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Old 01-22-2002, 08:36 PM
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Montana Sued For New Fishing Regs

FYI

See below yesterdays press release on new proposed restrictions on the famous Beaverhead and Big Hole rivers.

I have heard these two rivers are heavily floated by the guide services as our several of our midwestern rivers. This can make for very crowded unpleasant fishing conditions and over use on the river and fish resources. Another example of over use of our rivers with out controls. This may be the first one like this in the US.

I have mixed feelings both ways on this issue but have seen one world class steelhead, salmon, and trout fishery here in the midwest which the drift boat guides have impacted negatively over the last 15 years. Seeing one drift boat after another floating a smaller river and contending for space to fish is just not a quality fishing experience for the drifters and the walk in fisherman.


Montana sued for new fishing restrictions

Outfitters file over managed fishing on Beaverhead, Big Hole rivers

Associated Press Jan. 21, 2002

BUTTE, Mont. Fishing outfitters filed suit Thursday, Jan. 17, challenging the state's plan to restrict outfitters and out-of-state anglers on two of the state's most famous fishing rivers.

The lawsuit by the Fishing Outfitters Association of Montana asks a state district judge to rule on the validity of the state wildlife agency's management rules for the Big Hole and Beaverhead rivers of southwestern Montana.

The regulations, adopted in February, are an effort to address crowding along the two popular trout rivers. The rules reserve certain days, river stretches and access points for use by Montanans, while setting aside times and places for out-of-state anglers or outfitters.

They also continue a 1999 moratorium on new outfitters working the rivers, and limit the number of clients outfitters can serve during peak fishing periods.

The association contends the state Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks did not follow rule-making requirements and exceeded its authority in adopting the restrictions. The state Environmental Quality Council considered that issue in December and rejected it.
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