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A stream with two stories — but only because it goes dry in summer

In Alaska, California, Idaho, Oregon, Washington by Nick ChambersLeave a Comment

Most people think of the Pacific Northwest as a region of dense coniferous rainforest and myriad gushing rivers that drain mountain ranges influenced by a damp, cool coastal climate. And it is. But like every other part of the American West, this region also features one of the most important components of any watershed: intermittent streams.   Intermittent streams are …

2017 – a Bad Year or Part of a Trend?

In Alaska, California, Idaho, Oregon, Science Friday, Washington by Nick ChambersLeave a Comment

Ocean conditions are vitally important for wild steelhead runs — probably every steelhead angler knows this. But what does that phrase really mean? The ocean is a massive and incredibly complex system, and there are many factors out in the big blue that can influence steelhead in any given year. That is why it is so difficult to parse out …

The Dry Creek Steelhead Story

In Alaska, California, Idaho, Oregon, Washington by Nick ChambersLeave a Comment

By Bill McMillan On moving to the Skagit Basin in the summer of 1998, in order to begin some familiarity with such a large watershed I began to fish its tributary streams, which were open to fishing at that time.  It was strictly catch-and-release, knowing most of the encounters would be juvenile steelhead.  Finney Creek is near our house with …

Science Friday: More on summer and winter steelhead genetics

In Oregon, Science Friday by Nick Chambers1 Comment

By John McMillan Two weeks ago we reviewed a study by Prince et al. that discovered a single gene differentiated steelhead which return immature (referred to as pre-mature in the study) to freshwater (i.e., summer steelhead) and those that return in a mature or relatively mature state (i.e., winter steelhead). Anglers have long known there is something inherently different about …

Rise of the Phoenix: wild summer steelhead in the Elwha River

In Science Friday by Nick ChambersLeave a Comment

By John McMillan, science director, Trout Unlimited Wild Steelhead Initiative   A few years back, while working on the Elwha dam removal project, I donned a wetsuit for one of many snorkel surveys I conducted that summer. I had been snorkeling the main-stem Elwha, but that day – a crisp cool day in mid-October – I found myself drawn to …

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Science Friday: How summer steelhead are genetically different than winters

In Science Friday by Nick Chambers1 Comment

Many anglers over the years have no doubt wondered why some steelhead return to freshwater during the hottest and driest part of the year. The reasons why are both simple and complex.   The most obvious difference between summer steelhead and their winter run brethren is that they enter freshwater streams in summer and fall, not winter. Duh. But that …