Tag Archives: rainbow trout

SW WA, Lower Columbia Fishing Report (8-14-19)

THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION WAS FORWARDED BY BRYANT SPELLMAN, WDFW

Salmon/Steelhead:

Columbia River Tributaries

Elochoman River– 1 bank angler had no catch.

Cowlitz River – I-5 Br downstream – 1 boat/4 rods had no catch.

Above the I-5 Br – 31 bank rods kept 25 steelhead. 27 boats/73 rods kept 37 steelhead and released 3 steelhead.

NATE SCANLON BEAMS WITH PRIDE AT HIS MOM LARA AND HER ESTIMATED 30-POUND UPRIVER BRIGHT, CAUGHT IN THE BUOY 10 FISHERY ON AUG. 7 JUST ABOVE THE ASTORIA-MEGLER BRIDGE. THEY WERE FISHING WITH GUIDE JOEL HENLEY AND TROLLING A GREEN-LABEL CUTPLUG BEHIND A CUSTOMIZED FISH FLASH AND 14 OUNCES OF WEIGHT TO KEEP THE SETUP “HUGGING THE BOTTOM.” (ANVILOUTDOORS.COM)

Tacoma Power employees recovered 121 summer-run steelhead adults, 68 spring Chinook adults, one spring Chinook jack, 62 spring Chinook mini-jacks, and two Cutthroat trout during five days of operations at the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery separator.

During the past week Tacoma Power employees released nine spring Chinook adults into the Cispus River located near Randle and they released six spring Chinook adults and two Cutthroat trout at the Franklin Bridge release site in Packwood.

To date, Tacoma Power employees have recycled 606 summer-run steelhead to the lower Cowlitz River.

Kalama River – 23 bank anglers had no catch.

Lewis River – 26 bank anglers kept 3 steelhead and released 1 Chinook jack. 3 boats/8 rods released 4 Chinook.

Drano Lake – 5 boats/7 rods kept 1 Chinook jack and released 1 steelhead.

Klickitat below Fisher Hill Bridge – No anglers sampled.

Klickitat above #5 Fishway – No anglers sampled.

Trout:

Merrill Lake – Fishing has been good for rainbow and cutthroat, some browns are being caught.

Catchable Trout Plants:

Lake/Pond Date Species Number Fish/lb Hatchery

MAYFIELD RES (LEWIS) August 6, 2019 Rainbow 2,680 1.34 EELLS SPRINGS

MAYFIELD RES (LEWIS) July 28, 2019 Rainbow 2,648 1.32 EELLS SPRINGS

MAYFIELD RES (LEWIS) July 24, 2019 Rainbow 2,786 1.39 EELLS SPRINGS

GOOSE LK (SKAM) July 18, 2019 Rainbow 1,644 2.30 GOLDENDALE

Warmwater:

Lacamas Lake – Bass and yellow perch fishing has been excellent.

Rowland Lake – Anglers have been catching some bluegill and pumpkinseed.

Swofford Pond – Bass and channel catfish fishing has been excellent.

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/

Buoy 10 

Date Number
of Boats
Number
of Anglers
Chinook
Kept
Coho
Kept
Comments
1-Aug 35 85 3 3 Opener
2-Aug 40 100 7 7  
3-Aug 192 505 45 34  
4-Aug 128 338 35 22  
5-Aug 73 180 47 30  
6-Aug 86 212 85 45  
7-Aug 0 0 0 0 Not Sampled
8-Aug 114 287 129 82  
9-Aug 35 97 31 27  
10-Aug 264 756 217 143  
11-Aug 334 997 82 66  

 

Lower Columbia Mainstem Sport Aug. 5-11

Salmon and steelhead:

Bonneville bank: 14 anglers with nothing
Camas/Washougal bank: 4 anglers with 1 Chinook jack kept
I-5 area bank: No report
Vancouver bank: 23 anglers with nothing
Woodland bank: 50 anglers with 1 Chinook kept
Kalama bank: 42 anglers with nothing
Cowlitz bank: No report
Longview bank: 52 anglers with nothing
Cathlamet bank: 5 anglers with nothing
Private boats/bank: 3 anglers with nothing

