Back Issue Content: 2012
Tar Heel State sportsmen want gamefish status
Gamefish status for redfish, speckled trout, and stripers would seem like a no-brainer for anyone outside of the commercial fishing industry. But in North Carolina, even mentioning such an unholy thought could get a gun drawn on you. This spring sights are set on House Bill 353, a state measure that would effectively ban gillnetting for, and commercial sale of, these fish.
For many recreational fishermen in the Tarheel State, the fact that such a bill was even brought before the legislature was a coup, considering they’ve waited for 20 years as every other state from here to Texas (except Mississippi) has enacted gamefish status and/or banned targeted gillnetting for these species.
Time for the Cardinal to dump their damn dam
You’ve never fished San Francisquito Creek. And if something isn’t done about Searsville Dam, you never will. Stanford University owns the dam, which was built in 1892. It buries the confluence of five redwood- and fir-shaded salmon creeks that now run salmonless out of the Santa Cruz Mountains. They all came together beneath what is now the Searsville impoundment to create San Francisquito Creek, which winds through Palo Alto and out into San Francisco Bay.
The dam produces no hydroelectric power. It provides no potable water and no flood control. Siltation has reduced storage capacity in the reservoir by more than ninety percent. Its last full, state-certified safety inspection occurred the same year some of Stanford’s Vietnam protesters made national news for shouting down Vice President Hubert Humphrey. It sits precariously adjacent the restless, explosive San Andreas Fault. When the next big one hits—should the dam fail—a map produced by county planners shows downtown Palo Alto, Menlo Park, and the Stanford campus itself would be devastated. The State of California has designated Searsville a “high hazard” dam and predicts that failure would result in loss of life.
My flight was delayed an entire day. My bags were packed for a two-week stay in Guatemala City, where I would accompany an underground cadre of ex-gang members who were now volunteer chaplains entering Central America’s infamous gang prisons. As a jail chaplain myself, working with Chicano gangs in Washington State’s Skagit County, these young radicals in Guatemala had become my heroes. As far as the Jesus tradition goes, these are extreme fishers of men.
Time for a new direction in the Pacific Northwest
The trout hatchery at iDeath was built years ago when the last tiger was killed and burned on the spot. We built the trout hatchery right there. The walls went up around the ashes... The hatchery has a beautiful tile floor with the tiles put together so gracefully that it’s almost like music. It’s a swell place to dance. There is a statue of the last tiger in the hatchery. The tiger is on fire in the statue. We are all watching it.--Richard Brautigan, In Watermelon Sugar
"My father was very sure about certain matters pertaining to the universe. To him, all good things—trout as well as eternal salvation—come by grace and grace comes by art and art does not come easy." —Norman MacLean
ABOUT TEN YEARS AGO, JAY BREVIK AND I SPENT A DAY FISHING several of the Olympic Peninsula's winter steelhead rivers. I don't remember where we started, probably the upper Hoh, because we both loved the wide open gravel bars up there. And I'm pretty sure we hit a little pool on the Calawah. The thing I know for certain is that we ended the day on the upper Sol Duc, on the selective fisheries, wild‐release water up by Sappho.