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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
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    2,012

    Fix Hebgen Dammit!

    Well NWE is again doing their best to fuck up the upper Madison. If any SWMT mags are around today I believe Madison/Gallatin TU is organizing the bucket brigade/volunteer effort to save fish. The entire upper Madison shitshow might not have anything to argue about if there's no fish next year...

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
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    OOTAH
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    Man that sucks! They are doing their very best to destroy one of the finest fisheries in the west. Wish I was closer to help.
    Samuel L. Jackson as Jules Winnfield: Oh, I'm sorry. Did I break your concentration?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    idaho panhandle!
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    8,914

    Fix Hebgen Dammit!

    This is a shitty deal. They need to try and save the brood fish since the reds will be fuct. Hope they get some water flowing asap. If I still lived in the Ďzone I would absolutely be there.
    Fuck!

    https://www.kbzk.com/news/montana-ne...els-after-drop

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Bottom feeding
    Posts
    9,685
    JFC
    Well maybe I'm the faggot America
    I'm not a part of a redneck agenda

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    PNW
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    6,893
    Unacceptable.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2019
    Posts
    590
    I went up today. Here's a photo essay.

    Showed up at Ennis Foods at 8:30. It was a mix of guides, TU, FWP, NW Energy, and folks like myself who just have a passion for our fishery.





    Some of you might know Beau, he's the secretary of our local TU chapter.





    Andy (orange coat) is a manager for NW Energy. Bob (black coat) is the CEO.





    Mike from FWP.





    There were so many folks that turned out they sent most of us home. Before heading back to Bozeman, I decided to drive up river and check it out.

    Looking N from Mac Bridge. The river here is still in pretty good shape as this is below several major tribs.





    Looking N from Lyons. While you can see the river is a little lower, things here are still pretty good.





    Black Butte. This is above the West Fork and you can start to see where the river has dropped as indicated by the darker gravel on the left bank.





    Probably the most iconic bridge in fly fishing.





    Raynolds. There are a couple guys combing the puddles.





    While everything below Quake was not ideal, It was nowhere near as extreme as I was expecting. Between the Lakes was by far the worst area.


    If you've driven by or fished here, you know this bend. This is usually under water and one huge redd complex.





    Obviously the side channel is bad. But if you look downstream you can also see how far the river has dropped.





    The guys from FWP showed up. They had 5 teams spread out between the lakes, each team equipped with a shocker.





    They would shock each puddle in an attempt to collect sculpin and small trout. This looked like very tedious work and I started wondering how much difference would it really make. There are thousands of these little puddles. I was also expecting dead fish everywhere but only saw one.





    Got one!





    And another.





    Not that it really matters on this section but one reason they didn't want hoards of people trampling all over the river was to protect the redds. Here are several that are completely exposed.





    Two ladies that are completely surrounded by redds.





    I then made it to the dam. There were three rigs on site. Guess I thought there would've been a much greater sense of urgency. On my way out, I did pass by a few more rigs heading up.





    Obviously we are all pulling for 'em to get it figured out but the manager didn't sound too optimistic.

    How can there not be more redundancy built into the system? This is one of the biggest dams in SW Montana.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Wenatchee
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    11,792
    So you all are getting worked up over a dam breach and the river returning to a more natural state? What am I missing here, isnít this what fishermen and environmentalists want?


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  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    Bellevue
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    7,314
    Quote Originally Posted by MagnificentUnicorn View Post
    So you all are getting worked up over a dam breach and the river returning to a more natural state? What am I missing here, isnít this what fishermen and environmentalists want?


    Sent from my iPhone using TGR Forums
    No, looks like the opposite situation. Not enough water getting through the dam. Click image for larger version. 

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  9. #9
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    Oct 2008
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    Wenatchee
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    Quote Originally Posted by abraham View Post
    No, looks like the opposite situation. Not enough water getting through the dam. Click image for larger version. 

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    Got it. Thatís a bummer.


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  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    just outside the bubble
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    1,383
    Swimmy- thanks for the report. Wow.

    Fingers crossed they get it fixed asap.
    It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. ĖErnest Hemingway

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
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    OOTAH
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    Swimmy, thanks for sharing I have been wondering. Man it sucks to see all the redds exposed that is going to put a big damper on things for the next several years.
    Magnificent Unicorn- might want to hold off commenting on shit you know nothing about.


    Sent from my iPhone using TGR Forums
    Samuel L. Jackson as Jules Winnfield: Oh, I'm sorry. Did I break your concentration?

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Posts
    2,012
    Yeah my buddy sent me almost the same pics as you swimmy. Not to be too cynical but I've seen fuckloads of people walking that side channel below the dam stomping on and fishing over those redds but that's another rant.

