Report Updated March 17, 2016
STILL RAGING…WHALE SIGHTING??
Last weekend, the flows here jumped from 4,000 cfs to 20,500! The dam operators backed off a bit this week but the flows are still running 16,400 cfs, which has most of the park access drive-in spots closed and the ramps shut down. But what’s more interesting…
There were reports of a whale spotted in the river near Watt Ave over a few days back…which is hilarious. Oh, I so wish it were true because…you just never get enough chances to say “Thar she blows!!!” While it’s not clear if alcohol was involved with said whale sighting, it does remind me of a group I once guided in Alaska that started yelling “BEAR…BEAR!” and pointed to an area we had just passed. “Turn around so we can see the bear!” they demanded. So, I flipped the boat back around and took them to the place I had just seen a porcupine.
I think our American River whale spotter probably would have seen the “bear” too! In any case, it’s fun to think about it. Here’s my artists rendition 0f the scene…
Salmon and steelhead need water! You can help by becoming a member of the Golden Gate Salmon Association: A non-profit group fighting to restore Central Valley salmon habitat and ensure both spot and commercial fisheries remain sustainable. Click for details.
American River map
About the American River
The American winds its way 23 miles through the heart of California’s Capitol City from Nimbus dam to its confluence with the Sacramento River. Though it bisects a major metropolitan area, you’d never know it when you’re on the water. There’s a ton of wildlife in the scenic green belt along the river and surprisingly good fishing to be had as well.
The American’s once epic salmon runs have recently fallen on hard times but anglers still see some nice winter steelhead action from November through March on mostly hatchery fish that can sometimes reach 16 or even 18 pounds. In May, a huge run of shad hits the river and they are followed by striped bass that can occasionally top the 50-pound mark. Both species are present until mid summer and then things settle down here from mid July until the fall.
Species of the American River