Trinity River - Willow Creek Weir Fish Report for 9-27-2021
Fishing on The Trinity Has Finally Picked Up
Trinity River - Willow Creek Weir - Willow Creek, CA (Humboldt County)
by E.B. Duggan
The Monument and River Complex fires in Trinity County are still burning as well as a new fire the Fawn Fire north of Redding. Son now we have several fires burning in the local northern part of Calif. Smoke is a guess as to what the air quality will be when you wake up in the morning. Hwy 299 is still open on a 45 minuet to 1hr passing time by pilot car starting at 7:00am to 7:00pm.
On the other hand we have fishing! This is great news for all the fishermen that have been waiting for the chance to go out and hook a fish. The last two weeks has been great for the numbers going through the Willow Creek Weir. Over a 1,000 salmon have been counted at the weir for the last two weeks. Fishing below the weir has been really good below the weir at Kimtu. Big Rock and the mouth of Willow Creek have been a hot item in the early mornings throwing hardware and towards mi- mornings then change over to drifting roe till the sun warms up.
What we the fishing people need to do is start a letter campaign to NOAA and the CFG Commission about restoring the fish release of Coho salmon and steelhead back to the original numbers. Maybe increase all numbers of fish raised and released from the Trinity/Klamath hatcheries to help increase ocean abundance and in-river return. What about the possibilities of being able to be able to go fishing and bring home fish to eat? Wouldn’t that be great! Just once if all of the sport fishermen stood up to the commissions and told them “What we wanted” not what they thought we wanted. The Commissions can’t figure out why yearly fishing licenses are falling by 3,000 to 5,000 per year. 1. Costs; 2. Opportunity, are the problem!
Lower Klamath Creel Survey: Julian Week 38 ending Sep. 23,2021 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; 449-jacks, 3-adults total 452, season total 1,547.
Junction City weir summary: Julian week 35 ending the week of Sep. 2, 2021 for Spring-Run Chinook salmon; 10 - jacks, 20 - adults, total of 30, season total of 1,070; Coho salmon, 0 jacks, season total 0, 0 adults, season total 0; steelhead, 0- 1/2lber, 4- adults, for total of 4, season total 74; Brown trout 0, season total 6. Note: even though the fire and smoke were along the river there was a nice bump of springer’s going up to the Hatchery.
Willow Creek weir summary: Julian Week 38 ending Sept. 23 for Fall Chinook salmon; 130-jacks, 719-adults, total 849, season total 1,401; Coho salmon; 1-jack, 10 adults, total 11, season total 12; steelhead, 0-1/2lbers, 57-adults, total 57, season total 169.
Upper Klamath summary: Julian Week 38 observed through Sept. 21 Shasta River 1,491; Bogus Creek 2 adult Chinook salmon have spawned; Scott Creek, significant numbers have already spawned.
Fishing: The temperatures have cooled down some in Willow Creek and the Hoopa Valley. If the rains come Monday of this week as predicted we should see another significant move on up the Trinity. Willow Creek has been a great place to hook up a salmon and a good possibility of even hooking a nice adult steelie. Below the runway at Big Rock is a good place to fly fish and will as drift some roe. Up from Kimtu there are several places like Campora access/ and Hiel-Din trail just above South Fork. These are all good places for one to reach the Lower Trinity/Willow Creek area. The upper river above Junction City has been doing great also. North Coast Outfitters has been doing trips in the Canyon and took a crew of fishermen with accompanying pontoon boats for two days and was able to hook forty fish, mostly salmon but a few small adult steelhead. Fishing has finally started to pick up again on the Trinity!
Mid-Klamath to Happy Camp: The Klamath River at Weitchpec is flowing 1,995cfs. This is a decrease of 359cfs. Iron Gate Dam is releasing 1,046cfs and increasing. With the increase of water releases from Iron Gate Dam the Upper Klamath is still very fishable and good fly fishing for trout with the possibility of hooking a salmon or two. One might even be able hook a steelhead, that would be nice. Access is going to be a problem along the Upper Klmath due to some smoke but the smoke comes and goes with the winds in the river canyon. Orleans has been fishable of lately and those that have taken advantage have had some fair to good fishing. Above Weitchpec fishing has been good at or near the mouths of the cold-water creeks like Hopkins Creek, Bluff Creek and Slate creek Raffle.
Lake Conditions: Whiskeytown is 98% of capacity (a decrease of 0%) with inflows of 1,697cfs and releasing 1,995cfs in to Spring Creek. Shasta Lake is 24% of capacity (a decrease of 1% minus 3ft) with inflows of 2,930cfs and releasing 4,345cfs into Keswick. Keswick is 93% (an increase of 0%) with inflows of 6,522cfs and releasing 6,799cfs into the Sacramento River. Oroville Lake is 22% of capacity (a decrease of 0% minus 0ft) with inflows of 1,731cfs with releases of 1,507cfs into the Feather River. Folsom Lake is 24% of capacity (a decrease of 0% plus 0ft) with inflows of 951cfs with releases of 556cfs into the American river.
Trinity Lake: The lake is 148ft below the overflow (an increase of 5ft) and 30% of capacity (a decrease of 1%) with inflows of 7cfs and releasing 2,046cfs into Lewiston Lake with 1,596cfs being diverted to Whiskeytown Lake and on to Keswick Power Plant, which is releasing 6,799cfs into the Sacramento River.
Trinity River flows and conditions: Lewiston Dam is 95% of capacity (an increase of 1%) and water releases are 450cfs into the Trinity River, with water temperatures of 52.1 degrees, as of 11:00am today Sunday September 26, 2021. Limekiln Gulch is 4.50ft at 402cfs. Douglas City is 6.49ft with flows of 444cfs with air temps of N/A and water temperatures of 53.6 degrees. Junction City is 1.91ft at 437cfs. Helena is 8.37ft at 456cfs with water temps of 56.9 degrees. Cedar Flat (Burnt Ranch) is 2.57ft at 474cfs. South Fork of the Trinity near Hyampom is 1.97ft at 38cfs. Willow Creek is estimated at 512cfs and air is 64 degrees and water at 61.3 degrees. Hoopa is 11.11ft at 593cfs and water is 65.3 degrees. Water flows at the mouth of the Trinity River at the Klamath in Weitchpec are estimated to be 1,995cfs a decrease of 359cfs.
Klamath River flows and conditions: Iron Gate is releasing 1,046cfs. Seiad Valley is 2.01ft at 1,109cfs. Indian Creek is 3.12ft at487cfs. Happy Camp is estimated at 1,157cfs, Somes Bar is estimated to be 1,289cfs, and the Salmon River is 1.30ft at 113cfs. Orleans is 2.07ft at 1,402cfs, the Klamath River at Terwer Creek is 7.92ft at 2,155cfs and water temps are 65.3 degrees. Flows for the Smith River at Jed Smith are 4.42ft with flows of 181cfs. and flows at Dr. Fine Bridge are 11.47 ft at N/A cfs.
Temperatures for the Valley last week had a high of 92 and a low of 48 degrees. Rain for the week was 0.00in with a water year total to date of 47.02 inches and 1.5in of snow in Willow Creek. The predicted weather for next week is high of 89 and a low of 48. The predicted weather for next week is rain showers and then going up to 89 by Friday then a nice over cast for the weekend. That could mean some good fishing for nest weekend. Let’s hope so.
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