Not a Pretty Picture

5.18.20 SNOTEL

Here’s the latest snow pack info for Oregon.  Pretty grim.  Last weekend I did a driving tour of the Cascade Lakes and saw just how low the lakes are for spring. Here’s a photo of the Deschutes arm of Wickiup from two days ago.  It’s not just a river yet, but it will be by the end of the summer.Read More »

COVID-19 Stops Chub Removal

For years, ODFW has been working on chub control in a number of local lakes, mostly via netting and removal.  The pandemic has created a budget issue along with a health issue and there will be no netting this year on East or Paulina Lakes.  Control efforts have been successful and the chubs are less abundant than in the past, so this should not have too much impact on this summer’s fishing.

A Quote Worth Reading Again

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Another beautiful day on the river which made me think of the quote below.  (BTW, I was following the rules: little travel, no parking in a parking lot or at a trailhead, there was no trail, and I only saw a couple of other adventurers all day.  It is still possible to do this in Central Oregon.)

“I fish because I love to. Because I love the environs where trout are found, which are invariably beautiful, and hate the environs where crowds of people are fond, which are invariably ugly. Because of all the television commercials, cocktail parties and assorted social posturing I thus escape. Because in a world where most men seem to spend their lives doing what they hate, my fishing is at once an endless source of delight and an act of small rebellion. Because trout do not lie or cheat and cannot be bought or bribed, or impressed by power, but respond only to quietude and humility, and endless patience. Because I suspect that men are going along this way for the last time and I for one don’t want to waste the trip. Because mercifully there are no telephones on trout waters. Because only in the woods can I find solitude without loneliness. Because bourbon out of an old tin cup always tastes better out there. Because maybe one day I will catch a mermaid. And finally, not because I regard fishing as being so terribly important, but because I suspect that so many of the other concerns of men are equally unimportant and not nearly so much fun.”

– Former Michigan Supreme Court Justice John Voelker

 

ODFW’s 2021-2023 Biennium Budget

The Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife is currently working on their budget for the 2021-2023 biennium and taking public comment until May 1.  You can learn more here.  ODFW is the only state agency that solicits direct public feedback on their budget.  In the past they have done this through their External Budget Advisory Committee (I am a member) as well as at town hall meetings throughout the state.  Given the current pandemic, they are soliciting feedback electronically.  There’s lot of information on their website, below are my observations and comments from the perspective of an angler in Central Oregon.  I encourage you to familiarize yourself with the materials and submit your own comments.Read More »

Cows! 

If you are a trout angler, you have likely seen the impact cows have on rivers and streams by damaging banks, trampling riparian areas, and otherwise degrading habitat.  You might not be aware that they are also the primary reason for low river flows in the West.  “Water scarcity and fish imperilment driven by beef production, published in Nature last month, describes exactly what we are seeing in the upper and middle Deschutes River.  (Thanks to George Wuerthner for sending me this article.)Read More »

More on Cold Water Refugia for Columbia Steelhead

David Moskowitz, Executive Director of The Conservation Anger, emailed me with a few comments on my post about the Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife’s plans for creating cold water refugia for steelhead in the Columbia River.  I have been thinking about this more as well, so here are some things to consider.  I really hope you take the time to look at ODFW’s web page on this topic and submit your comments via email.Read More »