Chehalis River and Tributaries Closing Due to Low Steelhead Returns

The final straw for Washington wild winter steelhead.

Anglers and guides will now shift their focus to the rivers open on the coast exacerbating already crowded runs and pressure on those declining stocks.

Better yet? There is a proposal to build a flood control dam on the Chehalis. 

The Chehalis River and its tributaries will close to all fishing at midnight Sunday, Feb. 16, due to low projected steelhead returns, fishery managers with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) announced.

With only 6,616 Chehalis basin steelhead projected to return this year, returns of wild Chehalis steelhead are forecast to come in well below the escapement goal of 8,600 fish for the fourth year in a row, said Mike Scharpf, district fisheries biologist with WDFW.

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