Tag Archives: chinook

SW WA, Lower Columbia Fishing Report (9-25-19)

THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION WAS FORWARDED BY BRYANT SPELLMAN, WDFW

Sport Fishing Report Sept. 16-22

Salmon/Steelhead:

Columbia River Tributaries 

Cowlitz River – I-5 Br downstream – 27 bank rods kept 1 coho and 1 coho jack. 32 boats/72 rods kept 11 coho, 3 coho jacks and released 62 Chinook, 53 Chinook jacks, 15 coho and 8 coho jacks.

Above the I-5 Br – 8 bank rods released 3 Chinook and 2 Chinook jacks.

KERI WILLARD AND BEAU MEUCHEL HOLD UP FALL CHINOOK CAUGHT ON THE LOWER COLUMBIA IN THE ST. HELENS AREA OVER LABOR DAY WEEKEND. (YO-ZURI PHOTO CONTEST)

Lewis River – 36 bank anglers kept 7 coho and released 3 Chinook and 2 coho.  6 boats/18 rods released 1 coho jack.

Wind River – 2 boats/6 rods kept 5 Chinook, 1 coho and released 2 Chinook and 3 coho.

Drano Lake – 17 bank anglers kept 1 coho and released 1 coho jack and 1 steelhead.  20 boats/45 rods kept 18 Chinook, 1 Chinook jack and released 1 Chinook.

Klickitat below Fisher Hill Bridge – 32 bank anglers kept 5 Chinook and 2 Chinook jacks.

Klickitat above #5 Fishway – 3 bank anglers had no catch.

Sturgeon:

Cowlitz River – I-5 Br downstream – 29 bank rods released 3 sublegal sturgeon.  11 boats/37 rods kept 7 legal sturgeon and released 33 sublegal sturgeon.

Bonneville bank: 97 anglers with 4 sublegals released
Bonneville boat: 52 angles with 12 sublegals released
Camas/Washougal boat: 82 anglers with 9 legals kept and 63 sublegals and 9 legals released
Vancouver bank: 12 anglers with nothing
Vancouver boat: 162 anglers with 22 legals kept and 46 sublegals and 39 oversize released
Woodland bank: 36 anglers with 1 legal kept and 1 sublegal released
Woodland boat: 59 anglers with 4 legals kept and 11 sublegals and 4 oversize released
Kalama bank: 40 anglers with nothing
Kalama boat: 161 anglers with 22 legals kept and 38 sublegals and 7 oversize released
Longview bank: 38 anglers with 1 legal kept
Longview boat: 255 angles with 16 legals kept and 18 sublegals and 4 oversize released

Pikeminnow Sport – Reward Fishery Program:

The program operates from May 1 to September 30 in the lower Columbia River (mouth to Priest Rapids Dam) and the Snake River (mouth to Hells Canyon Dam).  http://www.pikeminnow.org/

‘I Was Fishing Like An ____. You Got Me’–Nemah Salmon Snagger

Washington game wardens report catching a family of blatant salmon snaggers on a Willapa Bay tributary recently.

They allege that two parents and an uncle were teaching a pair of youngsters aged 11 and 13 how to fish the wrong way, and they had half a dozen salmon on the bank of the tiny North Nemah River when Officer Todd Dielman found them on a late evening patrol.

“They were all fishing with a barbed hook tied about 8 inches above a lead weight. No bait or lure could be found on any rod,” WDFW Law Enforcement stated on its Facebook page today.

None of the six salmon had been recorded on a card, the agency alleges, and some family members were still fishing after retaining what would have been their daily limit.

Had they been doing it legally.

“I was fishing like an a**hole. You got me,” one told Dielman.

The North Nemah sees runs of hatchery and natural-origin Chinook this time of year, as well as some coho and chum later in fall. Daily limit is two adult salmon (up to six jacks), release unclipped Chinook.

WDFW reports the three adults were cited for various violations while the salmon were seized and donated.

“Numerous” snaggers were encountered during the patrol, wardens say.

