Saturday, October 25, 2008

SARSAS Update October 9, 2008

Subject: SARSAS Update
Date: Thursday, October 9, 2008, 8:00 PM
Hello SARSAS Supporters,

Sarsas is now a 501C3, non-profit, tax exempt organization so those of you who have volunteered to donate money may do so. We received our status from the California Secretary of State and must file with the IRS to obtain our tax exempt number to give to donors for their ability to deduct their donations to SARSAS.

We have a very knowledgeable SARSAS Steering Committee in place and are working in several areas to get anadromous fishes into the entire length of the Auburn Ravine. To update yourself on SARSAS, you can check out our Blog:

We have a monthly SARSAS meeting (fourth Monday of each month) with Placer County Supervisor Robert Weygandt in which we meet with representatives of Placer Legacy, PG&E, Placer County Water Agency, Nevada Irrigation District, CABY, Auburn City Council, CaDFG, and other interested parties to keep our focus on getting salmon back into the Auburn Ravine. The most recent CaDFG fish count indicates the Auburn Ravine averages 7,000 trout per mile, making in one of the richest fisheries in California.

Last week I toured Butte Creek near Chico to view the most successful creek restoration project in the state. Six thousand spring run salmon were spawning, and I thought I was standing on the banks of a creek in Alaska such as Ketchikan Creek, watching the females using their tails to dig holes in the gravel to lay their eggs with the male fertilizing them. This creek is a foreshadowing of what the Auburn Ravine will be.

We are working with the Dry Creek Conservancy to coordinate a fish count on the Ravine sometime in December 2008.

Auburn Ravine has twelve man-made barriers blocking the salmon and steelhead from reaching Auburn, in whose Auburn School Park Preserve we hope the salmon will ultimately be able to spawn, in the center of Auburn, Ca. Four of the barriers are major barriers: the Lincoln Gaging Station, located a mile downstream from the city of Lincoln; the Hemphill Dam, two miles upstream from Lincoln, the Lincoln Ranch Duck Club Dam, a mile above Locust Rd several miles downstream from Lincoln; and the Gold Hill Diversion Dam, one mile upstream from Gold Hill Road.

Here is the good news. Placer Legacy working with CABY and NID has funded and are doing the design work to retrofit the Lincoln Gaging Station and the Hemphill Dam, making them both passable for salmon and steelhead, probably within a year.
We just learned this week that the CaDFG working with NOAA were able to get the Lincoln Ranch Duck Club Dam completely removed, opening up another ten mile reach of the Auburn Ravine. Removal of this barrier is our Big News. The next barrier to be addressed will be the Gold Hill Diversion Dam.

Once salmon reach the Wise Powerhouse one mile downstream from Auburn, the real work begins because this reach needs additional water and major habitat restoration.

All things are possible. First, comes the dream, then the strategy.

Thanks for all your support and interest.

Jack L. Sanchez SARSAS (Save Auburn Ravine Salmon and Steelhead)
Volunteer Coordinator
3675 Larkin Lane, Auburn, CA 95602 530-888-0281