Queets Steelhead/Dept. of Interior

Mike Etgen

Not Quite A Luddite, But Can See One From Here
New River Mike

Some time ago, another member encouraged us to contact one or more of our senators in regards to the harvest of wild steelhead on the Queets. I wrote Sen. Maria Cantwell, and eventually got an email in reply, advising me I should hear something soon from someone in charge.

Sure enough, while I was in Pa., a letter arrived on Department of Interior letterhead, from Jonathan Jarvis, Regional Director, Pacific West Region.

Here's the body of the letter:

"Thank you for your inquiry of February 17, 2004, to Senator Maria Cantwell regarding steelhead fishing regulations in the Queets River of Olympic National Park, Washington. The Senator has referred your letter to this office for reply.

Your letter expressed concern that existing recreational fishing regulations allow for harvest of native steelhead in the Queets River. Current regulations do allow for retention of one wild steelhead per day March 1 through April 15, 2004. In order to provide adequate notice to fishermen, Olympic National Park will implement catch and release of all wild steelhead in the park beginning with the regulations that will take effect on May 1, 2004. This is consistent with the moratorium on wild steelhead retention to be implemented in all state waters beginning on May 1.

The new regulation in Olympic National Park that will require release of wild steelhead in the Queets River is supported by many individuals as reflected in recent emails and calls to the park. The change in regulations in the Queets is based on conservation concerns related to low spawning escapements and declining run sizes of wild steelhead in the Queets River in recent years. The change is in direct accordance with National Park Service fisheries management policies and also conforms to Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife's recent announcement of a two-year moratorium on wild steelhead retention throughout the State beginning
May 1,2004.

Biologists from Olympic National Park continue to work closely with technical staff from Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife on steelhead management issues. Quality fishing through catch-and-release of all wild fish is encouraged by National Park Service policies, and has been implemented in all recreational fisheries within Olympic National Park with few exceptions."
New River Mike

Thank you,
This is what all of us should do!
Writing letters to officials!
Bring these issues out, so other people can see them!
Too many people just seat back and complain?
Go to your local Watershed meetings!
Do something for the HABITAT!
Habitat is a piece of the puzzle.
Everything HELPS!

Sorry I just had to say it!


Active Member
Cantwell. Y'know, about a month ago I bumped into our junior WA Senator in a casual environment and spent some time talking to her about both this issue as well as general economic issues (she says WA economy will be strong in 12 months- ya right). Anyway, I followed up with an email and never heard anything back. Maybe meeting her in person made accountability too much for her or staff to respond? Easier via anonymous letter? I dunno. But, I'm almost certain she was hitting on me.... (Maria if you read this I could use some of that Real Networks option action since my business is struggling along with most other in your home state. Plus you're kinda foxy for an older gal so wadda ya say hey? I pretty up real nice with a shirt and tie...) :dunno



Active Member
I actually sent off a letter to both Senators and my Congresswoman about the proposed kill fishery in the Oly Natl Forest a couple of months ago and will probably send another concerning the petition by Forks to have the moratorium changed. I have gotten several responses back from Senator Cantwell, one from the Western Regional Director of the National Park Service, and none from the other folks that I contacted. That doesn't mean that they didn't receive my message, but they didn't take the time to say thank you or to respond. If enough folks contact them concerning a particular issue they have no choice but to respond in some manner or risk losing their positions, so get those letters and emails in.



Workin in a sweet mullet
I got the exact same letter on Monday from the DOI. Doesnt make me feel any better about people killing wild steelhead

Mike Etgen

Not Quite A Luddite, But Can See One From Here
New River Mike

Jusr wanted to clarify that I posted this strictly as an FYI post. I wasn't drawing any conclusions as to whether the response was good or bad, or whether Sen. Cantwell was or was not sufficiently responsive.

Just wanted the membership to see the information in black and white without my editorializing - something I'm prone to do.