By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Quotas, Fire Suppression Impact Fishing Opportunities

The spit fishery at the mouth of the Klamath River was closed to angling as of 11:59 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 7. Based on California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) projections of the recreational fall Chinook salmon harvest, anglers will have met the “spit area” adult fall Chinook quota of 15 percent of the total Klamath River Basin allotment by that time.

Meeting the quota triggers the closure of the spit fishery at the mouth of the Klamath River, within 100 yards of the channel through the sand spit formed at the Klamath River mouth. The spit area is downstream of the Highway 101 bridge located near the town of Klamath. All recreational fishing at the mouth of the Klamath River will remain closed for the duration of the 2020 season.

Anglers may keep track of the quota status of open and closed sections of the Klamath and Trinity rivers by calling the information hotline at (800) 564-6479.

For more information regarding Klamath River fishing regulations, consult the 2020-2021 California Freshwater and Supplemental Sport Fishing Regulations at

The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) has also announced the emergency closure of the Heenan Lake Wildlife Area in Alpine County as firefighting helicopters utilized Heenan Lake’s water supply to combat the Slink Fire in nearby Mono County.

Heenan Lake itself is a 130-acre, special regulations water popular with fly anglers that opened to fishing at sunrise Sept. 4. Heenan Lake and the surrounding wildlife area has now been closed to fishing, hunting and all public use and access indefinitely.

“We’re sorry to have shut down this unique fishery on opening day but public safety takes precedence,” said Kevin Thomas, regional manager for CDFW’s North Central Region.

Heenan Lake is home to CDFW’s Lahontan cutthroat trout broodstock. Native to the Sierra, Lahontan cutthroat trout are listed as a threatened species under the federal Endangered Species Act. CDFW uses the Heenan Lake population as a source to stock these native fish for recreational angling and species recovery efforts. CDFW fisheries biologists do not expect any negative impacts on the lake or the fish as a result of firefighting efforts.