The Reed canyon is a 28-acre watershed in the center of the Reed College campus. Reed Lake is fed by several springs, most of which begin at the eastern most edge of the campus. Downstream, Crystal Springs Creek provides the cleanest water in the Johnson Creek system, an important tributary of the Willamette River. The Willamette flows to the Columbia River, which flows on to the Pacific Ocean at Astoria, Oregon. This is a unique habitat for ocean-going and resident fish species.

The 1999 Reed canyon restoration strategy was made possible by a generous original gift from Laurel Wilkening '66 and is now under way. Non-native, invasive plants are being eradicated, and the slopes are being replanted with diverse native plant communities. The old outdoor pool was removed, and a new stream meander was created to encourage fish passage to the lake.

Students have worked with the grounds department to accomplish the tasks outlined in the strategy and have contributed to significant improvements in managing this diverse environment throughout the history of the college. You can find out more at the Reed canyon website.

Call or email Facilities Services if you have questions or would like to get involved:
Extension 7283 (503-777-7283),

(Page last modified: November 29, 2023)