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CA, Scheduled Recreational Releases 2017

Posted: 04/19/2017
by Theresa Simsiman

California is officially in the wettest season on record giving the state a plethora of paddling choices throughout the year.  Here are some of the paddling opportunities that American Whitewater helped negotiate and implement with hydropower projects across the state including the South Fork American Slab Creek, South Fork Silver Ice House, North Fork Feather Rock Creek and Pit 5. Keep in mind we have never seen a season like this and the flow schedules shared are subject to change. Stay tuned for more!

South Fork Silver Creek below Icehouse Reservoir

June 9, 10, 11, 16 & 17 – 500 CFS

June 18, 23, 24, 25 – 400 CFS

Duration: 10 am - 3 pm


South Fork American River below Slab Creek Reservoir

April 29 & 30 – Targeting 1100 – 1500 CFS

May 6, 7, 13 & 14 – Targeting 1100 -1500 CFS

Duration: 10 am - 4 pm

Coloma Shuttle is available for this run.

Caveats to remember for Slab Creek:

·      Slab Creek Road was closed due to storm damage.  SMUD has indicated with the presence of USFS & SMUD staff they will have these roads open for the six scheduled recreational flow days.  STAY TUNED as AW clarifies what this means in terms of access on other days and exactly where the closure is (i.e. top of the road or lower)

·      This year it is highly likely that recreational streamflows may be modified or suspended in the event the licensee determines expected inflows from SFAR into Slab Creek Reservoir are not controllable to 1500 CFS. 

·      On the Placerville side the road immediately preceding Mosquito Road Bridge is down to one lane until repairs can be completed due to runoff washing out the road, the culvert and underneath the retaining wall. THE USUAL PARKING SPOTS BY THE CULVERT ARE NOT THERE FOR USE.  PLEASE DO NOT BE THE BOATER THAT BLOCKS TRAFFIC AT THIS BRIDGE.

·      The gauge below Slab Creek has been washed out twice and is currently not expected to be replaced until later in the year when flow finally recedes to a level where SMUD is comfortable sending folks back out.  Refer to Dreamflows for a calculated stream flow.


North Fork Feather Rock Creek Dam to Rock Creek Powerhouse

June 24 & 25 1600  CFS 10am-4pm

July 22 & 23 1200 CFS 10am-4pm

August 26 & 27 1000 CFS 10am-4pm

FEATHER RIVER FESTIVAL September 23 & 24 1000 CFS 10am-4pm



August 5 & 6 1500 CFS

September 9 & 10 1200 CFS

Duration: 10 am - 4 pm

Earlier storm events flooded the Pit 5 Powerhouse and it is off line.  PG&E does not expect to see this fixed until late August 2017.  Which means you will see flows in the Pit 5 reach until then.  So yes, there will be extra opportunity for the upper Pit 5 run, however, the same storm events have washed out the road to the lower run take-out.  In other words, the Class IV stretch will be accessible to the Bridge in Big Bend.  The take-out for the Class III section is inaccessible on the Pit 5 Powerhouse Road.