Tag Archives: elochoman river

SW WA, Columbia Fishing Report (1-16-19)

THE FOLLOWING WDFW FISHING REPORTS WERE TRANSMITTED BY BRYANT SPELLMAN AND PAUL HOFFARTH

Washington Columbia River and Tributary Fishing Report Jan 16, 2019

Sturgeon:

Bonneville Pool- 45 bank anglers released 1 sublegal sturgeon.  36 boats/102 rods kept 8 legal sturgeon and released 1 legal, 151 sublegal and 2 oversize sturgeon.

The Dalles Pool- Closed for retention.  No report.

John Day Pool- 17 bank anglers had no catch.  27 boats/56 rods released 5 sublegal sturgeon.

TROY BRODERS PREPARES TO CAST OUT FOR STEELHEAD. (YO-ZURI PHOTO CONTEST)

Walleye:

Bonneville Pool- 1 boat/2 rods had no catch.

The Dalles Pool- No report.

John Day Pool- 11 boats/25 rods kept 12 walleye and released 1 walleye.

Salmon/Steelhead:

Columbia River Tributaries

Grays River – 4 bank anglers had no catch.

Elochoman River – 33 bank anglers kept 6 steelhead and released 1 steelhead.  1 boats/2 rods had no catch.

Abernathy Creek – 2 bank anglers had no catch.

Germany Creek – 7 bank anglers kept 1 steelhead.

Cowlitz River – I-5 Br downstream: 12 bank rods had no catch.

Above the I-5 Br:  3 bank rods had no catch.

Last week, Tacoma Power employees recovered two coho adults, 23 coho jacks and nine winter-run steelhead adults during five days of operations at the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery separator.

During the past week, Tacoma Power released five coho jacks into Lake Scanewa in Randle.

Tacoma Power released two coho adults, 22 coho jacks and eight winter-run steelhead adults into the Tilton River at Gust Backstrom Park in Morton. They also released two coho jacks at the Franklin Bridge release site in Packwood.

River flows at Mayfield Dam are approximately 9,520 cubic feet per second on Monday, Jan. 14. Water visibility is 11 feet and the water temperature is 44.6 degrees F. River flows could change at any time so boaters and anglers should remain alert for this possibility.

East Fork Lewis River – 34 bank anglers had no catch.  2 boats/4 rods released 1 steelhead.

Salmon Creek – 34 bank anglers had no catch.

 

  • Tributaries not listed: Creel checks not conducted.

 

Trout Plants and stocking schedules:

McNary Steelhead Sport Fishery

This past week WDFW staff interviewed 16 boats with 5 hatchery steelhead harvested and 12 wild steelhead caught and released. Anglers averaged just over 1 steelhead per boat, 6.5 hours per fish including wild. The majority of the steelhead caught were A run but one B run fish was harvested and 6 wild were caught and released. 21 bank anglers were interviewed but no catch was reported.

Southwest Washington Fishing Report (1-9-19)

The creel checker was a little surprised when I volunteered the city that my zip code – which she’d asked for – belonged to.

Shoreline was a mighty far way to come fish Vancouver’s tiny Salmon Creek for hatchery winter steelhead, she noted.

A SALMON CREEK STEELHEADER POSES FOR A SELFIE ON THE VANCOUVER STREAM.

One hundred seventy miles, to be exact, but I had other business in the neighborhood last Saturday — namely, picking up my two sons at a halfway point between the Seattle suburb and Newport, where the boys had just spent a week with their Nana.

Dropping them off or retrieving them during school and summer breaks over the years has always given me a chance to try a few casts in the creek, or the Kalama or East Fork Lewis Rivers.

Can’t say I’ve been very lucky overall, but that jig-biting winter-run on the blog’s skyline did come from Salmon several years ago, during a better run.

Hooked it twice, the first time on a spoon, lost it, let it rest, came back 20 minutes later, hooked it again, got it in and then made a mad dash to the pickup point where my mother-in-law was waiting with one of the boys.

This season, however, steelhead so far have been few and far between in this part of the Evergreen State, as well as elsewhere.

WDFW’s weekly creel summary for Southwest Washington has been pretty woefully low on fish actually creeled, and last week was once again no exception.

