Trinity River - Willow Creek Weir Fish Report for 4-26-2020
Water releases Are Up
Trinity River - Willow Creek Weir - Willow Creek, CA (Humboldt County)
by E.B. Duggan
Both the Klamath and the Trinity are releasing water into the rivers making it almost impossible to fish and on top of that the coronavirus has us on “shelter in place”. This is a predicament I wouldn’t wish on anybody that fishes. How does one get to the rivers or the ocean when the government closes all of the accesses to either place to fish? I respect what the government is trying to do to protect us from this terrible virous. It is terrible and they don’t know for sure how it spreads or for sure how it began but they are trying to help us from getting the virous.
Back to the water releases. With both of the dams releasing water it is very hard to fish plus it is also very dangerous. Iron Gate is on the downside of it’s releases and the Trinity also on the down side of its releases we should start to see more down runners. It is possible for some real late stragglers but I doubt you would be able to land one. On the trinity side we could see a few late sea run Brown Trout coming in. March and April are usually when they show up. The big problem is you are restricted to you place of residence. I guess you could say you are out to get food because fish is food.
With the “delay” of the Eastern Sierra opening there are a lot of fishermen that are upset because many have made their arrangements last year. I know many fishermen make their reservations a year ahead of time but I can agree with the people that had to make the decision for the sake of everyone’s health. Hopefully things will be OK for the May 30th.
Trinity River Water Releases: Releases were set for an Extremally Dry Water Year. Releases went up to 1500cfs 4/17/20 at 6pm, then down to 450cfs at 4/19/20 2am; then back up to 1500cfs 4/19/20 2pm; and back down to 450cfs 4/21/20 10am; then back up to 3900cfs 4/24/20 8am and then slowly back down to 900cfs 6/13/20 10am; a slight boost to 1400cfs 6/15/208pm; and then to reach summer flows of 450cfs by 7/2/20 6am. To help you with these releases you might want to place the releases on you calendar so you can better plan when you might want to go fishing when this coronavirus thing is over and we can once again go out to fish.
Trinity River Hatchery: TRH season is over and they are preparing to start releasing the salmon and steelhead they raised from 2018. You might want to refer to last weeks report for their totals.
Mid-Klamath to Happy Camp: Because of the water releases the Mid-Klamath is unfishable for the time being. The Klamath from I-5 up is also in the same state so now would be a good time to check over your gear and replace or repair anything. For the fly fisher this would be a good time to tie up your flies.
The Klamath at Weitchpec is flowing about 7,975cfs. Because of COVID-19 I have not been in contact with my up-river contacts, so I don’ have anything to report at this time. With the Iron Gate releases of 9,499cfs I would expect fishing above I-5 would be very difficult.
Lake Conditions: Whiskeytown is 96% of capacity (an increase of 1%) with inflows of 1,148cfs and releasing 233cfs on to Keswick. Shasta Lake is 82% of capacity (a decrease of 0% minus 1ft) with inflows of 5,058cfs and releasing 8,645cfs into Keswick. Keswick is 82% (an increase of 3%) with inflows of 9,160cfs and releasing 9,499cfs into the Sacramento river. Oroville Lake is 70% of capacity (an increase of 1% plus 4ft) with inflows of 5,729cfs with releases of 2,388cfs into the Feather River. Folsom Lake is 68% of capacity (an increase of 4% plus 5ft) with inflows of 5,203cfs with releases of 1,381cfs into the American river.
Trinity Lake: The lake is 34ft below the overflow (an increase of 1ft) and 79% of capacity (a decrease of 1%) with inflows of 2,149cfs and releasing 3,129cfs into Lewiston Lake with 1,254cfs being diverted to Whiskeytown Lake and on to Keswick Power Plant, which is releasing 9,499cfs into the Sacramento River, up from last week.
Trinity River flows and conditions: Lewiston Dam is 96% of capacity (an increase of 1%) and water releases are 1,1875cfs into the Trinity River, with water temperatures of 49.4 degrees, as of 12:00pm today Sunday April 26, 2020. Limekiln Gulch is 6.56ft at 1,982cfs. Douglas City is 8.39ft and flows of 2,057cfs. with air temps of 74 and water temperatures of 50.1 degrees. Junction City is 4.58ft at 2,210cfs. Helena is 12.48ft at 2,435cfs with water temps of 51.0 degrees. Cedar Flat (Burnt Ranch) is 7.22ft at 3,353cfs. South Fork of the Trinity near Hyampom is 3.14ft at 352cfs. Willow Creek is estimated at 3,705cfs and air is 73 degrees and water at 54 degrees. Hoopa is 15.24ft at 4,633cfs and water is 55.6 degrees. Water flows at the mouth of the Trinity River at the Klamath are estimated to be 13,841cfs up from last week.
Klamath River flows and conditions: Iron Gate is releasing 9,499cfs. Seiad Valley is 6.05ft at 5,526cfs. Happy Camp is estimated at 5,526cfs, Somes Bar is estimated to be 6,969cfs, and the Salmon River is 4.94ft at 2,239cfs. Orleans is 7.36ft at 9,208cfs, the Klamath River at Terwer Creek is 12.89ft at 15,662cfs and water temps are N/A degrees. Flows for the Smith River at Jedia Smith are 6.38ft with flows of 1,197cfs. and flows at Dr. Fine Bridge are 13.01ft at N/Acfs.
Temperatures in the Valley last week had a high of 78 and a low of 43 degrees. Rain for the week was 0.02in with a water year to date of 36.24 inches, with snow in willow Creek, snow of 1.45in. in the valley to date. (We are way behind in rainfall for this year) Forecasts for next week are for temperatures in the highs of 80 and lows of 43 with some a mixture of partial sun and cloudy days. It appears that we are going to have some fare days with a little sunshine and a few clouds. The Trinity River Water Releases have started so fishing is going to be hard until July 2nd.
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