This public comment period is now closed.
Short Description: The Commission was petitioned to revert the fishing season for the portion of the Colville River from the mouth to the bridge at the town of Valley from a statewide stream season (Sat. before Memorial Day-Oct. 31) to open year-round. The Commission accepted the petition and directed the Department to initiate rulemaking. The description of the boundaries for this rule change will also specify “including Meyers Falls Reservoir” to clarify the rules that apply to the reservoir. Statewide minimum size and daily limit rules for streams (min. size 8”; daily limit 2 trout) will continue to apply to this portion of the Colville River and to Meyers Falls Reservoir.
Explanation: The Commission was petitioned in June 2019 to restore a year-round fishing season to the portion of the Colville River which extends from the mouth upstream to the bridge at the town of Valley. This portion of the Colville River was moved to a standard stream season (Saturday before Memorial Day-Oct. 31) during rule simplification in 2018. Prior to that, it had been regulated under a year-round open fishing season since 1950. Following the change enacted during rule simplification, staff received comments from the public and elected officials stating concern that the new season unnecessarily limits recreational opportunity, with much of the trout fishing opportunity occurring in late winter/early spring, prior to the current season opener. During that time, fishing conditions are more favorable than later in the spring and summer when water quality makes fishing difficult.
For additional information, see the notice of proposed rule making.