As she enquired about what I’d been using, its hook size and how long I’d fished (about half an hour’s worth more of one more last casts than I should have — sorry, Diane!), the Salmon Creek checker told me she hadn’t actually checked any fish of late and had only heard rumor of two caught since New Year’s.

When the official stats were emailed out this morning by the agency’s Bryant Spellman, it reported 40 of my fellow bankies had had no catch either.

Pretty discouraging. Other weekly reports this winter haven’t been any better and, frankly, I didn’t even bother posting the last one or two from Spellman, they were so grim compared to years past.

Washington Columbia River mainstem and its tributaries sport sampling summaries for Dec. 29 (2014)-Jan.4 (2015)

Cowlitz River – 72 bank anglers kept with 3 steelhead and 3 coho kept.  49 boat anglers had 31 steelhead and 8 coho kept and 7 coho released.

Partially it’s poor ocean conditions.

Returns are much lower than recent years at this same time at state hatcheries throughout Western Washington, and last week that led to closures on my home waters, the Skykomish and Wallace, as well as the North Fork Stilly, to meet eggtake goals.

Partially it’s a question of access.

That’s the case on the Elochoman, which saw smolt releases doubled, but where the new owners of a prime spot aren’t allowing access across their property.

And mostly it’s just the long-term switch away from early Chambers Creek fish to late-timed local stocks.

The former used to fuel solid holiday steelheading, most notably on the Cowlitz — 1,980 were harvested in December 2012, a figure which had slumped to just 88 in December 2016.

Future flame runs to pick up River and Kiran this time of year will just see fewer and fewer steelhead around.

With the new Mitchell Act biop, WDFW said the last release of Chambers smolts would be in spring 2017, into the Kalama, Coweeman, Washougal Rivers and Rock and Salmon Creeks, for return this winter.

Starting last year, Salmon and Kalama releases were being switched to a late-returning stock, while the other three were to be bridged with Eagle Creek, Oregon, fish.

WDFW said it hoped to develop an early-returning strain of winter steelhead out of late-timed broodstock, but warned that “will likely take a decade or more.”

By then I won’t have to taxi the boys anymore — they’ll be able to drive themselves back and forth to their Nana’s.

The younger one is more likely to detour to one of the streams along the way, and hopefully there will be some fish around for some midwinter break angling.

Ahhh, the continuing changing world of winter steelheading in the Northwest …

For what it’s worth, here is Spellman’s latest Southwest Washington fishing report, covering Jan. 1-6

Salmon/Steelhead:

Columbia River Tributaries

Grays River – 3 bank anglers had no catch.

Elochoman River – 31 bank anglers kept 3 steelhead and released 1 coho jack.  2 boats/7 rods kept 2 steelhead.

Abernathy Creek – 3 bank anglers had no catch.

Germany Creek – 4 bank anglers kept 1 steelhead and released 1 steelhead.

Cowlitz River – I-5 Br downstream: 3 boats/5 rods kept 1 steelhead.

Above the I-5 Br:  8 bank rods released 1 coho jack.  2 boats/4 rods had no catch

Last week, Tacoma Power employees recovered 35 coho adults, 57 coho jacks, one cutthroat trout, one summer-run steelhead adult and four winter-run steelhead adults during four days of operations at the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery separator.

During the past week, Tacoma Power released one coho jack into the Cispus River near Randle and they released two coho adults and 15 coho jacks into Lake Scanewa in Randle.

Tacoma Power released 27 coho adults, 36 coho jacks, three winter-run steelhead adults and one cutthroat trout into the Tilton River at Gust Backstrom Park in Morton.

River flows at Mayfield Dam are approximately 8,680 cubic feet per second on Monday, Jan. 7. Water visibility is 11 feet and the water temperature is 44.8 degrees F. River flows could change at any time so boaters and anglers should remain alert for this possibility.

East Fork Lewis River – 24 bank anglers released 2 steelhead.  3 boats/8 rods released 1 steelhead.

Salmon Creek – 41 bank anglers had no catch.

  • Tributaries not listed: Creel checks not conducted.

SW WA Fishing Report (12-10-18)

THE FOLLOWING WDFW FISHING REPORT WAS TRANSMITTED BY BRYANT SPELLMAN

Salmon/Steelhead:

Columbia River Tributaries

Grays River – 3 bank anglers released 1 coho.

Skamokawa Creek – No anglers sampled.

