WA STEEL ESCAPESteelhead escapement is defined by the number of fish that survive commercial and recreational fisheries to reach their spawning grounds. This eye-opening infographic for Washington State shows projected goals in relation to actual returns and paints a sobering picture of how wild steelhead numbers stand on a selection of rivers—including the Hoh, Wind, Queets, and Snohomish.


Keep in mind, green circles are indicators of targets met or exceeded. But in most cases management goals are set so dismally low from the get-go that any notion of “achievement” is highly subjective.

Via Ben Grady at Sea Run Mapping: “This is a project I’ve been wanting to work on for quite some time. I’ve always been interested in keeping up-to-date with the status of steelhead returns, but typically found it difficult to find the data and compare it to the established escapement goals. The information is out there, of course, but you’ve got to dig around and find it using various resources… something most people don’t have the time or inclination to pursue. Hopefully this visual makes it easier for folks to digest the information and understand what’s going on.”

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Tom Bie

Tom Bie is the founder, editor, and publisher of The Drake. He started the magazine in 1998 as an annual newsprint publication based in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. He then moved it to Steamboat, Colorado (1999), Boulder, Colorado (2001), and San Clemente, California (2004), as he took jobs as managing editor at Paddler, Senior Editor at Skiing, and Editor-in-Chief at Powder, respectively. Tom and The Drake are now both based in Denver, Colorado, where The Drake is finally all grows up(Swingers, 1996) to a quarterly magazine.

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