I've had it!!!!!

Rob Blomquist

Formerly Tight Loops
Same thing for our this fishing discussion. Rob B. shouldn't be complaining about the guys targeting steelhead when they are 'catching whitefish', when on the other hand he targets coho when he's actually 'fishing for searuns'. It's called being a hypocrite.

According to my copy of the WDFW fishing regs the Methow is open to fishing for "Whitefish Only", consequently it is a crime to catch a steelhead.

But now, salmon are not "closed" to catch and release in the sound, except in certain places at certain times. In general, as I read the regs, the sound is open year around to the C&R fishing for salmon and searun cutts, as are the rivers and streams for dollies and bull trout. Marine are specifically stated as closed to the capture of Dolly Varden/Bull Trout.

So, it is legal to fish for SRCs and any salmon in the salt year around, so there is nothing wrong in fishing for them. I don't target dollies in the salt, either.

But the regs clearly state that the Methow is open for "Whitefish Only". And if someone is bragging to me about thier catch, I will report them, no questions.

Oh, and if the best you can do is call a guy you don't know a hypocrite, I feel sorry for you.
The salt is by no means open year around for cutts and salmon. For example, Agate Passage is closed to all fishing right now. Closed means just that. No catch and release. No bottom fishing. Nothing. Sometimes areas are closed specifically for salmon but open for Sea Run catch and release. For example, sometimes you will see guys at Point No Point fishing off the beach stripping their flies like crazy when it is totally closed for all salmon (July for example) but say they are fishing for cutts even though you never catch a cutt there, only salmon and bottom fish. This is an example of targeting one fish under the guise of fishing for another. Now I am of the opinion that catch and release fly fishing does precious little damage to any fishery. My gosh, even a place like Rocky Ford, where a zillion guys fish every day with wimpy 2 and 3wts and 6x or 7x tippets and play fish nigh unto death, sees only a handful of kills. I might add that it is very obvious there when a fish is killed. If the incidental kill rates were even close to what some say they are, then the banks and bottom of Rocky Ford would be lined with dead fish. The issue is really not fly fishers using size 14 hooks but meat poachers pretending to be on the river for some reason other than poaching steelhead for the freezer. It is just too difficult under current budget restraints to have enough enforcement officers to get the steelhead harvesters so they are forced to shut down the river to make enforcement simple.

in a sense the south sound is open all year. the 2001/2002 season is open all year for salmon south of the narrows. probly allot to do with the fact its not a mega blackmouth fishery like other places but has the winter/spring ultralight/fly fishery. theres rules and desinated areas but its open 365 days a year to legally fish for salmon. agate pass is closed because true cod spawn there in the late winter early spring. i am guilty of fishing for cutts in july at pnp and area. seen kings hooked regularly there doing that time fishing for cutthroat. never myself but that you would be the shiznit to land a king wading the sound on a fly.ben

Rob Blomquist

Formerly Tight Loops
Without a doubt the whole sound is not open year around, but about 90% of it is at anyone time.

C&R is poorly studied at best, most mortality studies focus on fisheries that are wholly freshwater, and all the anadromous regs are based on the freshwater studies (but let FishPirate correct me on this, he's the expert). I question the use of freshwater studies on anadromous fish, as they are in two very different places in their lives. One is ready to spawn and C&R may inhibit the spawning in some way, or just that mortality may be higher due to the size of the fish and the nature of the migration.

When the state is closing a fishery to prevent extinction, then I am all behind them, and that is just what is being done on the Methow.

If one is selfish enough not to care about extinction of a stock of fish, that sure does not bode well for the rest of the fly fishing ethic in my book. I would expect that a fly fisher that follows the C&R, care of the fishery ethic could embrace the closure of a river to protect the fishery. It sounds to me like the baitfisher ethic: chuck bait, and take your limit every day, and praise the hatcheries.
There are a couple of things your post brings to light.
As fishermen, be it bait, lure or fly, we have all fished in areas where open to one species and closed to another. A good example of this was last summer in marine area 9. It is open to searuns and silvers, yet closed to kings which are a protected species. If I'm fishing on the beach next to you, using legal equipment, hook a king and release it, are you going to report me? I highly doubt it. Besides, I haven't come up with the "Kings won't bite it herring pattern" yet. Incidental catches do happen when fishing in mixed open / closed species waters. In the past five years, I have seen only one king that was poached and I did report it.

Secondly, I believe this is your second post regarding this subject on various web sites. If you are that upset, why don't you express it directly to the individuals you feel have done wrong? Perhaps you should give these people the opportunity to explain what type of equipment / techniques they where using. You also mentioned nameless local fly shops. If you don't like what you were told or overheard, perhaps you should take your business elsewhere rather then possibly tainting a business's reputation over what you perceive as a rules violation.

For the most part though, don't forget why we fish. It is to get outdoors, hopefully catch some fish and to relax. Playing junior game warden will only take up to much of your time and only distract from your fun.

