Happy summer solstice. Saturday was the longest day of the year and officially the start of summer. Sunday was Father’s Day. We are now going into the hot summer days so be careful when you jump into the lake or the river as it will be cold!
The Fourth of July weekend is coming up and July 1 will be the opening of salmon fishing for the Klamath River basin for spring chinook salmon. This year you will be limited to one, yes, I did say one (1) salmon per day no matter what size with two (2) salmon in possession. CDFW will be out there looking for violators so please be aware of this new regulation. We have been having some high water on the Trinity because of the “spring flush” and there have been spring chinook going up the river. From what I have seen the upper Trinity will have some nice spring salmon but this year they are going to be hard to locate because of the low return. I have not heard much about the mouth of the Klamath but with the hot weather predicted for this week the fish are not going to want to linger around down there for very long. In fact, I would expect the fish are not going to want stay in the Willow Creek area very long either. With triple digit weather in the forecast I would expect all fish to head up river as fast as they can in order to get into the colder water.
Because of the low runoff from a low snowpack there is going to be a low supply of water for the upper Klamath. What is this going to cause? Once again there is going to be “water wars” over who should get the water, fish or farmers. This is not a new subject. We have been there before. With us fighting over the amount of water going to fish or farms the government doesn’t have to worry about water storage. That is the problem; a limited amount of water storage. If the government would wake up and learn that more water storage is what we need for and when there are drought years. Their answer is if there is “water wars” between fishermen and farmers we don’t have to do anything. Try more water storage.
Tribal Ceremonial Calendar: The following are dates the Karuk Tribe will be holding ceremonies along the Klamath River. Please be respectful and not try to fish in the following locations: July 20-24, Pile Rocks at the mouth of Clear Creek; July 24- Aug. 2, near Somes Bar; Aug. 14-23, near Clear Creek; Aug. 29 – Sept. 7, near Orleans at Camp Creek; Sept. 13-22, near Somes Bar. Remember, there is plenty of river and other areas to fish.
Junction City Weir: Julian week 24 ending June 17: 1 adult chinook salmon, season total 2; coho 0; steelhead 0; Brown trout 0.
Trinity River Water Releases: The Trinity releases are on their way down to summer water flows of 450 cfs by 6 a.m. July 2. On Sunday Lewiston Dam was releasing 707 cfs into the Trinity River.
Mid-Klamath to Happy Camp: The Klamath River at Weitchpec is flowing at 4,327 cfs, a decrease of 1,626 cfs from the last report. Iron Gate Dam is releasing 1,099 cfs as of noon Sunday, June 21.
Lake Conditions: Whiskeytown is 98 percent of capacity (a decrease of 1 percent) with inflows of 1,722 cfs and releasing 1,769 cfs on to Keswick. Shasta Lake is 72 percent of capacity (a decrease of 4 percent, minus 6.5 feet) with inflows of 4,506 cfs and releasing 10,550 cfs into Keswick. Keswick is 94 percent (an increase of 4 percent) with inflows of 11,944 cfs and releasing 11,890 cfs into the Sacramento River. Lake Oroville is 64 percent of capacity (a decrease of 4 percent, minus 10 feet) with inflows of 1,531 cfs with releases of 7,252 cfs into the Feather River. Folsom Lake is 78 percent of capacity (a decrease of 4 percent, minus 4 feet) with inflows of 1,493 cfs with releases of 3,336 cfs into the American River.
Trinity Lake: The lake is 44 feet below the overflow (an increase of 4 feet) and 73 percent of capacity (a decrease of 3 percent) with inflows of 335 cfs and releasing 2,447 cfs into Lewiston Lake with 1,740 cfs being diverted to Whiskeytown Lake and on to Keswick Power Plant, which is releasing 11,890 cfs into the Sacramento River.
Trinity River flows and conditions: Lewiston Lake is 73 percent of capacity (a decrease of 3 percent) and water releases are 707 cfs into the Trinity River, with water temperature of 51.8 degrees as of noon Sunday, June 21. Limekiln Gulch is 5.31ft at 724 cfs. Douglas City is 6.95ft and flows of 718 cfs with water temperature of 55.3 degrees. Junction City is N/A. Helena is 9.58ft at 904 cfs with water temp of 62.2 degrees. Cedar Flat (Burnt Ranch) is 3.93ft at 1,022 cfs. South Fork of the Trinity near Hyampom is 2.57ft at 199 cfs. Willow Creek is estimated at 1,221 cfs and water at 64 degrees. Hoopa is 12.65ft at 1,630 cfs and water is 65.4 degrees. Water flows at the mouth of the Trinity River at the Klamath in Weitchpec are estimated to be 4,327 cfs, a decrease of 1,626 cfs.
Klamath River flows and conditions: Iron Gate is releasing 1,099 cfs. Seiad Valley is 2.447ft at 1,448 cfs. Happy Camp is estimated at 1,561 cfs. Somes Bar is estimated to be 2,037 cfs, and the Salmon River is 2.44ft at 660 cfs. Orleans is 3.36ft at 2,697 cfs. The Klamath River at Terwer Creek is 9.69ft at 5,259 cfs and water temp is 67.9 degrees. Flows for the Smith River at Jedediah Smith are 6.02ft with flows of 942 cfs, and flows at Dr. Fine Bridge are at 12.66ft.