The Pacific Fisheries Management Council first alternatives for ocean fishing are out and they look a little better than last year. We still have next month for the final recommendations to come out but from what I was able to find out was most recommendations for Ocean and In-River salmon quotas were a little better than last years proposals. It is still a little early for a final discussion so we need to keep our fingers crossed and hope for a better quota than last year. I think with the coming drought we will be lucky to see many salmon coming up the rivers as there is going to be a big fight over water. Who is going to get how much, again farming against fishing? If the politicians can keep us fighting over the water who will get what amount of water for fish or farms then the cities can sneak in and take any extra water and we will be without enough water for the fish or the farmers. Just my opinion from the many years of doing this. I have seen the PFMC make decisions about the Klamath River Basin In-River Sport Fishery without any or very little in-put from the In-River Sport Fishery. In other words, “we get wat is left over!” I don’t attend the PFMC meetings any more but I have attended many and it is always a fight for what the In-River Sport Fishery is allowed.
This little bit of rain has done very little for the rivers in Northern California and the filling of the reservoirs. In looking at the quantities left in the reservoirs it looks very disheartening as we stare into the coming water year. What with the state Legislators and our Governor agreeing to build the Sites Reservoir with NO incoming water from the Sierras where are they going to get the water to fill it?
Trinity River Hatchery summary: Fall Run Chinook Salmon and steelhead, Julian Week 11 ending on Mar. 11, 2022; Chinook salmon 0-jacks, 0-adults, total 0, season total 5,968; Coho salmon 0-adults, 0-jacks, total 0, season total 2,383; steelhead 87, season total 1,433. This looks like the conclusion for collecting fish at the TRH for the year.
Klamath River Project: Mar. 18, marked-recapture rotary screw trapping; Shasta River Chinook salmon 661,109 age 0+; Raw Catch out migrating smolt, Chinook salmon age 0+ 140,401, Coho age 0+ 4, age 1+ 18. Scott Creek through Mar 18, 2022; Chinook age 0+, 634, age 1+ 55; Coho cage 0+ 0, age 1+ 193.
Trinity River summary: Outmigration smolt Julian week 11; Chinook 0+ 4, total 25, season total 71, 1+ 4, season total 12; Coho 0+ 1 total 2, 1+ 2 total 2; steelhead 0+ 0 total 0, 1+ 2, total 33
Fishing: The Lower Trinity is holding due to the light rain but it is still gin clear and one has the use stealth and be very careful while fishing for the late in-coming steelies and the few down runner adults. There are plenty of out migrating smolts and some one-year-old hatchery steelhead to have fun with on a light fly line or ultra-light tackle.
Mid-Klamath to Happy Camp: The Klamath River at Weitchpec is flowing 6,3448s. This is an increase of 252cfs. Iron Gate Dam is releasing 1,0cfs. The Orleans area is flowing good and the rive is clear but I have not heard about anyone fishing so I can’t say much about fishing that area. The Happy Camp area should be producing some good trout fishing about now for those who wish to wet a line. If you are interested if fishing above I-5 I would give Scott Caldwell a call to see what the conditions are.
Lake Conditions: Whiskeytown is 86% of capacity (a decrease of 0%) with inflows of 312cfs and releasing 273cfs in to Spring Creek. Shasta Lake is 38% of capacity (an increase of 1% plus 101ft) with inflows of 3,860cfs and releasing 3,035cfs into Keswick. Keswick is 92% (an increase of 3%) with inflows of 3,308cfs and releasing 3,217cfs into the Sacramento River. Oroville Lake is 46% of capacity (a decrease of 0% minus 3ft) with inflows of 4,053cfs with releases of 3,255cfs into the Feather River. Folsom Lake is 54% of capacity (an increase of 1% plus 1ft) with inflows of 2,642cfs with releases of 1,281cfs into the American river.
Trinity Lake: The lake is 140ft below the overflow (an increase of 0ft) and 33% of capacity (an increase of 1%) with inflows of 739cfs and releasing 446cfs into Lewiston Lake with 146cfs being diverted to Whiskeytown Lake and on to Keswick Power Plant, which is releasing 3,217cfs into the Sacramento River.
Trinity River flows and conditions: Lewiston Dam is 96% of capacity (a decrease of 0%) and water releases are 300cfs into the Trinity River, with water temperatures of 49.2 degrees, as of 12:00pm today Saturday March 19, 2022. Limekiln Gulch is 4.69ft at 322cfs. Douglas City is 6.35ft with flows of 355cfs with water temperatures of 50 degrees. Junction City is 1.80ft at 379cfs. Helena is 8.46ft at 483cfs with water temps of 50.1 degrees. Cedar Flat (Burnt Ranch) is 3.23ft at 725cfs. South Fork of the Trinity near Hyampom is 2.89ft at 402cfs. Willow Creek is estimated at 1,127cfs and air is 53 degrees and water at 50.2 degrees, the river is holding steady and gin clear. Hoopa is 12.95ft at 1,895cfs and water is 50.7 degrees. Water flows at the mouth of the Trinity River at the Klamath in Weitchpec are estimated to be 6,348cfs an increase of 252cfs.
Klamath River flows and conditions: Iron Gate is releasing 1,066cfs. Seiad Valley is 2.88ft at 1,765cfs. Indian Creek is 4.69ft at 425cfs. Happy Camp is estimated at 2,190cfs, Somes Bar is estimated to be 3,243cfs, and the Salmon River is 3.17ft at 1,210cfs. Orleans is 4.42ft at 4,453cfs, the Klamath River at Terwer Creek is 10.56ft at 7,475cfs and water temps are 50.1 degrees. Flows for the Smith River at Jed Smith are 6.96ft with flows of 1,746cfs. and flows at Dr. Fine Bridge are 13.52 ft at N/A cfs.
Temperatures for the Valley last week had a high of 71 and a low of 42 degrees. Rain for the week was 1.80in with a water year total to date of 40.09 inches and 5.0in of snow in Willow Creek. The predicted weather for next week is high of 81 and a low of 38. The predicted weather for next week is some Sunshine with clouds and possible rain showers for next Monday. We need more rain to get the river moving to help flush it out.