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Hunters bent on having an ultratraditional feast still have time – and a season – to bag a wild turkey for Thanksgiving. General turkey seasons re-opened this week in Washington and portions of Idaho.
Fly fishing The Big Spokane is an excellent option for rainbow in the cold weather as the water temperatures remain fairly stable. Streamer fishing has been good, but there has been some dry-fly action in the late afternoon.
Fly fishing There have been some early afternoon hatches on the Big Spokane. It is possible to take trout on top, but streamer fishing has been best.
It wasn’t clear last month why some hunters were driving past the highway check station marked by big fluorescent orange signs while others willingly stopped and shared the information of their hunt with Washington Fish and Wildlife Department biologists. Sometimes hunter behavior is as mysterious as the ways of secretive whitetail bucks.
PUBLIC LANDS – A huge addition to a state wildlife area in Kittitas County has been approved for purchase by the Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission during its meeting Friday in Olympia. The acquisition will include 5,497 acres adjacent to the Washington Fish and Wildlife Department’s L.T. Murray Wildlife Area, 35 miles northwest of Yakima.
Salmon and steelhead The Clearwater River is a lonely place this season, what with the lack of hatchery fish, the reduced limit and the size restriction. There are fish to be caught, however, if you’re not particularly interested in bringing one home. The Grande Ronde is fishing pretty well for anglers drifting jigs or trolling plugs.
Trespassing is an easy crime to pooh-pooh when you can hear a rare life list bird species over the hill or if the perfect mountain biking route cuts the corner of someone else’s back 40. Even some hunters – the one outdoor group that’s specifically schooled on trespassing laws during mandatory hunter education courses – can rationalize going through another person’s fence for a quick shot at game that’s eluded them everywhere else.
OUTLAW – Elk and deer are crazy for salt, and that craving, exploited by unethical and illegal hunters, is getting them killed, according to Idaho Department of Fish and Game conservation officers. Predators such as wolves, mountain lions and bears have learned staking out a salt lick leads to an easy meal.
Twenty-one years after he was attacked by a grizzly bear sow while hunting bighorn sheep in northwestern Wyoming, Terry Everard still recalls the incident clearly and still carries the now-hidden scars as reminders. “When it happens to you, all you wish is that it will stop,” he said in a telephone interview.
Fly fishing The Grande Ronde has been better for fly fishermen this week, but with cooler water temperatures, swinging is not as effective as before. Afternoons and evenings bring the most success; stick to the sink-tips. Nymphing a stonefly and egg is effective. The Methow River has slowed from last week but is still an excellent option. Nymphing will be best with a stonefly and a bead. The Snake River is fishing better for fly fishermen than the Clearwater. Streamer fishing has been good, but nymphing is better.