River Steward Marty Sheppard, came across this B-Run steelhead in the John Day River which passed away July 24th, 2017 looking for a cold water sanctuary. Currently, the John Day watershed is considered water quality impaired, and a Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) water quality model developed in 2010, doesn't seem to be reducing temperature-related fish mortalities.
Current water temperatures in the John Day River are above 75 degrees as of July 26th. With air temperatures next week expected to reach triple digits, the Native Fish Society urges anglers to not disturb steelhead in the John Day. In areas where it is ethical to fish for steelhead, respect fish holding in cold water refuges, and limit fishing activity when the water exceeds the 68 degree threshold critical for native salmon, trout, and steelhead.