Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife FISHING RULE CHANGE
WASHINGTON DEPARTMENT OF FISH AND WILDLIFE
600 Capitol Way North, Olympia, WA 98501-1091

February 13, 2004

Fishing closure on Skagit River system

Action: The Skagit River from its mouth upstream to the Dalles Bridge at Concrete, including Fisher Slough, will close to all fishing March 1, 2004.

Effective opening and closing dates:

March 1, 2004 to March 31, 2004 -- The area from the mouth upstream to the Memorial Highway Bridge (Hwy 536 at Mt. Vernon) will be closed to all fishing.

April 1, 2004 through May 31, 2004 -- The area from the mouth upstream to the Memorial Highway Bridge (Hwy 536 at Mt. Vernon) re-opens for trout, Dolly Varden, and other game fish, but will remain closed for fishing for steelhead. The fishery will open under selective gear rules, however it will be lawful to fish from a motorized vessel.

March 1, 2004 to March 31, 2004 -- The area from the State Route 536 Bridge at Mt. Vernon upstream to the Dalles Bridge at Concrete, as well as Fisher Slough from the mouth upstream to the Highway 530, will be closed to all fishing.

Species affected: Steelhead and all other fish.

Location: Skagit River, including Fisher Slough

Reason for action: The forecast for Skagit River system wild steelhead returning this winter (2003/2004) is 6,162 fish, slightly above the basin's escapement goal of 6,000 fish.

Other information: The area from the mouth upstream to the Memorial Highway Bridge (Hwy. 536 at Mt. Vernon) will be open April 1 through May 31 for trout, Dolly Varden/bull trout and other game fish under selective gear rules, except that fishing from a motorized vessel is allowed. All steelhead must be released.

Information contact: Curt Kraemer, Freshwater Program Manager, (425) 775-1311 ext. 101

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.