Outdoors Outdoors

Field reports: Idaho fishing rules could be revised

A cutthroat trout meets the camera before being released.
A cutthroat trout meets the camera before being released.

FISHING – Idaho is taking a look at the big picture of fishing throughout the state as it revises its management plans through 2018.

Panhandle Region anglers will be asked to chime in on hot topics such as:

• Enhancing or culling Priest Lake mackinaw.

• Easing catch-and-release rules to allow more cutthroat trout to be harvested in the St. Joe and Coeur d’Alene rivers.

• Returning to trophy management of rainbow trout and a limited kokanee fishery on Lake Pend Oreille.

The Idaho Fish and Game Department adjusts fishing rules every other year. But the state Fisheries Management Plan, approved by the Fish and Game Commission, guides the policy and direction the rules take for five or six years.

The agency will explain the issues and begin taking public comment at public meetings starting at 7 p.m. as follows:

Tuesday: Sandpoint, Panhandle Health Meeting Room, 322 Marion St.

Thursday: Priest River, Senior Center, 339 Jackson Ave.

March 22: Coeur d’Alene, IDFG Regional Office, 2885 W. Kathleen Ave.

Anglers are invited to register their comments by March 31 in an Idaho Fish and Game online survey.

Rich Landers

Spokane River closing to fishing

FISHING – The annual spring fishing closure to protect spawners in the Spokane River starts Friday.

Fishing season resumes June 1 below Monroe Street Dam while the river from the stateline downstream to Upriver Dam reopens June 2.

Rich Landers

South Hill bluff fire-plan meeting

TRAILS – The Friends of the South Hill Bluff will meet Wednesday to discuss applying for grants to manage fire danger on the popular city recreation area below High Drive.

The meeting is at 6:30 p.m. at St. Stephens Church at 57th and Hatch.

Donations for thinning trees and other measures are being accepted.

Info: Diana Roberts, 477-2167.

Rich Landers

Legislators debate IFG role in ATVs

HUNTING – Debate will continue Monday over whether the Idaho Department of Fish and Game should be able to dictate where ATV-mounted hunters can pursue big game.

The House Resources Committee is considering a bill that would strip the agency’s authority to limit hunting from vehicles to established roads in designated areas.

Fish and Game deputy director Sharon Kiefer says that power is an important wildlife management tool that helps prevent the overharvest of big-game animals.

Idaho requires hunters on public land in a third of Idaho’s 99 hunting units to stay clear of off-road vehicle or jeep trails, which are reserved for unarmed ATV riders.

Associated Press

Free clinic covers basic bike maintenance

CYCLING – A free class on basic bicycle maintenance is set for 7 p.m. Thursday at REI.

Preregister at rei.com/Spokane.

Rich Landers



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