New Sign at Amber Lake

Jerry McBride and Jim Athearn recently installed a new sign at the

Jerry McBride at Amber Launch

Amber Lake boat launch. This new sign replaces the previous one and emphasizes the selective gear regulations and the bait prohibition. We will be installing a similar one at Coffeepot and are talking with WDFW about possibly adding two signs at Medical Lake. These signs help to educate anglers unfamiliar with the regulations, and they also aid WDFW in enforcement issues.

We have had a problem with bait fishermen at Amber for a long time and this weeks paper reported numerous bait containers on the shores of Medical Lake.

In the past Fish and Wildlife officials have asked for our assistance in notifying them of violators and many of us do routinely contact WDFW. For those of you who were not aware of the poacher hot line, it is not a bad idea to program it into your phone so that you can easily notify WDFW of a problem. The number is (509) 227-6560.

Jim Athearn and Jerry McBride

New Sign for Amber Lake

2018 Big Horn Show

Our booth at the Big Horn Show was again a huge success. There was great participation from the club and a large number of visitors to our display. We were able to work with many young men and women who wanted to learn a little about fly fishing and tying flies. It was enjoyable and thanks to all who participated. We are looking forward to continuing our commitment by being at next years show.

Those of you who didn’t get a chance to participate, sharpen your skills and sign up for next year. It is well worth it.

Volunteers included the following:  Chet Allison, Lee Funkhouser, Bob Johnson, Stephen Aspinwall, Bruce Morgan, Bob Burton, Bill McElroy, Randy Shaber, Phil Beck, Gordon Olson, David Lohman, Mike Fortney, Frank Faha, Bill Papesh, Bryan Harman, Skip Cavanaugh, Jerry McBride, Dan Lobb, Jon Bowne, Larry Ray and Jason Mulligan.  A special thanks to Bill Papesh for donating hats and Leon Buckles for all of the extra assistance he provided including set-up, breakdown and storage of supplies.

Conservation Committee Sets 2018 Projects

2018 For Sure
Latah Creek River Keeper Silt Monitoring – See article by Tom Stralser.
2018 Just About for Sure
Clean Out Bayley Lake Spawning Channel – We have done this just about every year since the five
low log dams were put in by the IEFFC to create spawning beds for fish in Bayley Lake. Being able to
spawn adds a year or two to the life of the fish that would normally die after three years. The project
requires eight people for half of a day. We go fishing in Bayley Lake when we are done. This project is
done in late September or early October and I will try to plan it for a Saturday so members who work
during the week have a chance to participate.
Fin Clip Fish for WDFW – Done over two days with 16 people required each day. We do this project
with the Spokane Fly Fishers so we would each supply eight people. WDFW supplies lunch. I have
asked WDFW if we can do this on a weekend so members who work during the week have a chance to
2018 Maybe Projects
Put Up New Signs with Current Regulations at Amber and Coffeepot Lakes – The frames are already
there so IEFFC would acquire new signs and two people from the club would put them in place.
Then they could go fishing for the rest of the day.
Plant Native Shrubs and Trees Along the Upper Reaches of Latah Creek – Tom Stralser is working
with the Coeur d’Alene tribe on this. Our part of this could be a donation of money to help pay for
the materials used. No more details known at this time.
Assist Spokane Fly Fishers in improving natural spawning in creek flowing into Browns Lake
(Pend Oreille County). No estimate of cost or manpower at this time.
Participate in a project in the Thompson River, MT drainage. Leon Buckles is going to attend a
meeting in Thompson Falls, MT January 23, 2018 to find out what the project entails and how the
IEFFC might participate.
Randy Osborne of WDFW may have a project for the upper Spokane River. He will get back to us
when it is better defined.
Pie-In-The-Sky Like-to-Have
Rework launch at Fourth of July Lake so boats can be launched with the new prevailing lower
water level. Boat launching at Fourth of July Lake has become almost impossible for the last seven or
eight years. WDFW needs to fix this. Good news! Randy Osborne of WDFW has agreed to take a look
at how this situation could be rectified. Our role is mainly to keep reminding WDFW that this is a problem
that needs fixing.

Toys for Tots 2017

Jim Brown Toys for Tots

Our November meeting is historically dedicated to honoring our veterans while also contributing to our community by raising funds and donating toys for area children.  This year was no exception.

Bill Bean and Jim Brown

Members brought a large number of toys for donation and donated over $600.00 for the Marines to purchase additional toys.  Toys for Tots representatives and Marines Jim Brown and Bill Bean were present to collect the toys and funds, while also addressing the membership regarding the importance of this annual project.

Thank you to all of the IEFFC members who contributed to this great program.

Big Horn Sportsmen’s Show 2017

Big Horn Sportsmen’s Show a Big Success

If you didn’t have a chance to make it to the Big Horn Show this year and to see all of our members ”in action” teaching the kids to tie flies, you missed a lot of fun. Everyone did a fantastic job and all the kids and parents really appreciated their efforts. Our new booth location proved successful at attracting a lot more attention and our volunteers responded with a great effort to entertain and teach our young visitors. This was our best show ever thanks to their efforts. Not only did the kids have a good time but a lot of our guys said they enjoyed the opportunity to spend time with other club members getting to know them better. It especially was nice to see a lot of returning kids, some who have been back for several years now and never seem to get enough.

