Outdoors

Adventure briefs for March 26

The Tacoma Women’s Sailing Association will offer lessons for people of all experience levels starting April 12.
The Tacoma Women’s Sailing Association will offer lessons for people of all experience levels starting April 12. Staff file, 2015

Sailing

Women’s association holding lessons

The Tacoma Women’s Sailing Association will begin its spring sailing lessons next month.

The classes will run from 6-9 p.m. Tuesdays from April 12-May 17. There will be beginner, intermediate and advanced level classes.

Students will be assigned to a boat based on their experience level and the best location for the student. Boats will depart from docks in Tacoma and Gig Harbor.

Students must be 18 years or older, and must bring their own personal flotation device and appropriate clothes and shoes. The classes are open to men and women.

The cost is $185 and includes a $30 association membership. If you sign up before April 4, you will avoid a $10 late fee.

You can sign up for the classes at twsa.org.

For more information, contact Nini Tayet at 253-686-3307 or Rod Tayet at 253-686-3282 or norsebynw@comcast.net.

Conservation

Help with Gravel Pack-in

Organizers are looking for volunteers to take part in the 11th annual Great Gravel Pack-in in the Capitol State Forest near Olympia. Working with the Back Country Horsemen of Washington, Washington ATV Association, the Evergreen Sportsmen Club and state Department of Natural Resources staff, volunteers will help haul gravel, repair trail tread and maintain recreation sites in the 100,000-acre forest.

The event will run from 8 a.m.-3 p.m. April 9.

The work party brings together about 150 people.

Registration will open at 8 a.m. at the Mima Falls Campground, with a safety briefing at 9 a.m. Lunch will be provided by the Back Country Horsemen.

Participants should bring weather-appropriate clothing, work gloves and water.

Learn more about the event at dnr.wa.gov/event/great-gravel-pack. To learn more about recreation in the Capitol State Forest, go to dnr.wa.gov/Capitol.

Wildlife

State creates 2 more steelhead gene banks

Hatchery steelhead will no longer be released in the Grays River to help preserve the wild steelhead population near the mouth of the Columbia River. The Chinook River, which flows into the Columbia 15 miles farther downstream, will also be off-limits to the release of hatchery steelhead.

The two rivers were designated last week by the state Department of Fish and Wildlife as the state’s newest wild fish gene banks. The department had also considered an area including Mill, Abernathy and Germany creeks, but opted for the Grays and Chinook rivers.

That designation is part of a statewide effort to protect self-sustaining populations of wild steelhead by reducing the risk to them posed by hatchery fish.

Since 2014, the agency has established wild steelhead gene banks on the East Fork Lewis River, the North Fork Toutle/Green River and the Wind River. The Grays and Chinook rivers are the last of four gene banks planned in the lower Columbia basin.

The use of gene banks as a recovery strategy was spelled out in the statewide steelhead management plan adopted by the Fish and Wildlife Commission in 2008.

Compiled by Jeffrey P. Mayor, jeff.mayor@thenewstribune.com

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