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Beautiful picture. I'm in northern Idaho and that's on my bucket list of places to go when I can dedicate more time to fishing. I do get to fish the Clearwater (not this year) and like the big water.
 

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"She's a big river" ….


That's an understatement … impressive :whoa::whoa:
I need to fish there … on my bucket list and getting closer to the top :D


Mike
 

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It always amazes me that those monster Western rivers, when at full or even full flood stage move massive boulders and scour out new channels, still allow the fish and their food sources to survive.

ddb
 

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Haven’t been to that part of the Columbia drainage, but live in Central Washington and have been to the headwaters where one can almost jump across the river. Those rocks were placed by the Missoula floods. Not moving much at recent flows. The Ice Age floods are an interesting read and there are books written on the subject. J Harland Bretz was the geologist that figured it out before satellite images.

Mark
 

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I grew up east of Lewiston along the Clearwater river. When I was a kid (using my kid brain) I would wonder how these orange and white rocks (Quartz) wound up here and there, not near the river. All the other rocks were brown and gray (Basalt). I came across Bretz book some years back and as I read it a lot of little things started to make sense how river channels were cut out in open areas South of Spokane and my orange and white rocks up on the hillside.
 

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Curious.

Before the Columbia River dams and reservoirs were constructed in British Columbia, did the Columbia River near Castlegar ever run clear in the summer or only in late autumn and winter?
 

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Curious.

Before the Columbia River dams and reservoirs were constructed in British Columbia, did the Columbia River near Castlegar ever run clear in the summer or only in late autumn and winter?
Not as clear as it does now. The Arrow lakes acted as as the filter but the Kootenay had lots of silt for most of the summer Also the Didymo algae filters a lot of particulate that stuff showed up about 40 years ago.

Grant
 

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Thanks Grant.

Kootenay Lake was insufficient to settle out the glacial till? Interesting. Did the glacial till that the Kootenay River would have once upon a time dumped into Kootenay Lake enhance productivity in Kootenay Lake? The effluent from the Sullivan mine operations at Kimberley was once upon a time a source of fertilizer for Kootenay Lake until Cominco spent about ~C$10-12 M in the late-70s cleaning it up.

So the Columbia River below the Lower Arrow Lake would then likely run clean or cleanish for most of the summer. I have trouble imagining the trout fishery being as rich as it is now. How do the old timers describe the trout fishing pre-dams?

It would be great to see a map of the old Arrow Lakes. I managed to see the unflooded lower Kootenay River valley in 1968 but never managed to visited the unflooded Arrow Lakes/Columbia River valley.
 

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Thanks Grant.

Kootenay Lake was insufficient to settle out the glacial till? Interesting. Did the glacial till that the Kootenay River would have once upon a time dumped into Kootenay Lake enhance productivity in Kootenay Lake? The effluent from the Sullivan mine operations at Kimberley was once upon a time a source of fertilizer for Kootenay Lake until Cominco spent about ~C$10-12 M in the late-70s cleaning it up.

So the Columbia River below the Lower Arrow Lake would then likely run clean or cleanish for most of the summer. I have trouble imagining the trout fishery being as rich as it is now. How do the old timers describe the trout fishing pre-dams?

It would be great to see a map of the old Arrow Lakes. I managed to see the unflooded lower Kootenay River valley in 1968 but never managed to visited the unflooded Arrow Lakes/Columbia River valley.
More fish but less size My uncle would take the train and drift from the Brilliant Falls down to Trail, he and his brother would have enough fish to get the family through the winter none over 3lbs. He told me stories of getting 20lb trout out of Trail creek pretty sure they were steelhead. There were a lot of Dollies in the system before the Dams and lots of coarse fish. They have been replaced with Walleye.
Grant
 

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Great picture of a beautiful river. I confess that when I see that picture it is very hard not to dwell on what has been lost. The Columbia Dams changed both countries in profound ways, many of them very good (irrigation, flood control, hydro power during the war, and many jobs), but the un-dammed river was a treasure of the same scale as the Amazon or the Nile, and we don't have many things like that on the planet. It is still an amazing river up there, though, and I am glad we can still enjoy the modern version. Still.....
 

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With the Columbia River Treaty being negotiated right now the Environmental impacts are at the top of the list for all those concerned. I can only hope that the quest for the all mighty dollar does not hider that position. The best comment I have heard is from a First Nations Rep. "if we can send a land rover to Mars we can get a few fish over a concrete wall"

Grant
 

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With the Columbia River Treaty being negotiated right now the Environmental impacts are at the top of the list for all those concerned. I can only hope that the quest for the all mighty dollar does not hider that position. The best comment I have heard is from a First Nations Rep. "if we can send a land rover to Mars we can get a few fish over a concrete wall"

Grant
Getting them up over the wall is the easy part....getting the juveniles back to the ocean is a whole other story unfortunately :crying:
 

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Getting them up over the wall is the easy part....getting the juveniles back to the ocean is a whole other story unfortunately :crying:
For sure, but I think it can be done just takes some major coordination between all the agency's that manage the system.
Maybe not in my lifetime but the Next Gen can do it.