Club members who participated this year were: Bob Schmitt, Lee Funkhouser, Jon Bowne, Lowell Tveit, Gordon Olson, Rick Ripley, Leonard Gross, Dan Lobb, Stephen Aspinwall, Randy Shaber, Skip Cavanaugh, Bob Johnson, Jerry McBride, Neal Beechinor, Phil Beck, Bryan Harman, Bruce Morgan, David Lohman, Larry Ray. Ray Kranches, Leon Buckles and Jim Athearn. A special thanks to Phil, Lowell, Larry and Leon for helping me set up and take down the booth and to Bill Papesh and Tom May for supplying all the hats we were able to give the kids.

We’ll be back same time, same place next year so please mark your calendars.

Jim Athearn

Kid’s Fishing 2017

The Kids Fishing Days will be at the Clear Lake’s Fairchild Air

Dick O’Dell with a happy group of fishers

Force Base Recreational Area this year on May 5th and 6th.

The special Ronald McDonald House session of kids fishing will be on Friday May 5th from about 2:30 pm until 5:00 pm.  We will again be transporting the families to attend.

The main Kids Fishing will be on Saturday May 6th from 8:00 am to about 4:00 pm.

Volunteers for the Ronald McDonald House should show up at the RMH by 1:30 pm

Volunteers for the Kids fishing on Saturday should show up by 7:30 am and Randy Osborne will tell us what is to go on for the day.

There will be rod building on Wednesday the 19th of April  at the Inland Northwest Wildlife Council from 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm.

The volunteers who show up on Saturday may come and leave at any time as we realize that not every one can spend a whole day.  We do appreciate everyone’s participation in this great event.

Toys For Tots – 2016

Our annual Toys For Tots meeting was again very successful, bringing in a number of toys and donations to support this extremely important program.  The IEFFC members responded to the community needs by filling up two large containers with toys while also supplying hundreds of dollars in monetary donations.toys4tots1

The representatives from the Marines were able to transport the toys from the meeting and the support of our club will help to provide a number of children with a brighter Christmas.

Thanks to all of you who donated toys and cash.  Your support is special.



Bayley Lake Inlet Channel Rehab

Eight hardy volunteers tackled the Bayley Lake inlet channel again this year.



We cleaned out the channel between Potter’s Pond and Bayley Lake that gets overgrown with grass and weeds every summer, repaired some of the overflow weirs, and placed more spawning gravel.  Whether we get any production from trout spawning in the channel is uncertain but it does provide mature trout a place to spawn



and possibly survive another year to provide larger fish for the anglers.  Fishing in the afternoon started slow but picked up and they were really healthy, strong fish.  Thanks to Jerry McBride, Bob Schmidt, Bruce Morgan, Stephen Aspinwall, Bill Papesh, Phil Beck, Bill Herrington, and Jim Athearn for all their hard work.4-work-crew

Spokane Hatchery Fin Clipping

Those in attendance from our Club were Stephen Aspinwall, Dan Lobb, Floyd hatch10-300x225Holmes, Leon Buckles, Chet Allison, Phil Beck, Jon Bowne, Ward Buckingham, Bob Harley, Tom Hoag, and Bob Johnson. We were joined by a group from the Spokane Fly Fishers and several Fish Hatchery employees plus Chris Donley, Regional Fisheries Manager, WDFW.

We started at 8 AM and most worked until 3 PM with the Hatchery guys furnishing us pulled pork sandwiches, chips and potato salad for lunch.  There hatch3-300x225were about 60,000 triploid rainbows to clip for the Avista financed planting into Lake Spokane.  It was a great activity for a near Fall day. The setup that we used was built with minimal cost by the Hatchery guys. Fish were dipped from the rearing pond into a central holding tank that ran about 20 feet in length. On each side of this central shallow tank was another aluminum trough that held a fish anesthesia to make the fish stop moving. The small dipping nets with fish were placed in the anesthesia water and we pulled each fish from the net so we could then clip their adipose fins and placed them in a plastic rain gutter on each side that took the fish to another rearing pond to recover. It was a very well designed working area.



Kid’s Fishing 2016 – Floyd Holmes – Director

On Friday May 6th, Bill Papesh and Jerry Harms met at the Ronald McDonald House and rode out to Clear Lake with 15 youngsters who were hoping to catch a big trout. The largest fish caught was 24″and all of the youngsters who accompanied Bill and Jerry caught fish and had a good time. There were 3 youngsters who were unable to attend because of chemo and radiation treatments. Kids_Fishing

On Saturday, May 7th, Bill Papesh, Jim Athearn, Randy Shaber, Dick Odell, and Paul Coopwood showed up at Clear Lake to help with the Kids Fishing Day. This year about 850 to 900 kids showed up for the event and there were a lot of fish caught.

Paul Coopwood also had his two grandsons, Connis and Ryan Ehring, and their mother Beth help-ing out with various jobs. Paul said that Connis was going to use the event as part of his eagle scout merit badge project.

My thanks go to all those who helped out with the two fish outs and I hope that I did not miss any one.