NSIA Reports A Successful 20th Annual Buoy 10 Salmon Challenge

THE FOLLOWING IS A PRESS RELEASE FROM THE NORTHWEST SPORTFISHING INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION

On Friday, August 16th, nearly 200 sportfishermen from all over the region came out for the Buoy 10 Salmon Challenge to try their luck hauling in one of the large Chinook and coho migrating up the mighty Columbia. With a total of 89 fish weighed in by 5pm this was a very successful year for the derby; the competition was stiff! NSIA has hosted this derby for 20 years, raising hundreds of thousands of dollars to support sport fishermen and the sport fishing industry. This Astoria fundraiser is the biggest of the five events hosted by NSIA.

(NSIA)

The Buoy 10 derby is made possible each year by the incredible support of the sportfishing industry, both through sponsorships and the product donations that allow us to offer some of the top brands on the market as prizes and auction items. This year’s silent auction items, door prizes and raffle offerings included products from Berkley, Brad’s Killer Fish Gear, Engel Coolers, Gamakatsu, Grundens, Lamiglas, Okuma, ProCure, Shimano, Smokehouse Products, Tempress and Yakima Bait to name just a few of the many companies who supported Buoy 10 with product donations.

The 2019 Big Fish Prize of $1000 went to Jim Johnson of Team Austin’s Northwest Adventures. The team captain, Austin Moser, got Jim on the winning fish that weighed in at 21.80 gilled and gutted pounds. NSIA’s longtime sponsor, North River Boats donated funds for the Big Fish winner. Other winners include:

2nd Place Big Fish: Jason Erickson with a close runner-up at 21.40 pounds.

3rd Place Big Fish: Cameron Black hard on their heels with a Chinook at 21.15 pounds.

4th Place Big Fish: Tanner Morton pulled in a 20.60-pound Chinook.

5th Place Big Fish: Joe Depweg was just a hair behind with a good-size fish at 20.45.

G Loomis, Lamiglas, and Berkley Air rods, paired respectively with Shimano, Abu Garcia Ambassadeur and Penn Warfare reels along with Maxima line packages were won by the following teams:

1st Place Team – Cameron Black’s Gone Catchin’ Team with an average weight of 17.88.

2nd Place Team – Blair Johnson’s Team Double Trouble had an average weight of 17.82.

3rd Place Team – Josh Hughes Team with an average weight of 14.68

The $1,100 Mystery Fish Prize, sponsored by WeldCraft/Duckworth, was available to any angler that weighed in a fish. Dan Lawrentz was the 2019 lucky winner.

The Columbia’s Buoy 10 area is the largest salmon fishery in the lower 48 states. NSIA is proud to be fighting every day for the health of this magnificent river as well as every other watershed in the Pacific Northwest, and the critical ocean habitat they flow into. Events like this year’s Buoy 10 Salmon Challenge allow NSIA to be steadfast in its mission of preserving, restoring and enhancing Northwest sportfisheries and the businesses that depend on them.

NSIA Executive Director, Liz Hamilton says of the tournament, “The Buoy 10 Salmon Challenge has not only been the most exciting salmon fishing tournament on the lower Columbia for almost 20 years, but it is also our most important fundraiser. All funds will go toward protecting and restoring healthy river systems, defending hatcheries and the millions of smolts they release each year as well as working to increase angler access to fisheries across the Northwest.”

NSIA would also like to thank the Buoy 10 derby sponsors for making this event a success. Their support allows NSIA to have a strong voice in local, state, and federal governments, advocating for policies that keep the sportfishing industry thriving in the Northwest. Please remember these companies and brands when you’re gearing up for your next trip: Berkley, Brad’s Killer Fish Gear, Engel Coolers, Fisherman’s Marine & Outdoor, Frank Amato Publications/STS Magazine, Freshwater News, G. Loomis, Grundens, Luhr Jensen/Rapala, Master Marine, Maxima, North River Boats, Northwest Sportmans Magazine, Okuma, Pautzke/Atlas Mike’s, PENN, Raymarine, Shimano, Tom & Jerry’s Boat Center, and Weldcraft/ Duckworth.

