GARDNERVILLE - State and county officials were called to the Carson River on Saturday to investigate an unknown substance flowing into the river near the Carson Valley Golf Course.
Golf course pro Alan Hoover reported the spill to the Douglas County Sheriff's Office at 1:30 p.m. Saturday
"My marshal was out looking at the course and he said there was something kind of gross in the river so I called the sheriff's department after I saw it. I haven't seen anything like this before," Hoover said.
A spokeswoman for the Douglas County Sheriff's Office said the investigation was turned over to state environmental protection officials who were unavailable for comment Saturday.
Initial reports by emergency officials on scene said there were several hundred yards of the substance backed up at a diversion dam near the 16th hole of the golf course and that it looked like the substance had traveled down several irrigation channels.
Hoover said he was concerned about the health of children who swim in irrigation ditches downstream as well as livestock which use the river for drinking water.
"I hope it's just some algae," he said.
By 3:30 p.m., the foamy brown and beige plume was collecting along the riverbank between the 15th and 16 holes at the golf course which winds along the river.
"I haven't seen that before," Hoover said.
Seventeen-year-old Taylor Lantis who drives golf carts on the course and washes golf balls, said she noticed the foul smell on Friday.
"It was disgusting," she said. "I work right by the river and it was gross. Usually, the water is clear and pretty."