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Big Horn - Yakima Access
- Pending Legislative Action
If this WWRP grant is funded, the Department of Fish and Wildlife will provide exceptional recreational river access to the Big Horn - Yakima River. We propose to purchase several key shoreline parcels from a single landowner along the scenic and biologically rich Yakima River Canyon between the towns of Ellensburg and Yakima. The acquisition will purchase 3.0 miles of the Yakima River and its shoreline. The property is an in-holding to WDFW's Wenas Wildlife Area and is under threat of development. The project will secure an exceptional recreational property along the Yakima River. The property has two private boat launches that are only open seasonally in a section of the river where put-in and take-out opportunities are limited. Both sides of the Yakima River will be acquired which equates to 6 miles of shorline access that is currently posted as no trespassing. Popular local hiking trails also cross the property. The Yakima River Canyon supports a blue-ribbon trout fishery. In summer months rafting and inner tubing are highly popular activites for regional residents and CWU students. The Yakima Canyon conservatively serves tens of thousands of recreationists annually. Access points have become crowded. Securing additional public access will better distribute recreationists in a highly popular reach. The Yakima Canyon is one of the most scenic and biologically important areas in Washington State. Puchasing this property is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity (6 miles of shoreline) that would provide exceptional public benefit.
What is the WWRP?
The Washington Wildlife and Recreation Program (WWRP) is a state grant program that creates and conserves local and state parks, wildlife habitat and working farms. The Washington State Recreation and Conservation Office administers WWRP grants, and the legislature funds the program.