Elochoman River – 35 bank anglers kept 5 steelhead and released 7 coho jacks.  1 boat/2 rods had no catch.

Abernathy Creek – 1 bank angler had no catch.

Mill Creek – 1 bank angler had no catch.

Germany Creek – 4 bank anglers had no catch.

Cowlitz River – I-5 Br downstream: 5 bank rods had no catch.

Above the I-5 Br:  12 bank rods released 1 coho jack.

Last week, Tacoma Power employees recovered 691 coho adults, 273 coho jacks, 26 cutthroat trout, three fall Chinook adults and four summer-run steelhead adults during five days of operations at the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery separator.

During the past week, Tacoma Power released 106 coho adults and 45 coho jacks into the Cispus River near Randle and they released 179 coho adults, 61 coho jacks and one cutthroat trout into Lake Scanewa in Randle.

Tacoma Power released 34 coho adults and 44 coho jacks at the Franklin Bridge release site in Packwood and they released 189 coho adults, 119 coho jacks, one fall Chinook adult and five cutthroat trout into the Tilton River at Gust Backstrom Park in Morton.

River flows at Mayfield Dam are approximately 4,740 cubic feet per second on Monday, Dec. 3. Water visibility is 11 feet and the water temperature is 49.8 degrees F. River flows could change at any time so boaters and anglers should remain alert for this possibility.

Kalama River – 8 bank anglers had no catch.  1 boat/2 rods released 2 coho.

Lewis River – 12 bank rods had no catch.

East Fork Lewis River – 15 bank anglers released 1 steelhead.

Salmon Creek – 31 bank anglers had no catch.

Wind River – No anglers sampled.

Klickitat River –No anglers sampled.

SW WA Fishing Report (12-5-18)

THE FOLLOWING WDFW FISHING REPORT WAS TRANSMITTED BY BRYANT SPELLMAN

December 4, 2018

Salmon/Steelhead:

Columbia River Tributaries

Grays River – 9 bank anglers released 2 steelhead.

Skamokawa Creek – No anglers sampled.

Elochoman River – 38 bank anglers kept 6 steelhead and released 4 steelhead, 2 coho and 11 coho jacks.  1 boat/2 rods had no catch.

Abernathy Creek – 4 bank anglers had no catch.

Mill Creek – No anglers sampled.

Germany Creek – 6 bank anglers had no catch.

Cowlitz River – I-5 Br downstream: 14 bank rods kept 1 coho jack and released 1 steelhead.

Above the I-5 Br:  6 bank rods had no catch.

Last week, Tacoma Power employees recovered 691 coho adults, 273 coho jacks, 26 cutthroat trout, three fall Chinook adults and four summer-run steelhead adults during five days of operations at the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery separator.

During the past week, Tacoma Power released 106 coho adults and 45 coho jacks into the Cispus River near Randle and they released 179 coho adults, 61 coho jacks and one cutthroat trout into Lake Scanewa in Randle.

Tacoma Power released 34 coho adults and 44 coho jacks at the Franklin Bridge release site in Packwood and they released 189 coho adults, 119 coho jacks, one fall Chinook adult and five cutthroat trout into the Tilton River at Gust Backstrom Park in Morton.

River flows at Mayfield Dam are approximately 4,740 cubic feet per second on Monday, Dec. 3. Water visibility is 11 feet and the water temperature is 49.8 degrees F. River flows could change at any time so boaters and anglers should remain alert for this possibility.

Kalama River – No anglers sampled.

Lewis River – 2 bank anglers had no catch. 2 boats/4 rods had no catch.

East Fork Lewis River – 7 bank anglers kept 1 coho.  1 boat/2 rods had no catch.

Salmon Creek – 41 bank anglers released 1 steelhead.

Wind River – No anglers sampled.

Klickitat River –No anglers sampled.

SW WA Fishing Report (11-28-18)

THE FOLLOWING WDFW FISHING REPORT WAS TRANSMITTED BY BRYANT SPELLMAN

Salmon/Steelhead:

Columbia River Tributaries

Grays River – 4 bank anglers released 4 coho and 3 coho jacks.  1 boat/3 rods released 3 coho.

Skamokawa Creek – No anglers sampled.

Elochoman River – 3 bank anglers kept 1 steelhead, 1 coho jack and released 1 steelhead and 1 coho jack.