Bonneville boat: No report
Camas/Washougal boat: 14 anglers with nothing
I-5 area boat: 7 anglers with nothing
Vancouver boat: 23 anglers with 1 Chinook kept
Woodland boat: 24 anglers with 4 Chinook kept and 1 Chinook released
Kalama boat: 25 anglers with 2 Chinook kept
Cowlitz boat: 24 anglers with 5 Chinook kept and 10 steelhead released
Longview boat: 41 with 1 Chinook kept
Cathlamet boat: No report
Private boats/bank: 11 anglers with 1 Chinook kept and 1 jack released

Sturgeon:

Kalama boat: 2 anglers with 7 sublegals and 1 oversize released
Longview bank: 1 angler with nothing
Longview boat: 3 anglers with 1 sublegal, 2 legals and 1 oversize released

Walleye:

Camas/Washougal boat: 8 anglers with 2 kept and 2 released

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Geezers (And Others) Will Now Have To Walk Down To Grand Coulee Fishing Beach

Despite a reported 33 of 34 commenters being opposed to banning parking at Geezer Beach, parking will no longer be allowed at the popular lower Lake Roosevelt bank fishery.

A FISHERMAN TENDS THEIR LINE AT GEEZER BEACH ON JAN. 8, 2019. (HANK WIEBE)

Local anglers and the town of Coulee Dam had fought the Bureau of Reclamation’s proposal this past winter, but citing “safety concerns” the federal agency will now block off vehicle entry to the fishy spot on the reservoir’s north bank just above Grand Coulee Dam.

Trouters and others will still be able to fish there, but will now have to walk in from a parking area at roughly the 1,300-foot-elevation mark down to the water, the level of which can fluctuate as low as the 1,220-foot mark over the course of a year. This year it went as low as 1,258 feet.

“It’s just bullsh*t,” reacted Northwest Sportsman reader Hank Weibe, who earlier this year said that due to his disabilities, the beach was “one of the few places I can access.”

For fellow angler Bob Minato, who reported that he suffers from heart disease, diabetes and poor circulation, Geezer is perfect for fishing out of his vehicle.

“Before I became disabled, I used to spend all six weeks of my vacation in Grand Coulee. Now I spend even more time in Grand Coulee and Eastern Washington,” he wrote to BOR.

With the lake near full pool now, the change won’t realistically go into effect until some time in early 2020 when water levels will drop to make room for spring runoff, per BOR spokeswoman Lynne Brougher.

REMINGTON WIEBE SHOWS OFF A NICE RAINBOW CAUGHT OFF GEEZER BEACH WHILE FISHING WITH HER GRANDPA, HANK, WHO HOPED TO KEEP THE ACCESS SITE OPEN TO DRIVE-DOWN ANGLING. (YO-ZURI PHOTO CONTEST)

The feds essentially went along with a request from the Colville Tribes.

“We support the use of suitable areas for fishing or other appropriate recreational activities. However, driving on the drawdown is not an acceptable practice,” stated Chairman Rodney Cawston in comments citing public safety, protecting archeological resources and a ban on driving on the lakebed everywhere else on the reservoir.

However, in comments to BOR, Coulee Dam officials said that over the past four decades they’d never heard of any vehicle ever going into the water at Geezer Beach.

A former worker at the dam told The Star of Grand Coulee, which followed the story closely since last December, that the area had been “reworked and completely modified through the construction of the Dam’s history” while being used for staging, though a BOR assessment says that three places at or near there do have tribal names.

Banning parking on the beach but continuing to allow fishing was one of three alternatives federal managers evaluated.

Another was completely barring access, while the third was no change.

“… Cars, trucks, all-terrain vehicles and recreational vehicles will be required to park in designated parking areas and will not be allowed to drive or park on the shoreline or drawdown,” BOR said in a press release announcing the change.

The new rules for what’s known as BOR’s Reclamation Zone will be enforced by the Colville Tribes, the feds say.

