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FEW Lehigh River no flow
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2006/9/11 8:26
From Chester County
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I just checked the Lehigh gage below the FEW dam to see what level it is running at and saw the reading was at 12cfs! Yesterday it was run down to 7cfs!! Just to give you some perspective, this past weekend the flow was close to 3000cfs!

I guess they are working on the dam release, but jeez!!

Lehigh at FEW flow

Posted on: 10/11 11:12


Re: FEW Lehigh River no flow

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2013/6/5 10:12
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That 12 cfs was a just a blip but overall the flows have been SUPER annoying as of late. The web site said there was a 'fisherman realease' this past weekend. If they think 2000+ CFS is a good fishing level they are on crack. Then Monday they drop it to 380 for 48 hours. Gee thanks! 2 days of good levels FINALLY but on a freakin start of a work week. Now, POW, back up over 1000. The next move this weekend will be to drop it back down to 150 so nobody can use it. I simply LOATHE FEW, Beltzville, all of them. ACE is my enemy! even the WBD is a mess this fall.


What I don't understand is why they just can't keep it at 300 for 5 days instead of 1000 for 2?? Do you have to off load water that aggressively when the forecasts are clear with no major storm events. Can't some common sense. The Po makes FEW look like angles though. The guys running Beltsville are morans.

Posted on: 10/11 12:02


Re: FEW Lehigh River no flow

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A little while back I posted about a similar situation at Sayers Dam on Bald Eagle Creek.

At a local meeting, with presentations by the Corps and the Susquehanna River Basin Commission, they said they are going to do a study to improve the flows.

And it was stated that under the present management regime sometimes flows from the dam are very low, including "gate closure" (their term) which of course means NO flow. Shut off.

And I've noticed this, looking the USGS gauge a short distance below the dam.

But they didn't even attempt an explanation of WHY they do this.

But I see it's not just a local thing, it seems part of a pattern.


Posted on: 10/11 12:53


Re: FEW Lehigh River no flow

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2014/9/30 15:26
From Lehigh Gorge
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That happens when they are working or calibrating instrumentation. As said above....Blips

Fishermens release may have more to do with water temp than "fishability" Best to stay home anywhere above 1000

Posted on: 10/11 14:43


Re: FEW Lehigh River no flow

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2006/9/13 18:28
From chester ct
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Yo Zak - the ACE hosts a public meeting every fall. I've gone to the last 2 and was pleased to see a lot of anglers (and their groups) there, offsetting the rafters, who have the dominant economic interest in the area. You ought to attend and voice your concerns.

Posted on: 10/11 14:57
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Re: FEW Lehigh River no flow

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The Corps is working/doing inspections on the discharge tunnel. Its posted on their facebook page. If you are on facebook check it out. https://www.facebook.com/fewalterdam

Posted on: 10/11 15:14


Re: FEW Lehigh River no flow

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A possible solution might be a simple siphon pipe running up over the dam, allowing some flow when they have to do work on the discharge tunnel. And you'd probably need a pump to get the siphon process started.

Low tech and relative low cost, yah?

BTW, wouldn't it be scary to be working in the discharge tunnel?

Posted on: 10/11 15:51


Re: FEW Lehigh River no flow

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It would be nice if they had a low flow bypass system during these occasions. You raised another reason to change the outflow tower.

I don't think they send people down in the tunnel, but some kind of robotic equipment. I could be wrong so don't hold me to it. I wouldn't want to work in there with millions of gallons of water being held back by some metal gates.

Posted on: 10/11 17:05


Re: FEW Lehigh River no flow

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I just don't get the COE this year. Yet another example in a long line of examples at the Tully this year: 2 days ago the flow was at 160. That morning it shot up to 364. We had 1" of rain in Berks County after a drought period. Now it's at 105???? Is there a newbie controlling this?

Posted on: 10/11 17:17
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Re: FEW Lehigh River no flow

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The people controlling the releases are just looking at things differently than we are. At the end of the day flows that are good to fish in take a back seat to just about everything.

