Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife FISHING RULE CHANGE
600 Capitol Way North, Olympia, WA 98501-1091

March 18, 2011

Hanford Reach steelhead fishery closes April 1 below Priest Rapids Dam

Action: Close the Columbia River between the Highway 24 Bridge (Vernita Bridge) and Priest Rapids Dam to the retention of hatchery steelhead.

Species affected: Hatchery steelhead

Location: Vernita Bridge (Hwy 24) upstream to Priest Rapids Dam

Effective Date: 12:01 a.m. on April 1, 2011

Reason for action: The steelhead sport fishery that opened by emergency rule on December 8, 2010, will close effective April 1, 2011. This action is necessary to protect spawning steelhead and to reduce impacts to returning adult spring chinook salmon listed for protection under the federal Endangered Species Act.

Other information:

Last day of fishing for steelhead in this area is March 31.

The steelhead fishery at Ringold will remain open from April 1 through April 15, but is restricted to "bank fishing only". The boundary area for the bank fishery is from the WDFW marker 1/4 mile downstream of the Ringold irrigation wasteway outlet to the marker 1/2 mile upstream of Spring Creek (see Page 77 in the fishing rule pamphlet).

Information contact: Paul Hoffarth, District 4 Fish Biologist, (509) 545-2284 (Pasco), or John Easterbrooks, Regional Fish Program Manager, (509) 457-9330 (Yakima).

Fishers must have a current Washington fishing license, appropriate to the fishery. Check the WDFW "Fishing in Washington" rules pamphlet for details on fishing seasons and regulations. Fishing rules are subject to change. Check the WDFW Fishing hotline for the latest rule information at (360) 902-2500, press 2 for recreational rules. For the Shellfish Rule Change hotline call (360)796-3215 or toll free 1-866-880-5431.

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