FWP is still on my not so favorite list.
The Hoot Owl restrictions are still in place on some of the lower drainages, but they did lift it on the Paradise Valley stretch of the Yellowstone. Those restrctions do not save fish so don't fool yourslef into thinking that there is any logic involved!
If they were truly worried about saving our wild trout, increasing catch & release waters would do far more to save wild trout than these silly "feel good" restrictions.
NO LOGIC. So let's say that the fish are more prone to dying after 2 pm than say noon (whatever!) from trhe stress of being caught and released. On most Montana waters, anglers are allowed to keep 3-5 trout every day. Most anglers practice catch and release, but there are certainly a good chunk that like to keep a few trout every now and then. According to the regs, we shoudl be allowed to kill a few fish everyday anyway, so what's the big deal if we just keep our limit after the 2 pm magic hour? The point is that FWP has no idea HOw to manage our wild trout fisheries! Close it or leave it open!
Another FWP gripe. Commercial operators (guides, contractors, movie folks, etc.) are now required to pay FWP a $100 fee in order to use state-owned fishing access sites. I'm all for paying for the use, infact I would've been up for paying more. The problem is that we have gotten NOTHING out of the new revenue source. I've been all over Region 3 this year and the only thing I've noticed is a dumpster at Black's Ford! That extra money can't even keep toilet paper in the outhouses! The $100 fee is being wasted away and I'm disgusted by it! There's a reason that beurocrats are not in the real world...they don't understand how it works!