NSIA also wishes to thank the many volunteers and companies that donated their products and services. And once again, Cody Herman of Day One Outdoor Adventures kept the evening’s festivities lively as Master of Ceremonies.

NSIA will host the next Buoy 10 derby in August 2020. We hope you can join us for what is always a fun and fantastic event!

Get a Free NewsLetter Here

Study Shows 74 Percent Loss Of Columbia Tidal Wetlands, 85 Percent Up And Down West Coast

THE FOLLOWING IS A NATIONAL OCEANIC AND ATMOSPHERIC ADMINISTRATION STORY

An unprecedented survey has revealed the loss of about 85 percent of historical tidal wetlands in California, Oregon, and Washington. The report, published in PLOS ONE, also highlights forgotten estuary acreage that might now be targeted for restoration.

Where West Coast rivers reach the sea, estuaries serve as critical nurseries for juvenile salmon and steelhead as they make the transition from freshwater to the ocean. They are among the most dynamic and productive habitats known, also supporting migratory birds and a variety of other fish, shellfish, and terrestrial wildlife.

A FEDERAL GRAPHIC SHOWS THE AMOUNT OF TIDAL WETLANDS UP AND DOWN THE WEST COAST, INCLUDING IN SOME OF THE REGION’S MOST IMPORTANT SALMON SYSTEMS. (NOAA)

A team of scientists applied new technologies and data to identify and estimate the historic reach of nearly 450 West Coast estuaries. Their results show that the estuaries historically extended far beyond where they exist now. More than a century of development has erased roughly 85 percent of original vegetated estuarine wetlands, especially around major river deltas.

San Francisco Bay has lost about 85 percent of its original vegetated tidal wetlands, the study found. The Columbia River estuary has lost about 74 percent. While other scientists have estimated losses for these and other well-studied estuaries, this is the first time researchers have applied consistent methods across all 450 estuaries of the contiguous U.S. West Coast.

Mapping Reveals Restoration Opportunities

“Given how valuable estuaries are to so many different species, it’s important to understand how much they have changed and what that means for fish and wildlife that depend on them,” said Correigh Greene, research biologist at NOAA Fisheries’ Northwest Fisheries Science Center in Seattle and coauthor of the new study.

The lost estuary habitat includes areas that were long ago diked and drained for agriculture, and forested wetlands that had not been widely recognized as estuary acreage, said Laura Brophy, lead author of the study and director of the Estuary Technical Group at the Institute for Applied Ecology in Corvallis, Oregon. Identifying such areas may open new opportunities for restoration of estuary habitat that otherwise might go overlooked.

BEFORE AND AFTER IMAGES FROM THE TILLAMOOK ESTUARY PARTNERSHIP SHOW THE EFFECT OF REMOVING LEVEES AND TIDE GATES NEAR THE MOUTH OF THE TRASK RIVER. (TILLAMOOK ESTUARY PARTNERSIHP VIA NMFS)

“By folding in these areas that may not have been recognized as part of estuaries, we have a better idea of just how important and extensive these estuaries were,” Brophy said. “Now we can see new restoration opportunities that people didn’t realize existed.”

The study’s high-resolution mapping also highlights low-elevation areas at greatest risk of flooding as the sea level rises with climate change. Tidal wetland restoration in these vulnerable areas can re-establish natural processes like sediment delivery. This will help these wetlands remain productive into the future.

Estuaries Once Covered 2 Million Acres

The scientists combined precise elevation mapping known as LIDAR with NOAA water level modeling to establish the extent of tides that define estuary habitat. Based on these maps, they estimated that all West Coast estuaries once covered nearly 2 million acres. This is an area nearly three times the size of the state of Rhode Island.

Scientists have data on the historic and current wetlands in 55 of the larger estuaries. Those estuaries have lost about 85 percent of their original vegetated wetlands. These 55 estuaries represent about 97 percent of historical estuary area on the West Coast, so their losses reflect almost all of the estuary losses.

Since Brophy has studied estuaries for years, she found the losses “dismaying but not surprising.” She said the good news is that fish and wildlife that live in estuaries must be adaptable because of the ever-changing tidal environment. She says “if you give them the chance to move back in, they will literally jump at the opportunity.”

