At the June 14-15th California Fish and Game Commission meeting listening to the dozen or so Tribal speakers and only one sports fisherman decided to list the Upper Klamath Spring Chinook salmon as a Threatened Species under the California Endangered Species Act (ESA). Note: Not the Federal Endangered Species Act! Most of the Tribal speakers that spoke for listing were Karuk Tribal members. Now mind you, no Tribal conservation plan or recommendations were presented or suggested at the meeting, just list them! Tribes do not have to adhere to state ESA’s only to Federal ESA. So where does this leave the In-River Sports Fishing or the Ocean Commercial salmon fishing industry? At the present time there has not been any change to this year’s Spring Chinook salmon fishing regulations. For the Lower Klamath River from the mouth up to the bridge over the Klamath at Weitchpec July 1st to August 15th; one salmon per day two in possession. Trinity River from above the South Fork of the Trinity up to the Old Lewiston Bridge July 1st to Aug. 31st; one salmon per day and two in possession. (That is any size salmon) Why is the Fish and Game Commission not protecting the Sports fishermen? I thought their job was to protect the interest of California fish and wildlife as well as the sportsmen. Who foots the majority of the bill for conservation in the state? The sportsmen through a special excise tax on sporting goods and ammunition.
Junction City weir summary: The Junction City Weir was installed the first week of June. Julian week 24 end ending June 17, 2021 for Spring Chinook salmon; 2-jacks, season total 3, 29-adults. Season total 40; Coho salmon, 0-jacks, 0-adults, season total 0; steelhead, 0-1/2 lbers, 1-adult, season total 1; Brown trout, over 14in. 0, season total 1.
Fishing: Fishing on the reservation was very slim until about the second week of June and then the Springer’s started moving through in good numbers. From what I have been able to learn the Hoopa weir is going to go in again down at TishTang. I have not been able to find out if NOAA has reviewed the permit but to the best of my knowledge it has not been approved yet. I am working on that. If the Hoopa continue to harvest all hatchery marked Coho salmon the Trinity River Hatchery will NOT have enough eggs to provide the required releases for next year. Where is their conservation plan to sustain the salmon fishery for years to come? At the present rate the Trinity is rushing to become like the Eel River. Up river the Spring salmon are showing and staging to try and go up their spawning streams or to the hatchery.
Fishermen are catching trout in the Straw House to Del Loma area. Remember these fish are baby steelhead going river on their way out to the ocean. The Willow Creek/Hoopa area reached 107 this past week and is expected to reach 101again the coming weekend.
Mid-Klamath to Happy Camp: The Klamath River at Weitchpec is flowing 3,076cfs. This is a decrease of 850cfs. Iron Gate Dam is releasing 1,040cfs from Iron Gate but I am not hearing about much fishing in the Upper Klamath at this time because of the heat. The area reached triple digit numbers last week and is expected to reach them again this coming weekend.
Lake Conditions: Whiskeytown is 99% of capacity (an increase of 1%) with inflows of 1,377cfs and releasing 1,762cfs into Spring Creek. Shasta Lake is 40% of capacity (a decrease of 1% minus 3ft) with inflows of 864cfs and releasing 6,153cfs into Keswick. Keswick is 86% (a decrease of 9%) with inflows of 8,169cfs and releasing 8,075cfs into the Sacramento River. Oroville Lake is 34% of capacity (a decrease of 2% minus 6ft) with inflows of 1,197cfs with releases of 5,702cfs into the Feather River. Folsom Lake is 33% of capacity (a decrease of 1% minus 3ft) with inflows of 1,005cfs with releases of 2,364cfs into the American river. Of the twelve California CVPA Reservoirs 2/3s of them are at or below 50%.
Trinity Lake: The lake is 94ft below the overflow (an increase of 2ft) and 49% of capacity (a decrease of 1%) with inflows of 319cfs and releasing 1,833cfs into Lewiston Lake with 1,377cfs being diverted to Whiskeytown Lake and on to Keswick Power Plant, which is releasing 8,075cfs into the Sacramento River.
Trinity River flows and conditions: Lewiston Dam is 95% of capacity (an increase of 0%) and water releases are 456cfs into the Trinity River, with water temperatures of 51.6 degrees, as of 10:00am today Monday June 21, 2021. Limekiln Gulch is 4.91ft at 434cfs. Douglas City is 6.56ft with flows of 484cfs. with air temps of 72 and water temperatures of 61 degrees. Junction City is 1.97ft at 463cfs. Helena is 8.63ft at 544cfs with water temps of 63.1 degrees. Cedar Flat (Burnt Ranch) is 2.92ft at 602cfs. South Fork of the Trinity near Hyampom is 2.27ft at 107cfs. Willow Creek is estimated at 709cfs and air is 79 degrees and water at 69 degrees. Hoopa is 11.70ft at 926cfs and water is 74.4 degrees. Water flows at the mouth of the Trinity River at the Klamath in Weitchpec are estimated to be 3,076cfs a decrease of 850cfs.
Klamath River flows and conditions: Iron Gate is releasing 1,040cfs. Seiad Valley is 2.19ft at 1,250cfs. Happy Camp is estimated at 1,364cfs, Somes Bar is estimated to be 1,783cfs, and the Salmon River is 1.93ft at 367cfs. Orleans is 2.68ft at 2,150cfs, the Klamath River at Terwer Creek is 8.75ft at 3,357cfs and water temps are 71.2 degrees. Flows for the Smith River at Jed Smith are 5.22ft with flows of 479cfs. and flows at Dr. Fine Bridge are 12.05ft at N/A cfs. Temperatures in the Valley last week had a high of 106 and a low of 53 degrees. Rain for the week was 0.00in with a water year total to date of 45.11 inches and 1.5in of snow in Willow Creek. The weather predicted for next week is high of 101 and a low of 52. The weather predicted for next week is more sunshine for the end of the week to go into the triple digits again. Remember to stay hydrated as it is going to get HOT again