SW WA Fishing Report (6-5-19)

THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION WAS FORWARDED BY BRYANT SPELLMAN, WDFW

Lower Columbia Mainstem Sport May 27-June 2

Salmon and steelhead:

Vancouver bank: 12 anglers with no Chinook or steelhead kept or released
Woodland bank: 7 anglers with no Chinook or steelhead kept or released
Kalama bank: 17 anglers with 1 adult Chinook released and no steelhead kept or released
Longview bank: 69 anglers with 2 adult Chinook released and 2 steelhead kept and 1 released
Cathlamet bank: 12 anglers with no Chinook or steelhead kept or released
private boats/bank: 8 anglers with 1 steelhead kept

Vancouver boat: 8 anglers with no Chinook or steelhead kept or released
Kalama boat: No report
Cowlitz boat: No report
Longview boat: 14 anglers with 1 adult Chinook released and no steelhead kept or released
Cathlamet boat: 4 anglers with no Chinook kept or released and 2 steelhead kept
private boats/bank: No report

HUGE NUMBERS OF SHAD ARE BEING COUNTED AT BONNEVILLE DAM, WITH BETTER THAN 1.7 MILLION IN JUST THE PAST FIVE DAYS ALONE. (CHASE GUNNELL)

Shad:

Bonneville bank: 44 anglers with 141 kept and 7 released
Bonneville boat: No report
Camas/Washougal bank: No report
Camas/Washougal boat: No report
I-5 area bank: No report
I-5 area boat: 3 anglers with 0 kept and 0 released
Vancouver bank: 5 anglers with 30 kept and 0 released
Vancouver boat: 8 anglers with 3 kept and 15 released
Woodland bank: 1 angler with 0 kept and 1 released
Woodland boat: 3 anglers with 25 kept and 0 released
Kalama bank: No report
Kalama boat: 9 anglers with 55 kept and 4 released
Cowlitz bank: No report
Cowlitz boat: No report
Longview bank: No report
Longview boat: 3 anglers with 41 kept and 0 released

Sturgeon:

Chinook/Elochoman bank: 173 anglers with 0 kept and 3 sublegals and 6 oversize released
Cathlamet boat: 77 anglers with 12 kept and 32 sublegals and 21 oversize released
Chinook/Elochoman boat: 1,036 anglers with 114 kept and 241 sublegals and 183 oversize released
Ilwaco boat: 224 anglers with 16 kept and 20 sublegal and 27 oversize released
Charter boats: 198 anglers with 11 kept and 13 sublegal and 99 oversize released

Columbia River Tributaries

Salmon/Steelhead:

Elochoman River– 3 bank anglers had no catch.

Cowlitz River – I-5 Br downstream: 9 bank rods had no catch.

Above the I-5 Br:  6 bank rods had no catch.  4 boats/10 rods kept 3 steelhead.

Tacoma Power employees recovered 81 spring Chinook adults, eight spring Chinook jacks, 20 summer-run steelhead adults, six winter-run steelhead adults, and one cutthroat trout adult during five days of operations at the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery separator.

During the past week Tacoma Power employees released eight spring Chinook adults, one spring Chinook jack, and one cutthroat trout adult into Lake Scanewa located in Randle.

Tacoma Power employees recycled 22 summer-run steelhead this week to the lower river.

River flows at Mayfield Dam are approximately 2,940 cubic feet per second on Tuesday, May 28. Water visibility is 9 feet and the water temperature is 48.4 F.

Kalama River – 12 bank anglers released 2 Chinook jacks.

Lewis River – 5 bank anglers had no catch.  2 boats/5 rods had no catch.

Klickitat below Fisher Hill Bridge – 12 bank anglers kept 1 Chinook jack, 2 steelhead and released 1 steelhead.

Klickitat above #5 Fishway – 7 bank anglers released 1 steelhead.  2 boats/5 rods kept 1 steelhead and released 2 steelhead.

 

  •      Tributaries not listed: Creel checks not conducted.

 

Trout:  No report on angling success.