Abernathy Creek – No anglers sampled.

Mill Creek – No anglers sampled.

Germany Creek – No anglers sampled.

Cowlitz River – I-5 Br downstream: 8 bank rods had no catch.  2 boats/5 rods had no catch.

Above the I-5 Br:  4 bank rods had no catch.  2 boats/4 rods released 2 coho.

Last week, Tacoma Power employees recovered 599 coho adults, 528 coho jacks, 63 cutthroat trout, three fall Chinook adults, one fall Chinook jack and three summer-run steelhead adults during five days of operations at the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery separator.

During the past week, Tacoma Power released 89 coho adults and 26 coho jacks into the Cispus River near Randle and they released 269 coho adults, 292 coho jacks and two cutthroat trout into Lake Scanewa in Randle.

Tacoma Power released 205 coho adults, 293 coho jacks, one fall Chinook jack and seven cutthroat trout into the Tilton River at Gust Backstrom Park in Morton.

River flows at Mayfield Dam are approximately 3,540 cubic feet per second on Monday, Nov. 26. Water visibility is 12 feet and the water temperature is 51.8 degrees F. River flows could change at any time so boaters and anglers should remain alert for this possibility

Kalama River – 24 bank anglers had no catch.

Lewis River – No anglers sampled.

East Fork Lewis River – 6 bank anglers had no catch.

Salmon Creek – 15 bank anglers had no catch.

Wind River – No anglers sampled.

Klickitat River –No anglers sampled.

SW Washington Fishing Report (11-13-18)

THE FOLLOWING WDFW FISHING REPORT WAS TRANSMITTED BY BRYANT SPELLMAN

Salmon/Steelhead:

Columbia River Tributaries

Grays River – 6 bank anglers had no catch.

Skamokawa Creek – No anglers sampled.

Elochoman River – 7 bank anglers kept 1 steelhead and released 15 coho.

JASON RESSER HOLDS A HATCHERY COHO CAUGHT ON THE KALAMA SEVERAL SEASONS BACK. (YO-ZURI PHOTO CONTEST)

Abernathy Creek – No anglers sampled.

Mill Creek – No anglers sampled.

Germany Creek – 1 bank angler had no catch.

Cowlitz River – I-5 Br downstream: 12 bank rods had no catch.  1 boat/1 rod released 2 coho jacks.

Above the I-5 Br:  87 bank rods kept 2 coho jacks, 1 steelhead, 5 cutthroat and released 28 chinook, 2 coho, 1 coho jack and  1 steelhead. 11 boats/24 rods kept 4 coho, 11 coho jacks, 2 steelhead and released 5 chinook jacks, 1 coho jack and 3 cutthroat.

Kalama River – 31 bank anglers kept 4 coho, 2 steelhead and released 2 coho.  3 boats/6 rods released 1 chinook.

Lewis River – 12 bank rods kept 2 chinook and released 1 coho.  17 boats/33 rods kept 1 chinook, 3 coho and 1 coho jack.

East Fork Lewis River – 4 bank anglers released 1 coho and 2 steelhead.

Salmon Creek – No anglers sampled.

Wind River – No anglers sampled.

Klickitat River – 73 bank anglers kept 8 chinook, 1 chinook jack, 10 coho , 3 coho jacks and released 1 chinook and 1 coho jack.

Southwest Washington Fishing Report (11-5-18)

THE FOLLOWING WDFW FISHING REPORT WAS TRANSMITTED BY BRYANT SPELLMAN

November 5, 2018

Salmon/Steelhead:

Columbia River Mainstem from the mouth upstream to McNary Dam

  • From the Buoy 10 line upstream to the Highway 395 Bridge at Pasco:
    • Closed to angling for and retention of salmon and steelhead.

IN THIS IMAGE DREDGED OUT OF THE WAY, WAY, WAAAAAY BACK FILE, FALL SALMON ANGLERS FISH THE COWLITZ ABOVE AND BELOW THE MOUTH OF THE TOUTLE FOR COHO. (CHRIS SPENCER)

Salmon/Steelhead:

Columbia River Tributaries

Grays River – 18 bank anglers released 5 coho.  1 boat/3 rods had no catch.

Skamokawa Creek – No anglers sampled.

Elochoman River – 3 bank anglers had no catch.

