A Petition To Overturn Steelhead Harvest Moratorium

Bob Triggs

Stop Killing Wild Steelhead!
In several shops in Forks, gas stations, and other locations on the Olympic Peninsula, I am seeing a petition, from a group called "Washington Sportsmen",that seeks to overturn the WDF&W Commissioner's recent ruling for a two year moratorium on the harvest of Wild Steelhead in Washington. It appears to be addressed to the Governor's office, or intended to be. I have not been able to find any contact information for this "group".

Perhaps the Governor should be hearing from us as well.

Rob Blomquist

Formerly Tight Loops
Interesting, I didn't see anything like that at the Sportsman's show in Monroe, so it can't be too pervasive.

I can only assume that its going to be another one of those "city folks" vs. "country folks" arguments. I wonder if the OP is going to try to secede from the rest of the state....
To secede from the state is OK, but just the people, not the land.}( Of course, I'm talking about the west end only.
I believe the real issue is all smoked up by now. My gut feeling is that what we have as opposition are just a bunch of rednecks who want to kill some fish. They don't really fish all that much but they do like to kill fish every now and again and resent anyone telling them how to manage "their" rivers.

I Spring fish for steelhead quite a bit, and I'm interested in seeing if the pressure on the rivers drops significantly because no killing is allowed after April 1, 2004.

I also have a gut level feeling, for whatever that's worth, that we will win this one, petitions or not. We have right on our side and that's always tough to fight against.:thumb

Bob, the Only slightly Pissed
Off About the Petitions:beer2
Come on guys! So far only 208 people have voted, fewer than have looked at this posting, and more than 700 have looked at "Weekend Reports".

If you care about wild steelhead release, PLEASE cast your vote.

The moratorium is in place and I doubt that it is going to be overturned. I believe that cooler heads will prevail once the air has cleared and Mayor Nedra Reed of Forks gets enough feedback in favor of "C&R" of all wild steelhead. She does, however need to know that we will remain faithful to the Olympic Peninsula and spend our money as well as our time in the area. She is concerned over the tourist economy of Forks, which will become increasingly important as commercial fishing and timber harvesting become a smaller part of the economy.

Good Fishing,
Les Johnson
When we were out there over the weekend we had several gear guys visit us at our campsite, and they fish quite often and all said that if they can not take home the fish they most likely will not be back. They understood our positions of C&R (although one guy called us Indian Lovers, not sure what the hell he ment by that) but their position is that they only account for a small percentage of the take, where as the real problem lies in the drift nets being laden accross the lower reaches of the river.

I have never personally seen how these nets are laid out but from other people describing them it seems like the fish basically have no chance of getting through them.

What needs to happen is to limit netting and find a alternate form of business for the native tribes such as casino's or whatever it may be.

I am in support of the retention ban, but do believe that the root of the problem lies with the netting & retention of wild steelhead by the native tribes.

Tight Lines,


PS. I voted on the forks forum for you Joe
Just a footnote read the article on www.forksforum.com here is one paragraph that I found funny, I guess the fly fishing community is like a organized crime group now.....

"The commission voted 5-3 for the moratorium after it was introduced by Commissioner R.P. Van Gytenbeek during the meeting. Coincidentally a number of representatives of fly fishing groups also attended the meeting which has led Reed, and others, to contend that it was a set up and led to the concern that the way the decision was arrived at was flawed and possibly illegal. If it wasn’t illegal, it was morally wrong, Reed said. This was a set up. It was an well-orchestrated event. The fly fishermen arrived at the meeting by the bus load.
Roehl voted against the ban. "



Active Member
Well, excuse us for being organized!! Like its wrong or something. I look at it like this: Lots of things inhibit the fish from getting back home, commerial fisherman, nets, etc. BUT, if a fish made it through that madness, And actually got back home, i.e "the river", why not let them go spawn and some day we can fish for the offspring. this is why every single fish counts for something, every single fish counts for the future of our sport.

This quote is disturbing at a very basic level: obviously Reed has no true comprehension of democracy, and feels threatened when back room dealings become public. Illegal? Morally wrong? I find that very scary, and despite a previous post about how powerful it is to be in the right, fighting such ignorance in a place of power will be a very difficult thing indeed.

Bob Triggs

Stop Killing Wild Steelhead!
If you look at todays local news in the Forks Forum; www.forksforum.com ,you will read about some of the concerns of local politicians,businesses and fishermen in Forks, over the wild steelhead harvest moratorium.

In that article they encourage people to write in to the state commissioners and wdfw with their concerns. I think that we should do the same.

If you don't heed this then don't complain when the moratorium gets overturned. Save your energy for writing some solid, real letters in support of the moratorium.

Throughout the discussion of this issue, raised here in several other "Forks" related postings, I have been emphatic in my requests that people be thoughtful and respectful in their discussion and in their letters to public officials, businesses and the Forks Chamber of Commerce. For the most part this has been the case.

In a few instances though there have been some very ugly and inflammatory things said, here and elsewhere, regarding the people of Forks. I can not begin to describe here how damaging this has been for all concerned. Please keep a civil tounge. It is my experience that a lack of respect, sarcasm and outright abusiveness only alienates people further. My goal in raising the issue was not to burn bridges but to build them.


Active Member
A couple things.

The "busload" was only a dozen people that my club, The Washington Fly Fishing Club, carpooled in a small bus, over from Seattle via the Kingston ferry to Port Townsend for the public hearings. The forks forum made it sound like we took a bus to Olympia for the Commission meeting in February – not true. As I understand it, a few members of the Wild Steelhead Coalition attended that meeting.

Also, I'm fairly certain this website is read by members of the Forks city council. It's already water under the bridge, but the inflamatory and derogative comments in past postings have only served to heat up the situation.



New Member
Bob you are right about a lot of folks in Forks being hurt by comments made on this board. Last Friday I stoped in at the Commerce building and talked with Diane for an hour. She was a very nice person with legitimate concerns about the future of Forks.

We talked fish, science and economics for that hour then she booted up her internet and came over to this site to show me the ill feelings of some. I was a bit unconfortable with that and tried to explain that many of the posts were possitive towards Forks and that the few may have been just a little over doing it and maybe kind of young. But when your back is against the wall like Forks feel they are it is hard to see anything but the negative sometimes. I showed her other sites where everything said is possitive and where those sites are planing to put up free links to Forks Chamber of Commerce. Maybe Chris can do the same here?

I also let her know that the mayor was wrong in beleiving that it was fly fishing groups who caused all this as the WSC I believe has more gear fishermen than fly, maybe 60/40 %. We got to stop boasting about being fly fishermen it just does not work in the real world outside of our small domain.

We also must remember that Forks has the right to challenge anything that has been done just as we would expect to be able to challenge things we see as not right. Thank God we still have a few but fading rights left in this country. Let them challenge or go before the board and find out how proceedurs like the WSR passed.

Nothing is easy in this world of rivers, steelhead and politics.