Cacoosing Creek dam removal

T

TYoung

Member
Joined
May 7, 2009
Messages
457
Yesterday, someone on Instagram posted a video of the small dam on Cacoosing Creek being removed. I think this will make it easier for wild browns to move between Cacoosing Creek and Tulpehocken Creek. I'm hoping I'll be able to catch more wild browns in the Tully in the future.
 
pcray1231

pcray1231

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 31, 2008
Messages
12,623
I've already caught a nice number of wild browns in the Tully near the mouth of Cacoosing. But yeah, the dam removal is a good thing. Happy to hear it.
 
M

Mike

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 10, 2006
Messages
4,341
This project is a prime example of how complex and numerous the problems and technicalities regarding dam removals can get. It is not just about $. This specific dam removal was conceptualized at least 10-15 yrs ago. I’m not going to go into the details, but suffice it to say that it has been a long time in coming with many stops and starts along the way and if all goes well, there may be gains beyond fish passage that will eventually be realized by anglers.

I would also add that passage for white suckers (spawning migration) and enhanced passage for American eels were species considerations for this project, not just trout movement and impacts on Tully temps.
 
Last edited:
afishinado

afishinado

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Sep 11, 2006
Messages
15,371
Location
Chester County, PA
This project is a prime example of how complex and numerous the problems and technicalities regarding dam removals can get. It is not just about $. This specific dam removal was conceptualized at least 10-15 yrs ago. I’m not going to go into the details, but suffice it to say that it has been a long time in coming with many stops and starts along the way and if all goes well, there may be gains beyond fish passage that will eventually be realized by anglers.

I would also add that passage for white suckers (spawning migration) and enhanced passage for American eels were species considerations for this project, not just trout movement and impacts on Tully temps.
Interesting. Can you detail them?
 
M

Mike

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 10, 2006
Messages
4,341
Those rocks would be better left unturned.
 
wgmiller

wgmiller

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 24, 2008
Messages
2,626
I made it out to the Tully yesterday to chase the tricos around Rebers Bridge Rd. I had limited success as the same old story applies ("you should have been here last week...":rolleyes:). At any rate, I moved farther downstream mid-morning and checked out the confluence of Cacoossing/Tully as well as ventured up Cacoosing. I spoke with a "local spin angler" who was miffed at the dam removal and how it ruined his honey hole. I tried to explain to him that in due time, the dam removal would be a good thing, as it would allow a constant flow of cold water into the Tully (it was coming in at 62 yesterday). We just simply need some high water events to let Mother Nature do her thing.

There is a tremendous of "silt" that came downstream as well as what remains in the area that was above the dam. Hopefully they can get in and stabilize the stream above where the dam was, as it's in a pretty precarious position as it currently sits. The "silt" isn't silt like you'd see in a limestone stream, but instead has lots of little pebbles in it. Nonetheless, it is still soft and you sink when walking in it. There are still wild browns in this stretch, that I can tell you!

IMG 5770
No more dam 👏

IMG 5771

IMG 5772

IMG 5773

IMG 5774
 
Flylife

Flylife

New member
Joined
Jul 19, 2013
Messages
14
I made it out to the Tully yesterday to chase the tricos around Rebers Bridge Rd. I had limited success as the same old story applies ("you should have been here last week...":rolleyes:). At any rate, I moved farther downstream mid-morning and checked out the confluence of Cacoossing/Tully as well as ventured up Cacoosing. I spoke with a "local spin angler" who was miffed at the dam removal and how it ruined his honey hole. I tried to explain to him that in due time, the dam removal would be a good thing, as it would allow a constant flow of cold water into the Tully (it was coming in at 62 yesterday). We just simply need some high water events to let Mother Nature do her thing.

There is a tremendous of "silt" that came downstream as well as what remains in the area that was above the dam. Hopefully they can get in and stabilize the stream above where the dam was, as it's in a pretty precarious position as it currently sits. The "silt" isn't silt like you'd see in a limestone stream, but instead has lots of little pebbles in it. Nonetheless, it is still soft and you sink when walking in it. There are still wild browns in this stretch, that I can tell you!

