More Upriver Columbia Springers Expected In 2018

Columbia River salmon managers are forecasting a better spring Chinook run in 2018.

They’re expecting 166,700 bound for tributaries east of Bonneville Dam, according to a Facebook post by the Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission.

SPENCER RHODES SHOWS OFF A WESTERN COLUMBIA GORGE HATCHERY SPRING CHINOOK CAUGHT THIS SEASON. (FISHING PHOTO CONTEST)

The prediction, which was made by the U.S. v. Oregon Technical Advisory Committee last week, is for almost 51,000 more than actually returned this year, 115,822.

This year’s original preseason forecast was for 160,400, which may provide a gauge for how 2018 recreational fisheries will shape up.

Snake River Chinook are expected to come in twice as strong as they did in 2017, with 107,400 forecast.

Upper Columbia summer kings are forecast to be about as strong as this year, with 67,300 expected.

Unfortunately, it looks like another bum sockeye year, with just under 100,000 returning to the Okanogan/Okanagan, Lake Wenatchee and Central Idaho.

With a similar sized run this year, managers had to scrub fisheries on the Columbia from the Tri-Cities area up to Chief Joseph Dam to get enough fish back on the gravel and for hatchery broodstock programs.

State fishery managers will meet with representatives from the sportfishing world this Wednesday at ODFW’s Clackamas office to go over the forecasts.

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