Salt Lake City -- The Utah Blue Ribbon Fisheries Advisory Council voted Sept. 20 to designate a newly restored section of the Ogden River as a “Blue Ribbon Fishery.”

With that vote, the 1.1-mile restored section of the Ogden River—located downstream from Washington Boulevard—is the forty sixth water body in Utah to be recognized, protected and appreciated for its unique recreational qualities.

In order to be designated as a “Blue Ribbon Fishery,” a water body must provide high quality fishing, a quality outdoor experience, contain high quality fish habitat and provide an economic benefit to the community.

The Sept. 20 vote recognizes intensive efforts by Ogden City, the Division of Wildlife Resources and a long list of project partners to enhance and improve the river.

“For many years,” says Ben Nadolski, regional aquatic habitat restoration biologist for the DWR, “it has been our collective desire and passion to transform this neglected and often abused reach of the Ogden River into an asset that everyone, including future generations, can be proud of.”

The following is among the work the DWR and its partners have done to improve habitat for fish and provide more access to anglers:

·        Protected 17 acres of riparian and in-stream habitats using perpetual conservation easements

·        Installed 20 cross-vanes that restore riffle/pool sequences and diversify habitats in the river

·        Removed and recycled 5,684 tons of concrete and metal, including seven car bodies

·        Removed 8,359 tons of non-recyclable glass, concrete and miscellaneous waste

·        Removed and recycled 2,460 automotive tires that were used to manufacture flip flops

·        Built nine storm water filtering areas that are vegetated with wetland plants

·        Built two fishing ramps that are accessible to those with physical challenges

·        Created 20 access points to the river for fishing and other recreation

 “The recent vote, along with recent awards and other wide-spread recognition, have proven to all of us, as well as to communities across the nation, that Utah’s rivers and fisheries are unique and valuable resources that improve our quality of life,” Nadolski says.

The Utah Blue Ribbon Fisheries Program was established in 2005 by former Gov. Jon Huntsman Jr.  The Blue Ribbon Fisheries Advisory Council, a broad-based citizen advisory group, oversees the program.

Funds for the Blue Ribbon program come from those who purchase fishing licenses.

For more information, call the DWR’s Northern Region office at (801) 476-2740.