Steelhead: The Upper Columbia River steelhead fishing above Priest Rapids Dam is very unlikely to happen this season because of low projected run sizes.
Upper Columbia River steelhead are listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act. Under WDFW’s permit, a run-size of 9,550 total steelhead (including 1,300 wild) are needed at Priest Rapids just to open retention fisheries.
Elk: Modern firearm elk hunting runs through Nov. 3 throughout the region. Most GMUs in Region 2 offer an opportunity to harvest any elk, however, a few have the following restrictions: GMU 204 – any bull, GMU 249 – spike bull, and 251 – true spike bull. Late archery and muzzleloader elk hunting seasons run through Nov. 15 in select units throughout the region.
Deer: Late archery white-tailed deer season is Nov. 21 – Dec. 15 in GMUs 204, 209, 215, 233, and 243.
Late archery mule deer season is Nov 21-30 in GMUs 209, 215, 233, 243, and 250.
Several late mule deer and white-tailed deer permit hunts are open in Region 2 during the month of November. Dates and GMUs vary by individual hunt.
Upland game bird: Pheasant, quail, partridge and forest grouse hunting continues throughout the region.
Waterfowl: Duck and goose hunting is underway. Some of the best hunting is probably still ahead when northern migrants drop in to boost locally-produced duck and goose numbers.
Birds: November’s changing weather and shortening daylight hours bring lots of bird movement throughout the region. New winter resident birds are arriving and migrants are making stopovers, so birdwatchers never know what they might see from day to day at this time of year.
The usual patrons of backyard bird feeding stations, including finches, juncos, chickadees, and nuthatches, are showing up where meals are offered or water is provided. Some have been summer residents, but more are moving in from farther north. Several woodpecker species that normally feed on insects may be attracted to suet feeders. If you live in bear country, putting out bird feed should be delayed until the middle of November to minimize the potential for conflict.
Deer: With the peak of mule deer breeding season (or rut) in mid-November, this is the time to view antlered bucks vying for dominance over other bucks or seeking does. Buck deer can be less wary of virtually everything else at this time, so viewing may be easy from a roadside. Motor vehicle collisions with deer increase at this time, not just because the deer are less wary but because shortened daylight hours simply have more motorists on the roads in the dark.
Jim Brown, the North Central Regional Director (Region 2) since 2013, has been with WDFW since 1992. He began his career as a Fisheries Patrol Officer for the former Department of Fisheries. He came to us with a background as a Deputy Sheriff having experience in fish and wildlife issues and crimes frequently encountered in the rural county where he worked. Since then, he served in six different geographic locations around the state with duties spanning from marine commercial enforcement work on the coast and Puget Sound, west side rivers, the lands and lakes of the Columbia Basin, and finishing his enforcement career as the supervising Sergeant assigned to Okanogan County. Jim is a native of Washington, having grown up in Clark County, and was raised to appreciate the outdoors and wildlife, learning to hunt and fish at an early age—hobbies he still participates in to this day. He has a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Washington State University.