anglers, guides – Chilliwack Progress

Concerns about the condition of the Island 22 boat ramp in Chilliwack and the road to it turned into a call to action this week from the Fraser Valley Angling Guides Association and the Fraser Valley Salmon Society.

According to a March 1 letter sent to the Fraser Valley Regional District by Brandon Wootton of Chilliwack, director of the Salmon Society and member of the Girl Guides Association.

“It is impossible to drive over 10 kilometers per hour on this road safely,” Wootton wrote.

But FVRD Chairman Jason Lum launched a response on Friday March 4 to clarify that the entire length of Cartmell Road had just been completely leveled the day before, from Young Road to the Regional Park.

The reason it’s important to anglers and anglers is that they hold out hope for a 2022 Fraser River sockeye fishery, which hasn’t been the case for the past few years. past three seasons in the face of collapsing salmon stocks and the consequences of the Big Bar slide. .

An opening in 2022 would only be authorized by Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) if the expected returns of sockeye salmon were sufficient to allow it. If that were the case, the popular Island 22 Regional Park would likely experience a significant increase in vehicle traffic towards the end of the summer.

Wootton points out in his letter that historically the two fisheries-related organizations have a “long and significant relationship” with the Fraser Valley Regional District and the City of Chilliwack, which respectively manage and own park facilities.

He suggested the gate be moved closer to the gatehouse to address some of the ongoing damage issues.

Lum said there are RVs parked on an adjacent property behind the gate, and those residing there become trapped when the gate is locked. The gate locks were damaged in several incidents in the evening, so that the gate could not be opened in the morning by the operator.

But changing the location of the door is not as simple as it seems.

“Moving this gate onto the levee requires provincial levee maintenance act approvals for construction on a levee,” Lum added.

Wootton noted that the boat launch had been in poor condition for two years.

“Only one lane exists in the area where boats can be safely launched,” Wootton said.

Removing the piles of silt and leveling the area would be a big improvement.

“Additionally, tamping the area near the river would cause the area to harden to help vehicles not get stuck.”

Lum responded that the silt cleaning process requires it to be removed in small sections for the silt to dry out.

There were successive incidents of high water during the freshet and then again during atmospheric river events in November, which brought additional silt deposits to the shore.

“The contractor removed the silt for several days in November and then his services were needed elsewhere,” Lum said.

Episodes of bad weather, which brought snow and ice, prevented the contractor from returning until the end of January, and again this week.

Work was completed on March 3 and 4 to remove the piles of silt, and the contractor is exploring creative options for the use of materials such as fill.

“We value our working relationship with FVSS and appreciate your patience as we work to manage river access to Island 22 and deal with recent weather and water conditions,” Lum added.

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Fraser RiverFraser Valley Regional District

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