Posts tagged: rivers
FISHING — Solid winter trout fisheries are hot items.
Check out this report from Mark Morical of the Bend Bulletin about Central Oregon's Crooked River, a trout stream that lures fly fishers from far and wide, especially to the 7-mile stretch below Bowman Dam.
CONSERVATION — The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife will accept public comments through Nov. 15 on proposed updates to the Hydraulic Code, which governs construction work in and around state waters.
Agency staff will hold a public meeting to discuss the changes on Monday, Oct. 28, at Center Place Event Center, 2426 N. Discovery Pl. in Spokane Valley.
Hydraulic Code rules were last updated in 1994, with the exception of those for mineral prospecting, which were updated in 2008.
The proposals would update the requirements to stay current with fish science and design technology and streamline the review process for hydraulic permit applications, agency officials said.
BOATING — The Spokane Parks and Recreation Board apparently has reached an agreement with the Spokane Public Facilities District that may assure maintaining a viable boat take-out point under the Division Street Bridge after the voter-approved $55 million Convention Center expansion project is finished.
But here's a message received tonight from Parks Board member Andy Dunau of the Spokane River Forum:
I’m pleased to be able to share what I believe is good news. Today, the Spokane Parks and Recreation Board passed a resolution that the PFD has agreed to. The resolution addresses items needed to move forward this fall with development activities on Centennial Trail and Spokane River shoreline that are part of the convention center expansion. The section of the resolution that is essential to a put-in/take-out for the water trail reads as follows:
“The Park Board approves the Access in principle and subject to further review and approval design of the Park Board, and further authorizes the Spokane Parks and Recreation Department to be the lead agency in getting the Access permitted, conditioned on the District’s acknowledgement that it will bear all costs and expenses associated with permitting and construction of the Access, including any expenses ordinarily assigned to the City as lead agency for any permitting and/or construction of the Access, up to an amount not exceeding $47,000.”
The PFD verbally agreed to the resolution at the Park Board meeting, and will memorialize their agreement to it in a letter being sent to the Park Board.
We now have in writing a commitment of funds from the PFD, a design that has received broad support (also funded over the summer by the PFD), and Parks and Recreation agreeing to be the lead agency to develop the access. We can now get to the fun part: creating the Spokane River Water Trail Division Street Bridge Access.
Over the past week, intensive hours were committed by both PFD and Parks and Recreation staff and Boards to take this critical step forward. We are very appreciative of their time, effort and support. The Forum would also like to thank Spokane City Council for amending the municipal code last spring to allow this site location to move forward; Avista for their support in developing the design; Spokane Riverkeeper for providing important policy and regulatory guidance; and the many individuals and user groups who are the lifeblood of helping make good things happen.
UPDATE: Sept. 12 at 8 p.m.: Tentative agreement reached on Spokane River boat access at Division Street.
RIVERS — Plans for the voter funded $55-$65 million expansion of the Spokane Convention Center are advancing to the construction stage, but Public Facilities District officials continue to suggest that maintaining viable public river access at Division Street Bridge for rafts, kayaks, paddle boards and outfitters is not their priority.
I wrote about this in April when the designs were being approved.
I wrote about it again today as the PFD readies to begin digging without giving a commitment to a viable boat access when the construction is complete.
FLY FISHING — My friend David Moershel and I drove over Lookout Pass on Thursday, dodged lightning storms and endured weather ranging from cool to hot over two days to check out Montana's Clark Fork River a week after fishing restrictions were lifted after weeks of water too warm for the health of the trout.
The verdict: The Clark Fork is back in action, when it's not being cruel.
The three photos with this post (click continue reading) show the thick 14- to 16-inch cutthroat, rainbow and cuttbow I caught on dry flies and nymphs in a two-hour period on Friday morning. They were among five other fish I caught including a whitefish in three hours of walkng and wading.
Not bad for a guy who casts like a zombie and was trying to train his English setter to stay on a rock and NOT retrieve the fish as they were reeled in.
But while we had periods of good fishing, we also had stretches when we couldn't buy a trout. On Thursday evening we drove to several spots that have been good to us in the past and we couldn't find a rising fish.
The moral: When it's hot, it's hot; when it's not, it's not.
RIVERS — The annual Spokane River Clean-up is set for Sept. 28 and the planning team and REI volunteer coordinator Carol Christensen are putting out the call for more crew leaders.
