The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation is implementing a Power Bypass at Folsom Reservoir to reduce river water temperatures and protect salmonids as spawning season begins on the Lower American River.
A power bypass allows Reclamation to access and release cold water below the power unit penstocks at the reservoir, thereby reducing river water temperatures to benefit rearing steelhead and spawning fall-run Chinook salmon.
Reclamation initiated the bypass on October 20, 2022. Since then, temperatures have decreased by 2 to 3 degrees. The bypass will last several weeks until ambient temperatures drop further to assist Reclamation with its target temperature of 56°F towards the end of November.