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    New thermal release plan for the Upper D

    Some of you probably saw this already - new agreement from the DRBC regarding thermal releases from Cannonsville. (Most important section is pasted below.)

    My take is that this is very good news. It insures that the mainstem will stay cool enough to hold trout (under 75) all the way down to Lordville... now if only they'd put in a drift boat ramp

    But more importantly, it's simple and transparent, so there will be no more confusion about what should happen when the river heats up.

    (Btw, floating from Buckingham to Lordville for trout during a heatwave will still not generally be a good idea. 75 is way too hot to fish. but it won't kill the trout or force them to relocate.)

    Thanks to FUDR for fighting for this.

    ---

    In March of 2018, the Delaware River Basin Commission reactivated the Subcommittee of Ecological Flows (SEF) consisting of state and federal officials and members of the UDR conservation community including Friends of the Upper Delaware River and Trout Unlimited.

    Over the past 14 months SEF met 8 times and reached consensus on a proposal that is referred to as "Simple 75". That means whenever the water temperature at the USGS gauge at Lordville, NY is predicted to meet or exceed 75 degrees Fahrenheit, the NYSDEC will call for a thermal release from Cannonsville reservoir to keep water temperatures below 75 F.

    Three important points of clarification with respect to the 75 F target at Lordville, NY:

    1. Exceedances of 75 degrees at Lordville have significantly diminished since the FFMP baseline water releases were improved in 2011.
    2. Conservation interests on SEF successfully countered an initial proposal that called for a 77 F target at Lordville under certain conditions, a temperature that approaches lethality for trout.
    3. SEF made a commitment to study the possibilities of a 72 F target and to reconsider the size of the TMB should it bear out that 2500 cfs days is not enough to adequately protect the cold water ecosystem.



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    Re: New thermal release plan for the Upper D

    Good news. I knew it was coming, but didn't hear about the details. I like that they are immediately diving in to see if we can get down to 72F. While I fully agree that 75F is a great first step and guarantees trout won't die, I'm not so sure they won't largely relocate to find cooler waters. Having them stacked up in the mainstem with their noses in colder tributary waters only makes them an easier target for predators including some anglers. Getting down to highs of 72 might change that scenario. Either way, all good news and thanks to FUDR, TU and the others working so hard to make NY City focus more on the habitat needs of the rivers they control so closely.

    A sinking fly is closer to Hell - ​Unknown

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    Re: New thermal release plan for the Upper D

    Quote Originally Posted by Rusty Spinner View Post
    Good news. I knew it was coming, but didn't hear about the details. I like that they are immediately diving in to see if we can get down to 72F. While I fully agree that 75F is a great first step and guarantees trout won't die, I'm not so sure they won't largely relocate to find cooler waters. Having them stacked up in the mainstem with their noses in colder tributary waters only makes them an easier target for predators including some anglers. Getting down to highs of 72 might change that scenario. Either way, all good news and thanks to FUDR, TU and the others working so hard to make NY City focus more on the habitat needs of the rivers they control so closely.
    Agreed. The colder the better. Anecdotally, trout in the lower East Branch will stick around through highs in the mid-70s, especially if there are cold nights, but they all vanish immediately once the thermometer edges up toward 78 or so.

    There's still some ambiguity in the plan, mainly due to the phrases "is predicted to" and "meet or exceed" 75. I could see a scenario where the temps top out at 72 or 73, because the releases kick in a day before a heat wave, and preempt anything higher. That would be a big change for Lordville, which sees at least a couple of weeks in the high 70s every summer.

    But I could also see them taking a more reactive approach and waiting for the gauge to hit 75 before releasing water. That would be a smaller change, but still a meaningful one.

    Either way, this means from Stilesville down, the WB and mainstem will be a bit cooler every summer, and that can't be anything but good.


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    Re: New thermal release plan for the Upper D

    More cool water in the heat of summer is always good for the fish and the fishermen, but I'm fascinated by the logistics.

    "The NYSDEC will call for a thermal release from Cannonsville reservoir"

    How does that work? Does an authorized person at the DEC call Schneider over at the dam and he turns a big valve 3/4 of a turn? Does Schneider have a list of authorized people who can request flow changes? Do authorized members of all the different agencies have their own logins to a computerized flow regulation valve and they can make flow adjustments themselves? Inquiring minds want to know...strictly for educational purposes.

    Side story: A couple decades ago the gate at Pepacton was open. Being curious we drove out on the dam to look. Pretty cool site. Schneider came out and berated us for not reading the sign and trespassing. "Nobody ever reads the sign. The world is full of assholes. Get the hell out of here before I have you arrested." Well you can't miss the sign on the gate...when the gate is closed. When the gate is open, the sign well hidden. I tried to make some calls to help the dam managers understand why the whole world full of assholes was ignoring their sign but didn't get very far. Good times.


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    Re: New thermal release plan for the Upper D

    Quote Originally Posted by tompg View Post
    More cool water in the heat of summer is always good for the fish and the fishermen, but I'm fascinated by the logistics.

    "The NYSDEC will call for a thermal release from Cannonsville reservoir"

    How does that work? Does an authorized person at the DEC call Schneider over at the dam and he turns a big valve 3/4 of a turn? Does Schneider have a list of authorized people who can request flow changes? Do authorized members of all the different agencies have their own logins to a computerized flow regulation valve and they can make flow adjustments themselves? Inquiring minds want to know...strictly for educational purposes.
    Basically, yes. Someone at NY DEC makes a call and the valves get open more. You know FUDR and others will be making calls to NY DEC on those hot days when more water needs to be released.

    A sinking fly is closer to Hell - ​Unknown

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    Re: New thermal release plan for the Upper D

    When I saw this agreement, it occurred to me that, just to keep water cold and trout down to Lordville, we might run out of water in New York City.


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    Re: New thermal release plan for the Upper D

    Quote Originally Posted by golden beetle View Post
    When I saw this agreement, it occurred to me that, just to keep water cold and trout down to Lordville, we might run out of water in New York City.
    We dont care. Its all about the fish, not people

    To look good is to fish good

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    Re: New thermal release plan for the Upper D

    Quote Originally Posted by golden beetle View Post
    When I saw this agreement, it occurred to me that, just to keep water cold and trout down to Lordville, we might run out of water in New York City.
    Much like AOC and her 3 Stooges, you have the ability to then move.....



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