Bull Run Watershed

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Water flowing through the Bull Run Watershed. Image: Craig Hennecke

Bull Run Watershed has been an important water reservoir since 1895. It is located 26 east of downtown Portland in Mount Hood National Forest, however, snow on Mount Hood does not empty into the Bull Run Watershed. It rains about 130 inches in Bull Run annually, which provides 90-95% of the watershed's water reserve. It drains about 102 square miles of forested landscape. The Bull Run Watershed Management Unit is federally owned and managed by the Mount Hood National Forest; 4% is owned by Portland.

Bull Run did not get its name from the common term "bullshit" (thankfully), but rather after the cattle who broke loose from pioneers who were crossing the Cascades in the 1850s.

Nearly 53% of the Bull Run Watershed is classified as "old growth" and has never been logged. There has been no logging at all since 1993. The Bull Run Act, passed in 1977, created many restrictions against logging in that area, however, prior to this, about 16% of Bull Run had been logged.

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