I finally got on the new stretch of river that was created as a result of the gold ray dam removal on the Rogue river. It was a quick trip in my drift boat to check out the new area and try to catch some wily Rogue river steelhead.
Of course the top part of the stretch is the same as it’s always been with one exception. There were tons of spawning Chinook Salmon. This is the time of year that spawning occurs but I’ve never seen so many salmon in this stretch of river. It was weird, I literally couldn’t keep from hitting them with my oars. they were darting around like great logs just beneath the surface.
I was perplexed as to why this area was so full of them, but finally got my answer when I got to the area below where gold ray dam was taken out. But first let me tell you about my float.
I’ve done this stretch before but always in my tiny pontoon boat. Now that the dam is removed I can row my drift boat and use the never before accessible boat ramp. For a further explanation see my previous post.
Besides tons of spawning salmon, I didn’t see a change in the river until I was about 2 miles above where the dam used to be. At this point I started seeing some of the silt and mud on the side of the river.
This silt is an accumulation of 104 years of a stopped up river. It was thick, loamy, and black. For many years to come this is the stuff that will run off and muddy up the Rogue with every rise in the river. Hopefully, we’ll have some big rainy winters and get the Rogue to really flush all this shit out of there in one or two seasons. Continue reading Gold Ray Drift