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JANUARY 28, 2010

January 28, 2010

Spring steelhead season open

    A sure cure for cabin fever - the spring steelhead season is under way, but anglers will need a 2010 fishing license and steelhead permit.

Spring steelhead season is open on the:

     Salmon River from its mouth to the posted boundary 100 yards downstream of the Sawtooth Fish Hatchery weir, near the town of Stanley.

     Little Salmon River from its mouth to the U.S. Highway 95 bridge near Smokey Boulder Road.

     Snake River from the Washington state line at the confluence of the Snake and Clearwater rivers upstream to Oxbow Dam.

     Clearwater River mainstem and Middle Fork Clearwater River from its mouth to Clear Creek.

     North Fork Clearwater River from its mouth to Dworshak Dam.

     South Fork Clearwater River from its mouth to the confluence of American and Red Rivers.

     Boise River from its mouth to the Barber Dam.

The season runs through April 30 in most areas, except:

     On the Salmon River from Lake Creek Bridge to Long Tom Creek, about a quarter mile upstream of the Middle Fork, the season ends March 31.

     On the Little Salmon River the season runs through May 15.

     On the Snake River from Hells Canyon Dam upstream to Oxbow Dam, and on the Boise River upstream to Barber Dam, the season ends May 31.

    Steelhead are in the Snake River between the Hells Canyon and Oxbow dams and the Boise River only when stocked by Idaho Fish and Game. Here steelhead are defined as rainbow trout longer than 20 inches with a clipped adipose fin.

    About 1,500 steelhead were stocked in the Boise River; a similar number was stocked in the Snake River below the Oxbow Dam. Barbless hooks are not required in the Boise River or in the Snake River between Hells Canyon and Oxbow dams, but anglers must have a steelhead permit to fish for and keep steelhead.

    On the Boise and Clearwater rivers and on the Snake River between Hells Canyon and Oxbow dams, the steelhead limit is three per day and nine in possession.

    Elsewhere, the daily limit is five steelhead, no more than three may be 32 or more inches in total length. The possession limit is 15, no more than nine may be 32 or more inches long. The statewide limit in the fall and spring seasons is 40 steelhead in each season, but no more than 20 of those may be caught in the Clearwater River drainage in each season.

    Once limits are reached, the angler must stop fishing, even catch and release.

    Steelhead anglers must have a valid Idaho fishing license and steelhead permit.

    Steelhead anglers may use only barbless hooks, and may keep only hatchery steelhead marked with a clipped adipose fin. All other steelhead must be released unharmed.

    In the boundary waters on the Snake River between Idaho and Oregon or Washington, an angler with a valid 2010 Idaho fishing license and steelhead permit may fish where the river forms the boundary between Idaho and Oregon or Washington, but may not fish from the shoreline, including wading, and may not fish in sloughs or tributaries on the Oregon or Washington side. An angler may have only the limit allowed by one license regardless of the number of licenses the angler holds.

    Consult 2008-2010 fishing rules brochure, (http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/cms/fish/rules/) for exceptions and special restrictions.

    Don't forget to buy a 2010 fishing license and steelhead permit before heading out.

 Sportsmen's Report sponsored by John and Lorraine Weiland

Riverside Sport Shop/Sinclair

11320 U.S. Highway 12, Orofino--208-476-5418

Click here to see their web page