Abernathy Creek – 1 bank angler had no catch.

Mill Creek – No anglers sampled.

Germany Creek – 1 bank angler had no catch.

Cowlitz River – I-5 Br downstream: 22 bank rods had no catch.  2 boats/4 rods released 1 chinook.

Above the I-5 Br:  53 bank rods kept 4 coho jacks and released 10 chinook, 4 coho jacks, 1 steelhead and 3 cutthroat.  8 boats/21 rods kept 1 coho and 18 coho jacks.

Last week, Tacoma Power employees recovered 935 coho adults, 2,717 coho jacks, 110 fall Chinook adults, 32 fall Chinook jacks, 73 cutthroat trout and 11 summer-run steelhead adults during seven days of operations at the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery separator.

During the past week, Tacoma Power released 181 coho adults and 428 coho jacks into the Cispus River near Randle and they released 77 coho adults and 214 coho jacks at the Franklin Bridge release site in Packwood.

Tacoma Power released 242 coho adults, 1,212 coho jacks, 33 fall Chinook adults, 22 fall Chinook jacks and six cutthroat trout into the Tilton River at Gust Backstrom Park in Morton, and they released 227 coho adults and 879 coho jacks into Lake Scanewa in Randle.

River flows at Mayfield Dam are approximately 3,540 cubic feet per second on Monday, Oct. 29. Water visibility is 11 feet and the water temperature is 54.14 degrees F. River flows could change at any time so boaters and anglers should remain alert for this possibility

Kalama River – 57 bank anglers kept 2 chinook, 1 chinook jack, 1 coho, 1 steelhead and released 1 chinook, 1 coho and 1 steelhead.

Lewis River – 86 bank rods kept 6 coho, 2 coho jacks and released 2 coho and 2 coho jacks.  15 boats/37 rods kept 1 chinook jack, 7 coho and 4 coho jacks.

East Fork Lewis River – 2 bank anglers had no catch.

Salmon Creek – 6 bank anglers had no catch.

Wind River – No anglers sampled.

Klickitat River – 46 bank anglers kept 2 chinook, 16 coho, 4 coho jacks and released 4 chinook.

Fishing Rule Changes:

  • Grays River:  effective October 6, 2018 until further notice, from the mouth upstream to the mouth of the South Fork:  release all Coho.
  • West Fork Grays River:  effective October 6, 2018 until further notice, from the mouth upstream:  release all Coho.
  • Cowlitz River:  Until further notice closed for Chinook retention from the mouth to the Barrier Dam including all lower Cowlitz tributaries, except the Toutle River.  Until further notice, the closed waters section below the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery Barrier Dam is 400’, at the posted markers.
  • Washougal River, including Camas Slough:  Until further notice closed for Chinook retention from the mouth to the bridge at Salmon Falls.
  • Toutle River:  effective October 6, 2018 until further notice, from the moth upstream to the forks:  release all Chinook.
  • North Fork Toutle River:  effective October 6, 2018 until further notice, from the mouth upstream to the posted markers below the fish collection facility:  release all Chinook.
  • Wind River:  from the mouth to 400’ below Shepherd Falls, closed for steelhead retention and closed to night fishing for salmon and steelhead.
  • Drano Lake: Effective Oct. 17, 2018 until further notice. Closed to all fishing in the waters downstream of markers on a point of land downstream and across from Little White Salmon National Fish Hatchery and upstream of the Highway 14 Bridge.
  • White Salmon River:  from the mouth to the county road bridge below the former location of the powerhouse, closed for steelhead retention and closed to night fishing for salmon and steelhead

STURGEON

From the mouth of the Columbia River upstream to McNary Dam including adjacent tributaries – Until further notice, white sturgeon open for catch and release fishing only. Fishing for sturgeon at night is closed.

 

SW WA Fishing Report (10-24-18)

THE FOLLOWING WDFW FISHING REPORT WAS TRANSMITTED BY BRYANT SPELLMAN

Salmon/Steelhead:

Columbia River Mainstem from the mouth upstream to McNary Dam

  • From the Buoy 10 line upstream to the Highway 395 Bridge at Pasco:
    • Closed to angling for and retention of salmon and steelhead.