The authors of the study include researchers from NOAA Fisheries’ Northwest Fisheries Science Center, the Institute for Applied Ecology, Pacific States Marine Fisheries Commission, Oregon Department of Land Conservation and Development, The Nature Conservancy, Moss Landing Marine Labs, and Pacific Spatial Solutions. The project was coordinated by the Pacific Marine and Estuarine Fish Habitat Partnership.

Get a Free NewsLetter Here

Chinook Released Into Lake Roosevelt

Another week, another 30 Chinook swimming where ocean-returning salmon haven’t been in the Upper Columbia for decades and decades.

A tribal newspaper based in North-central Washington reports that the Colville Tribes’ latest release occurred near Keller, above Grand Coulee Dam, which blocked anadromous fish runs 80 years ago.

GRAND COULEE DAM AND LAKE ROOSEVELT. (BUREAU OF RECLAMATION)

It’s a ceremonial move, one that’s “very sacred to us, very important,” Business Chairman Rodney Cawston said, according to the Tribal Tribune.

“We have strong prayers today, because our ancestors, our elders at the Ceremony of Tears, they had strong prayers that one day we would see these fish return back to the river, back to our people,” he said.

The summer kings were surplus to spawning needs at Wells Hatchery. Just as the 30 the tribes put into Lake Rufus Woods recently, they were screened beforehand by WDFW for an infectious fish virus before the release.

The paper reports that 30 more acoustically tagged Chinook were also let go in Rufus as an experiment, with another batch slated to go into dam-blocked Upper Columbia waters next week.

Get a Free NewsLetter Here

Area 10 Kings, Area 8-1 Pinks Closing

THE FOLLOWING ARE EMERGENCY RULE CHANGE NOTICES FROM THE WASHINGTON DEPARTMENT OF FISH AND WILDLIFE

Marine Area 10 to close to the retention of hatchery Chinook salmon

Action: Marine Area 10 (Seattle/Bremerton Area) will close to the retention of hatchery Chinook salmon beginning Saturday, Aug. 17.

Effective date: Aug. 17, 2019.

WITH BETTER THAN 95 PERCENT OF THE 3,057-FISH QUOTA IN THE BAG, MARINE AREA 10, WHERE MATT FERRIER AND HIS COUSIN CAUGHT THIS PAIR A FEW SEASONS BACK, WILL CLOSE AS OF SATURDAY FOR CHINOOK RETENTION. COHO AND PINKS WILL REMAIN OPEN. (YO-ZURI PHOTO CONTEST)

Species affected: Hatchery Chinook salmon.

Location: Marine Area 10 (Seattle-Bremerton Area), excluding Sinclair Inlet and the year-round docks and piers.

Reason for action: Preliminary estimates indicate that anglers have harvested more than 95 percent of the summer quota of hatchery Chinook through Aug. 15.

Additional information: Marine Area 10 will remain open to the retention of coho and pink salmon with a two-salmon daily limit through Nov. 15, 2019.  Sinclair Inlet remains open to hatchery Chinook retention through Sept. 30. Anglers may also continue to retain one Chinook salmon (wild or hatchery) at the docks and piers that are open year-round as listed in the 2019-20 Washington Sport Fishing Rules pamphlet.

For more information, anglers should consult the 2019-20 Washington Sport Fishing Rules pamphlet available online at http://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/regulations/.

Anglers can check WDFW’s website at https://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/reports_plants.html for the latest information on marine areas that are managed to a quota or guideline.

Anglers must release pink salmon in Marine Area 8-1

Action: Closes pink salmon retention.

Effective date: Aug. 17 through Oct. 31, 2019.

Species affected: Pink salmon.

Location: Marine Area 8-1.

Reason for action: Early season abundance indicators confirm the returning Skagit River pink salmon run is below harvestable levels. This conservation measure is necessary to allow more fish to reach the spawning grounds.

Additional information: Marine Area 8-1 salmon rules: No min. size. Daily limit 2. Release Chinook and pink salmon.

