Neighbors fault Yacolt quarry for well woes
Traffic fears near quarry become reality, neighbors sayThere was a time, seven years ago, when Todd Ford could put a hose in the hot tub at his Yacolt Mountain home and fill it with well water. His shallow well, just 15 feet deep, sat atop a natural spring, and the water was pure and plentiful. “Everybody who came up here thought I had the best water,” he said. No more. “If I were to fill the tub up now, I would get it half full before there was no more water and have to wait for the well to recover,” he said.The pond in Ford’s yard, where he keeps cutthroat trout and brook trout, has shrunk by half, and like many fish ponds on the mountain, has filled with sediment. “Now you can see a sandbar from our deck,” he said. “The trout are smaller, and there aren’t as many. We had a couple of beaver, but they left.” Water quantity is not Ford’s only concern.“Our water is still pretty clear,” he said. “It just became super acidic.” The well water has corroded his copper pipes, causing water to spray everywhere. He ended up replacing mildewed kitchen cupboards and stripping his kitchen floor down to bare wood. At one point, he and his wife moved into the Battle Ground Best Western for a month. oooShirley Miller has lived in her house near Yacolt Mountain for 35 years. Her well used to produce 35 gallons a minute. She remembers keeping the sprinklers running all day, watering four acres of fields. But four and a half years, ago, when she came home from the hospital after surgery, she noticed a change.