Brian Vander Brug / Los Angeles Times)
Owens River near Big Pine
Inyo County officials hope that eventually the Lower Owens River will support a thriving recreational industry. (Brian Vander Brug / Los Angeles Times)
Mapping water levels
Architect Zach Hill of Environmental Sciences uses a laser range-finder to help map water levels along the Owens River near Big Pine. (Brian Vander Brug / Los Angeles Times)
Shorebirds
Shorebirds fly along the Owens River delta. Although wildlife is moving into the area more quickly than expected, the ecosystem is far from being balanced. (Brian Vander Brug / Los Angeles Times)
Cowboy
Nells Rotchstein Jr. sits atop his horse on a bluff overlooking a grazing area on the Owens River in Lone Pine, where he runs cattle. The recent flooding had some ranchers on guard because high waters could potentially destroy cattle forage, but the event passed without incident. (Brian Vander Brug / Los Angeles Times)
Fisherman
Fisherman Alex Ortiz of West Covina tries his luck along the banks of the Owens River in Lone Pine. Ortiz finished his work as a contractor for AT&T and spent the evening fishing with a co-worker. (Brian Vander Brug / Los Angeles Times)
Sunset
It’s almost sunset in the Lower Owens, where the work of gathering data on the burgeoning wildlife, foliage and water flows has only just begun. (Brian Vander Brug / Los Angeles Times)
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