The Spirit Mountain Recreation Area is constructing check dams, swales and conveyance systems to reduce destructive peak flows in Knowlton Creek within the St. Louis River System Area of Concern. This work is reducing sediment inputs and enabling the restoration of a brook trout population. Spirit Mountain is installing a bidirectional pipeline to pump water to snow-making equipment at the top of the ski hill and installing a collection system to manage stormwater runoff and snowmelt to avoid discharge to Knowlton Creek. The project will significantly reduce runoff and sedimentation from Spirit Mountain into Knowlton Creek, which will allow for the restoration of impaired habitat within a designated trout stream. The diversion and treatment of up to 35 cubic feet per second of flow around the impaired stream section will minimize further damage to Knowlton Creek trout habitat by reducing peak flows and sedimentation to pre-impairment levels.
Knowlton Creek watershed on the southwestern edge of West Duluth in St. Louis County, MN