Press Release


Yakima River Public Access Plan Adopted by the Board of County Commissioners

Kittitas County, WA - 02/27/2019 - The Kittitas County Board of Commissioners (BOCC) tasked the Yakima River Access Citizens Advisory Committee to develop a plan which was reviewed and recommended by the Public Lands Advisory Committee to the Kittitas County Board of Commissioners for final adoption. Commissioner Osiadacz stated, "I would like to thank everyone that has been involved in this process. The Yakima River is very important to our county. Having all the stakeholders involved ensures the plan developed fairly represents all interests."

  This plan is adopted in an effort to determine:

  • River geology, ecology, and history
  • River hydrology
  • Recreation demands and economic potentials
  • Public access sites
  • River hazards
  • Access site enhancements
  • Implementation of plan

During the development of the plan public outreach was conducted through a series of workshops, open house events, and an online survey to identify issues, concerns, proposals and priorities with various river user and interest groups including:
  • Wildlife and hunting
  • Fishing and guides
  • State and tribal agencies
  • Rafters
  • Landowners
  • Boating - non-fishing
  • Emergency responders
  • Camping and hiking

The full plan is available on the Kittitas County Website at:

Participants in this effort include:

Yakima River Access Citizen Advisory Committee
Paul Jewell – Former Kittitas County Commissioner
Calvana Carper – Development Services Office Assistant
Donald Bechard - Fisherman
Dave Bouta - Fisherman
Ryan Gausman - Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation/Mule Deer
Judy Hallisey – Kittitas Chapter of the Audubon Society
Theo Leonard - Upper County Resident
William Meyer - Washington Department Fish & Wildlife
Clay Meyers - Kittitas County Sherriff’s Office/Public Safety
Mike Milligan - Outdoorsman
Scott Nicolai - Yakama Nation Staff
Gary Cox - Landowner
Nicky Pasi – Mountains to Sound Greenery Trust
Joe Rotter - Fly Fishing Guide
John Schultz - Fisherman/Hunter
Jack Seth - River Rescuer
Kyle Thayer - Landowner
Todd Thayer – Landowner
Steve Worley – Fly Fishing Guide
Public Lands Advisory Committee
Laura Osiadacz – Chair, Kittitas County Commissioner
Rachel Kane – Development Services Permit Technician
Gary Berndt - Former Chair of Public Lands Advisory Committee
Anita Boyum - Former School Board Member
Chris Cruise - Small Business Owner, Outdoorsman
Dave Duncan - Washington Cattlemen’s Association, Outdoorsman
Bill Essman - Outdoorsman, Former WDFW Enforcement
Marc Eylar - Outdoorsman, Noxious Weed Control Board
Jim Hanson - Farmer, Teanaway Resident, Outdoorsman
Greg Parker - Small Business Owner, Mountain Bike Enthusiast
Rory Savage - Business Owner, Realtor, Outdoorsman
Justin Vincett - Farmer, Outdoorsman
Keith Winter - Business Owner, Outdoorsman
Steve Worley - Outfitter, River Guide, Outdoorsman
Kittitas County Commissioners

Cory Wright, District 1
Laura Osiadacz, District 2
Brett Wachsmith, District 3

Tom Beckwith FAICP - Beckwith Consulting Group
Jennifer Kiusalaas ASLA LEED - JKLA Landscape Architects
Jennifer Hackett - Manastash Mapping
Michael Arthur – Creative Communications

Kittitas County, from the Cascades to the Columbia, and online at


Contact: Laura Osiadacz, Kittitas County Commissioner
Phone: 509.962.7508