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President's Message

The 2016 Women in Waders calendars are now in. If you are interested in purchasing one please call the Barrier Dam Store at (360) 985-2495 or the FOC office at (360) 985-2505.

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Our Labor Day Fish Pond Function was another great success. Thanks to John, Don, Steve, Gary Olson and Richard for helping. Labor Day was our last fish pond function for this year.
One subject I would like to bring to your attention is the Wild Coho coming back to the salmon hatchery. We were told and promised we could keep one wild coho on the upper river which is above Packwood, and one wild coho on the lower river which is below the Barrier Dam. In every meeting I go to I ask what is the magic number of Coho that goes through the hatchery before we can keep one. I have complained and asked the same questions for over 20 years—Why cant we keep one wild Coho an both ends of the river like they promised us-and to this day the department cannot give me an answer. Year before last when we had the good run of Coho-over 100,000, Out of that they took over 15,000 wild coho to the upper water shed and we still couldn't keep one. As far as I’m concerned that was a complete waste of resources. Those fish belong to the sportsmen.
The other subject is the fall chinook returning to the Cowlitz River this fall. For the last approximate 4 years we have been receiving between 75% and 85% full fin fish. The department is saying they are wild fish. I’m saying they are nothing but hatchery stock, all of them. We cant keep any of them because they put them on the ESA list. Which is nothing but a dam joke. I was also told that the department took their helicopter and flew over the Cowlitz from the mouth of the Toutle upstream and estimated over 6,000 Fall Chinook spawning in the river. It sounds to me these big female kings must have only a dozen eggs in them.. So that’s the reason we cant keep them HA. So here is reality– its nothing but politics and bullshit. If anyone out there reading this article has any comments please send them to Friends of the Cowlitz.

Don Glaser

President Friends Of The Cowlitz

We have moved our Friends Of The Cowlitz Office.
New Location: 273 Fuller Rd. Salkum Wa. 98582
Phone: 360-985-2505
We apologize for any inconvenience.


About Friends of the Cowlitz

Friends of the Cowlitz was formed in 1988 by a group of concerned individuals who had watched the runs of salmon and steelhead become smaller and smaller each year after the hydroelectric dams were constructed by the City of Tacoma.

At the time Friends of the Cowlitz was formed, it was decided that the main goal of the organization would be to work to restore the runs of anadromous fish (salmon, steelhead and cutthroat trout) to the Cowlitz River and it’s tributaries. To accomplish this they would work to make Tacoma live up to it’s obligations that had been agreed to the in 1967 mitigation agreement between Tacoma and the Washington Departments of Fisheries and Game. 

The goal of the restoration effort would be to see that an opportunity to harvest these returning fish by sport fishermen was available each and every year (for all species). As part of our over all goal, FOC also decided to work to restore anadromous fish to the watershed above the dams. This effort is ongoing at this time, with coho, spring chinook, steelhead and cutthroat trout all being released into the watershed above the dams. This has been possible because of FOC being able to work successfully with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, Lewis County PUD and BPA. 

We have worked hard to have a juvenile collection facility installed at Cowlitz Falls Dam where the juvenile salmon and steelhead are captured and then transported downstream by tank truck to the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery. At the Salmon Hatchery they are placed in stress relief ponds for a couple of days and then released into the Cowlitz River to continue their journey to the ocean.

 Among our other goals that have evolved over the years has been our fish rearing projects. Our fish rearing started with a net pen in an old gravel pit below Interstate Highway 5 that was known locally as Wallace’s Pit. This endeavor was so successful with summer-run steelhead that some of the guides actually left the area around the Trout Hatchery to concentrate their efforts in the area out in front of our rearing facility. This portion of the river was and is known as the Vader Pump House drift.


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