WELL UPSTREAM OF THE COLUMBIA, BILL STANLEY AND FRIENDS HAVE BEEN FINDING A FEW NICE-SIZED HATCHERY B-RUN STEELHEAD WHILE FISHING ALONG THE SNAKE RIVER. (YO-ZURI PHOTO CONTEST)

Salmon/Steelhead:

Columbia River Tributaries

Elochoman River – No anglers sampled.

Cowlitz River – I-5 Br downstream: 62 bank rods kept 15 coho jacks and released 1 chinook jack and 4 coho jacks.  9 boats/46 rods kept 6 coho, 27 coho jacks and released 1 chinook, 6 chinook jacks, and 2 coho jacks.

Above the I-5 Br:  60 bank rods released 27 chinook and 1 coho jack. 21 boats/30 rods kept 7 coho jacks, 2 steelhead and released 21 chinook, 1 chinook jack and 2 coho.

Last week, Tacoma Power employees recovered 1,093 coho adults, 2,210 coho jacks, 162 fall Chinook adults, 34 fall Chinook jacks, 107 cutthroat trout and 19 summer-run steelhead adults during seven days of operations at the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery separator.

During the past week, Tacoma Power released 141 coho adults and 165 coho jacks into the Cispus River near Randle, and they released 191 coho adults and 425 coho jacks at the Franklin Bridge release site in Packwood.

Tacoma Power released 353 coho adults, 1026 coho jacks, 28 fall Chinook adults, 13 fall Chinook jacks and four cutthroat trout into the Tilton River at Gust Backstrom Park in Morton, and they released 283 coho adults, 597 coho jacks and one cutthroat trout into Lake Scanewa in Randle.

River flows at Mayfield Dam are approximately 3,540 cubic feet per second on Monday, Oct. 22. Water visibility is 14 feet and the water temperature is 53.6 degrees F. River flows could change at any time so boaters and anglers should remain alert for this possibility.

Kalama River – 16 bank anglers kept 1 coho.  1 boat/2 rods had no catch.

Lewis River – 106 bank anglers kept 5 chinook, 9 coho jacks and released 5 chinook, 1 chinook jack and 1 coho jack.  19 boats/37 rods kept 1 chinook, 3 chinook jacks, 3 coho, 9 coho jacks, 1 steelhead and released 3 chinook and 5 coho jacks.

Wind River – No anglers sampled.

Drano Lake – 2 bank anglers had no catch. 3 boats/7 rods kept 1 coho.

Klickitat River – 80 bank anglers kept 24 chinook, 7 chinook jacks, 2 coho, 1 steelhead and released 2 chinook and 1 steelhead.  2 boats/3 rods kept 2 coho.

Fishing Rule Changes:

  • Grays River:  effective October 6, 2018 until further notice, from the mouth upstream to the mouth of the South Fork:  release all Coho.
  • West Fork Grays River:  effective October 6, 2018 until further notice, from the mouth upstream:  release all Coho.
  • Cowlitz River:  Until further notice closed for Chinook retention from the mouth to the Barrier Dam including all lower Cowlitz tributaries, except the Toutle River.  Until further notice, the closed waters section below the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery Barrier Dam is 400’, at the posted markers.
  • Washougal River, including Camas Slough:  Until further notice closed for Chinook retention from the mouth to the bridge at Salmon Falls.
  • Toutle River:  effective October 6, 2018 until further notice, from the mouth upstream to the forks:  release all Chinook.
  • North Fork Toutle River:  effective October 6, 2018 until further notice, from the mouth upstream to the posted markers below the fish collection facility:  release all Chinook.
  • Wind River:  from the mouth to 400’ below Shepherd Falls, closed for steelhead retention and closed to night fishing for salmon and steelhead.
  • Drano Lake: Effective Oct. 17, 2018 until further notice. Closed to all fishing in the waters downstream of markers on a point of land downstream and across from Little White Salmon National Fish Hatchery and upstream of the Highway 14 Bridge.
  • White Salmon River:  from the mouth to the county road bridge below the former location of the powerhouse, closed for steelhead retention and closed to night fishing for salmon and steelhead

STURGEON

From the mouth of the Columbia River upstream to McNary Dam including adjacent tributaries – Until further notice, white sturgeon open for catch and release fishing only. Fishing for sturgeon at night is closed.

2018-19 Winter Steelhead Season Smolt Release Figures Out

The latest smolt release data for Western Washington rivers shows three you might want to put on your radar this coming winter season.