Please see the 2019-20 Washington Sport Fishing Rules pamphlet for additional rules or visit the WDFW website at https://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/regulations.

Salmon Biting On Lower Puyallup Opener

Salmon fishing action began its transition to Puget Sound rivers with today’s opening of the Puyallup.

Dylan Chlipala was among the anglers on the Pierce County river this morning, limiting by 7 a.m.

DYLAN CHLIPALA SHOWS OFF HIS PUYALLUP RIVER LIMIT. (INSTAGRAM: @DYLANFISHES_PNW)

“Lots of pinks in the river already,” he told Northwest Sportsman‘s Jason Brooks, adding that he’d caught and released around 10 while beaching a hatchery Chinook and wild coho.

Use drift bobbers and enough weight to hold bottom in the silty currents of the glacial river.

“Drift fish bright, size 12 Corkies (red rocket red) with cerise or chartreuse yarn on a size 1 or 2 Gamakatsu octopus hook, soaked with Pro-Cure Bloody Tuna Super Gel, on a 12-pound Izorline XXX clear leader that is 36 to 48 inches long, with a 1/2- to 3/4-ounce cannonball or six-shot slinky, with 15-pound hi-viz yellow Izorline platinum mainline,” Brooks recommends.

The Puyallup is open from the 11th Street Bridge near the mouth upstream to the Carbon, with a daily bag of two adult salmon, release wild kings and chums.

This year’s forecast calls for just over 102,000 harvestable salmon to return to the river, though of course some of those are needed for broodstock and spawning escapement goals.

Night closure, anti-snagging and barbless hook rules are in effect.

Also note that the Puyallup is closed on Sundays through the end of August, then Sundays-Tuesdays in September and October to make room for tribal netting.

“Popular areas on the Puyallup include the K-Mart Hole, which as you might guess is across from the old discount store, now a farm supply store and a Planet Fitness. Access it from the North Levy Road, as you cannot cross the river from the parking lot. Try the banks along the shore near the ‘blue building,’ a large glass building on East Main Street, or under the 5th Street bridge,” Brooks reported for a 2017 issue of the magazine.

This isn’t to say that fishing on Puget Sound is over and you should winterize your boat already.

It’s not — it’s peak pink season throughout the inland sea, clipped Chinook are still biting in Areas 5, 6, 10, 11 and 13, and ocean-returning coho should be moving in soon in better numbers. Track the action through WDFW’s daily creel reports.

But the opening of the Puyallup today, Quilcene tomorrow, Duwamish next week, Nooksack, Skagit and Snohomish on Sept. 1 and Stillaguamish in mid-September add to the options.

Deschutes Mouth Plume In Columbia Again Closed To All Fishing

THE FOLLOWING IS A PRESS RELEASE FROM THE OREGON DEPARTMENT OF FISH AND WILDLIFE

Per direction from the Fish and Wildlife Commission at their Aug. 2 meeting, ODFW is closing all fishing (including catch-and-release) in the Columbia River around the mouth of the Deschutes River and in the lower Deschutes River from the mouth upstream to markers placed on the downstream end of Moody Rapids, from Monday, Aug. 12 through Sept. 15.

The closure is to protect wild summer steelhead and follows several other regulatory steps ODFW and WDFW have taken to protect wild steelhead this year. Returns of ESA-listed wild Snake River steelhead this year are forecasted to be similar to the extremely poor return of 2017, and there are ongoing concerns about the potential effects of angling on wild steelhead that may gather in cooler water near tributary mouths like the Deschutes.

The boundary of the angling closure is defined by a line projecting from the South Channel Range “B” marker located approximately 3/4-mile upstream of the mouth of the Deschutes, downstream through Red Buoy Marker “4”, and terminating at the flashing red USCG light #2 on the Oregon shore downstream of the mouth. (See map on Columbia River Zone fishing regulations page.)

The Commission directed ODFW to take similar steps to close the mouth of the Deschutes last year. Based on additional discussions with the public and regional biologists, the boundary of this year’s closure has been refined to reduce the impact on Chinook fishing opportunities.

