Winter is Offically Here!
by E.B. Duggan
The winter solutes has officially come and the winter weather is here. I hope all had a great Christmas and am wishing you a Happy New Year. I am sorry about last week as I was under the weather and was not able to make the report. We also had a bit of weather for the Holiday, enough so that maybe, just maybe, the Winter Run steelhead made the move to start up the Klamath and soon to be in the Trinity.
Well it is the end of the year and time to send in your report cards for salmon and steelhead fishing. It also starts the new year of fishing so you might want to get our new fishing license for 2021. NO, the Commission did not approve a new all year fishing license from the date you buy it. The license is still by the calendrer year. Maybe in 2021 it will happen. Something is going to have to happen because we cannot afford to keep losing 3,000 license buyer’s every year without some replacement program to bring in new fishermen.
The Hoopa reservation is experiencing some COVID-19 cases which is going to keep the restrictions for non-residents from going on to the reservation lands. This will also restrict access to the Trinity River areas that cross the reservation. Let’s hope that this COVID thing will end soon we can get back to fishing.
Trinity River Hatchery: Julian week 50 ending Dec. 16, 2020 Fall Chinook, 19- Jacks, 60-adults, total 79, season total 7,0571; Coho, 54-jacks, 112-adults, total 166, season total 1,836; steelhead 5, total 5, season total 29.
Upper Klamath River video count: Julia week 50 ending on Dec. 16, 2020; Shasta river; Chinook salmon 0, season total 4,101, Coho 1, season total 29; Scott River, Chinook salmon-0, season total 251; Coho salmon 28,season total 1,480; Bogus Creek; Chinook salmon,0, season total 2,300, Coho salmon 3, season total 59.
Fishing: Fishing the Willow Creek area the last several weeks in between the rain, has been slow but if one worked hard and make good presentations one could get some hookups. The storms that came through were not very heavy with rain but it did help the river and streams, but it just wasn’t enough to get the steelhead moving up the rivers. Over the Christmas Holiday it did rain over and inch which made the streams and the Trinity come up some. Maybe that will help start some steelies moving. According to weather report we are supposed to get some rain for the New Year Holiday that could possibly get the winter run moving. Let’s keep our fingers crossed and hope that and comes about. The report didn’t say much about any snow but I would keep an eye out because we could get so in the passes.
Mid-Klamath to Happy Camp: The Klamath River at Weitchpec is flowing @ 6,017cfs. an increase of 1,233cfs from last week. Iron Gate Dam is releasing 987cfs as of 11:00am Sunday afternoon. The Weitchpec area is still closed to the general public because of the COVID 19 but the Orleans area up to Happy Camp is open to the public with plenty of places for fishing.
Lake Conditions: Whiskeytown is 85% of capacity (a decrease of 0%) with inflows of 464cfs and releasing 360cfs on to Keswick. Shasta Lake is 45% of capacity (an increase of 1% plus 1ft) with inflows of 3,232cfs and releasing 2,872cfs into Keswick. Keswick is 92% (an increase of 1%) with inflows of 3,281cfs and releasing 3,260cfs into the Sacramento river. Oroville Lake is 35% of capacity (a decrease of 1% minus 2ft) with inflows of 2,095cfs with releases of 1,752cfs into the Feather River. Folsom Lake is 30% of capacity (a decrease of 2% minus 2ft) with inflows of 1,080cfs with releases of 1,365cfs into the American river.
Trinity Lake: The lake is 89ft below the overflow (an increase of 2ft) and 51% of capacity (a decrease of 1%) with inflows of 434cfs and releasing 584cfs into Lewiston Lake with 288cfs being diverted to Whiskeytown Lake and on to Keswick Power Plant, which is releasing 3,307cfs into the Sacramento River.
Trinity River flows and conditions: Lewiston Dam is 96% of capacity (a decrease of 1%) and water releases are 316cfs into the Trinity River, with water temperatures of 44.8 degrees, as of 11:00am today Sunday Dec. 27, 2020. Limekiln Gulch is 4.75ft at 320cfs. Douglas City is 6.35ft with flows of 371cfs. with air temps of 38 and water temperatures of 43.6 degrees. Junction City is 1.82ft at 400cfs. Helena is 8.41ft at 476cfs with water temps of 42.6 degrees. Cedar Flat (Burnt Ranch) is 3.14ft at 688cfs. South Fork of the Trinity near Hyampom is 3.67ft at 601cfs. Willow Creek is estimated at 1,289cfs and air is 44 degrees and water at 43 degrees. Hoopa is 13.44ft at 2,375cfs and water is 44.8 degrees.
Water flows at the mouth of the Trinity River at the Klamath in Weitchpec are estimated to be 6,017cfs an increase of 1,233cfs.
Klamath River flows and conditions: Iron Gate is releasing 987cfs. Seiad Valley is 2.57ft at 1,523cfs. Happy Camp is estimated at 2,023cfs, Somes Bar is estimated to be 4,750cfs, and the Salmon River is 2.99ft at 992cfs. Orleans is 5.47ft at 5,742cfs, the Klamath River at Terwer Creek is 12.57ft at 14,412cfs and water temps are 44.7 degrees. Flows for the Smith River at Jedia Smith are 10.54ft with flows of 7,312cfs. and flows at Dr. Fine Bridge are 16.89ft at N/A cfs. Fishing on the Smith river for fresh steelhead should be starting to be really good with all the high water.
Temperatures in the Valley last week had a high of 51 and a low of 31 degrees. Rain for the week was 2.35in with a water year to date of 11.5 inches with snow in Willow Creek of 0.00in. Forecasts for next week are for high of 62 and low of 32. Winter weather is here but winter is for sure but not much snow predicted yet. The forecast for the coming week shows rain for the New Year Holiday and weekend. Please have a safe Holiday and be careful.
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