Catchable Trout Plants:  

Lake/Pond                           Date Species Number    Fish/lb Hatchery

Klineline (CLARK)                   May 29, 2019        Rainbow 1,500        2.60 Goldendale

Goose Lake (SKAMANIA)      May 28, 2019 Rainbow      1,500 2.52 Goldendale

Rowland (KLICKITAT)             May 28, 2019 Rainbow 1,562           2.52 Goldendale

Spearfish (KLICKITAT)            May 29, 2019 Rainbow 2,028           2.60 Goldendale

 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/

SW WA Fishing Report (5-28-19)

THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION WAS FORWARDED BY BRYANT SPELLMAN, WDFW

Lower Columbia Mainstem Sport May 20-26

Salmon and steelhead:

Vancouver bank: 8 anglers with no Chinook or steelhead kept or released
Woodland bank: 20 anglers with 1 steelhead kept
Kalama bank: 6 anglers with no Chinook or steelhead kept or released
Longview bank: 14 anglers with no Chinook or steelhead kept or released
Cathlamet bank: 17 anglers with 1 adult Chinook released and 1 steelhead kept
private boats/bank: 8 anglers with 1 steelhead kept

Vancouver boat: 5 anglers with no Chinook or steelhead kept or released
Kalama boat: 3 anglers with no Chinook or steelhead kept or released
Longview boat: 8 anglers with 3 steelhead kept
Cathlamet boat: 10 anglers with 1 jack Chinook kept and 1 steelhead kept
private boats/bank: 17 anglers with 1 adult Chinook released and 1 steelhead kept

Shad:

Bonneville bank: 41 anglers with 47 kept and 4 released
Bonneville boat: 2 anglers with 0 kept and 7 released
Vancouver boat: 3 anglers with 7 kept and 0 released

Sturgeon:

Chinook/Elochoman bank: 164 anglers with 1 kept and 3 sublegals and 1 oversize released
Cathlamet boat: 193 anglers with 11 kept and 35 sublegals and 18 oversize released
Chinook/Elochoman boat: 692 anglers with 49 kept and 100 sublegals and 104 oversize released
Ilwaco boat: 178 anglers with 9 kept and 8 sublegal and 10 oversize released
Charter boats: 118 anglers with 11 kept and 7 sublegal and 26 oversize released

JULIE McCLELLAN-JOHNSON SHOWS OFF A 45.5-INCH FORK LENGTH STURGEON SHE KEPT ON MAY’S FIRST COLUMBIA ESTUARY OPENER. (MD JOHNSON)

Columbia River Tributaries

Salmon/Steelhead:

Elochoman River– 2 bank anglers had no catch.

Cowlitz River – I-5 Br downstream: 10 bank rods kept 2 steelhead.

Above the I-5 Br:  11 bank rods kept 3 steelhead.  23 boats/64 rods kept 22 steelhead.

Tacoma Power employees recovered 165 spring Chinook adults, 10 spring Chinook jacks, 25 summer-run steelhead adults, and 14 winter-run steelhead adults during five days of operations at the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery separator.

During the past week Tacoma Power employees released 20 spring Chinook adults, three spring Chinook jacks, and three winter-run steelhead adults into Lake Scanewa located in Randle and they released one winter-run steelhead adult into the Tilton River at Gust Backstrom Park in Morton.

Tacoma Power employees recycled 20 summer-run steelhead this week.

River flows at Mayfield Dam are approximately 2,970 cubic feet per second on Monday, May 20. Water visibility is 8 feet and the water temperature is 49.3 F.

Klickitat – 11 bank anglers kept 1 Chinook, 2 steelhead and released 6 jacks.

 

  •      Tributaries not listed: Creel checks not conducted.

 

Trout:  No report on angling success.

Catchable Trout Plants:  

Lake/Pond                           Date Species Number    Fish/lb Hatchery

Horsethief (KLICKITAT)          May 20, 2019 Rainbow       4,000 2.30 Goldendale

Battle Ground (CLARK)         May 21, 2019 Rainbow  1,833 2.44 Goldendale

 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/

Family Enjoys Trout, Perch Fishing At Curlew

When life hands you lemons, make lemonade — or at least in this case, a fish fry.

