New Area Opens On Methow For Steelhead

(WASHINGTON DEPARTMENT OF FISH & WILDLIFE RULE CHANGE)

Additional section of the Methow River
to open for steelhead fishing Oct. 21

Action: Open the Methow River from the second powerline crossing upstream of Pateros to the first Highway 153 Bridge.

  • The daily limit will be four adipose fin-clipped, hatchery steelhead, 20-inch minimum size.
  • Mandatory retention of adipose fin-clipped hatchery steelhead.
  • Selective gear rules apply, no bait allowed.
  • A night closure is in effect for the duration of the fishery.
  • Release any steelhead with one or more round holes punched in the caudal (tail) fin.
  • Boats with motors are not allowed.

Location: The Methow River from the second powerline crossing upstream of Pateros to the first Highway 153 Bridge.

Effective date: Oct. 21, 2009.

Species affected: Steelhead.

Other information: Anglers are required to release all steelhead with an adipose fin.  Any steelhead caught with an intact adipose fin may not be removed from the water and must be released immediately.

Reason for action: Sufficient numbers of wild steelhead have moved upriver from this section, allowing anglers additional opportunity to harvest adipose fin-clipped steelhead with minimal impact to wild fish. The fishery will reduce the number of excess hatchery-origin steelhead and consequently increase the proportion of natural-origin steelhead on the spawning grounds. Higher proportions of naturally produced spawners are expected to improve genetic integrity and stock recruitment of upper Columbia River steelhead through perpetuation of steelhead stocks with the greatest natural-origin lineage.

Information contacts: Jeff Korth, Region 2 Fish Program Manager, (509) 754-4624, Bob Jateff, District 6 Fish Biologist, (509) 997-0316.

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