View attachment 1641226685
No more dam 👏

View attachment 1641226686

View attachment 1641226687

View attachment 1641226688

View attachment 1641226689
wgmiller,
With water temperature at 74 and low water why are you Trout fishing the Tully???
 
M

Mike

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 10, 2006
Messages
4,341
Flylife: from the Hatches etc Forum comes info on Tully temps under low flow conditions…
If you fish upstream from the Cacoosing, the site of one of the long term temp monitors when we conducted that temp study, you should find the temp to be cooler than the gauge temp. That’s the way things go there in low flow years. I suspect that could be true in any stretch above Cacoosing but below Plum where the water from Plum has fully mixed with that of the Tully. Also, the temp should be cooler below the Cacoosing because of the aforementioned situation and now because the Cacoosing is presently running cool without the dam to heat things up. When we did the study, on hot afternoons the Cacoosing was either the same temp as the Tully just up from the confluence or a degree or two warmer. If you decide to keep few fish later in the morning, you won’t have to worry about temps and the fish will probably taste pretty good after having been in the stream since late winter or early spring.

Additional comment: The morning flow yesterday (Thursday) looked to have been around 100 cfs, at the gauge, just above the the 90 cfs target as maintenance flow for aquatic life, and the temp was cir 70 deg F at the gauge. Flow was then reduced from 8:30 to 10:30 AM and temps were rising, maxing out at 74 deg later that day. I would expect that temp was lower in the stretch below Plum, but above Cacoosing.
 
Last edited:
wgmiller

wgmiller

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 24, 2008
Messages
2,626
wgmiller,
With water temperature at 74 and low water why are you Trout fishing the Tully???

Mike pretty much nailed it. I'm not naive enough to fish in water that is too warm for trout. The area I fished around Rebers Bridge was in fact below where Plum dumps in. I checked the temp and it was in the upper 60s. Mid-morning I switched over to the confluence of Cacoosing/Tully, which when mixed with 62 degree water from Cacoosing certainly is within safe limits for trout. I was off the water by mid-morning, as it was entirely too hot for me. Some guys may not like "fishing on the temperature bubble", but these are largely stocked rainbow trout in a DHALO stream. It's not like they're wild fish on a wilderness stream.

Even if one chooses to fish above where cold feeders dump in, the temp doesn't start to "push the envelope" until mid-morning and beyond. Based on the number of anglers I saw yesterday, they too understood that.

IMG 5783

My plans moving forward are to focus on smallmouth and pick back up with trout in early September (temps and flow permitting).
 
T

troutbert

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 2, 2006
Messages
9,449
I made it out to the Tully yesterday to chase the tricos around Rebers Bridge Rd. I had limited success as the same old story applies ("you should have been here last week...":rolleyes:). At any rate, I moved farther downstream mid-morning and checked out the confluence of Cacoossing/Tully as well as ventured up Cacoosing. I spoke with a "local spin angler" who was miffed at the dam removal and how it ruined his honey hole. I tried to explain to him that in due time, the dam removal would be a good thing, as it would allow a constant flow of cold water into the Tully (it was coming in at 62 yesterday). We just simply need some high water events to let Mother Nature do her thing.

There is a tremendous of "silt" that came downstream as well as what remains in the area that was above the dam. Hopefully they can get in and stabilize the stream above where the dam was, as it's in a pretty precarious position as it currently sits. The "silt" isn't silt like you'd see in a limestone stream, but instead has lots of little pebbles in it. Nonetheless, it is still soft and you sink when walking in it. There are still wild browns in this stretch, that I can tell you!

View attachment 1641226685
No more dam 👏

View attachment 1641226686

View attachment 1641226687

View attachment 1641226688

View attachment 1641226689

The photos show a typical situation when a dam is removed where there is a deep accumulation of sediments. I've seen this pattern at various dam removal sites.