As Curlew Lake transitions from a rainbow fishery to one gradually being overrun by perch, it provided good angling for both species for members of the Han family of the Tri-Cities area.

AUSTIN HAN LIFTS A HOOKED YELLOW PERCH OUT OF THE WATER AT CURLEW LAKE. (JERRY HAN)

They were making their annual pilgrimage to Washington’s northeastern corner over Memorial Day Weekend.

“Curlew may be a great destination for trout, but my parents and kids sure do love the perch fishing there!” says Jerry Han, a Kennewick dentist.

Getting in on the action was his 90-years-young uncle P.P. Han who  has just started getting into fishing this spring.

“He is turning into a fishing machine,” reports Jerry. “He caught the biggest trout of the day and got into a kayak for the first time to try kayak fishing.”

AT 90 YEARS OLD, P.P. HAN HAS TURNED INTO AN AVID ANGLER, FOLLOWING UP HIS FIRST CATCH AT THE TUCANNON LAKES EARLIER THIS SPRING WITH A NICE RAINBOW FROM CURLEW LAKE. (JERRY HAN)

Jerry reports rainbows to 17 inches, perch to more than a foot long.

“The trolling for trout is pretty standard with dodgers and Wedding Ring spinners with a chunk of nightcrawler. Easy limits of great-tasting pink-meated trout,” he says.

Afterwards, he switched everyone’s rigs up to target the perch using 1/16-ounce jigheads and 1 1/2-inch crappie tubes tipped with a piece of worm or strip of belly from an already caught perch.

“The perch belly is way more durable if the perch are biting aggressively, but a crawler will get bites guaranteed,” Jerry tips.

As for tube colors, he says red/chartreuse was tops, followed by all chartreuse.

CORBIN HAN HOISTS A NICE CURLEW PERCH. (JERRY HAN)

Han says that using his sidefinder he located a “huge” perch school mainly in 12 to 16 feet of water and suspects similar gatherings be found in the lake’s shallower bays.

In the short term, the yellowbellies are adding to Curlew’s plethora of species to fish for, which also include largemouth and smallmouth bass and tiger muskies — Jerry says he saw several 3-footers lurking in the shallows — but state fishery biologists don’t expect it to last after the illegal introduction of perch around 2011.

Their numbers jumped from just four in 2012 to at least 840 two years later, a “startling increase” that initially spawned a derby called the Perch Purge.

But WDFW has also changed its tune, promoting the fishery, though their collective teeth might be gritted about the likely demise of one of the state’s destination trout fisheries, not unlike what happened to Oregon’s Phillips Reservoir.

“We anticipate that over time perch will become overabundant and may stunt to sizes that are not favorable to anglers. In addition, we expect to see trout survival and growth negatively impacted by the presence of perch,” an agency spokesperson stated on WDFW’s Facebook page in a post this past winter pimping ice fishing for perch.

P.P. HAN DISPLAYS ANOTHER CURLEW TROUT AS ANGLER JERRY HAN’S PARENTS LOOK ON. (JERRY HAN)

They said it was likely the number of rainbows would be reduced to account for competition with perch, though it’s possible trout sizes could be increased as part of that.

“Anglers should expect trout catch rates to go down as perch abundances increase,” WDFW said. “Anglers can help with the trout fishery in Curlew by removing as many perch as they can. The bonus is that perch are pretty darn tasty.”

That, no doubt, is exactly what the Han family is finding on their return home, and that’s what the Walgamotts will be doing when we camp here for a week later in summer.

Besides the state park, there are three resorts on Curlew — Black Beach, Tiffany’s and Fisherman’s Cove.

GET OUT THE FILLET KNIVES, TIME TO GET TO WORK, BOYS! (JERRY HAN)

Southwest Washington Fishing Report (5-7-19)

THE FOLLOWING REPORTS WERE TRANSMITTED BY BRYANT SPELLMAN, WDFW

Salmon/Steelhead:

Columbia River Tributaries

Elochoman River– 1 bank angler released 1 steelhead.

