Wanda Keefer recently, understandably, bemoaned the loss of $500,000 in cruise ship business at the Port of Clarkston and LC Valley, due to the Bonneville Dam lock closure. Dismay over the effects of a blocked river gives Keefer a firsthand opportunity to feel Idaho anglers, guides, outfitters, and fishing-dependent communities’ angst at the continuing loss of salmon and steelhead runs that sustain their economies.
Keefer works in Washington and perhaps doesn’t care about Idaho’s lost treasure: thriving fish runs. She fails to realize that Idaho losing millions of salmon and steelhead isn’t worth a few cruise ships docking at her Washington port, nor worth keeping four aging, unneeded dams.
For a number of years, my husband and I were outfitters. We did historical tours along the Lolo Trail, several for Road Scholar along Highway 12 from Lewiston to Powell, and many for cruise ship guests who debarked at Keefer’s dock – such as Lindblad/National Geographic guests.
I know those guests. I believe they’d tell Keefer to stop referring to their money in her support of the extinction of salmon and steelhead. They’re smart and have “heart.” They would gladly give up a boat trip to help save endangered species.