Little Butte Creek, which the Butte Creek Mill sits upon is an important tributary to the famed Rogue River. Little Butte Creek is known to be one of the best salmon producing tributaries of the Rogue River, and is also one of only a few streams in the Upper Rogue watershed to support salmon populations.
The Daley Mill, currently known as the Butte Creek Mill holds a certificate of water right was issued on April 28, 1950, in the name of George Putnam, with a priority date of 1872. What makes the Mill’s water usage unique is that it is only diversionary – the Mill does not actually consume any water, just borrows its power as it moves past the turbines.
In 2017, Bob Russell, President of the Butte Creek Mill Foundation worked with Trout Unlimited to dedicate the mill’s water rights to instream flow in 2017, protecting over 20 cubic feet per second (cfs) of water in this vital tributary. Trout Unlimited is working to protect intact habitat, bolster streamflows and restore degraded in-stream and riparian conditions.