Recent Posts

Science Friday: Ephemeral Streams Provide Key Steelhead Habitat

    Previously we wrote about the importance of ephemeral streams to steelhead. These are smaller waters, typically in headwaters and tributary drainages, segments of which dry back in summer or that flow intermittently. Today we pick up the topic again because of recent developments on the federal policy front that threaten these important habitat … Continued

How to rig a spoon

By Bill Herzog   Casting and retrieving/swinging spoons for steelhead has made a bit of a comeback the last ten years. Nice to see the oldest technique for steelhead experience a bit of career resurgence. Rigging our spoons- that is the configuration of swivels and hooks- has to not only be the right size and … Continued

Smith River gets additional layer of protection

The DEQ voted unanimously to give the North Fork of the Smith Outstanding Resource Waters designation, which will protect the river, its tributaries, and associated wetlands from any activity that could degrade water quality. The rule will become state law effective immediately, but requires approval by the Environmental Protection Agency to take effect under the … Continued

Science Friday: Hitch-Hiking Smolts

Last week we talked about the importance of spill for out-migrating kelts and smolts in the Columbia Basin. Increasing spill is only one method employed to enhance downstream survival of smolts. As early as the mid-1950s smolts were loaded onto barges and moved downstream past the dams through the lock system. While fisheries managers experimented … Continued

Science Friday: Increased flow and spill in the Columbia River is important for more than just smolts

  Steelhead in the Upper Columbia and Snake Rivers undergo some of the longest journeys of any anadromous fish — some travel more than 600 miles. Returning adults must navigate numerous dams on their upstream migration to reach spawning grounds. Those offspring that survive to become smolts must make that same migration downstream, past the … Continued

Finding solutions on the Snake River Dams

  By Rob Masonis   Lonesome Larry was the only sockeye to make it from the Pacific Ocean to Idaho’s Redfish Lake in 1992. That was only one year after Larry’s fellow Snake River sockeye salmon were protected under the Endangered Species Act because they were on a path to extinction.   Despite the passage … Continued

Science Friday: Steelhead invade the east!

While our Initiative is focused on the West Coast where steelhead are native, there is also interesting research being done elsewhere in areas where they are not native. For example, nearly every angler knows that we also have “steelhead” in numerous streams draining the Great Lakes in the Midwest and East Coast of the United … Continued

Washington Regulations Change Due to Low Columbia Returns

By Jack Pokorny This summer, 130,700 steelhead are projected to return to the Columbia River system, the lowest number since 1980 according to the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife.   Due to these projections, parts of the Columbia, Drano Lake, Lewis, Wind, Cowlitz, and White Salmon Rivers are subject to new angling regulations. Through … Continued

Conservation funding and steelhead

    By Sam Davidson The California Coast between San Francisco and the Oregon border has been a magnet for steelhead anglers for more than half a century. Legendary steelhead waters like the Eel, Klamath, Garcia and Gualala Rivers remain wild steelhead sanctuaries today, despite decades of pervasive habitat decline due mostly to dams, timber … Continued

Anglers ask NOAA to expedite Skagit decision

Hundreds of anglers, industry representatives and community businesses all signed on to a letter urging the National Oceananic and Atmospheric Adminstration to expedite a review that would re-open the Skagit River for the 2018 winter/spring steelhead season. The following letter was recently submitted:   Barry Thom West Coast Administrator Peter Dygert Branch Chief Anadromous Harvest … Continued