Serving Franklin County, WA

Turkey season coming to Turnbull in fall of 2023

Officials to open 1,883 acres off Mullenix Road

CHENEY – Turkey hunting is coming to Turnbull National Wildlife Refuge in the fall of 2023.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service officials are opening 1,883 acres in the Long Lake Unit of the refuge for hunting four days per week during the fall turkey season, from Sept. 1 through Dec. 31 beginning next year.

The Long Lake Unit is located east of Mullenix Road, south of the city.

The new Turnbull hunt would align with state and federal hunting laws, officials said. And hunting would be by reservation only, on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Up to two hunting parties of up to four hunters per party would be allowed to hunt for two days, officials said. They would be able to take to the field up to two hours before legal hunt times and must be off Turnbull no more than an hour after legal hunt times end.

Hunting can start a half-hour before sunrise and ends at sunset.

Officials didn't say how many hunting parties would be allowed to access Turnbull over the course of the season.

Hunters would be allowed to roam the Long Lake Unit on foot only, officials said. However, disabled hunters with special-use permits may be allowed to hunt with a vehicle or e-bike on existing and maintained roadways in the unit.

Hunters will be able to use dogs, blinds and shotguns, muzzleloading shotguns, bows and crossbows to hunt turkey, officials said. Non-toxic shot is required.

According to a report on the proposed new hunting season, "hunting has occurred on the refuge for many years."

Turnbull has offered elk hunting and youth waterfowl hunting since 2009 in limited seasons, officials said, noting the "newly proposed turkey hunt may initially cause some public concerns.

Officials also noted that Eastern Washington offers "world-class" turkey hunting and the new season will bring recreation-related revenue into the greater Cheney area.

Turnbull officials estimate the new hunt will cost about $2,000 for signage and brochures, and $13,000 for a new parking area off Mullenix Road.

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Roger Harnack, Publisher

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Roger Harnack is the co-owner/publisher of Free Press Publishing. Having grown up Benton City, Roger is an award-winning journalist, photographer, editor and publisher. He's one of only two editorial/commentary writers from Washington state to ever receive the international Golden Quill. Roger is dedicated to the preservation of local media, and the voice it retains for Eastern Washington.


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