Rivers and Floodplain Management

BGW Photo

Restoring rivers and reducing flood risks

One of the many attractive features of Blaine County is the system of rivers flowing through the Big Wood, Little Wood, Salmon, Silver Creek and Rock Creek Watersheds. These rivers flow through the high country carrying fine sediments, cobbles and nutrients through narrow valleys to fertile agricultural areas in lower elevations. As the water moves through heavily developed areas, runoff can quickly turn dangerous, eroding streambanks, flooding neighborhoods and sweeping away debris in the floodplains. 

Blaine County has taken a comprehensive approach to floodplain management to reduce flood damages and promote public safety, while protecting the ecological, economic, and other benefits floodplains provide. 

The recently completed Big Wood River Atlas (Cardno 2020) guides how restoration, flooding, and channel migration on the Big Wood River and its associated floodplain is managed. In addition, Blaine County uses a variety of floodplain management tools such as regulations, levees, floodplain restoration projects, community partnerships and public education. 

National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) and Mapping

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), manages the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). Blaine County administers the NFIP policies to protect public health and safety, reduce damage to buildings and contents, prevent increases in flood damage from new construction, reduce the risk of erosion damage.

The three components of the NFIP are as follows (click on each link for more information):