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Tailwater Dam Release - Impact on Trout/Fishing

Joined:
2012/5/29 19:53
From Codorus, PA
Posts: 39
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Looking for some education about how a dam release can impact fishing. I fish Codorus TT section frequently as it is 3 miles from my house and it seems everytime I fish up to 3 days after a release I get skunked - any other time it fishes real well.

Posted on: 2013/7/24 21:13


Re: Tailwater Dam Release - Impact on Trout/Fishing

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2011/5/26 10:12
From Dauphin PA
Posts: 2766
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I'm not familiar with that stream but will be after you show me around sometime.

Things to consider......

Temps prior to and during the 'release'. A sudden temp change up or down tends to shut off the fish.

Water volume due to release. If the flow increases fairly dramatically, the hold position of the fish will change dramaticly which may explain your decrease in success. You are looking where the fish normally are but due to the release, they've temporarily moved.

Turbidity. Visibility may improve or hurt you catch rate. It may also have some impact on the hatches.

Beyond that, I'd be grasping at straws.

Posted on: 2013/7/24 22:07
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Re: Tailwater Dam Release - Impact on Trout/Fishing

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2011/5/9 15:37
From Ohio
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Like krayfish, I'm not familiar with the stream, but I have experienced fluctuations in water levels on a local tailwater.

Usually I noticed the fishing doesn't change all that much, and if it does it's usually easy to figure out the new pattern if there is one, but there's been a few times when I actually fished within hours and in one case minutes of releases(and the opposite). Most of the times the fishing for just about all of the species kinda shut down. I didn't pay attention to the water temps which certainly could have been a big factor, but imo I think the fish just didn't have all that much time to get used to the new flows. The times when I have had good luck after a release(or decrease in flow) there was a pretty good hatch and the fish took advantage of it. But then again the change in flow didn't happen during the hatch, but hours before.

This is just my experience on one tailwater(which doesn't hold trout year round), so take it for what it's worth..

Posted on: 2013/7/24 22:21


Re: Tailwater Dam Release - Impact on Trout/Fishing

Joined:
2006/9/21 0:02
From Pittsburgh
Posts: 4307
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Well, speaking for dry fly fishing - a sudden increase in flow - and especially clouding or muddying of the water - does seem to slow down rising action.

I've aso heard some people claim that a sudden drop in flow, will also shut things down . But I haven't found that to be the case in my experience
Case in point - on the yough river, they increase the flow on weekends for the whitewater rafting trips. Then on sunday evening, they cut it back again.
I've fished there many mondays after a rapid flow reduction, and have done quite well

Posted on: 2013/7/25 0:01


Re: Tailwater Dam Release - Impact on Trout/Fishing

Joined:
2006/9/13 10:18
From LV
Posts: 7778
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Usually after a release, fishing is best as the water is dropping. Very cold water temperatures from releases do slow things down, especially if the water is not cold already. Even a slight temperature change can put fish down.

Posted on: 2013/7/25 9:58
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Re: Tailwater Dam Release - Impact on Trout/Fishing

Joined:
2012/6/5 21:59
From Hanover
Posts: 298
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That may explain why I get skunked there every other outing.

Posted on: 2013/7/25 10:07


Re: Tailwater Dam Release - Impact on Trout/Fishing

Joined:
2012/5/29 19:53
From Codorus, PA
Posts: 39
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The water temp makes perfect sense - it was freezing last night.

It was so cold there was a noticable difference from when I was out on Saturday.

I will make sure to check the USGS before heading out moving foward. Thanks for all the replies!

Posted on: 2013/7/25 14:35


Re: Tailwater Dam Release - Impact on Trout/Fishing

Joined:
2009/10/15 13:45
From Eastern PA
Posts: 10291
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what are you people refering to as a "release"? codorus releases water every minute of every day.

andy you would HATE codorus.

Posted on: 2013/7/25 20:59


Re: Tailwater Dam Release - Impact on Trout/Fishing

Joined:
2012/3/14 6:23
From Lancaster
Posts: 1017
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The last time I fished the Codorus was a number of years ago. I vividly remember fishing during a "release". I was catching a fair amount of small browns nymphing and didn't realize it was happening at first. I was on the opposite side of the stream from my vehicle and only wearing hip boots. I would say that the flow and clarity of the water changed very quickly. My focus quickly changed from catching fish to getting back to the other side of the creek. I managed to get back across but not without a wet a$$. That's what I would call a "release".

Posted on: 2013/7/25 21:25


Re: Tailwater Dam Release - Impact on Trout/Fishing

Joined:
2006/9/9 22:44
Posts: 740
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There are too many factors involved to even try to speculate. And each tailwater is different. So you can't even realistically equate a comparison from another fishery.

That said, this topic is good message board fodder.

Posted on: 2013/7/25 21:25


Re: Tailwater Dam Release - Impact on Trout/Fishing

Joined:
2011/5/26 10:12
From Dauphin PA
Posts: 2766
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I'd hate Codorus? I'll take your word and please scratch me off the list.

Posted on: 2013/7/25 21:27
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Re: Tailwater Dam Release - Impact on Trout/Fishing

Joined:
2009/9/9 14:52
From Bel Air, MD
Posts: 703
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I have fished the Codorus several times per year for the last 4 years or so, and I have never really noticed a significant increase (or decrease) in flow from anything other than rain. I have been skunked there, but I do not attribute it to release.

As some of you may know, the Gunpowder is my home water. The water is consistently cold, and although my evidence is purely anecdotal, I do not find that the fishing is any better or worse during a release. I catch fish there when the flow is 55 cfs, or 90 cfs or 135cfs.


Posted on: 2013/7/25 23:05


Re: Tailwater Dam Release - Impact on Trout/Fishing

Joined:
2009/4/19 23:09
Posts: 80
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They don't do 'releases' on the Codorus. I've been told that they 'exercise' the dam's release gates from time to time, and I've heard its noticeable when they do that. Other than that, the flow is adjusted based on the demand for cold water at the paper mill downstream, and those are small adjustments that don't seem to change the fishing. If the water is really up, its because some weather event has the west branch swollen, and that typically doesn't last more than a couple of days.

They also did some maintenance on those gates earlier this year, and that may have resulted in some unusual patterns that some of you may have seen.

Posted on: 2013/7/26 0:22


Re: Tailwater Dam Release - Impact on Trout/Fishing

Joined:
2012/6/5 21:59
From Hanover
Posts: 298
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Was there this morning 7:45 to 8:00 AM, yes just 15 min. and I could tell that there was some extra water flow around the bridge at Brown Rd. and we haven't had a good rain since the weekend. It may have been a gate exercise. BTW caught 2 in the 15 min I was there at the bridge run.

Posted on: 2013/7/26 14:11


Re: Tailwater Dam Release - Impact on Trout/Fishing

Joined:
2009/10/15 13:45
From Eastern PA
Posts: 10291
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Quote:

krayfish wrote:
I'd hate Codorus? I'll take your word and please scratch me off the list.


Given you are two minutes from Clarks and really don't like it, I couldn't see you enjoying Codorus. Rather similar streams.

Posted on: 2013/7/26 14:38



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