Heat vs Fish

 At the time of this writing it is 101 degrees and at end of the day it was 112 degrees. The water in Hoopa was 77.9 degrees. Salmon can survive in 72 degrees but really will die after 75 degrees. The following is research I have done on the internet: The State Water Resources Control Board at its July 1, 2021meeting will hold a public meeting to provide information and solicit public input on the potential drought actions that could be implemented to address water shortages in the Scott River and Shasta River watersheds. 

Opinion: This could affect the water releases and water storage in the Shasta and Trinity Reservoirs to the point of going below the cold-water pool storage for this water year. If this were to happen water storage for next year would start at a negative or minus storage next year. Again, IF this were to happen and we had another drought year where would the water come from for the farm crops and the fish?

Another Opinion: (By James Poque June 27, 2021) “Salmon is an indicator species for the California Crisis; It is not looking good! California State Water Resources Control Board wrote a tragic letter stating that it would approve a plan for water releases out of Shasta Dam that would risk destroying the Sacramento iconic winter-run Chinook salmon population forever.” The Sacrament Winter-Run Chinook has already declined by an estimated 90% and is now down to a few thousand fish when the Winter-Run used to be in the 100’s of thousands. This is the same for the Klamath River Basin.

The Spring-Runs of Chinook salmon are already in deep trouble due to the mismanagement of harvesting on the Sacramento River and the Klamath River Basin. The California Fish and Game Commissioners have already listed the Upper Klamath Spring-Run Chinook salmon as Threatened. What next? Seriously, I see an end to salmon fishing for the future if something isn’t done very soon to help the fish!

Upper Klamath River Rotary Screw Trapping count: Julian week 25 ending on June 24, 2021; Shasta River; 0 Chinook salmon age 0+, season total 239,284, Juveniles, 1yr old 0, season total 115;  0 Coho salmon age 0+, season total 128; 0 Rainbow Trout age 1+, season total 404, 0 Rainbow Trout age 2+, season total 2,847; Scott River, 8 Chinook salmon age 0+, season total 7,425; 1yr old Chinook 0, season total 62; 16 Coho salmon 1yr+, season total 247; 13 Rainbow Trout age 0+, season total 1,103, 1 Rainbow Trout age 1+, season total 1,480.

Junction City weir summary: Julian week 25 ending the week of June 24, 2021 for Spring-Run Chinook salmon; 23 jacks, season total 26, 351 adults, season total 392 for a total of 418; Coho salmon, 0 jacks, season total 0, 0 adults, season total 0; steelhead, 1- 1/2lber, 5-adults, season total 6; Brown trout 4, season total 6.

Fishing: The triple digit heat is really curtailing the fishing in Willow Creek what with water temperatures 75 degrees. I received info of fishing in Hoopa that the tribe is doing very well netting Spring -Run salmon. I have not heard anything about the Hoopa weir, if it is up and running or how many salmon they are taking at this time. Up river should be fair to good fishing for salmon but the hear is really hurting any fishing. If one was to fish, I would imagine it would only be in the early morning.

Mid-Klamath to Happy Camp: The Klamath River at Weitchpec is flowing 2,756cfs. This is a decrease of 320cfs. Iron Gate Dam is releasing 1,095cfs. I am not hearing about much fishing in the Upper Klamath at this time due to the heat. Down at the mouth of the Klamath I heard that the tribal fishermen are really landing the salmon.

Lake Conditions: Whiskeytown is 97% of capacity (a decrease of 2%) with inflows of 1,422cfs and releasing 1,926cfs in to Spring Creek. Shasta Lake is 39% of capacity (a decrease of 1% minus 3ft) with inflows of 1,865cfs and releasing 6,556cfs into Keswick. Keswick is 97% (an increase of 11%) with inflows of 8,308cfs and releasing 8,050cfs into the Sacramento River. Oroville Lake is 33% of capacity (a decrease of % minus 7ft) with inflows of 1,553cfs with releases of 6,124cfs into the Feather River. Folsom Lake is 31% of capacity (a decrease of 2% minus 3ft) with inflows of 946cfs with releases of 2,039cfs into the American river.

Trinity Lake: The lake is 92ft below the overflow (an increase of 6ft) and 50% of capacity (a decrease of 2%) with inflows of 340cfs and releasing 1,946cfs into Lewiston Lake with 1,461cfs being diverted to Whiskeytown Lake and on to Keswick Power Plant, which is releasing 7,571cfs into the Sacramento River.

Trinity River flows and conditions: Lewiston Dam is 48% of capacity (a decrease of 31%) and water releases are 456cfs into the Trinity River, with water temperatures of 53.3 degrees, as of 2:00pm today Sunday June 27, 2021. Limekiln Gulch is 4.90ft at 427cfs. Douglas City is 6.55ft with flows of 479cfs. with air temps of 96 and water temperatures of 62 degrees. Junction City is 1.96ft at 458cfs. Helena is 8.54ft at 515cfs with water temps of 69.9 degrees. Cedar Flat (Burnt Ranch) is 2.77ft at 546cfs. South Fork of the Trinity near Hyampom is 2.18ft at 88cfs. Willow Creek is estimated at 634cfs and air is 101 degrees and water at 75 degrees. Hoopa is 11.53ft at 822cfs and water is 77.9 degrees. Water flows at the mouth of the Trinity River at the Klamath in Weitchpec are estimated to be 3,756cfs a decrease of 320cfs.

Klamath River flows and conditions: Iron Gate is releasing 1,095cfs. Seiad Valley is 2.05ft at 1,115cfs. Happy Camp is estimated at 1,214cfs, Somes Bar is estimated to be 1,835cfs, and the Salmon River is 1.78ft at 303cfs. Orleans is 2.50ft at 1,934cfs, the Klamath River at Terwer Creek is 8.54ft at 2.944cfs and water temps are 74.3 degrees. Flows for the Smith River at Jed Smith are 5.02ft with flows of 385cfs. and flows at Dr. Fine Bridge are 11.88ft at N/A cfs. Temperatures in the Valley last week had a high of 107 and a low of 56 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 102 and a low of 56. The weather predicted for next week triple digit with more sunshine for the end of the week and into next week. The weekend is predicted to not reach triple digit.  Remember to stay hydrated and drink plenty of water.

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