IT’S NEVER TOO EARLY TO START THINKING ABOUT WINTER STEELHEAD SEASON, AND THE LATEST SMOLT RELEASE DATA FROM WDFW BEGINS TO PAINT A PICTURE ABOUT WHAT TO EXPECT IN THE COMING MONTHS. ONE THING YOU CAN COUNT ON IS THAT HUNTER SHELTON WILL BEAT A PATH TO THE OLYMPIC PENINSULA FOR A SHOT AT CHROME-BRIGHT BEAUTS LIKE THIS PAIR FROM LAST NOVEMBER. (YO-ZURI PHOTO CONTEST)

They doubled on the Elochoman and Naselle in 2017 for return this season, and were up sharply on the Quinault system as well, according to state figures.

Now, whether the fishing’s twice as good as last year on them is anyone’s guess, as ocean conditions play a strong role in returns, but they will be ones to watch for reports in the coming months.

On the Lower Columbia trib, releases jumped from 66,000 in 2016 – a year-class that produced a “phenomenal” return that allowed managers to recycle and even surplus fish – to 139,000 last year.

According to a WDFW hatchery tech’s report, last season’s fish were the first smolts at the Elochoman’s Beaver Creek facility protected from predation by netting and fencing since 2009.

A bit further west on Highway 4, the Naselle jumped from 37,000 to 73,000, bringing it back up to where it’s been in recent years, outside of 2015 when Puget Sound smolts were let loose here due to a court settlement.

And releases into Lake Quinault and Cook Creek climbed by 73,000 over 2016 and previous years, to 488,000. You’ll need a tribal guide to fish the system.

The one major blip is that Cowlitz stocking dropped by 161,000, but the number of late-returning smolts that went out is still nothing to shake your fish stick at – 437,000 from Blue Creek, 13 percent of all the winter-runs released in the state.

Elsewhere on the Westside, the number of young steelhead turned loose in most waters didn’t vary all that much from the prior year.

But for the record, they were up slightly on the Nooksack (+13,000), Salmon (+10,000), Wynoochee (+7,000) and Willapa (+7,000) and down somewhat on the North Fork Stillaguamish (-20,000), Bogachiel (-20,000), Satsop (-17,000) and Skookumchuck (-13,000).

SW WA, Hanford Reach Fishing Report (10-1-18)

THE FOLLOWING ARE WDFW FISHING REPORTS FROM BRYANT SPELLMAN AND PAUL HOFFARTH

Salmon/Steelhead:

Columbia River Mainstem from the mouth upstream to McNary Dam

  • From the Buoy 10 line upstream to the Highway 395 Bridge at Pasco:
    • Closed to angling for and retention of salmon and steelhead.

AUSTIN, LEXI, BRITT AND CORBIN HAN POSE WITH A FALL CHINOOK RECENTLY CAUGHT NEAR TRI-CITIES. IT BIT A SUPERBAIT WITH TUNA BEHIND A PRO TROLL FLASHER TROLLED DOWNSTREAM. (YO-ZURI PHOTO CONTEST)

Salmon/Steelhead:

Columbia River Tributaries

Elochoman River – No anglers sampled.

Cowlitz River – I-5 Br downstream: 25 bank rods kept 9 coho jacks and released 1 coho jack.  14 boats/33 rods kept 8 coho, 25 coho jacks, 1 steelhead and released 15 chinook, 1 chinook jack, 3 coho, 6 coho jacks and 1 steelhead.

Above the I-5 Br:  41 bank rods released 12 chinook and 1 steelhead. 5 boats/13 rods kept 1 steelhead and released 3 chinook.

Last week, Tacoma Power employees recovered 986 coho adults, 2,251 coho jacks, 375 fall Chinook adults, 89 fall Chinook jacks, 86 cutthroat trout, 42 summer-run steelhead adults and seven spring Chinook adults during five days of operations at the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery separator.

During the past week, Tacoma Power released 107 coho adults, 174 coho jacks and two spring Chinook adults into the Cispus River near Randle, and they released 120 coho adults, 68 coho jacks, and two spring Chinook adults at the Franklin Bridge release site in Packwood.

