Federal agencies announce schedule for Clear Creek emergency pulse flow for spring-run Chinook salmon

Bureau of Reclamation

The Bureau of Reclamation, NOAA Fisheries, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced their plan today for an emergency pulse flow release from Whiskeytown Dam into Clear Creek to benefit spring-run Chinook salmon.

Pulse flows are rapid increases in dam-released flows occurring over a short time frame. During pulse flows, water levels are higher and currents are faster. Visitors should use caution when near or on Clear Creek during the pulse flow period.

Flow releases from Whiskeytown Dam will begin overnight on June 20 and reach a peak of 500 cubic feet per second June 22. Flow releases will be reduced to 150 cfs by June 24.

This emergency pulse flow aims to encourage threatened Central Valley spring-run Chinook salmon to move upstream to take advantage of cooler summer water temperatures and more suitable habitat. This emergency pulse flow is consistent with the Bureau of Reclamation’s 2019 Proposed Action and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s and NOAA Fisheries’ Biological Opinions for the Coordinated Long-Term Operation of the Central Valley Project and State Water Project, which allow operational flexibility in critically dry water years.

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