Grant
 

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The fact that any of the juveniles make it back is sort of a miracle. The U.S. piece of the Columbia is ecologically a very, very long lake, which is sort of not the ideal...... Where is George Hayduke when we need him? Kidding. Kind of.....
 

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Would be great if the will is there to bring back some Columbia runs back to Canada. From what Ive been told likely never get fish over Mica dam but even getting fish into Arrow ,Slocan and Salmo drainages would be great . Likely not in my fishing time either but sure would be nice to see it.The early spring run of Chinook-Kings were supposed to be the largest sized fish on pacific coast and think they travelled furthest too, all the way to headwaters of the river.From what I was told they were in 50-70 pounds range and have seen picture of fellow catching them in down town Salmo in early part of 1900,s.Hope it happens again.
Daryl
 

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The ONA (Okanagan Nation Alliance) are working on putting salmon over the Grand Coulee into the UC. I heard they put some chinook over this past summer with tags to see where they went. They are spearheading the project similar to the re-introduction of sockeye into the Okanagan system.

The Salmo and Slocan would be tough as there's several more dams to tackle after the GC. The Arrow system only has the Hugh Keenleyside dam which has a navigation lock, so that system and it's size would be the best bang for the buck for an initial re-introduction habitat, essentially no fish ladder would be needed to access a massive system. Save the the Pend'orielle and Kootenay, most of the feeder streams (and spawning habitat) into the UC from the border are maybe not the highest quality either (small, modifications, etc.), so the arrow system would probably be the cornerstone with some really wild feeder rivers/streams.

Will be interesting to see what happens in the future.

There are fertilizing programs on both Kootenay and Arrow Lakes.
 

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I know the Colville Confederated Tribes released tagged, adult Chinook over both Chief Joseph and Grand Coulee dams this past year.

I also know that the ONA have been instrumental in getting sockeye into Okanagan Lake, both juveniles and adults as part of their reintroduction program. It is great to see anadromous fish being returned to habitat that they previously occupied after being displaced for so long.
 

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Would be great if the will is there to bring back some Columbia runs back to Canada. From what Ive been told likely never get fish over Mica dam but even getting fish into Arrow ,Slocan and Salmo drainages would be great . Likely not in my fishing time either but sure would be nice to see it.The early spring run of Chinook-Kings were supposed to be the largest sized fish on pacific coast and think they travelled furthest too, all the way to headwaters of the river.From what I was told they were in 50-70 pounds range and have seen picture of fellow catching them in down town Salmo in early part of 1900,s.Hope it happens again.
Daryl


From what I have read the June Hogs where upper Columbia river fish, Would be nice to see fish get that big again. Even on the Elwha river where the dams have been removed and once had ginormous kings, the chance are slim to none of getting that back. Possible yes, likely, wont happen. Who is going to release a 30# king to grow up to be a 50#. Who is going to release a 50# king so it can become an 80# king. Who is going to release a 80# king so it can become a 100# +. And that's just sportsmen, add in all the comercial fisheries, the trawler fleet that dumps over 90,000 pounds of kings as by catch.

Until all open ocean fisheries are ended, we stop harvesting the food base for the salmon, we stop harvesting the food base for the salmons food base we.. Salmon are doomed.

June Hogs
 

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Those are big fish in pic and yes was told the largest went all the way up to the very top of Columbia. I went to a talk a fellow from Salmo area gave a few years ago and he(sorry have forgotten mans name)said that the American native nations wanted to see fish re-established so glad they are following through and maybe with the treaty being renewed will see some money go into it to from governments. Fellow said that he was told there were provisions being included into the dam on Pond Oreille just on Canadian side for fish passage so if that is true would make it possible to see fish in that river and the Salmo again. Not sure if it happened though. The Kootenay there is one old dam at Castlegar just above Columbia which won,t have any passage way but if will and money are there could be done .That would put ocean fish to Slocan river. Would be nice to see and I would love chance to fish for Steelhead in Columbia , the Rainbows in river think their steelhead already so a few extra pounds would make for even stronger fighting fish. I think historically there were Sockeye, Coho and Steelhead in the Slocan system. Just having the dead salmon putting nutrients into systems would improve the trout fishing. I know things or bleak now with ocean survival and rivers have taken a beating to but Nature has a way of making it work if given a chance and I think our system of resource extraction and interfering with ecosystems will either change pretty soon or we will really start to pay for damage done. Its really just society having to want to make the changes and put some value on having a nice world to live in and things can change, its in our best interest to do it,just need to start and people will come on board.I live in hope(and hope i,m not in denial) . Daryl

Just a small addition, on the fertilizing on Kootenay lake the rainbows have crashed on the lake last few years ad kokanee are way down too so the hope of the fertilizing, while it seemed to help in beginning years has proven to not be much help now. Bull trout got skinny and unhealthy about 7 years ago then they are doing better and rainbows are now smaller, last derby at Woodbury winning fish was 5 pounds where years ago would have been over 15 and some years over 20 pounds. Maybe just a natural cycle ,seems to be more fish but way smaller in size.If the Kokanee don,t come back though will be a shame as that is food that allows the others to grow large.
 
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