Sports Fishermen Treated Unfairlyby Dee Callison
The Columbian, May 28, 2010
A headline in the May 11 paper read "Spring chinook angling unlikely to reopen," but the commercial fleet will be open for a 2,000 to 4,000 spring chinook fishing season after they went over their quota in their so-called "off-channel areas" of fishing.
Why does Jim Wells of Salmon for All, an Astoria, Ore.-based commercial fishing group, say that "When the river re-opens, the commercial fishery goes first"? Why does Cindy LeFleur, Columbia River policy coordinator, say sportsmen appear done but gillnet fishing is a go? Not a word from Coastal Conservation Association or any local fishing clubs. Is there anybody to speak on behalf of sports fishermen?
It sure would have been nice to allow some boat fishing for the sportsmen who live above the I-5 and I-205 bridges instead of costing this area's sportsmen more in gas both for travel and operation of boat, launch fees, possible lodging/camping, etc. It would sure be nice to open the upper river to the dam for a few days, even if it was only one weekday and one weekend, for two to three weeks. That way we wouldn't have to tow and portage the distances and fight the heavy bumper fishing crowd.
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