Trout Being Removed from Desolation Wilderness Lakes

Category:
desolation wilderness
Environment
News
non-native species removal
trout
yellow legged frog
Added Date:
Monday, 20 Oct, 2008
Summary
The yellow-legged frog has been at the center of controversy for some time, and yes, I'd love to speak authoritatively about the effects (or lack of them) a trout population might have on the frog's populations, but I'd be blowing smoke.
 
Content
From the Northern California Hiking blog:

Here's something for Desolation Wilderness hikers who also like to fish. The Forest Service is removing non-native trout from seven lakes to protect the mountain yellow-legged frog, which the trout have been gobbling up since the fish were introduced to the lakes in the 1950s.

The yellow-legged frog has been at the center of controversy for some time, and yes, I'd love to speak authoritatively about the effects (or lack of them) a trout population might have on the frog's populations, but I'd be blowing smoke.


Like any fly fisherman, I hate to see trout populations removed. But then, like any person, I'm not too excited to see native species disappearing due to the introduction of non-natives.

More on this as it continues.
 
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Destinations
Truckee is a charming western mountain town. Truckee is geared toward both summer and winter tourism where visitors can hike, climb, shout into surrealistic caverns, or eat a superb ... moremeal, all before their head hits the pillow. Truckee is located along Interstate 80 and the Truckee river runs on the east side of town down the eastern slope of the Sierra Nevada in to Reno, Nevada. Truckee's elevation is 5,899 ft and around 16,000 people call it home. Truckee's annual snow pabck makes it the fifth snowiest city in the United States. For fly fishermen and paddlers alike the Truckee river is the main attraction. The river runs once gentle and through gurgling rapids as it changes its face almost constantly.
Fishing Waters
Another superb east slope trophy trout stream. The Carson River runs in northwestern Nevada and empties into the Carson Sink. Good fishing can be found from the headwaters, through ... moreMarkleeville and the wild trout section, down to Minden. Much of the river below Markleeville is accessible only on foot or in a raft. No trout are planted here due the wild & scenic designation but the resident trout do quite nicely all alone like that.

The 205 miles Carson River watershed encompasses 3,966 square miles and includes two major forks in the Sierra Nevada in its upper watershed region. James "Grizzly" Adams trapped beaver in the Carson River around 1860, "In the evening we caught a fine lot of salmon-trout (cutthroat trout), using grasshoppers for bait, and in the night killed half a dozen beavers, which were very tame."
From over 13,000 feet on the south side of Mt. Lyell, the Merced River gets off to an icy, cold start. Winding through ancient canyons, carved by glaciers from another age, the river ... moreflows through Yosemite National Park down to the Lake McClure Reservoir. Its journey includes snow-covered peaks, alpine and subalpine meadows and clear, fresh water lakes. Pristine and largely unaffected by outside influences, the South Fork of the river still boasts one of the few self-sustaining populations of rainbow, eastern brook and brown trout.
Game Fish Opportunities:
The Truckee River is a stream in the U.S. states of California and Nevada. The river flows northeasterly and is 121 miles long. The Truckee is the sole outlet of Lake Tahoe and drains ... morepart of the high Sierra Nevada, emptying into Pyramid Lake in the Great Basin. Its waters are an important source of irrigation along its valley and adjacent valleys.

The Truckee River's source is the outlet of Lake Tahoe, at the dam on the northwest side of the lake near Tahoe City, California. It flows generally northeast through the mountains to Truckee, California, then turns sharply to the east and flows into Nevada, through Reno and Sparks and along the northern end of the Carson Range. At Fernley it turns north, flowing along the east side of the Pah Rah Range. It empties into the southern end of Pyramid Lake, a remnant of prehistoric Lake Lahontan, in northern Washoe County in the Pyramid Lake Indian Reservation.

The Truckee River's endorheic drainage basin is about 3,060 square miles (7,900 km2), of which about 2,300 square miles (6,000 km2) are in Nevada. The Middle Watershed is regarded as the 15 miles (24 km) of river and its tributaries from Tahoe City in Placer County, through the Town of Truckee in Nevada County, to the state line between Sierra and Washoe counties. The major tributaries to the Truckee River in California from the Lake Tahoe outlet and heading downstream include: Bear Creek, Squaw Creek, Cabin Creek, Pole Creek, Donner Creek, Trout Creek, Martis Creek, Prosser Creek, the Little Truckee River, Gray Creek, and Bronco Creek. Major lakes and reservoirs in the California part of the watershed include Lake Tahoe, Donner Lake, Independence Lake, Webber Lake, Boca Reservoir, Stampede Reservoir, Prosser Creek Reservoir, and Martis Creek Reservoir. In the Lower Watershed, Steamboat Creek, which drains Washoe Lake, is the major tributary to the Truckee River.
Trips
$
275
-
$
615
/ Boat
Capacity:
1 - 4 anglers
Days:
Daily
Duration:
4 hours - 1 day
Fishing Waters:
The Merced River originates in the Southeastern corner of Yosemite National Park. Its headwaters begin at 7900 feet at the Clarke Range. It flows over Nevada and Vernal Falls, and ... morelastly, Illilouette Creek before she flows through the main Yosemite Valley. Then the Merced, picks up water from Tenaya, Yosemite, Bridalveil, and Pigeon Creeks near the end of the valley, and meeting up the water from Cascade Creek before the river flows through the Merced River Canyon and then outside the park. Its South and North Forks join it a few miles outside the park.

