Thursday, January 22, 2009

SARSAS Update, January 21, 2009

Save Auburn Ravine Salmon and Steelhead (SARSAS, INC.)
Update for January 21, 2009
Jack L. Sanchez
SARSAS, Inc., Volunteer Coordinator

Much progress is being made to achieve the goal of returning salmon and steelhead to the entire length of the Auburn Ravine. Starting at the west end near the mouth of the AR, South Sutter Water Agency , with General Manager Brad Arnold, providing a tour for SARSAS members of his three diversion dams – the Coppin, Davis, and Tom Glenn –, which showed all three flashboard dams are in compliance with anadromous fish passage. Flashboards are removed during the Chinook Salmon Run October to January of each year. The AR flows through these three diversion dams and then into the Eastside Canal, which in turn flows into the 4 mile long Cross Canal that empties into the Sacramento River at the town of Verona.

Moving upstream the next man-made barrier is the Lincoln Ranch Duck Club Diversion Dam, which is also in compliance with anadromous fish passage. The next two dams moving upstream are the Aitken Ranch and Moore Dams, which are passable for fishes but still need to be fully compliant. The Nelson Lane Diversion Dam is fully passable for anadromous fishes. Five of the lower seven man-made barriers are completely suitable for fish passage during the Fall Chinook Salmon Run.

Farther upstream the next two man-made barriers are the Lincoln Gaging Station and the Hemphill Dam. The LGS is located one half mile west of the Highway 65 Bridge on the AR. The HD is located approximately one mile upstream from the Highway 193 Bridge. Both of these barriers are owned and operated by the Nevada Irrigation District (NID). Funding and design are currently completed and work is underway to retrofit both barriers for fish passage with the work projected to be completed this summer. Ron Nelson, NID General Manager, has indicated that as soon as work on these two dams is completed, his attention will be focused on retrofitting the last remaining, and biggest dam on the Auburn Ravine, the Gold Hill Dam.

This summer fishes will be able to reach the Gold Hill Diversion Dam in Newcastle and when it is retrofitted, fish will have free, unobstructed passage to the Wise Powerhouse, one mile west of Auburn.

SARSAS, Inc., working with many state and national agencies, community governmental agencies and water districts, has made much progress but much remains to be done. The last phase of getting fish to Auburn is the restoration of stream bed and banks, fish habitat and riparian improvement, and water augmentation to the mile stretch of the AR between Wise Powerhouse and the city of Auburn.

SARSAS, Inc., is now a fully documented 501C3, public benefit non-profit corporation. SARSAS, Inc., is an all volunteer organization so all funds and in kind donations go to its goal of getting anadromous fishes to Auburn. It is totally free of administrative costs.

The next SARSAS benefit is the Wine Tasting and Music at Courthouse Coffee, 1425 Lincoln Way, in Auburn on Friday, February 13, 2009. Hours are 6-8 pm with a $10 donation. Call 530 888 0281. RSVP is unnecessary; just come to the event.

Tax Exempt # for SARSAS, Inc., is 80-229168. Donations and volunteer pledges of skills, equipment and time may be sent to:

PO Box 4269
Auburn, Ca 95602
Upon receipt SARSAS, Inc., will provide the donor the necessary tax deductible document.

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