When the dam is removed, the water cuts down vertically through the sediment deposit. You get a channel that is pretty straight rather than meandering, because when the dam is removed, the erosive energy of the stream is directed vertically downward, rather than laterally.

The channel is incised into the sediment deposit, with the water confined by steep banks on both sides.

There is little development of pool habitat, because there aren't features present to cause pool formation.

After McCoy Dam was removed on Spring Creek, it looked very similar. That's a larger stream, and the sediment deposit was quite large, probably 10 feet thick near the dam. But the basic situation looks pretty similar.

In the early days of the dam removal movement, they just removed the dam and considered it done. But what often resulted was a nearly straight shallow channel with very little good fish habitat (pools and cover).

That is why they now typically do some structural habitat work, such as rock cross vanes. That adds considerable expense, but you get some fish habitat rather than a shallow featureless "ditch."

Some people think that you can pull a dam, and "Mother Nature" will create good fish habitat. But I've seen old splash dam and mill dam sites from the logging boom of the late 1800s, and most of the sediment deposit is still there and you still have a nearly straight channel that is wide and shallow and lacking in pool and cover habitat. That's after about 100 years.

I know of one such stretch that is about 1 mile long. The water quality is good and there are good numbers of wild trout in other sections of the stream where there is pool habitat. But that 1 mile stretch through the old sediment deposit from the former dam has only a few small trout.
 
salmo

salmo

Member
Joined
Apr 24, 2009
Messages
720
Location
South Jersey
Thanks, Dwight..
 
Oregon_OwlII

Oregon_OwlII

Member
Joined
Sep 18, 2017
Messages
114
Location
Eugene, Oregon
The photos show a typical situation when a dam is removed where there is a deep accumulation of sediments. I've seen this pattern at various dam removal sites.

When the dam is removed, the water cuts down vertically through the sediment deposit. You get a channel that is pretty straight rather than meandering, because when the dam is removed, the erosive energy of the stream is directed vertically downward, rather than laterally.

The channel is incised into the sediment deposit, with the water confined by steep banks on both sides.

There is little development of pool habitat, because there aren't features present to cause pool formation.

After McCoy Dam was removed on Spring Creek, it looked very similar. That's a larger stream, and the sediment deposit was quite large, probably 10 feet thick near the dam. But the basic situation looks pretty similar.

In the early days of the dam removal movement, they just removed the dam and considered it done. But what often resulted was a nearly straight shallow channel with very little good fish habitat (pools and cover).

That is why they now typically do some structural habitat work, such as rock cross vanes. That adds considerable expense, but you get some fish habitat rather than a shallow featureless "ditch."

Some people think that you can pull a dam, and "Mother Nature" will create good fish habitat. But I've seen old splash dam and mill dam sites from the logging boom of the late 1800s, and most of the sediment deposit is still there and you still have a nearly straight channel that is wide and shallow and lacking in pool and cover habitat. That's after about 100 years.

I know of one such stretch that is about 1 mile long. The water quality is good and there are good numbers of wild trout in other sections of the stream where there is pool habitat. But that 1 mile stretch through the old sediment deposit from the former dam has only a few small trout.
I do believe the restoration process in dam removal is to allow some time for a stream channel to get established before any habitat improvements are attempted, to get some stabilization in place before riparian plantings and BAR (big *** rocks) in the stream channel. Attempting things too early may lead to misplaced effort and money wasted.
 
T

troutbert

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 2, 2006
Messages
9,449
I do believe the restoration process in dam removal is to allow some time for a stream channel to get established before any habitat improvements are attempted, to get some stabilization in place before riparian plantings and BAR (big *** rocks) in the stream channel. Attempting things too early may lead to misplaced effort and money wasted.
It's a good idea to let the stream adjust for a while.

But in the second photo above, isn't that a man-made rock structure?
 
Top