Wednesday, April 4, 2012

"Float" the beautiful Chetco River

The National Wild and Scenic Chetco River provides world-class salmon and steelhead fishing and exceptionally pure domestic water supplies for Brookings and Harbor. But it also offers it's own memorable brand of high quality recreational opportunities that are hard to find elsewhere. One reason is there are few entirely free flowing rivers with such a high percentage of their watershed in Wilderness or Roadless Area condition.

Motorized boats are prohibited on the Wild and Scenic  Chetco River for a high quality recreation experience

Another is the foresight of river planners and the public who supported the prohibition of motorized boats on the Wild and Scenic segments of the Chetco. We're reminded of how special this makes the Chetco by last year's video of Floating the Chetco River (below) and a commercial outfitter who counts efforts to protect the river and the public's enjoyment of it as a plus for his business and the world-class experience he can provide his clients. He writes:

The Upper Chetco was designated Wild and Scenic by Congress in 1988. The area is protected from development and boat traffic is limited ... customers experience world-class salmon and steelhead fishing without the crowded conditions that sometimes occur on the lower Chetco. Restrictions banning the use of motors in the Forest Service section of the Chetco add to the peaceful fishing experience there. And with fewer boats targeting the fish in the Upper River, catch rates can be spectacular, sometimes topping a dozen or more fish landed during a trip.
However, instream mining with noisy polluting gasoline powered dredges weighing up to one ton, would have taken precedent over the public's peaceful use and enjoyment of this exceptional  river. There's a temporary reprieve from the proposed gold mining but more to do to make it permanent and to protect the Wild and Scenic Chetco. Read about how.

We thought it would be a good time to revisit Floating the Chetco River with KBSC and host Harvey Young for a virtual experience of the peace and beauty of one Oregon most loved rivers.