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Phone: (509) 826-0100
Action: Close two sections of the Okanogan River to fishing for steelhead.
Species affected: Steelhead
Effective Dates: One hour before official sunrise on March 7, 2014
Locations: Okanogan River: From the first power line crossing downstream of the Highway 155 Bridge in Omak (Coulee Dam Credit Union Building) to the mouth of Omak Creek.
Okanogan River: From the Tonasket Bridge (4th street) downstream to the Tonasket Lagoons Park boat launch.
Reason for action: Sections of the Okanogan River around the mouth of Omak and Tonasket Creeks will close early to protect natural origin steelhead staging prior to spawning within those tributaries.
General rules in areas open to steelhead fishing;
Mandatory retention of adipose fin clipped steelhead, daily limit two (2) hatchery steelhead, 20 inch minimum size. Hatchery steelhead are identified by a missing adipose fin with a healed scar in its location.
Adipose present steelhead must be released unharmed and cannot be removed from the water prior to release.
Night closure and selective gear rules remain in effect.
Whitefish anglers must follow selective gear rules in areas open to steelhead fishing, no bait is allowed.
All other areas currently open to steelhead fishing on the Columbia, Okanogan, Methow, Wenatchee, and Similkameen rivers remain open.
Anglers are required to possess a Columbia River Salmon/Steelhead Endorsement as part of their valid fishing license. Check the fishing hotline at 360-902-2500 or the webpage at https://fortress.wa.gov/dfw/erules/efishrules/rules_all_freshwater.j
Information contacts: Jeff Korth, Region 2 Fish Program Manager (Ephrata), (509) 754-4624, Travis Maitland, District 7 Fish Biologist (Wenatchee, Entiat), (509) 665-3337.