Cowlitz River – I-5 Br downstream: 26 bank rods kept 3 steelhead.  1 boat/ 4 rods released 1 Chinook.

SKYLER BRODERS OF ST. HELENS SHOWS OFF A DRANO LAKE SPRING CHINOOK, HIS FIRST SALMON EVER. HE WAS TROLLING A BRINED HERRING WHILE FISHING WITH HIS COUSIN TROY BRODERS. (YO-ZURI PHOTO CONTEST)

Above the I-5 Br:  14 bank rods had no catch.  5 boats/13 rods had no catch.

Last week, Tacoma Power employees recovered 161 winter-run steelhead adults, two winter-run steelhead jacks, 118 spring Chinook adults, five spring Chinook jacks and one cutthroat trout during five days of operations at the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery separator.

During the past week Tacoma Power employees released 17 winter-run steelhead adults and one cutthroat trout into the Tilton River at Gust Backstrom Park in Morton and they released 22 winter-run steelhead adults, 17 spring Chinook adults and one spring Chinook jack into Lake Scanewa located in Randle.

River flows at Mayfield Dam are approximately 2,990 cubic feet per second on Monday, May 6. Water visibility is 10 feet and the water temperature is 50.0 F.

Kalama River – 67 bank anglers released 4 Chinook and 3 steelhead.  13 boats/23 rods kept 1 Chinook jack and released 7 steelhead.

Lewis River – 8 bank anglers had no catch.

Wind River– 65 boats/172 rods kept 46 Chinook and released 2 Chinook.

Drano Lake – 20 bank rods had no catch.  215 boats/594 rods kept 148 Chinook and released 12 Chinook.

Klickitat – No report.

 

  • Tributaries not listed: Creel checks not conducted.

 

Trout:  

No report on angling success.

Catchable Trout Plants:  

Lake/Pond                           Date Species Number    Fish/lb Hatchery

Battle Ground (CLARK)          April 24, 2019 Cutthroat    3,000 2.50 Skamania

Klineline  (CLARK)              April 24, 2019 Cutthroat       2,110 2.50 Skamania

Horseshoe (COWLITZ)           April 22, 2019 Rainbow    3,000 2.13 Goldendale

Sacajawea (COWLITZ)           April 26, 2019 Rainbow    3,360 2.80 Mossyrock

Carlise (LEWIS)                       April 16, 2019 Rainbow 10,000         2.00

Mineral (LEWIS)                     April 23, 2019 Rainbow 2,875           2.50 Mossyrock

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/

SW WA, Lower Columbia Fishing Report (5-1-19)

THE FOLLOWING REPORTS WERE TRANSMITTED BY BRYANT SPELLMAN, WDFW

Preliminary Washington lower Columbia River mainstem sport sampling summary

April 27-28, 2019

Bonneville bank anglers: 135; kept adult Chinook: 9
Camas area banks anglers: -; kept adult Chinook: –
I-5 area bank anglers: 2; kept adult Chinook: 0
Vancouver area bank anglers: 15; kept adult Chinook: 0

Bonneville boat anglers: 4; kept adult Chinook: 0
Camas area boat anglers: 11; kept adult Chinook: 0
I-5 area boat anglers: 20; kept adult Chinook: 0
Vancouver boat anglers: 62; kept adult Chinook: 0

BEST FISHING THIS SPRING IN SOUTHWEST WASHINGTON MIGHT JUST HAVE BEEN DURING LATE APRIL’S LOWLAND LAKES TROUT OPENING WEEKEND. THE RAMSEY BOYS, BLAKE AND WADE, SHOW OFF STRINGERS CAUGHT AT ROWLAND LAKE THIS PAST SUNDAY, WHEN THE WINDS WERE MUCH CALMER THAN SATURDAY. PA BUZZ REPORTS THEY WERE TROLLING 2.0 SIZE MAG LIP PLUGS AND USING A CRAWL RETRIEVE WITH 3-INCH SCENTED BERKLEY WORMS. (BUZZ RAMSEY)

Salmon/Steelhead:

Lower Columbia mainstem from Warrior Rock line to Bonneville Dam– 48 salmonid boats and 89 Washington bank rods were tallied during last Saturdays flight count.  Despite the not so perfect conditions over the weekend, some fish were caught with most of the catch being on the Washington bank in the Gorge.

