See proposed rule
language (CR-103)
2013 Recreational Fishing Rules Concise Explanatory Statement
Fish & Wildlife Commission
Meeting Feb. 8-9, 2013

2013 – 2014 Sportfishing Rule Proposals – Briefing and Public Hearing. Audio available.

Sportfishing Rule Changes for 2013-2014

Sportfishing Rule Proposals & Comments

View proposals and comments on proposals that were submitted by the public and WDFW staff.
There are two types of rules available for viewing.

for Public Comment
Not Recommended
for further consideration
View by Category
Statewide Coastal Region
Puget Sound
Region Freshwater
Coastal Region
Puget Sound
Region Marine
Eastern Washington and
Columbia Region Freshwater

Reference ID: DFW010323

Original Rule Proposal     See comments

Reference ID: DFW010323
Critical Conservation Need      Submission Type: Public
Rules Category:
Puget Sound Region Marine
Species covered in proposed rule
 • Steelhead
Rule to Change:
New Rule Proposal:
Bogachiel River. Fishing from floating devices is not allowed February 1 through November 30 in the Bogachiel River from the 101 Bridge to the Olympic National Park. Floating devices may be used for transportation in the area.
Why the change is needed:
This is an important spawning area for mid-to late-run wild steelhead in the Bogachiel River. Wild early run and many of the later run steelhead rest and slowly pass though this area and spawn in upriver areas. By early March the later run winter steelhead have begun spawning in the area in good numbers, continuing throughout the spring. Boats can access every possible resting, holding and spawning lie in the area, while bank anglers have less access to challenging lies. Wild steelhead are caught-and-released (CnR) in large numbers, often while in their spawning phase. Repeated and high levels of CnR can negatively influence behavior, reproduction, and survival of wild steelhead (Hooton, 2001, and others). This regulation will continue to allow ample sport fishing opportunity from the bank, including the accessing of bank-fishing opportunities by boat. The rule will also establish a partial reserve for resting and holding steelhead. This proposal will provide a partial refuge,
Names of individuals or groups with whom you have discussed this change:
Wild Steelhead Coalition, Federation of Fly Fishers Steelhead Committee, The Conservation Angler.
Describe their support and/or concerns:
Support similar or identical proposal

Date submitted: 06/14/2012

WDFW Rule Proposal Recommendation

Not Recommended for further consideration     Reference ID: DFW010323

Updated 09/27/2012
UPDATED: The "no fishing from a floating device" regulation to reduce negative effects of catch and release fisheries on wild steelhead is typically not a tool used to address conservation objectives. Currently wild steelhead are meeting escapement in this river. Limiting harvest of wild steelhead to one per year per angler statewide, to be taken only in the lower stretches of rivers that are routinely meeting escapement goals, has reduced the non-treaty harvest of wild steelhead in these rivers by roughly 70 percent. Upper reaches of the north coastal streams under both State and Olympic National Park jurisdiction require selective gear and some are closed during much of the year, further limiting impacts of catch and release fishing. WDFW welcomes discussion of this and other ideas to better manage the wild steelhead stocks of the North Coast, as escapements, and catch and effort trends continue to develop in the future.

Online Public Comments    (5 comments)

DUNN, RONALD C  October 29, 2012
Let us please stop the continued attack on access to our natural resources. Not all users can access a river on foot. This is just another way to stop fishing to all groups. Only to save it for an elitest few sportsmen.
BRAZDA, JEFF B  December 10, 2012
Un needed for the protection of wild steelhead at this time. Will reduce the opertunity for recreational use and increase the opertunity for special interest groups to increase there privatised steelhead fishing on public lands.
WALLACE, THOMAS M  January 28, 2013
I am not in support of this rule. It is better to spread the boats out than concentrate them in a few areas. Also it is unfair to only allow bank fisherman access to the water. We all deserve a right to open waters. Eliminate of out of state guides first.
SIMMS, RICH K  January 29, 2013
All Coastal Olympic Peninsula Rivers are experiencing declines in wild steelhead escapement, including the Quillayute River and its tributaries. The area proposed here is one of the most important spawning areas for early wild steelhead in the Sol Duc River (McMillan et. al. 2007), and currently the early wild steelhead stocks are estimated at just a fraction of their historic levels. The Quillayute River drainage’s wild steelhead abundance, which includes the Sol Duc River, dropped more than 70% during the last decade. WDFW needs to give additional protection to the depleted early run in order to restore and maintain the abundance, productivity, and diversity of the total run. This management practice has been a conservation tool implemented on many steelhead rivers in Oregon and British Columbia with proven success. Making these reasonably minor changes now to protect wild steelhead spawners on this critical stretch of the Sol Duc River can help divert the trend of declines, hel
HOPPLER, WES C  January 29, 2013
Oppose this proposal and others like it for the Hoh, Sol Duc, and Calawah. If there are specific case of vulnerable fish and conservation issues, close the area and protect the fish. Identifying a problem area and then proposing that an angler group should be allowed to target vulnerable fish is really sad. Eliminate non-resident guides before enacting further restrictions on resident anglers. Crawling in and out of boats all day in the winter is not my idea of a good time, I and some of my partners are getting older. Bank angling does not necessarily mean quality experience to some of us.

Other Comments Received