Travel Highway 299

Traveling Hwy 299 for fishing is going to be difficult to choose. You are going to have to make the choice of fishing the Upper Trinity or the Lower Trinity because of the blockage on Hwy 299. Monday thru Friday from 7am to 7pm travel between Big Bar to Don Juan Creek at Cedar Flat is 7:00am – 12:00pm – 4:30pm – 7:00pm by pilot car with weekends open to pilot car travel. So, if you come by I-5 you try to fish the Upper Trinity above Big Bar and if you come by Hwy 101 to try to fish below Cedar Flat/Hawkins Bar. This will be until Dec. 2nd or until changed.

    Now that we got that out of the way you can make your choice of where you might want to fish, Upper or Lower Trinity. Right now, the Upper Trinity is a better area to fish. There are still some jacks to be had in the upper waters but they are starting to get pretty dark. The good part is that there are some ½-pounders and small adult steelhead to be had in the area. Water conditions are somewhat good as the rains are light and the debris is pretty much washed out from the fires. From what I have been able to find out is that the water is off color and somewhat dark from ash.

    Finally a Judge in in Fresno has made a decision that will help the river. Fresno County Superior Court Judge Tyler Tharpe rejected a federal contract between Westlands Water District and the Bureau of Reclamations that would have guaranteed them a permanent water contract of 1.5-billion-acre feet of water per year. The part that negated the contract was, “the lack of public notice and key financial terms of $400 million owed for environmental restoration of Northern California water ways”.  The guarantee of water was tucked into a part of the contract. We have to be ever vigilant of how our water is dolled out by the Bureau of Reclamation as they have a tendency to declare the waters stored behind dams belong to them and NOT the place of origin.

    Proper restoration is and should be of public interest as it really affects our fisheries. Point of interest is the restoration going on in the Trinity River. Since 2017 the Trinity River Restoration Projects have been going on without public input or interest given into any projects. Going ahead to 2021 the present restoration project going on is not helping the recovery of our fishery as intended. In fact, it is destroying the fishery and our Trinity River. If we are to have a continuing fishery on the Trinity River, we the public should be involved (of which we are not) in those decisions. I say stop the TRRP until the public has the right of input and decisions!   

Lower Klamath Harvest Survey: Julian Week 44 ending Nov. 4, 2021 for Fall Run Chinook salmon for below Hwy 101 Bridge; 0-jack, 0-adults, total 0, season total 389. Chinook salmon above Hwy 101 Bridge; 0-jacks, 0-adults total 0, season total 3,060.

Junction City weir summary: Julian week 43 ending the week of Oct. 28, 2021 for Fall-Run Chinook salmon; 5 – jacks, 16 – adults, total of 21, season total of 1,753; Coho salmon, 2- jacks, season total 4; 13- adults, total15, season total 22; steelhead, 0- 1/2lber, 26- adults, for total of 26, season total 143; 0-Brown trout, season total 7.

Willow Creek weir summary: Julian Week 42 ending Oct. 21 for Fall Chinook salmon; 46-jacks, 224-adults, total 270, season total 2,814; Coho salmon; 7-jack, 17 adults, total 24, season total 168; steelhead, 1-1/2lbers, 74-adults, total 74, season total 331. Willow Creek weir is being removed.

Trinity River Hatchery summary: Spring Run Chinook salmon totals; 452-jacks, 1,553 adults; totals 2,005; Fall Run Chinook Salmon Julian Week 43 ending on Oct. 28, 2021; 16-jacks, 440-adults, total 456, season total 456.

Upper Klamath summary: Julian Week 43 observed through Oct. 28, Shasta River 6,879; Bogus Creek observed though Oct 23, 1,879 adult Chinook salmon; Scott River observed through Oct 25, 23adult chinook salmon, 5-Coho salmon; a significant number have already spawned, no new counts as of Sept. 17. 

Fishing:  At the present the Lower Trinity is blown out and very dark from the fire debris. There are logs and branches in the upper part of the Kimtu fishing are and the river is high flowing at 2,007cfs. The rain is steady but light which is good for the ground but keeping the lower river hard to fish.

Mid-Klamath to Happy Camp: The Klamath River at Weitchpec is flowing 4,926cfs. This is an increase of 299cfs. Iron Gate Dam is releasing 1,149cfs. With the temperatures holding in the mid 50s and the river in the lower 50s. Right now, the Klamath is a hard fish from Happy Camp up to I-5. With Weitchoec water flows increasing it is going to be awhile before fishing will be good. The good news is that this kind of water flows at this time of year is going to bring in steelhead.

Lake Conditions: Whiskeytown is 87% of capacity (a decrease of 6%) with inflows of 9165cfs and releasing 839cfs in to Spring Creek. Shasta Lake is 23% of capacity (an increase of 01% plus 4ft) with inflows of 6,213cfs and releasing 2,666cfs into Keswick. Keswick is 84% (an increase of 0%) with inflows of 3,540cfs and releasing 4,003cfs into the Sacramento River. Oroville Lake is 28% of capacity (an increase of 3% plus 6ft) with inflows of 3,381cfs with releases of 2,000cfs into the Feather River. Folsom Lake is 32% of capacity (an increase of 9% plus 18ft) with inflows of 3,684cfs with releases of 1,900cfs into the American river.

Trinity Lake: The lake is 155ft below the overflow (a decrease of 4ft) and 28% of capacity (an increase of 1%) with inflows of 301cfs and releasing 293cfs into Lewiston Lake with 8cfs being diverted to Whiskeytown Lake and on to Keswick Power Plant, which is releasing 4,003cfs into the Sacramento River.

Trinity River flows and conditions: Lewiston Dam is 97% of capacity (a decrease of 0%) and water releases are 293cfs into the Trinity River, with water temperatures of 54.6 degrees, as of 11:00am today Saturday November 6, 2021. Limekiln Gulch is 4.72ft at 332cfs. Douglas City is 6.44ft with flows of 410cfs with water temperatures of 51.5 degrees. Junction City is 1.91ft at 437cfs. Helena is 8.99ft at 658cfs with water temps of 50.5 degrees. Cedar Flat (Burnt Ranch) is 4.21ft at1,166cfs. South Fork of the Trinity near Hyampom is 4.11ft at 841cfs. Willow Creek is estimated at 2,007cfs and air is 52 degrees and water at 51 degrees and the river is off color. Hoopa is 14.26ft at 3,306cfs and water is 52.5 degrees. Water flows at the mouth of the Trinity River at the Klamath in Weitchpec are estimated to be 4,926cfs an increase of 299cfs.

Klamath River flows and conditions: Iron Gate is releasing 1,149cfs. Seiad Valley is 2.80ft at 1,697cfs. Indian Creek is 5.05ft at 549cfs. Happy Camp is estimated at 2,246cfs, Somes Bar is estimated to be 4,498cfs, and the Salmon River is 3.60ft at 1,620cfs. Orleans is 5.55ft at 6,118cfs, the Klamath River at Terwer Creek is 12.28ft at 13,313cfs and water temps are 53.1 degrees. Flows for the Smith River at Jed Smith are 11.75ft with flows of 10,076cfs. and flows at Dr. Fine Bridge are 17.89 ft at N/A cfs.

    Temperatures for the Valley last week had a high of 63 and a low of 48 degrees. Rain for the week was 2.72in with a water year total to date of 14.18 inches and 0.0in of snow in Willow Creek. The predicted weather for next week is high of 70 and a low of 38. The predicted weather for next week is rain showers Tuesday and Wednesday and cloudy for the weekend. That could be good fishing in the Upper Trinity. Check for the road closure above.

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