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Thread: Not-So-Nice Debris in Rivers........ New Sign of the Times? Thoughts?

  1. #1
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    Default Not-So-Nice Debris in Rivers........ New Sign of the Times? Thoughts?

    I have read several accounts of higher than normal amounts of garbage, trash, camp debris, and way worse in several valley river sections as they converge toward the main Sacramento. The pictures I've seen are not flattering and it definitely made me think twice about what I would be fishing in if I had my boat in the water fishing for Striped Bass, Shad, etc. Not the same feeling I had 20+ years ago about the same rivers as a fishing destination.

    The occasional dumped appliance or car part seemed normal, but what I saw was far worse....... use your imagination.

    Is it as bad as the pictures I've seen or are the reports embellished and focusing on a few small areas?

  2. #2
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    Homeless camps are causing a lot more issues as of late since I seem to see more camping along the river. They are getting kicked out of the city and have no where else to go. Plus their is a huge amount of illegal dumping going on by idiots. Sadly it really is getting worse and I see it personally on my visits to the river. It is incredibly sad!
    So long and thanks for all the fish!!!
    `..`.. ><((((>`..`.><((((>`..`.. ><((((>

  3. #3
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    I say lets start relocating those "problem Grizzlies" from Wyoming to the homeless infested areas and let the issue solve itself...

  4. #4
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    Question Homeless Impact....

    "....relocating those "problem Grizzlies" from Wyoming to the homeless infested areas...."

    This is not intended to be a comment on politics but is an attempt to describe a problem. OK, let's get real here. The number of homeless/pan handlers in Sacramento is, IMO, the single biggest problem the city, surrounding cities and county governments have failed to address. The current mayor has said he will allocate a large amount of the recent increase in sales tax revenue to solving this problem, but, he and some council members of the city are at odds with each other over the solution. Also, the state court ruled that the city anti-camping ordnance was invalid. Result, campers are under most bridges/overpasses and along each waterway/tributary and around most public areas. In an article in the SacBee during the last 6 months, testing of water in Steelhead Creek and the American River had elevated levels of e-coli in them. A ride along Arden-Garden will give you an idea of just how big and many camps are there and elsewhere. I'm, generally, sympathetic to the plight of the homeless but am no longer patient with ineffective city/county response to the problem. Believe it or not, The Socal/SF Bay Areas have it a lot worse than we do. One thing contributing to the increases is our weather. It's a lot better to be homeless in coastal or valley California than just about everywhere east of here. More jobs and a living wage would help but wouldn't make the segment of the homeless who're either addicted or worse employable. Since it's not against the law to be homeless, maybe the solutions to all of this are limited.
    Last edited by Darian; 03-14-2019 at 09:03 PM.
    "America is a country which produces citizens who will cross the ocean to fight for democracy but won't cross the street to vote."

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  5. #5
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    The number and size of homeless camps along the creekbeds, freeways, and riverways are the worst I've ever seen in the Bay Area/San Jose. Said creeks and rivers were once home to fish...... for obvious reasons, they have not been a fishery, let along a destination fishery for a very long time.

    That being said, if the trend continues, does the Metro Section of the American and Sacramento rivers, plus the lowest section of the Yuba and Feather Rivers become the "LA or Santa Ana Rivers"??

    I like to fish in clean waterways that are aesthetically pleasing. I don't think that makes me a "fishing snob" I would feel very pathetic fishing in a garbage filled river with a a constant monitoring of e-coli levels. Sad thing to say, really.

    With Sport fishing in CA being marginalized and getting less significant for the 40 million in CA by the year, the last thing I want to go do is fish in a "sewer" and be questioned why by those that see sport fishing in CA as a thing of the past.


    As for the problem, well, leadership allowed it to fester and now it's so big it cannot be dealt with by a patrol LEO..... With no solution in sight and the socio-economics and political environment keeping with the status quo, maybe this is the new norm along the riverways...... Another blow to our struggling fisheries and its significance.
    Last edited by OceanSunfish; 03-14-2019 at 02:00 PM.

  6. #6
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    It is a huge, and growing, problem. At the same time I don’t think it’s insurmountable. Affordable housing would help a lot, but the big one is mental health and addiction. There are huge numbers of people who could make substantial transitions towards more productive lives, but they need help putting them back on track. There may be some who are just lazy, probably always will be, but the numbers are high because we’ve gone way beyond that. A good number of our veterans, for example, are ending up homeless for a variety of reasons, most of which are addressable; sadly most are not likely to take those first steps on their own.

    It’s a big problem no doubt, but it really could be dramatically reduced if we choose to dig in and deal with some of the root causes. For the better part of my lifetime the main strategy has been to move the problem to where it is less of an issue, which is why they have ended up in the parkway in such numbers.
    JB
    "Lord help me to be the person my dog thinks I am"
    - unknown

  7. #7
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    IF the problem is now the new normal........ and our valley rivers become even larger havens for unsightly and unhealthy conditions, does this change your thoughts about fishing the same areas?

    There is one long time guide who is very disgusted with the conditions that have befallen in his "backyard". I can imagine that the garbage/filth might take away some of the allure felt by clients when being paying to be taken out for a day of fishing.

  8. #8
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    I am not saying this is the problem, however in high water years it seems there is always more garbage in the water---of course we all know if there wasn't any garbage then we wouldn't have to worry about anything.

    Carl Blackledge

  9. #9
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    Default Debris/Crap....

    With the exception of feces/urine, high water would wash whatever trash has already been thrown into the river down stream and there's quite a few shopping carts/bicycles, etc., visible in the water.

    An unconfirmed mention in an article in one of our local rags is that the city has made an agreement to allow the homeless to collect their garbage for some unmentioned/unknown benefit. No details provided but I've begun to see trash, etc. bagged and laying along the shoulder of Arden-Garden. Collection/transport would require some type of coordination with the city to take garbage/trash to a transfer station; altho, I haven't seen that type of activity, yet. I've fished on guided trips along the lower American (Howe to Discovery) and after seeing the number/size of the camps (many have been there for several years), have decided that I'm not interested in swimming/wade fishing anywhere in the lower river. Nor would I eat a fish of any species taken from its waters.

    Since the city draws some of its water from the American (downstream from Howe Ave) and the Sacramento (just downstream from the mouth of the American, you might think that the city/county would be concerned about it, but.....
    "America is a country which produces citizens who will cross the ocean to fight for democracy but won't cross the street to vote."

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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by OceanSunfish View Post
    IF the problem is now the new normal........ and our valley rivers become even larger havens for unsightly and unhealthy conditions, does this change your thoughts about fishing the same areas?

    There is one long time guide who is very disgusted with the conditions that have befallen in his "backyard". I can imagine that the garbage/filth might take away some of the allure felt by clients when being paying to be taken out for a day of fishing.
    Definitely! Then again, I can’t exactly say that the lower American River has ever been a pristine river experience. I’ve managed to find bits of beauty, and some quality fishing, here and there only by turning a blind eye to a lot of human ugliness. Parts of the river are a lot nicer than others, so far at least, so I tend to focus my efforts there. You do raise a good point that the economic impact has many fingers, I’m not sure that fishing interests really would have any more sway though. I do think that the mayor and city council are under some pressure already to address the problem, but I have no idea how close to any meaningful action they may be. Leadership has been failing pretty badly with this issue for a long time, but I do hold some hope that it’s getting to the untenable level that will force some change. That’s my hope anyway, it can’t get much worse...right....right?
    JB
    "Lord help me to be the person my dog thinks I am"
    - unknown

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