I fear we may have gotten a little afield of Rob's original point, which seemed to me simple and true enough: Have some ethics, and some sense of stewardship for a resource that you claim to love.

Don't use the fact that a river or lake or marine area is open for one species as a subterfuge to fish for a species that is closed, whether or not YOU happen to think that species is healthy or weak, or your particular brand of angling will hurt it. Quit finding yourself so special (or clever); obey the letter AND the spirit of the law, whether you agree with it or not (unless of course you feel so strongly you're willing to commit an act of civil disobedience, but remember that means you have to be willing to face the legal consequences of your act).

Be willing to go even farther. Even if you are sincerely fishing for the "open" species, consider whether the risk of impacting the "closed" species is worth a few whitefish or cutthroat or whatever, particularly when the closed species is in peril. (And don't simply dismiss that peril because it happens to be inconvenient for you.) Just because you have a "right" to fish someplace doesn't mean you have to excercise it.

Yes, I'm an angler; I love to catch fish. I want to keep catching fish, lots of them. That's precisely why I try to only fish in places and in ways that don't subject at-risk fish populations to any more risk. (I guess I need a smilie with a little halo, huh? :WINK ) And you know what? I still manage to find plenty of good fishing; what do I need to fish the Methow for?

Richard E

Active Member
You are exactly right, and I don't know why Rob B__mquist (yes, I do know who you are)doesn't get it.

Just because someone employs C&R on a fishery that is closed to fishing, whether the fishery is composed of fish approaching 'extinction' or not, isn't justification to illegally fish. Dude, bottom line, if fishing is closed, it's closed. It doesn't matter whether you practice C&R and there are lots of resident coho around, in your opinion, or not. I can't believe you, for being a reasonably intelligent guy, just don't get it (maybe it's because you don't want to . . . ?). If fishing is closed, it's closed, and folks fishing legally for whitefish, but targeting steelhead, is no different than you legally fishing for SRC's, but targeting coho. It's hypocritical to wag your finger at the Methow steelhead folks and then consider yourself different than they.

You're just getting called on the carpet, and you're having difficulty accepting it.

Rob Blomquist

Formerly Tight Loops
Nope, I'm standing on the carpet, and know that my sight is on target. Some are unethical, some do illegal things, and I don't.

But quite frankly, I have never caught any salmonid in saltwater in the last 20 years, so I guess your point is null and void, no?

But the key here is that I don't fish for fish that are in waters closed to fishing for them. And if I catch anyone I'm gonna report them.

And I have to agree with Ray, this discussion has gone too far.
Rob, your first post was a good one, but I have to side with Brian and Richard on this one----we need to stop fishing the sound altogether, except true "terminal" fisheries as we may incidentally hook ("harass" or perhaps "harm" as defined under the ESA) chinook salmon or bull trout. Or even sensitive species like cutthroat and native coho stocks. Richard made a great point, so don't plan on seeing him on any beaches. Hatchery chums in Hood Canal seem to be a good option. Unless you want a $25,000 fine for "take" of a listed species ("harassing" IS taking), then I suggest you stay away from Rob while landing that ESA listed Puget Sound Chinook---it would be best to break it off---and don't even THINK about a photo.

Back to CnR, and "no effects", do you ever fish for spawning rainbows or cutts? I really hope you don't wade while fishing in rivers for anadromous fish either. The effects of simple vibration on incubating eggs. . .Mortality? If salmon die after they spawn, where are all the carcasses? Sure I see a few, but with all the pinks around last fall? Small mammals you say? Birds? They blend it? Fish swim into aquatic veg mats and disappear? Surely you jest.


New Member
I guess we really have blinders on.......selectively so it seems.
When my parents told me NO- they meant it. I believed them. Growing up, when I was told you couldn't do something because it was against the law by my parents or teacher or I read it in a book or it was posted someplace or written in my drivers manual- you just didn't do it- of course there is always those out there who- think they are exempt. Unfortunately because of them, people die on the road everyday because they break the law by drinking and driving, or how about this the children who follow in the footsteps of their heros maybe a parent, big brother or sister, uncle, aunt or who ever of those who break the little rules on a regular basis- do so also- eventually, ohhhhh what a society we have become.......

The Big Picture vision here is turned off it seems as well.

They have elk season NOW- only a few weeks out of the year any more, why do you suppose that is? Sure would be hard to have to fish two weeks out of the year in the future........

Where is that rewind button on the remote?
I will always fish the shoreline for src no matter what is open or not. thats why its opened all year anyway for a fly/ultralight fishery. ben

Richard E

Active Member
Here's the deal.

If you've TRULY "had it" and plan to do something about "it", then you should talk to the person you referenced, in your initial posting, who works at the fly shop. I know who you are, who the shop is, and who the employee is. Tell him; maybe he'll be receptive, maybe he didn't think about the perspective you have, maybe you can enlighten him, maybe all you will have is a conversation and possibly agree to disagree.

Step up.
Read your regs. It is not open all year on all shorelines! You have to look at the exceptions footnotes and you also have to check the WDFW web site for special closures from time to time.