by Phoenix Anthony, Office Manager

Last Thursday night August 7th around 8:00 p.m., the town was in full swing as the hustle and bustle of Truckee Thursdays brought together both residents and tourists alike. Throughout the event, ominous clouds released rain drops that came down on the tents that lined the street and the Truckee River. Unbeknownst to most of us, Cold Creek, a tributary into the Truckee River, was seeing the brunt of the storm.

Many of us saw the results on Thursday morning as we gazed out on the Truckee River and noticed how cloudy and brown it was running. Though we have had a number of people try and pinpoint the exact source of the increased sediment, we were only able narrow it to the headwaters of Cold Creek in Coldstream Canyon. Based upon our stream gage data and our walk up Cold Creek, our hypothesis is that there were one or more landslides at the headwaters, west of the railroad crossing and toward the Sierra crest, that released a large amount of sediment.

The TRWC’s restoration project in Coldstream Canyon was unaffected, and did aid in filtering out some sediment but as we all saw, sediment still moved to the Truckee River. As the weather clears up over the next few days, or so the weather sites are telling us, the Truckee River will return to its former clarity.

We appreciate the community members that have voiced their concern over the days following the storm. It is situations such as this that bring us all Together for the Truckee.

A special thank you to Beth Christman (TRWC), Becky Bucar (Town of Truckee), and Dave Shaw (Balance Hydrologics) for data and information.

Photo: This image was taken on August 8th at Cold Creek and displays the cloudy, brown water that is making its way into the Truckee River. Credit: Beth Christman.