“If you’re willing and able to give a couple hours ahead of time for training and a morning of work leading a crew of about 30 volunteers,” she says, “please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
WILDLIFE ENCOUNTERS — A relaxing evening floating the river with friends two weeks ago took a turn for the worse for Sydney Sainsbury, who was attacked by an otter about 200 yards east of the Madison River Bridge.
The otter, she said, was relentless as it attacked, leaving Sainsbury with a broken right hand, torn ligaments and tendons and many bites and scratches. She said the animal bit through joints and ligaments on her hand requiring pins to be surgically implanted in her hand joint.
Her legs, too, were bitten and scratched, as well as her stomach and arms plus a gash above her left eye.
See the story from the West Yellowstone News.
FISHING — The Clark Fork River has been closed from Big Eddy Fishing Access Site to Dry Creek Fishing Access Site along Interstate 90 because of operations related to fighting a wildfire northwest of Superior, Mont., the state Fish, Wildlife & Parks Department has announced.
This is one of the more popular stretches among fly fishers who float the river to catch trout.
This section of river is closed in the interest of public safety while aircraft dip water out of the river to fight the West Mullan Fire. This stretch will remain closed as long as fire activities continue.
Click here for updates.
RIVERS — The author of “Elwha: A River Reborn,” will be in Spokane on Tuesday for a free presentation on the people, places, fish and history behind the world's largest dam removal effort.
Lynda Mapes, a Seattle Times reporter, will speak at 7 p.m. in the Community Building Lobby, 35 W. Main Ave.
Mapes joined Times photographer Steve Ringman to document what’s led to this monumental $325 million environmental restoration project.
Two antiquated dams are being removed to allow the Elwha to run freely for 45 miles from its headwaters in Olympic National Park to the Strait of Juan de Fuca. The effort is opening more than 70 miles of spawning habitat to steelhead and all five species of Pacific salmon
Scientists, tribes, elected officials, local communities, agency officials and anglers are putting stock in the power of nature to turn back the clock on an Olympic Peninsula river once known for hosting runs of 100-pound chinook.
BUMPY ROAD TO RECOVERY: Fish hatchery losses
A pump failure at the Elwha Klallam fish hatcher last weekend led to the deaths of at least 200,000 coho salmon, spawned last fall, and roughly 2,000 year-old steelhead trout — about 50 percent of this year's crop of the fish destined for restoring runs in the Elwha River. See the story.
BOATING — An updated Idaho Fishing and Boating Access Guide with a list of access sites on lakes and streams is available at state Fish and Game Department offices, including the Panhandle Region headquarters, 2885 W. Kathleen Ave. in Coeur d'Alene.
The guide includes regional maps of fishing and boating access sites.
Access locations managed by Fish and Game also are presented in an alphabetical list that includes available amenities and special access features, such as boat ramps, docks, restrooms, camping and ADA fishing access.
The guide also is available online in Idaho Fish and Game's interactive Fishing Planner. This includes the added feature of being able to toggle to satellite imagery of the maps. You can zoom in on a photo of a site and see it in amazing sharpness and detail.
WHITEWATER — A 22-year-old North Carolina man has died in a kayaking accident on the Payette River in Idaho, north of Boise, the Associated Press reports.
Boise County officials say Eric Weigel of Asheville, N.C., was kayaking the North Fork of the Payette with two friends on Wednesday afternoon when he apparently flipped over and hit his head, losing consciousness.
The sheriff’s department tells KBOI-TV that Weigel was upside down in his kayak for several minutes before friends could get him to shore. He died at the scene.
The sheriff’s office says Weigel and his friends were on the final day of a 21-day whitewater rafting trip when the accident happened.
The North Fork of the Payette is known for its challenging Class V rapids.
FISHING — Rain, moose, bushwhacking, scattered yellow stoneflies, a half-hour hatch of March Browns, 47-degree water, one hook imbeddd in thumb requiring cord-jerk extraction (worked slick) and more cutthroats than you could shake a (fishing) stick at….
It was another great day at Cutthroat Creek, where the trout are handsome, the anglers smell strong and the fishing is always above average.
PADDLING — Canoeists were rescued from Lake Pend Oreille after their boat — filled with three people and a dog — capsized in high winds that blasted Bonner County on Sunday evening, according to the Bonner County Bee.
One person in the canoe managed to swim safely to shore, said Bonner County Sheriff’s Lt. Ror Lakewold.
