trouble is the steelhead runs are already declining. Never been to the Dean myself, and probably wont go for a long time. However a couple things I would say. While historic floods are never good news for steelhead, I'd be more concerned about the salmon. Chinook especially will have already spawned and large amounts of bedload moving in a massive flood is likely to have killed alot of incubating eggs. Also, as many of us remember, the floods of 2003 and to a lesser extent the floods this year brought large amounts of sand into the sauk covering what were once excellent spawning beds with sand. In the recent Dean flood, steelhead probably got off the hook to a degree, the dean has a fairly intact off channel complex and therefore good high flow refugia for rearing juvenile steelhead. Finally steelhead spawn in spring so they will not exhibit the high egg to fry mortality that the salmon will in a flood event like that. Hope things on the dean start to turn around. I'm only 20, and I'd like to have a chance when I'm rich enough (probably 20 years down the line). Lets all cross our fingers and do everything we can for the fish. Just remember its not a lost cause and we can fix some of what we've done.
There was a severe flood two Novembers ago that significantly changed several pieces of water below the canyon - is this the flood you are refering to? If it was, then most of the stream bed alterations took place below the canyon and may not have as big an impact as feared as both chinook and steelhead do the bulk of their spawning above the canyon. Most of the pinks that spawn in the system are below the canyon and would have been heavily impacted, I guess to what extent we will see in the next year or two.(this will impact the grizzles as well)
According to a friend who flew the river by chopper there are more than a few changes all the way from top to bottom. You can now see the cabins at Hodson's Lower Camp from Stewart"s Lower Camp. The trees are gone. Where the lower river had become somewhat "channelized" in recent years it has now changed course to create a lot of new water and many large new tailouts. The flood was big, as in really big. First order of business next spring for the boys at Stewarts will be to shovel the dirt out of the cabins. Those familiar with the river know how far they are from the water and what the flow must have been to put 3-4 feet of water in camp. All that said it sounds as if many changes were positive in terms of good holding water. Hopefully there will be a good bunch of fish to take advantage of the changes.
Hello mark, the river was indeed very high in late Oct. but danny feels that the high water has helped to open up alot of fishable water and has cleaned out existing runs. Camp is allright a bit of clean up needed in the spring. Could you send me your mailing address as we are trying to get some christmas cards out . take care.
Now that must have been one heck of a major flood to be able to see Hodson's from Stewarts. What about Stewarts camp run has it been reestablished? What happened below ken's run? is the old river left channel been reclaimed? How about the motor deadline launch, is the river back to river right tight to the bank? What happend to shillings, hotel, and Jam?. Is it now a straight shot from Hornet to Ken's? What about giants and the water at Stewarts and Hodson's upper camps? Any word about the water from the canyon to the mouth?
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