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Thread: Why are Putah creek water flows so low right now?

  1. #1
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    Default Why are Putah creek water flows so low right now?

    Driving through 128 coming back from fishing the Garcia and Gualala I noticed Putah creek water flows were extremely low. I stoped to watch the spawners and the area was completely bone dry. Some of the frog water areas were showing the gravel bottom. I just checked the water flows and it's at 55 cfs. This is not good for the spawing season. Does anybody knows why is so unusual low?

  2. #2
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    Putah Creek flows high n the summer for irrigation and low in the winter.

    This does not sound good to be so low.


    Maybe someone can check with the "Putah Creek Council"?

    https://putahcreekcouncil.org/
    Bill Kiene (Boca Grande)

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    Email: billkiene63@gmail.com
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  3. #3
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    Lake Berryessa is still 28.5 feet below glory hole. The lake is above last year, but still lower than our other California reservoirs.

  4. #4
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    I think that is the “normal” winter flow. It is criminal what they have done to Putah Creek. They barely let any water out that is not diverted for irrigation.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by John H View Post
    I think that is the “normal” winter flow. It is criminal what they have done to Putah Creek. They barely let any water out that is not diverted for irrigation.
    The fish move in to Solano when the flows are that low. They’ll be fine.

  6. #6
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    I think the lowest water flow at Putah was in the 50 cfs, just like now. It is shameful. don't tell that after all this rain cannot afford to have flows in the 120 or 150 cfs. You wanna bet that by April or may the water will be gushing down the river?. It's not how much rain we get but how poorly is being managed.
    Last edited by mogaru; 01-28-2023 at 05:33 PM.

  7. #7
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    Clearly they are trying to fill Berryessa back up. I stopped on my way through Middletown yesterday and Putah Creek above Berryessa is flowing nicely. The gage says 183cfs, about average for this time of year (median value 191cfs). The debris line from recent rains was way up on the banks and the gage history showed it peaked briefly at 9700cfs during the recent storms.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sonoman View Post
    Clearly they are trying to fill Berryessa back up. I stopped on my way through Middletown yesterday and Putah Creek above Berryessa is flowing nicely. The gage says 183cfs, about average for this time of year (median value 191cfs). The debris line from recent rains was way up on the banks and the gage history showed it peaked briefly at 9700cfs during the recent storms.
    Yea Iím not sure why people are calling this mismanagement. Iíd rather these fish have cold water in summer when it hits triple digits than a raging creek in the winter. In reality Putah is an artificial habitat solely relying on water releases by the dam for many years besides the rare times the lake flows into the glory hole. The trout arenít suffering at all so I wouldnít call this mismanagement.

  9. #9
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    Don't worry by the spring the water will be spilling out of the lake like there will be no tomorrow. Bad water management example is not releasing an extra 50 or 70 cfs so the spawners will have the habitat to do their job. Bad water management would be doing exactly which the water managers are doing right now, dewatering the creek at a crucial time in the spawning process. Good water management would be spreading the water through he year, specially if doing so only requires and extra 50 cfs. Simple. When someone interferes in the trout spawning process, the Putah creek suffers and all the efforts to recover the fishery become futile. Putah creek is not something artificially created. It was there before the dam was built.
    Last edited by mogaru; 01-29-2023 at 01:30 PM.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by mogaru View Post
    Don't worry by the spring the water will be spilling out of the lake like there will be no tomorrow. Bad water management example is not releasing an extra 50 or 70 cfs so the spawners will have the habitat to do their job. Bad water management would be doing exactly which the water managers are doing right now, dewatering the creek at a crucial time in the spawning process. Good water management would be spreading the water through he year, specially if doing so only requires and extra 50 cfs. Simple. When someone interferes in the trout spawning process, the Putah creek suffers and all the efforts to recover the fishery become futile. Putah creek is not something artificially created. It was there before the dam was built.
    The dams have been there since the 50ís. Putah creek isnít putah creek pre-dams otherwise thereíd be salmon and steelhead running. The trout are hatchery strain even though they spawn wild. Iíve even caught some with cutthroat markings below the hill plate. They also spawn beginning November into Jan. Putah creek/solano is flood control and AG supply. Thatís just facts. No need to argue about how they manage the water because itís been this way before we were alive. The fish know what to do and the population is healthy. More water is always better but the fish will be ok. Itís way better they get cold water in the summer otherwise there would be NO trout population and everyone would complain about the lack of water in the heat.

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