When tons of mud rushed down the Sierra foothills and into the Mt. Whitney Fish Hatchery below, that famous and long-time facility stood in jeopardy. Jeopardy still exists, but the hatchery is lots cleaner.
Dennis Redfern, Senior Hatchery Supervisor, said Fish and Game is still at work on the clean-up. (This is what the trout raceways for brood stock looked like right after the flood and mudslide.) The hatchery provides eggs for several other hatcheries, but the mud damage put a stop to that.
What does the future hold for Mt. Whitney? Redfern said that Fish and Game is “still assessing the whole drainage, the water systems and the creek.” Redfern said it will be awhile to complete a thorough evaluation.
Local crews continue with the clean-up work.
State level Fish and Game officials have threatened in the past to close down the famous facility, but each time citizens have rallied to save it. Many, including local Trout Man Tim Alpers, believe that all of the hatcheries are key to a successful trout operation in the Eastern Sierra and all of California.