A low-cost rehabilitation program is restoring a section of Manti Creek to its pre-flood status as one of the area's pristine trout-fishing streams.

The Sanpete Ranger District has installed eight structures along a strip of the creek that was devastated by the floods of the early 1980s.The raging water tore away the shallows and pools that had been the habitat of browns and rainbows, overran the banks and deposited vast quantities of gravel and rocks along its course.

Gone was one of the area's prime fisheries.

The restoration program has included the installation of eight fish structures along what is known as the Cottonwood section of the creek. Each structure consists of a Douglas fir log, 24 inches in diameter and 30 feet long, that spans the stream and is anchored in 7- to 8-foot keyways in the banks.

Below each log is a pool 6 to 8 feet deep that has been excavated in the stream bed. Large boulders have been placed on two sides of the pools.

The logs that form the dams are notched at the center of the stream to concentrate the flow of water.

"The effect of the structures is to aerate the water and create a scouring action that clears away debris," according to Ed Schoppe, Sanpete Ranger District range management specialist.

The logs and boulders were obtained in the area. Jake Olsen Construction was awarded a contract for the work at a cost of $4,000 in Forest Service money.

Rainbows that will leap the dams, lurk in the pools and rise for a fisherman's lure will likely be planted early next spring, Schoppe says.