Outdoors blog

New walleye rules for Lake Roosevelt, including San Poil and Spokane arms


Jeffery Knudtson, 14, caught this 10.25-pound walleye in the Columbia River near Hawk Creek on April 2, while fishing with his father, Mike Knudtson. The 29-inch fish was Jeffery's first walleye. 
 (Photo by Mike Knudtson / The Spokesman-Review)
Jeffery Knudtson, 14, caught this 10.25-pound walleye in the Columbia River near Hawk Creek on April 2, while fishing with his father, Mike Knudtson. The 29-inch fish was Jeffery's first walleye. (Photo by Mike Knudtson / The Spokesman-Review)

FISHING -- New fishing regulations with more liberal limits take effect Monday, April 1, on Lake Roosevelt, and the lower reaches of the San Poil and Spokane Rivers. 

Here are the details from the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife:

Action:  The daily walleye bag limit for Lake Roosevelt, the lower San Poil River, and the lower Spokane River will increase to 16 fish with no size restriction. In addition, the lower Spokane River from mouth (SR 25 Bridge) upstream to 400 feet below Little Falls Dam will open for walleye fishing April 1.

Effective Date:  April 1 at 12:01 a.m. until further notice

Species affected:  Walleye

Locations:

  • Lake Roosevelt;
  • The lower Spokane River from mouth (SR 25 Bridge) to 400 feet below Little Falls Dam; and
  • The lower San Poil River from Boundary Line A upstream to Boundary Line C (as illustrated by the map in the current WDFW "Fishing in Washington" rules pamphlet, or the Fishing section of the WDFW webpage

Reason for action:  In early March, the Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission approved new fishing regulations designed to increase harvest on an overabundant walleye populations in Lake Roosevelt and the lower Spokane River. Besides providing additional fishing opportunities for anglers, these changes will help to reduce walleye predation on native fish populations as well as the number of small walleye in those waters. The permanent regulations approved by the Commission will take effect May 1, 2013.

The emergency regulations will effectively initiate these changes April 1, 2013, a month sooner, to expedite the goals of the Commission's permanent rules for Lake Roosevelt and the lower Spokane River. In addition, they apply the 16-fish daily limit for walleye to the lower San Poil River, which also has an overabundance of the species.

Other information:  All other WDFW fishing regulations for Lake Roosevelt, Spokane River, and San Poil River remain in effect. 

Recreational fishing in Lake Roosevelt, and in the San Poil River between Boundary A to Boundary C, requires a Washington State freshwater license and compliance with established State fishing regulations. The Colville Confederated Tribes (CCT) have established non-tribal recreational fishing regulations which differ from State regulations in this area. Be advised that anglers fishing in this area may be checked by tribal enforcement officers for a tribal license.

All waters upstream of Boundary C (above the 1310 mean sea elevation) and within the CCT Reservation boundary are under the regulatory authority of the CCT. For CCT fishing information call (509) 634-2110.




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Rich Landers
Rich Landers writes and photographs stories for a wide range of outdoors coverage, including a Sunday feature section and a Thursday column. He also writes the Outdoors Blog.

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