Tacoma Power released 389 coho adults, 1,251 coho jacks, 86 fall Chinook adults, 34 fall Chinook jacks, and six cutthroat trout into the Tilton River at Gust Backstrom Park in Morton, and they released 210 coho adults, 640 coho jacks, five cutthroat trout and three spring Chinook adults into Lake Scanewa in Randle.

River flows at Mayfield Dam are approximately 3,540 cubic feet per second (cfs) on Monday, Oct. 1. Water visibility is 14 feet and the water temperature is 54.8 degrees F. River flows could change at any time so boaters and anglers should remain alert for this possibility.

Kalama River – 10 bank anglers had no catch.  2 boats/5 rods kept 4 steelhead and released 1 steelhead.

Lewis River – 69 bank anglers kept 1 chinook jack, 2 coho, 1 coho jack and released 5 chinook, 3 coho and 1 coho jack.  15 boats/39 rods kept 4 chinook and released 19 chinook, 9 chinook jacks, 1 coho and 1 coho jack.

Wind River – No anglers sampled.

Drano Lake – 15 bank anglers released 1 steelhead.   91 boats/231 rods kept 78 chinook, 33 chinook jacks, 10 coho, 2 coho jacks and released 3 chinook, 3 coho and 5 steelhead.

Klickitat River – 97 bank anglers kept 51 chinook and 16 chinook jacks.

  • Deep River:  Effective September 24, 2018 Deep River reopens to salmon and steelhead angling under permanent rules.
  • Youngs Bay, Blind Slough and Knappa Slough: Effective September 24, 2018 Youngs Bay, Blind Slough and Knappa Slough reopens to salmon and steelhead angling under permanent Oregon regulations.
  • Cowlitz River:  Effective September 22, 2018 closed for Chinook retention from the mouth to the Barrier Dam including all lower Cowlitz tributaries, except the Toutle River.  Until further notice, the closed waters section below the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery Barrier Dam is 400’, at the posted markers.
  • Washougal River, including Camas Slough:  Effective September 22, 2018 closed for Chinook retention from the mouth to the bridge at Salmon Falls.
  • Wind River:  from the mouth to 400’ below Shepherd Falls, closed for steelhead retention and closed to night fishing for salmon and steelhead.
  • Drano Lake: Effective Sept. 29, 2018 until further notice.  The daily salmon limit remains 6 fish total, of which only one may be an adult.  Drano Lake remains closed to night fishing for salmon and steelhead and closed to retention of steelhead.
  • White Salmon River:  from the mouth to the county road bridge below the former location of the powerhouse, closed for steelhead retention and closed to night fishing for salmon and steelhead

STURGEON

From the mouth of the Columbia River upstream to McNary Dam including adjacent tributaries – Until further notice, white sturgeon open for catch and release fishing only. Fishing for sturgeon at night is closed.

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The Hanford Reach fall salmon fishery opened August 16. Angler effort continues to increase as well as harvest. There were 5,046 angler trips taken for salmon in the Hanford Reach this past week. WDFW staff interviewed 2,087 anglers this week. Based on the data collected, 2,043 adult chinook and 208 jacks were harvested bringing the season total to 4,411 adult chinook, 398 jacks, and 10 coho. Anglers averaged 13 hours per per fish (1.2 fish per boat), 50% increase compared to the week prior.

An in-season estimate was generated for the Hanford Reach wild return based on fish counts through September 30. An estimated 38,357 wild (natural) origin fall chinook are expected to return to the Hanford Reach. Base on this estimate harvest would be limited to ~6,500 adult chinook, leaving roughly 2,000 adult chinook remaining in the quota. Sunday, October 7 will likely be the final day of the fishery between the Hwy 395 bridge and Priest Rapids Dam.

From Highway 395 to Priest Rapids Dam the daily limit is 6 fall chinook, no more than 1 adult fall chinook. Anglers must stop fishing when the adult limit is retained. Anglers can use two poles if they have the two-pole license endorsement.

The Columbia River from Highway 395 to the old Hanford town site wooden powerline towers opened October 1 to the harvest of Ringold Springs origin hatchery steelhead. Steelhead released from Ringold Springs Hatchery are adipose fin clipped and right ventral fin clipped. The daily limit is one adipose + right ventral fin clipped steelhead. This unique mark (clips) allows these steelhead to be differentiated from upper Columbia River and Snake River steelhead and allows these steelhead to be selectively harvested.