Outdoor enthusiasts should be aware of Sacramento River levels and their safety

Sacramento River current

As temperatures are expected to warm, water flow released from Shasta Dam is expected to increase which will cause Sacramento River levels to rise, posing safety threats for those who aren't careful.

Right now, Shasta Lake is 90 percent full, 15 feet away from the crest. Water flows from Shasta Lake downstream 9 miles to Keswick Dam. From there the U.S. Department of the Interior Bureau of Reclamation can regulate a 3,000 cfs release into the Sacramento River.

In the summertime, Sheri Harral, with the bureau, pointed out irrigation is critical and water may be released at 8,000 to 12,000 cfs.

"This time of year, when the rains are coming less and less we want to fill the reservoir as much as we possibly can, keeping it safe, so that we have the storage for water deliveries and the other obligations we have downstream," Harral explained.

Whether it's 3 thousand or 15, public safety precautions are the same.

"All these rivers, especially the Sacramento River, can be very dangerous and it is the public's responsibility to be aware of your surroundings. You also need to be aware of the people that you're with, especially if you have children."

Harral cautioned the temperature of the Sacramento River is 56 degrees Fahrenheit or below. If you are in the water, hypothermia can come on very quickly.

River currents are also deceiving. The surface can look smooth and calm but a few inches down that current may be greater.

If boating, children under 13-years-old must wear a life jacket, although each person should have one they can use.

Alcohol is not advised when on or near the water. Those that do chose to drink should know that it affects your ability to react safely.

Currently water reclamation is relying on the amount of rain carried over from last year. The year-to-date rainfall, which measures months October-September, is 37.22."

For safety tips, along with a guide to the Sacramento River, click here.

close video ad
Unmutetoggle ad audio on off