Field Notes
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
Field Notes Entry   
Robinson River-Cedar Run Culvert Replacement, Rappahannock County, Virginia
Northeast Region, November 20, 2019
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Before and after image of replaced Cedar Run Culvert
Before and after image of replaced Cedar Run Culvert - Photo Credit: Piedmont Environmental Council

Virginia Fish and Wildlife Conservation Office staff participated in the opening of the Whiteoak Canyon Bridge at Cedar Run, a tributary of the Robinson River, Rappahannock County, Virginia. The bridge is a culmination of a seven year effort, starting with a request for Fish and Wildlife Service National Fish Passage Program (NFPP) funding for a road crossing assessment which, through agreement, funded the Piedmont Environmental Council (PEC). PEC conducted the survey in 2013-2014 using the Stream Continuity Protocol developed by the University of Massachusetts. The Cedar Run (Whiteoak Canyon) crossing was identified as a severe blockage to brook trout and a NFPP agreement was made with Trout Unlimited in 2017 to remediate the site with an Aquatic Organism Passage/Stream Simulation designed structure which would allow brook trout passage as well as improve the structural resiliency of the crossing and the stream.


The new bridge replaced a failing, mal-functioning vented ford that frequently clogged, requiring frequent maintenance. Brook trout and American eel can now pass freely at the site for an additional 3 miles into Shenandoah National Park headwater streams; access to the Whiteoak Canyon Hiking Trail into the Park is enhanced, allowing for emergency vehicle access. Project construction cost was $110,000 of which $35,000 was provided by the NFPP. Partners included Trout Unlimited, Piedmont Environmental Council, The Graves Family, National Park Service and several funding partners.

Whiteoak Canyon Stream Restoration
Contact Info: albert spells, 804.829.5627, albert_spells@fws.gov
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