    And yeah not a breach however the last major fuckup(depending on who you ask) the dam was stuck open creating one of the craziest class V runs below quake killing at least one kayaker. There has also been a pattern of very questionable release schedules according to many but I'm no hydrologist.

    Just another sad chapter on an area that holds a special place in my heart.

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  13. #13
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    SE Idaho
    Posts
    943
    This has happened 3 times in the last 2 years on Island Park dam but luckily they were able to get flows going again within 15 or 20 minutes. I think all 3 times were electrical issues. I was fishing on the ranch one of the times. They say they're not going to get flows going on the Madison for several days? Wtf? They're worried about people walking on redds that are going to be high and dry for several days and that are probably frozen solid right now? I'd imagine that salmon fly hatch is now toast too.
    So fucking shitty.
    Hunting kicks ass.
    Chicks dig Labs.
    I'll keep my job, my money and my guns and you can keep the change.
    From my cold dead hands.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Dec 2019
    Posts
    590
    Gates are open and the river is back up!!

    https://waterdata.usgs.gov/mt/nwis/u...65,00060,00010

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jan 2018
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    Gallatin County
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    Great news! I would like to some of the trillions of dollars for infrastructure improvements can be used to upgrade the Hebgen sluices and controls to preclude these wild man made river level fluctuations.

    Quote Originally Posted by swimmy View Post
    Gates are open and the river is back up!!

    https://waterdata.usgs.gov/mt/nwis/u...65,00060,00010

  16. #16
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    Oct 2008
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    Wenatchee
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    Quote Originally Posted by teleee View Post
    Swimmy, thanks for sharing I have been wondering. Man it sucks to see all the redds exposed that is going to put a big damper on things for the next several years.
    Magnificent Unicorn- might want to hold off commenting on shit you know nothing about.


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    It was clarified, I asked a question.


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  17. #17
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
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    Driggs
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    552
    Swimmy, Thanks for photographic essay. They need to get this fixed, maybe some of that infrastructure money.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
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    Where the sheets have no stains
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    Quote Originally Posted by Talisman View Post
    Great news! I would like to some of the trillions of dollars for infrastructure improvements can be used to upgrade the Hebgen sluices and controls to preclude these wild man made river level fluctuations.
    While I agree in principal, Northwest Energy is a private and for profit corporation that owns that fucking dam and charges us $$$ for energy.

    They can fucking well afford to fix that damn thing and operate it correctly or lose it.
    I have been in this State for 30 years and I am willing to admit that I am part of the problem.

    "Happiest years of my life were earning < $8.00 and hour, collecting unemployment every spring and fall, no car, no debt and no responsibilities. 1984-1990 Park City UT"

  19. #19
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    Jan 2018
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    Gallatin County
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bunion 2020 View Post
    They can fucking well afford to fix that damn thing and operate it correctly or lose it.
    The tyranny of maximizing profits with no accountability for poor outflow control likely means a "fix" of the issue that caused a major trout water to almost go dry versus an upgrade to a a primary and backup system.

  20. #20
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    Dec 2004
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    Where the sheets have no stains
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    Quote Originally Posted by Talisman View Post
    The tyranny of maximizing profits with no accountability for poor outflow control likely means a "fix" of the issue that caused a major trout water to almost go dry versus an upgrade to a a primary and backup system.
    Damn, that hurts to read.

    Fuck NWE, I had several buddies who worked for MPC and got completely fucked when they deregulated and morphed to NWE. They lost pensions & MPC stock went to zero while they were not allowed to liquidate.

    If they cannot be trusted to manage the water for what is probably a Billion dollar asset (the Madison) then Montana should step in and take over control of the water flow and NWE can make whatever $$$ they can from what flows are released.
    I have been in this State for 30 years and I am willing to admit that I am part of the problem.

    "Happiest years of my life were earning < $8.00 and hour, collecting unemployment every spring and fall, no car, no debt and no responsibilities. 1984-1990 Park City UT"

  21. #21
    Join Date
    Jan 2018
    Location
    Gallatin County
    Posts
    1,332
    I am just glad NWE isn't running a nuclear power plant nearby. Utility rate restructuring (aka "deregulation") has lead to a myriad of electrical power infrastructure issues, electricity is unreliable but at least it is expensive.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bunion 2020 View Post
    Damn, that hurts to read.

    Fuck NWE, I had several buddies who worked for MPC and got completely fucked when they deregulated and morphed to NWE. They lost pensions & MPC stock went to zero while they were not allowed to liquidate.

    If they cannot be trusted to manage the water for what is probably a Billion dollar asset (the Madison) then Montana should step in and take over control of the water flow and NWE can make whatever $$$ they can from what flows are released.

  22. #22
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Location
    Eagle River Alaska
    Posts
    10,951
    Dry it up let the brown and bows die and restore native cutties?

    No?

    Anyone?
    Its not that I suck at spelling, its that I just don't care

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