What we have here is a e mail from Mike at R-6 on finalizing the 2017 Chehalis & Hump seasons. Now I cannot post a link to this new model as it is not up but if you want it drop a PM to me. The concerns from some were the 4 days in 46 which is the week of Nov 12th and lates so read on through Mike's bit and I hoped in afterwords for a bit.

Mike Scharpf e mail:

Hi All,

I wanted to update you on the progress on the 2017 Grays Harbor salmon season setting process. We had a meeting with the Quinault Nation last week and came to an agreement on schedules. The recreational fishery is the same as was discussed during the April 14th Advisory Meeting, so NO Changes. There were a couple slight adjustments to the non-treaty commercial fishery. The schedule for 2A/D are 2 days in week 43, 2 days in week 44, no days in week 45, and 4 days in week 46. In 2C there are 1 day each in weeks 43 and 44 and 2 day in 45. The attached planning model represents these schedules. I donít believe another meeting is necessary, but Iím available for conversation if you have questions.

What I need from the commercial sector are dates and times for the openings. All of the days are modeled for 12 hours so keep that in mind. Also, Iím assuming that the Quinaultís will fish Sunday noon through Tuesday noon in the Chehalis during week 43, so the only time available would be noon Tuesday to midnight, then pick the 12 hour period you want for Wednesday. I need dates and times as soon as possible so the process progresses. Thanks.

Thanks for all the patience and work you have provided this years.

Now immediately some did a double take and concerns for the late Coho came forward which they should. The Chehalis Coho run timing is a bit off from the natural one mostly due to harvest, rebuilding efforts, and labeling. The run timing we have now is not the natural one as the early part of the Coho run is larger than naturally due to the fact that old Simpson hatchery ( now Bingham ) used run compression of the natural side for the egg take. Compression is achieved by taking your eggs off the very front of the run and not much else. Add to it that no mass making so over years the wild side and the hatchery are absolutely the same fish. Which led us to use this stock to rebuild the run with plants & egg boxes in the 70's & 80's so the early part of our Coho run has the same timing but is larger % than was naturally. These are called normal timed.

Now the middle is much smaller than it was say in the 70's for the normal reasons and it shows in the middle November through the first part of Dec. This is where confusion arrives as many call these fish lates and NOPE they are not. This is the old natural run time and it used to be the peak. Not anymore as harvest knocked them back over the years so these fish are the remnants of the old native run. These fish on paper are also part of the normal timed run.

Now the late run timing has moved around on paper but mostly due to the hatchery needs not the fish. When I was a kid we started fishing for lates in the last two weeks of December and January with January being the hog month. Now it was old Dept of Game that used about every early Steelhead stock that they could find ( Chambers Cr preferred ) for plants in a misguided attempt to keep the QIN from netting native Steelhead. That sorta worked for Steelhead but just plain damn near wiped out the native late Coho. Just so it is known I ( being my rude self ) called BS and the Regional Director told me it was Dept of Fisheries problem.

Now they have late Coho at Bingham but open the trap on Dec 1 ( unless things have changed ) so in reality the hatchery late production is not a true late but rather a sorta highbred. CWT's over the years show that a % of normal timed Coho come back late as do a % of the lates come back early. So by moving the start date at the trap led many to believe that Nov is late timing and nope. The lates evolved mainly in the East Fork Satsop & tribs as they naturally do not reach flows and such ( many are summer dry bed creeks ) for spawning to past mid Nov so they evolved in a later timed and bigger fish. Those genes are pretty much gone from the hatchery production.

Hopes this answers some of the questions.
Dazed and confused.............the fog is closing in