This action follows a number of regulatory steps ODFW and WDFW have taken to protect wild steelhead during Columbia River summer and fall fisheries this year. Bag limits in the Columbia River were reduced to one hatchery steelhead per day for the month of July. For fall fisheries, all steelhead (hatchery and wild) must be released during the following periods:

  • Aug. 1-31 from Buoy 10 upstream to The Dalles Dam,
  • Aug. 1 – Sept. 30 from The Dalles Dam upstream to John Day Dam,
  • Sept. 1 – Oct. 31 from John Day to McNary Dam, and
  • Oct. 1 – Nov. 30 from McNary Dam upstream to the OR/WA state line.

Get a Free NewsLetter Here

Westport Chinook Limit Bumped Up To 2 Starting Saturday

THE FOLLOWING IS A PRESS RELEASE FROM THE WASHINGTON DEPARTMENT OF FISH AND WILDLIFE

Westport anglers may retain two Chinook as part of salmon daily limit beginning Saturday, Aug. 10

Action: Anglers may retain up to two Chinook as part of their two-salmon daily limit.

ANGLER WILL BE ABLE TO KEEP TWO KINGS A DAY OUT OF WESTPORT STARTING AUG. 10. DAVE ANDERSON HOISTS CHINOOK FROM 2014’S FISHERY IN MARINE AREA 2. (FISHING PHOTO CONTEST)

Effective date: August 10, 2019.

Species affected: Chinook salmon.

Location: Marine Area 2.

Reason for action: Sufficient quota remains for Chinook in Marine Area 2 to allow retention of more than one Chinook salmon in the daily limit.

Additional information: Chinook min. size 24″, coho min. size 16″, other salmon no min. size. Daily limit of two salmon, release wild coho.

The Grays Harbor control zone and Marine Area 2-2 west of buoy 13 are closed to salmon angling beginning August 12.

Anglers are reminded to always check for emergency rule changes prior to fishing. Rule changes can be found on the website at https://fortress.wa.gov/dfw/erules/efishrules/ or by calling the fishing hotline at 360-902-2500.

Area 9 Chinook Reopening For At Least 4 More Days

THE FOLLOWING IS AN EMERGENCY RULE CHANGE NOTICE FROM THE WASHINGTON DEPARTMENT OF FISH AND WILDLIFE

Action: Reopens a portion of Marine Area 9 (Admiralty Inlet) to hatchery Chinook retention. Closes the section of Marine Area 9 south of a line from Foulweather Bluff to Olele Point to salmon fishing.

TIM LENNOX HOISTS AN AREA 9 HATCHERY CHINOOK CAUGHT LAST SATURDAY AS RYLEY FEE SPRAYS IT OFF. (ANDY WALGAMOTT)

Effective dates: Tuesday, Aug. 6 through Friday, Aug. 9, 2019.

Species affected: Hatchery Chinook salmon.

Location: Marine Area 9 (Admiralty Inlet).

Reason for action: Sufficient quota is available for Marine Area 9 (with the exception of the area south of a line from Foulweather Bluff to Olele Point) to open for hatchery Chinook salmon retention through Friday, Aug. 9, 2019.

This action is being taken to provide angling opportunities while ensuring compliance with conservation objectives.

As part of the fisheries agreements made with co-managers during the salmon season-setting process, the section of Marine Area 9 south of the line from Foulweather Bluff to Olele Point is closed to all salmon fishing when the rest of Marine Area 9 is open for hatchery Chinook retention.

Additional information: Salmon daily limit 2, up to 1 hatchery Chinook may be retained. Chinook minimum size 22 inches.  Release wild Chinook, chum, and wild coho.

On Friday, Aug. 9, fisheries managers will evaluate the fishery. If sufficient quota remains available, WDFW will announce when Marine Area 9 will reopen to hatchery Chinook retention.

For additional regulations, anglers should consult the 2019-20 Washington Sports Fishing Rules pamphlet available online at http://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/regulations/.

Anglers can check WDFW’s website at https://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/reports for the latest information on marine areas that are managed to a quota or guideline.

Get a Free NewsLetter Here