The other two paddlers clung to pilings supporting the U S Highway 95 Long Bridge, the Bee reported.
A cyclist heard or saw them and called it in, said Lakewold. The call came in about 5 p.m.
All three went to Bonner General Hospital to be checked for hypothermia and were later released, according to Lakewold.
Perhaps this should be emphasized: They all were wearing life jackets, according to the sheriff's report.
RIVERS — Whitewater river runners, anglers and other groups and agencies in Idaho and Washington that rely on streamflow gauges maintained by the U.S. Geological Survey are breathing a sigh of relief.
USGS had announced that as of today (May 1) operation of “up to 375 streamgages nationwide would be discontinued due to budget cuts as a result of the $85 billion across-the-board cuts known as sequestration. Additional streamgages may be affected if partners reduce their funding to support USGS streamgages.”
But agency managers worked out ways to keep the immediate closures down to three in Idaho and none in Washington. One closure of note to anglers: 13337500 South Fork Clearwater River near Elk City.
Click “continue reading” below for the explanations I received to my queries.
Streamgages are used nationwide to predict and address drought and flood conditions by monitoring water availability. The USGS and over 850 Federal, State, and local agencies cooperatively fund the USGS streamgaging network, which consists of more than 8,000 streamgages.
Following are some of the top recent outdoors stories from The Spokesman-Review:
RIVERS – Thomas O’Keefe of American Whitewater will update paddlers on the approval for removing Mill Pond Dam on Sullivan Creek and other river-liberating projects in a program for the Spokane Canoe and Kayak Club Monday, april 22 7 p.m., at Mountain Gear Corporate Headquarters, 6021 E. Mansfield Ave. in Spokane Valley.
O'Keefe, AW’s Pacific Northwest stewardship director, will discuss the national group’s regional river conservation efforts, including recent dam removal success stories, revision of national forest plans and the future of river management for the Lochsa River and the rest of the Clearwater drainage.
FISHING — Of concern to anglers:
Five open-pit coal mines in the Fernie-area Elk River watershed, a major tributary of the Kootenai River, an international watershed that covers 18,000 square miles in British Columbia, Montana and Idaho, were cited by American Rivers for ranking the Kootenai River among the most endangered in the United States.
The group is urging its 100,000 members to write Secretary of State John Kerry to use the International Joint Commission to protect the river. — Toronto Globe and Mail
FISHERIES — A new study says a metal-like element called selenium is leeching from coal mines into the Elk river drainage in southeastern British Columbia, threatening fish habitat in Canada and downstream in Montana.
The study found five coal mines in the Elk River Valley are causing toxic pollution, and four of the coal mines are planning expansions.
The Missoulian reports a new coal mine proposal and three exploration projects are also under way.
The executive director of a conservation group called Wildsight says the selenium affects reproductive organs in fish and could lead to a population collapse.
The Elk River joins the Kootenai River at Lake Koocanusa.
The study was commissioned by Glacier National Park and carried out by the University of Montana’s Ric Hauer and Erin Sexton.
Expect more information on this alarming development.
RIVERS — Bonnie Olin, author of Owyhee River Journals, will present a program and video about her experiences on Thursday (March 7), at 7 p.m. at Jack and Dan's Bar and Grill, corner of Hamilton Stree and Sharp Avenue.
The program is free, but reservations are required by Wednesday to reserve a seat in the limited space. Contact Northwest Whitewater Association:
email email@example.com or phone/text: 509-220-8018.
The Owyhee canyons in southwestern Idaho and Oregon — flushed with rushes of whitewater — are wild country, much of it proposed for wilderness.
“A trip into the Owyhee still allows you to feel like you are the first and only person to have set foot there,” she says.” It is here that it is still possible to “unplug” completely from the modern world, Olin said. It is one of the last places in the lower 48 states in which you do not require a permit to “just go.”
RIVERS — Photographer Gary Lane of Riggins, who does Salmon River rafting with Wapiti River Guides in Idaho, captured this image of a rare natural phenomenon that occurs in slow moving water in cold climates, such as January in the River of No Return Wilderness.
Ice circles are thin and circular slabs of ice that rotate slowly in the water. Generally they form in eddy currents. In fluid dynamics, an eddy is the swirling of a fluid and the reverse current created when the fluid flows past an obstacle or disturbance to the flow, such as a bay.
Some mystics have seized on the “power” of ice circles. Some wackos connect them with UFOs.
See other instances of ice circles: