Tahoe’s Kokanee Salmon Festival Cancelled Due to Bear Danger

The popular Kokanee salmon Fall Fish Fest, originally scheduled for October 14th, has been canceled by the U.S. Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit. This decision comes as a result of several challenges the event has faced in recent years, including staffing issues, growing crowds, and concerns related to individuals taking selfies with bears.

Public safety has taken precedence in the decision to cancel this year’s festival. Anticipated large crowds, limited staffing capacity, and the potential for human-bear conflicts were key factors considered. The Forest Service expressed worries about managing such a significant event in light of these concerns.

Photo by Rose Davies

The Great Basin Institute, responsible for the Taylor Creek Visitor Center, where the Fall Fish Fest traditionally takes place, will ensure that Taylor Creek paths, such as the Rainbow Trail, remain accessible to visitors this fall. A repair project for the glass-enclosed stream profile chamber at the center is expected to conclude by the first week of October.

In the past, there have been closures of the Rainbow Trail from 2014 through 2016 due to elevated bear activity and the growing number of people attempting to capture selfies with these wild animals. It’s important to note that wildlife, including bears, feed on the Kokanee salmon as they swim upstream in Taylor Creek. To ensure the safety of both visitors and wildlife, all spectators are urged to stay on designated trails when visiting this remarkable natural spectacle.

Active NorCal

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