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Thread: Elwha river after 6 years of no dams - exciting video

  1. #1
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    Default Elwha river after 6 years of no dams - exciting video

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9t_m1myVBBQ


    The wild summer Steelhead is the most magical freshwater fish.

    I personally believe that hundreds of rivers from California, Oregon, Washington and British Columbia had summer Steelhead before the dams.

    Rivers come back naturally with no dams, no hatcheries, no development, no AG, no logging, no mining, and no commercial fishing.


    Supposedly the summer Steelhead come into the rivers in the high water of Spring, go up to the deep shady spring feed holes and spend the summers

    up there and then spawn in the Fall and then most return to the ocean.


    The Middle Fork of the Eel river near Covelo had the largest size and amount of summer Steelhead in California.

    .
    Bill Kiene (Boca Grande)

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    Email: billkiene63@gmail.com
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  2. #2
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    That is soo cool.

  3. #3
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    They blew it on the Elwha by putting in the new hatchery.
    There was a great opportunity to see what Mother Nature could do on her own. The hatchery was sold as helping seed the river.
    The reality of it is to start getting more fish back as soon as possible so harvest can begin.
    SF

  4. #4
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    They will never learn...............so sad.

    stonefish, I did not know that about the hatchery. Thanks.


    Was that a deal they made with the Native Americans?


    Native Americans are using giant jetboats and huge modern nets to harvest the salmon that they sell for money.

    I heard that a Non- Native American man can marry a woman who is 1/4 Native American and they can start an unregulated modern

    commercial salmon harvesting business with big jet boats and big modern nets.



    Protected wild rivers will take care of themselves forever.


    Our only undammed river, the Smith, has a salmon hatchery on it. ????


    If we had any sport fisheries like there were about 100 years ago the dollars from traveling anglers would be staggering.

    Hotels, restaurants, boats, RVs, big trucks, and fishing tackle would support the communities.
    Bill Kiene (Boca Grande)

    567 Barber Street
    Sebastian, Florida 32958

    Fly Fishing Travel Consultant
    Certified FFF Casting Instructor

    Email: billkiene63@gmail.com
    Cell: 530/753-5267
    Web: www.billkiene.com

    Contact me for any reason........
    ______________________________________

  5. #5
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    Bill,
    There was an old hatchery on the river which was updated with the new one.
    The tribes have great political influence here.
    I understand their rights to fish and the want for more fish. I just wish they’d given the river a chance to see what it could do without the hatchery.
    SF

  6. #6
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    Oh well
    ....I guess it was too good to be true.
    Bill Kiene (Boca Grande)

    567 Barber Street
    Sebastian, Florida 32958

    Fly Fishing Travel Consultant
    Certified FFF Casting Instructor

    Email: billkiene63@gmail.com
    Cell: 530/753-5267
    Web: www.billkiene.com

    Contact me for any reason........
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  7. #7
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    We should note that the hatchery is near the mouth of the river and originally installed in the 70's it is a tribal hatchery. In 2010-2011 the old hatchery was replaced with a new larger hatchery well before the dams came down. It still continues to operate but some fish have chosen to spawn in the river naturally.

    Although very few salmon have spawned in the upper reaches above the second dam site. They hope as more natural spawners come into the middle river then competition for the best spawning spaces will move the fish further up the river. Interesting to me was that the native Rainbow and Bull trout populations has grown substantially since the dams came down. It is also good to hear the summer steelhead thought to be extinct are also making a resurgence. Bull trout have doubled their population and resident Rainbows have gone from 3,218 in 2008 to 24,896 in 2019.

  8. #8
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    Yes, tcorfey, we should be happy about all that.



    I guess when you have a hatchery where the fish can go past it to spawn naturally upstream, like Redwood creek, it is better than a dam that stops all fish.


    Redwood creek, the Mad river, the Russian river and I imagine some others let the fish go past the hatchery to spawn naturally too.

    ___________________________________

    They are finally removing small, defunct, and unused dams all over the World now and doing lots of stream bed restoration as well.
    Bill Kiene (Boca Grande)

    567 Barber Street
    Sebastian, Florida 32958

    Fly Fishing Travel Consultant
    Certified FFF Casting Instructor

    Email: billkiene63@gmail.com
    Cell: 530/753-5267
    Web: www.billkiene.com

    Contact me for any reason........
    ______________________________________

  9. #9
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    Bill,
    Here is a bit more regarding the hatchery. As mentioned, it is still operating today.
    I should also mention I'm not anti-hatchery, as I know many of the fisheries I enjoy up here wouldn't exist with hatchery fish.
    In the case of the Elwha though, I wasn't for the hatchery. I think salmon and steelhead get short changed when it comes to how resilient they are. It would have been cool to see what they could have done on their own in about as pristine habitat as you can find today in the lower 48, but we'll never see that happen.
    SF

    https://www.peninsuladailynews.com/n...n-elwha-river/

  10. #10
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    Thanks stonefish,

    I don't like mixing the genetics of hatchery fish and wild fish, but we need to thankful for what we get.


    __________________________________________

    I wish they would take a "few" salmon and steelhead rivers with potential and make them totally wild again.

    No hatcheries, no dams, no AG, no logging, no development, no nets, and "barbless, single hook, artificial only, catch and release".

    ___________________________________________


    About 40 years ago I got to fish such a river in British Columbia with good friends.........the Dean River.

    The top month is August and we went in by helicopter from Bella Coola to camp at "17 mile" on the Dean for 2 weeks.

    For the first week, we fished sink-tips and dark classic steelhead patterns.

    In the second week, we changed to floating lines and wet flies. In the end, we were dead drifting large dry flies with great success.

    This was pre-Spey on the West Coast so we used 9'6" #8 weight graphite fly rods.

    The smallest fish we caught was about an 8 pound male, and we eat it that even for dinner.

    It was the only fish we killed and felt kinda' bad, but it was so good.

    The end of the trip all we had left was pancakes but they were delicious.

    We put some in our backpacks and had them mid-day, way up or way down the river for lunch.


    Catching 10 to 20 pound wild summer Steelhead on dry flies was the height of my fly fishing life.

    _________________________________________________


    Worldwide I am not sure that future generations will be able to experience the fishing (and hunting) we Baby Boomers had.

    .
    Bill Kiene (Boca Grande)

    567 Barber Street
    Sebastian, Florida 32958

    Fly Fishing Travel Consultant
    Certified FFF Casting Instructor

    Email: billkiene63@gmail.com
    Cell: 530/753-5267
    Web: www.billkiene.com

    Contact me for any reason........
    ______________________________________

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