The Truckee River runs about 120 miles from its headwaters at Lake Tahoe, California to the mouth of Pyramid Lake in Nevada. The Truckee River Watershed drains about 3,060 square miles and is part of a terminal watershed between the lakes.
Historically, Lahontan cutthroat trout were abundant in the river and would migrate the 120 miles from Pyramid Lake to Lake Tahoe during spawning season. But for over the last 100 years, barriers have been constructed on the river and have impeded the migration of native fish.
Currently, the Truckee River is a very productive aquatic habitat and is host to populations of rainbow, brook and brown trout, as well as hatchery Lahontan cutthroat trout.
Approximately one third of the river flow has been appropriated for irrigation purposes. Water from the Truckee River is diverted into the Carson River via the Truckee Canal for irrigation in the Carson Valley.