Trinity weather - water - fish

Trinity River - Douglas City, CA

by E.B. Duggan

We are approaching summer and days are getting longer and warmer. The Memorial Day Holiday has passed and there were NO serious incidents which made for a great Holiday. Thank goodness. 

The Weather: This winter was recorded as one of the wettest in the last 100 years. This was good news for 54 of the 58 counties of California. The other 4 are still listed as “in a drought”. There is still plenty of water in the sierra snowpack according to NOAA. 

The Water: Some of California’s powerful water agencies are working with Gov. Brown s $15.4 million tunnel project so they can ship more water from the north to the south. “The water contractors don’t believe DWR is capable of delivering a $15 million project.” Therefore the water agencies are forming a JPA (Joint Powers Agreement) for financing and construction of the project.

The Fish: If this project were to go through, what are the fish going to do for water? A scientific report came out last week stating that some salmon species will be extinct within the next 50 years and even more will go extinct within the next 100 years. If this is true then the fish (salmon species) will need extra water to survive but the tunnels will take away any extra available water. How much water will two forty foot diameter tunnels be able to redirect around the delta in one day?

June 10th & 11th is the Willow Creek to Hoopa Boat races. July 23rd to 18th is Spring Salmon Ceremony at the mouth of Clear Creek on the Klamath.

Fishing: The Trinity is still high but starting to drop fast in the next two weeks (3,850cfs to 2,500cfs). This should be a signal to the spring salmon to head up the rivers to their spawning grounds. This season spring salmon will be allowed to be harvested on the Trinity River until August 31.Only 2-salmon of any size per day with only 2-salmon in possession; this means you can only have two salmon at any time! 

Mid-Klamath: Iron Gate Dam is releasing 1,807cfs and Seiad Valley gauge is reading 5,490cfs, so this a good indicator that the Upper Klamath down to I-5 could be fishable or close to it. A good source would be Scott Caldwell of SC Guide Service.   

Lake Conditions: The reservoir page is not available this weekend so I have listed last week’s readings. Whiskeytown is 99% of capacity with inflows of 2,190cfs and releasing 2,054cfs into Clear Creek & Keswick. Shasta is 96 of capacity (a increase of 0% & minus 1ft) with inflows of 7,943cfs and releasing 9,975cfs, Keswick is 85% of capacity with inflows of 11,169cfs and releasing 10,982fs; Oroville Lake is 71% of capacity (a decrease of 6% & minus 16ft), inflow is 11,407fs and releases are 13,548cfs; Folsom Lake is 87% of capacity (plus 3% & plus 5ft.) inflows are 14,515cfs and releases are 10,073cfs. 

Trinity Lake: The Lake is 10ft below the overflow (increase of 4ft) and 94% of capacity (2% decrease) Inflow to Trinity Lake is 7,224cfs and Trinity Dam is releasing 5,727cfs to Lewiston Lake with 1,672cfs going to Whiskeytown Lake and on to the Keswick Power Plant with 11,169cfs being released to the Sacramento River. 

Trinity River Flows and Conditions: Lewiston Dam releases is 3,910cfs, water temps of 47.  Air is 63 degrees at 10:00am. Sunday.  Limekiln Gulch is 7.8ft at 1,395cfs, water temps are 47 degrees and air is 87.  Douglas City is 9.90.3ft at 4,329cfs, water temps of 47, air is 66. Junction City is 6.2ft at 4,230cfs.  Helena is 14.9ft at 4,429cfs with water temps of 48.3. Cedar Flat is 9ft at 5,497cfs. Willow Creek is estimated at 6,180cfs air is 64 and water at 52. Hoopa is 16.8ft at 6,740cfs with water temps of 57.2.  Flows at the mouth of the Trinity River at Klamath River are estimated to be 18.3K cfs.

Klamath: Iron Gate Dam releases are 1,807cfs.  Seiad Valley is 5.9ft at 5,490cfs. Happy Camp is estimated at 5,914cfs. Somes Bar is estimated at 7.5Kcfs. Orleans is 8.6ft. at 11.6Kcfs. Klamath River at Terwer Creek is 14ft at 19.8Kcfs, water temperatures of 59.4 degrees. Flows at Smith River, Dr. Fine Bridge are 6.5ft at 1,350cfs. 

Temperatures in the Valley last week were 89/52 degrees with 0.0 inches of rain with a season total of 83.7in of rain and 3.5in of snow. Temperatures in the valley next week are expected to be 81/44 degrees; with some sunshine the first part, then some scattered showers mid-week and a mix of cloudy and sunshine for the weekend.

from Willow Creek, CA Phone 530-629-3554, E-mail

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