Fire is still a big deal

Agencies have relaxed very few of the restrictions on fires and shooting on state managed land. Updates will be found on the website at wdfw.wa.gov.

Answers to other concerns and questions about burning conditions and access restrictions on private and public land are available by county at 800-323-BURN, with wildfire risk and restrictions info. You will find more from www.dnr.wa.gov.

I-90 wildlife reports still needed

Please report Snoqualmie Pass wildlife sightings at i90wildlifewatch.org.

Just over a week

Washington Outdoor Women workshop, Sep. 13-15, introduces the basics of fishing, hunting and all outdoor skills with lodging, meals and gear for women only. Jen Syrowitz at 425-785-3555 or www.washingtonoutdoorwomen.org.

Soon

Sept. 28 is Youth Hunting Day for eastern Washington duck and goose hunts for youngsters under non-hunting adult supervision. Sept. 21 and 22 is Youth Hunting Weekend for pheasants and Sept. 28 and 29 is Youth Hunting Weekend for upland game. Info from DFW at 509-575-2740, 360-902-2515, or see the Waterfowl and Upland Game Pamphlet.

Sept. 21 is also the 23rd annual Sturgeon Festival at the Water Resources Education Center, 4600 S.E. Columbia Way in Vancouver. It’s free and lasts from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The festival includes entertainment and education for all ages. Special events and plenty of activities.

The 29th annual Wenatchee River Salmon Festival runs from Sept. 19-21, with Free Family Day on Saturday, the 21st, at the Leavenworth National Fish Hatchery. Activities for all; see www.salmonfest.org.

Coming up

Saturday, Sept. 28 is the 48th National Hunting and Fishing Day. This year’s honorary chairs are country music superstars Luke Bryan and Chris Janson — devoted outdoor nuts and advocates are encouraging experienced hunters and fishers to mentor youth in their outdoor passions. Spend a moment and think about the billions of dollars that hunters and fishers have contributed to ensure the abundant wildlife we enjoy in America. See www.nhfday.org.

Oct. 5 and 6 are the days for the 50th anniversary celebration for the Annual Issaquah Salmon Days Festival. 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day for salmon viewing, hatchery tours, exhibits, arts and crafts booths, the Grand Parade, foods of the world and continuous live entertainment. Great family fun! Info at 206-270-2532 or www.salmondays.org.

Wildlife and family fun

Yakima River chinook are spawning and viewable in the Easton Reach of the river, in Lake Easton State Park. Interstate 90, exit 70, and follow signs to the park.

Hawks, falcons and eagles are increasingly reported over mountain ridges where they ride thermals and updrafts preparing for migration. Our best viewing area is probably Red Top Mountain on Teanaway Ridge, west of Mineral Springs Resort off Blewett Pass road (FS road 9738 to 9702). Always some good reports over the Saddle Mountains, Yakima Ridge, and Rattlesnake Hills, too.

Hunting

Hunting prospect reports for fall are online at wdfw.wa.gov/hunting/prospects. Forecasts for wildlife across the state. Info, also, about “places to go hunting.”

Chukar and quail hunting opens Oct. 5. Both birds are in fair numbers. Find the habitat and get permission, where needed.

If you are hunting out-of-state deer or elk, check the chronic wasting disease rules at wdfw.wa.gov/wlm/cwd or 360-902-2515 or 360-902-2519. Failing to follow them will be costly.

WSU free publication: “Big Game from Hunt to Home” has tips for all stages of the hunting game, as well as cooking tips, nutritional information and recipes. Go to pubs.wsu.edu, and in the search box at the right, request “PNW517” for the free download. More at 800-723-1763.

Fishing

Yakima River is good for waders and floaters. Mayflies and caddis. Dry and wet flies, and nymphs. Current info from the Evening Hatch folks, 962-5959 or www.theeveninghatch.com.

Hungry brookies reported in headwaters of the Cle Elum River, hitting spinners and flies.

Yakima River fall salmon season is open to the Prosser Dam for fall chinook and coho. Check your regs.

Think about how you might celebrate National Hunting and Fishing Day in a bit over two weeks. Then, as the fires die down, go fill your lungs with the sweetest air of the year. Hike the family up Manastash Ridge, or drive up the creek. The fall valley is beautiful, and you’ll probably see some wildlife.

— JH

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