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

December 26, 2019

Nooksack River closing to hatchery steelhead retention

Action: Closes the mainstem Nooksack and all forks to hatchery steelhead retention.

Species affected: Hatchery steelhead.


The Nooksack River from the mouth to the confluence of the North and South Forks.

The North Fork Nooksack from the Highway 9 Bridge to Nooksack Falls.

The Middle Fork Nooksack from the mouth to city of Bellingham diversion dam.

The South Fork Nooksack from the mouth to Skookum Creek.

Effective dates: Jan. 1 through Jan. 31, 2020.

Reasons for action: Hatchery steelhead returns to the Nooksack River and Kendall Hatchery are not meeting escapement goals. This closure is necessary to ensure hatchery broodstock goals are met.

Additional Information: The fishery may reopen earlier if broodstock needs are met. Other gamefish fisheries will remain open. On Feb. 1, hatchery steelhead retention on the North Fork only will reopen. Please refer to https://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/regulations/ for further information on seasons and closures.

Information Contact: Mill Creek Regional Office 425-775-1311.

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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