Help support Fish Not Gold eliminate the damage caused by Hobby Miners to our streams

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by Fish Not Gold, May 22, 2014.

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  1. KerryS

    KerryS Ignored Member

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    Here we go. Internet posting finally comes full circle in this thread. It is inevitable that when one side feels the ground slipping under their feet they resort to name calling. Nice. Call it a day dude you are dredging up the very ground you are standing on.
     
  2. KerryS

    KerryS Ignored Member

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    So this is where the two sides of the issue would get together and hammer out the details. So far I see no such willingness from the dredge it all up side. They live in a fantasy world of 1872.
     
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  3. freestoneangler

    freestoneangler Not to be confused with Freestone

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    I failed to mention that I do tip my hat to you, Kent and Freestone for taking up the cause. I'm guessing a good many (myself included) agree with the basic premise that some sensible regulations should be established for this activity. If I hiked into a favorite section of stream one day only to find it looking like a kid's sandbox after a neighborhood party, I'd be irritated. I think the challenge is to have the passion, guts and willingness... but not be one. It's seems pretty damn clear to me that hard lines and polarized positions end up going nowhere. More often than not, there is room for compromise that both sides of the argument can live with.
     
  4. Kim McDonald

    Kim McDonald member

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    Freestoneangler:

    Indeed, the art of politics...it takes all hands on deck, each doing their job, to get folks to find middle ground. And sometimes that means people take extreme positions or postures, others take a more moderate or middle ground, and somewhere in this whole process, compromise is achieved. It isn't pretty, it never looks nice, and things are said or done that make for bad Thanksgiving dinners among families. If you read the miner's forums, Facebook postings and tweets, they are "out there." Some talk about pointing guns, you read one miner here threatening litigation, a number of them have made some pretty extreme statements about me and my beliefs, others photoshop pictures of the Executive Director of one of our partners and parody him, call him names. I've stopped counting the number of times I have been called stupid or other things that would make my mother (if she was alive) quite upset.

    We do believe that there are hobby miners out there who do see that reasonable restrictions on streams that are critical habitat for our endangered species is the right thing to do. And hopefully, as this process unfolds, they will take a leadership role in the discussions. If not, you will see a lot of miners talking (emphatically) that they have a right to do what they are doing and that there should be no restrictions. In fact, just this year, a miner petitioned WDFW to eliminate any of the restrictions on streams and rivers (the so-called work windows) and there is another miner currently suing the State to do the same thing.

    I personally wish it was easier than this. I don't enjoy being called names, having someone swear at me, libeling me. I don't enjoy conflict, to be frank. But I also believe that any help we can give endangered fish and their habitat, we have an obligation to do that.

    Kim
     
  5. Checkthisout

    Checkthisout Member

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    The next thing they will attack after hobby miners are jet boats. I'll think I'll stand by the Hobby Miners on this one.
     
  6. Kent Lufkin

    Kent Lufkin Remember when you could remember everything?

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    Have it your way. I hope you find more sympathy for your position at resources coalition.org.

    K
     
  7. Kent Lufkin

    Kent Lufkin Remember when you could remember everything?

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    "There are none so blind as those who will not see. None so deaf as they who will not hear."

    K
     
  8. Kent Lufkin

    Kent Lufkin Remember when you could remember everything?

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    While we certainly appreciate all the noble sentiment expressed here for hammering out a compromise with the hobby miners, that's not what the ultimate solution that prevents damage to our streams and habitat will look like.

    Laws are already on the books that provide checks and balances to prevent such damage. Problem is, they're either ignored by the miners (like the requirement to notify federal agencies like USFS when they file an HPA) or not implemented by WDFW, who refuses to put real bite into their toothless Gold and Fish pamphlet to truly regulate suction dredge mining despite their obligation to enforce existing laws that protect ESA-listed species and critical habitat.

    We're not here to negotiate with the hobby miners. We're here to hold the state and federal agencies' feet to the fire and make them do the job they've already been tasked with doing.

    K
     
  9. Kim McDonald

    Kim McDonald member

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    Kent is right. The big elephant in the room, here, is the Endangered Species Act. It requires the US Forest Service to consult with the wildlife agencies when they allow hobby mining on Forest Service land (public land). That consultation is triggered by the miners following federal law which requires them to notify the USFS when/where they are mining. The miners are now being advised by a lawyer in Portland, to not file the required Notices of Intent. It would be like fishermen being told to not submit our catch cards because it might trigger some action by the federal government, like shutting down a stream. In addition, WDFW has told miners, through some of their HPA permits, that they are mining in areas with endangered species and that they "shall" notify the appropriate federal agencies. WDFW even gives them the names, telephone numbers, and emails. Yet no one in the agencies are contacted.

    If being outside with their families, looking for the few flakes of gold, is truly a hobby, then there are plenty of other ways to mine for gold that minimize impacts to habitat and have time with families and friends.


    Kim
     
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  10. Checkthisout

    Checkthisout Member

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    And this is why they won't file anything and won't talk with you.

    You want their hobby banned completely. That's not a reasonable position to take. All you leave them with is time to enjoy their hobby as much as they can until you and your ilk are successful at outlawing the activity.
     
  11. smelt047

    smelt047 New Member

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    The hobby miners could pursue their pastime by panning for gold or dredging in streams without ESA-listed fish. But most are fanatically opposed to any change to the existing, highly permissive regulations in Washington, which they already consider an imposition on their God-given freedom. After debating the issue with some of the most vocal miners, I see no basis for a "reasonable compromise." Kim and Kent are only being realistic.
     
  12. KerryS

    KerryS Ignored Member

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    Following the law is not a resonable position to take. Another statement that rivals the best one you made about never seeing a dredge in action.
     
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  13. Kim McDonald

    Kim McDonald member

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    Wrong. We want suction dredge mining out of streams and rivers listed as critical habitat.

    You want to pan for gold, that is just fine. But breaking the law by not filing...not so good.

    Kim
     
  14. smc

    smc Active Member

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    Well now. This is a fine how-do-you-do. I was fine just reading along and snacking on my pop corn like I usually do, and then Mr. checkthisout goes and says that word. Ilk. Sounds like a derogatory term, Ilk, the way CTO uses it. And I suppose it might be if used to categorize those who think:

    They have a right to damage and/or destroy public property.
    They have a right to free use of public property that others must pay to use.
    They have a right to use mechanical dredging equipment in streambeds that are so environmentally sensitive that they are closed to all fishing activity.

    Well, I suppose that those of a certain "ilk" might expect that those so-called rights are "reasonable".

    Then there are others - CheckThisOut - of a certain ilk, that see through your tongue in cheek obfuscations and outright lies. Maybe you're a shill for big mining, a refugee from the Pebble Mine debacle come to lick your wounds on the backs of Washington State's last steelhead. I don't know. But I do know that you are of a certain "ilk".

    So am I, now that I think about it. I've got nothing against recreational panning. It's a great way to get out and get close to God & Country, Friends and Family. But: All streams sensitive enough to be closed to fishing should also be closed to any and all mining. Period. All other mining activity that involves mechanical equipment on open waters in Washington State should be subject to a comprehensive permitting process, with fees adequate to insure monitoring and enforcement of active claims. Because God knows, there are those of a certain ilk that feel they are above the laws of man and God.
     
  15. timlind

    timlind Active Member

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    Now that I read this entire thread, I think I will re-read the "pram" thread
     
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