Action: A portion of the Chehalis River and its tributaries will be closed to ALL FISHING for the remainder of the winter season.
Effective dates: March 16, 2009 - April 30, 2009.
Species affected: Closed to fishing for ALL SPECIES upstream from Porter Bridge. Closed to fishing for ALL SPECIES - except white sturgeon - from the mouth of the river to Porter Bridge.
Location: Chehalis River (from mouth to high bridge on Weyerhaeuser 1000 line approximately 400 yards downstream of Roger Creek upstream including all forks and tributaries and the Chehalis River, South Fork from the mouth to Hwy bridge at Boistfort School) and its tributaries; Cloquallum Creek (from the mouth to Hwy. 8 Bridge to the 2nd bridge on Cloquallum Rd), Newaukum River (South, Middle and North Forks), Satsop River and East Fork (from the mouth to bridge at Schafer State Park), Skookumchuck River (from the mouth to 400' below outlet of PP&L/WDFW steelhead rearing pond located at the base of Skookumchuck Dam), Wishkah River (from the mouth to 200' below the weir at the Wishkah Rearing Ponds), and Wynoochee River (from the mouth to above mouth of Schafer Creek upstream).
Reasons for action: Early indications are that both hatchery and natural steelhead returning to the Chehalis River basin are well below pre-season projections. Available data indicate escapement goals will not be met. Many independent tributaries have not achieved their spawner escapement goals in recent years; the entire Chehalis River system has not met minimum conservation goals for the last two years. To minimize overall impact to the natural spawning population and to ensure hatchery egg-take needs are achieved, the sport fishery will be closed.
Other information: Quinault Indian Nation has also closed their commercial fishery in the lower Chehalis River for the remainder of the winter steelhead season.