Posted on: 10/11 22:14


Re: FEW Lehigh River no flow

Joined:
2013/6/5 10:12
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That's exactly my point. It is sorta like a broken record because I know I'm not alone with my thoughts. It just always confuses me why they can't spread the release over a longer period when the weather forecast is good with not heavy rains forecasted to hold back. After a big heavy rain just stick it to 350 until enough is let out and then start to drop. 1000 is no good for anyone. Not rafters or fisherman really. Pick a side and deliver to it.

I would like to attend that meeting.

Posted on: 10/11 22:19


Re: FEW Lehigh River no flow

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And that's the cold hard truth Ryan....

Posted on: 10/11 22:19


Re: FEW Lehigh River no flow

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The main concern is not about nice fishing conditions.

It's about fish populations.

Dropping the flow to 12 cfs and 7 cfs surely hurts fish populations.

Maybe people can't really visualize what 12 or 7 cfs looks like on a river the size of the Lehigh.

Does anyone have any photos of these extreme events? Then I think people might grasp the situation a little more.

Even a small stream like Young Womans Creek is mostly rocks at 7 cfs.

A flow of 7 cfs on the Lehigh is extreme. I don't how they get away with it.

Doesn't anyone have regulatory authority over the Corps? The EPA? Do they have licensing requirements?

If the Lehigh ever gets a decent conservation base flow, the fish populations in the river will go up. Fish and other aquatic life need WATER. It's that simple.

Posted on: 10/11 23:15

Edited by troutbert on 2017/10/11 23:38:32


Re: FEW Lehigh River no flow

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2011/4/10 23:56
From Bucks County
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If you follow FEW's facebook page, they do a good job at explaining what is going on. (not 100% of the time thou, but most) They did alert that they needed to do their annual tunnel inspections and this is why you see the dips. They keep it at off for approx 15 minutes. There is no bypass built in to switch from one to the other (one main outflow tunnel) (See attached, the river is not de-watered)

There was no Fishing release this past weekend. It was the dump of the remaining storage above 1300'. What they did do however for this years dump (based on previous comments) is to step down the release instead of just going from 2400CFS to 300CFS. Mostly based on comments from the fishing community.

While they can do some head scratching changes in outflow at times, overall the flows plans and how they have been carried out have been the best in terms of conservation/recreation/flood control. Just look at the West Branch to see how really poor outflow management can look like.

There is always ways to make it better, and everyone that wants to throw in their .02 should attend their annual flow plan meeting on Nov 8th in Whitehaven. This is one of those situations where there is a clear process to provide input, vs just venting online. Seriously they do a great job of taking the public input into next years plan.

http://www.nap.usace.army.mil/Media/N ... lter-dam-recreation-plan/

I can say without a doubt, that the minimal flow aspect of the annual plan has lead to an increase in wild BT populations in the river. Its only been in place for 8(?) years and if you fish it enough you have notice the changes. So much so that PAFBC is doing more surveys while there is an increase interest in groups which have done studies in the WB now looking to see what is going on in the Lehigh.




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Posted on: 10/12 8:36


Re: FEW Lehigh River no flow

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2011/4/10 23:56
From Bucks County
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Quote:
If the Lehigh ever gets a decent conservation base flow, the fish populations in the river will go up. Fish and other aquatic life need WATER. It's that simple.


Not sure what you mean by 'If'. They have it now in terms of the mandated minimum flows starting in July (100CFS above inflow) going to end of Sept.

Now the limiting factor to increase this is the amount of available water. You can't make water, so the only way to increase these minimum flows is to increase storage above 1370 (which is already an increase from the original normal pool of 1300.) There has been and continues to be a push to increase the storage above 1370 (by collecting more in winter) and then that allows more water allocated for conservation. There might be some significant news on this front in the coming months.

Posted on: 10/12 8:45



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