The Lower Merced is another river that can be drifted, water flow permitting, or walk & waded January through May.
$
300
-
$
400
/ Angler
Capacity:
1 - 2 anglers
Days:
Daily
Duration:
4 hours - 1 day
Enjoy a day fishing the Truckee River near Sierraville, California. With our extensive experience fishing the Truckee River, we have the vast knowledge needed to help you catch fish ... moreand have fun doing it. We specialize in guided trips for fishermen of all types from first-time anglers, to experts.
$
375
-
$
500
/ Boat
Capacity:
1 - 2 anglers
Days:
Daily
Duration:
4 hours - 8 hours
If you have ever driven over the Lower Sacramento River or even fished it, you know that due to its shear size and abundance of water, this makes it extremely intimidating. That's ... morewhy having a knowledgable Lower Sacramento River Fly Fishing Guide is so important. A great guide will not only put you on the fish, but will also show you the fishy spots accessable by land, the put ins and pull outs for boats, as well as the bug life, the flies to use and when you go on your own, how to put all that t ogether to be successful. The Lower Sacramento River is a big tailwater fishery and California's biggest trout river, and its rainbows are just as big and powerful as the river they live in. If you want big fish and year-round fishing, this is the river for you. With more food than your local all you can eat buffets (2,500 insects per square foot of river), the average fish grows to a healthy and hard-fighting 16-18", and pigs pushing two feet are not out of the question, so bring some big guns. The fishing season is year-round, and water temperatures remain fairly constant too, as the river comes out of the bottom of Shasta Lake.

This river consists of long, indescribable, spring creek like stretches that are broken up by islands, deep pools, long riffles, gravel bars and undulating shelf’s, many of which are more pronounced during lower flows.

If having one of the best trout fisheries in the state isn’t enough, the Lower Sac also hosts some great runs of Steelhead and Chinook salmon too. It also hosts a variety of other fish, such as, shad, squawfish, stripers, largemouth and smallmouth bass, these populations of fish become higher the farther you get away from Shasta Lake. The highest flows are during the summer months, when snow melt is at its greatest, so a drift boat is highly recommended.

You can walk and wade during the higher flows if you so desire, but staying near the bank will be your safest bet. The best time to walk and wade the Lower Sac is going to be during fall, winter and early spring, there is very little snow melt, and the rain that falls goes to filling up the lake, so the river is low and great for walk and wading. This is the time to get out there and really learn the river's bottom and fish those slots that only come out in lower flows, either way “PLEASE WADE WITH CAUTION”. But due to the river’s size and the amount of private property along its banks, those that prefer to wade have two options. One is to fish from public parks and access points along the 16 miles or river between Redding and Anderson, or, from your boat, getting out at the riffles and fishy slots to make some casts.

Public access is fairly easy though on the Lower Sac, there are 6 boat launches, and many public parks and access points along the river that flows almost parallel with interstate 5.

-Brian
Outfitters
World class experiences in a world class location. We are passionate about guiding in Yosemite - fly fishing, hiking, majestic forests, and our surrounding waters! We explore and we ... morefly fish because the little voice that we hear, drives us into the most beautiful destination locations that the Sierra Nevada mountain range has to offer. Discover beautiful Yosemite National Park, it's hiking trails, it's fly fishing on the Merced, and the mighty Tuolumne rivers; or the seemingly endless Stanislaus river, and the stately Mokulmne river. We have a deep rooted love for Yosemite and it's surrounding areas, but this is only out done by sharing that passion for fly fishing and hiking with others, and watching our clients catch a sunset, a fish, a memory, and a passion for the outdoors!
You don't know the half of it. California Famp;G and the Forest Service have removed fish from lakes at almost every entry point into the Desolation Wilderness: East: Granite Lake, South: Ralston, Tamarack, Cagwin, Jabu, Le Conte, Lucille, and Margery Lakes; South-West: Highland Lake; West: Pyramid, Waca, and Gefo Lakes; and North-West: Tyler, Gertrude and Maud Lakes). Fish removal from linked lakes ... more is an ill-fated attempt to create meta-populations of mountain yellow legged frog (MYLF). Unfortunately, the meta-population concept for species conservation does not work when an infectious disease ((Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis) is present. Just the opposite- the meta-population allows the spread of the disease and the extinction of the MYLF. Forest Service and California Famp;G would have had to consider this alternative in an EIS. A warning of the pitfalls of the meta-population approach to species conservation when an infectious disease is present was published by Hess (1996) in Ecology. To this date no EIS has been written for fish removal in Desolation Wilderness although required by the National Environmental Policy Act for sensitive species (MYLF),or sensitive areas (Wilderness) or disputed issues (fish removal).
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Number one, fish in the area were being planted in area for about 100 years, the frogs and fish both flourished untill the more recent lack of water, which has made them both suffer. Also like to note the aggravation of having all my secret spots decimated. Willie
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There's a thought.....er...image.
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Yeah, but if you took a round float tube, you could simply insert yourself in the hole and roll downhill back to the car. The Trout Underground: Solving unique fly fishing problems since 2005
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From the lot, the main ascent into that area feels like taking on the Sears Tower on foot. Without fish, all you have to look forward to is bears? (almost, since it is quite spectacular up there). But, add three days of hippee food, two rods, a float tube, boots and fins, and I doubt my now rotund self could even make it to the fish.
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