Salmon/Steelhead:

Columbia River Tributaries

Cowlitz River – I-5 Br downstream: 22 bank rods kept 1 steelhead.

Above the I-5 Br:  11 bank rods had no catch.  13 boats/34 rods released 1 Chinook.

Last week, Tacoma Power employees recovered 302 winter-run steelhead adults, 19 spring Chinook adults, one spring Chinook jack and two cutthroat trout during five days of operations at the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery separator.

During the past week Tacoma Power employees released 19 winter-run steelhead adults and two cutthroat trout into the Tilton River at Gust Backstrom Park in Morton and they released 14 winter-run steelhead adults and three spring Chinook adults into Lake Scanewa located in Randle.

Tacoma Power tagged and recycled 26 winter-run steelhead adults to the lower river.

River flows at Mayfield Dam are approximately 2,960 cubic feet per second on Monday, April 29. Water visibility is 11 feet and the water temperature is 49.5 F.

Kalama River – 32 bank anglers had no catch.  13 boats/26 rods released 1 steelhead.  15 adult Chinook have returned to the hatchery as of April 29th.

Lewis River – Little to no effort during the current steelhead season.  1 bank angler had no catch.

Wind River– Light effort due to the mud line from the Columbia pushing its way into the normal trolling areas. 18 boats/31 rods kept 6 Chinook and released 1 Chinook.

Drano Lake – Effort has been ramping up each week along with the catch.  Creel samplers still have not checked a Chinook off the bank this season but the boats have been producing some fish.  80 boats/174 rods kept 40 Chinook.

Klickitat River- 4 bank anglers kept 1 steelhead.

Trout:

Klickitat County:

Horsethief Lake- 15 anglers kept 30 Rainbow trout and released 4.

Rowland Lake- 37 anglers kept 108 Rainbow trout and released 68.

Spearfish Lake- 8 anglers kept 22 Rainbow trout and released 3.

Lewis County:

Carlise Lake- 55 anglers kept 34 Rainbow trout and released 224.

Mineral Lake- 88 anglers kept 189 Rainbow trout and released 239.

Catchable Trout Plants:  

Lake/Pond                           Date Species Number    Fish/lb Hatchery

Battle Ground (CLARK)          April 24, 2019 Cutthroat    3,000 2.50 Skamania

Klineline  (CLARK)              April 24, 2019 Cutthroat       2,110 2.50 Skamania

Horseshoe (COWLITZ)           April 22, 2019 Rainbow    3,000 2.13 Goldendale

Sacajawea (COWLITZ)           April 26, 2019 Rainbow    3,360 2.80 Mossyrock

Carlise (LEWIS)                       April 16, 2019 Rainbow 10,000         2.00

Mineral (LEWIS)                     April 23, 2019 Rainbow 2,875           2.50 Mossyrock

Yuasa: Fishing Hits ‘Full Throttle’ In May; Planning Guide For Summer Salmon

Editor’s note: The following is Mark Yuasa’s monthly fishing newsletter, Get Hooked on Reel Times With Mark, and is run with permission.

By Mark Yuasa, Director of Grow Boating Programs, Northwest Marine Trade Association

May 2019

The month of May is a pleasant time. Flowers are in full bloom. The weather is improving. Days are getting longer. But, it’s also a time when fishing hits full throttle for a wide variety of fish and anglers can start making plans for summer salmon fisheries.

First off there’s nothing better than a batch of steamed spot shrimp on the dinner table and the season for these denizens of the deep gets underway on May 11 for most areas of Puget Sound, Strait of Juan de Fuca and Hood Canal.

(MARK YUASA, NMTA)

“It will likely be an average spot shrimp season,” said Don Velasquez, a Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) shellfish biologist. “In general, last year was a fair to good season.”

Spot shrimp are the largest – averaging 8 to 12 inches long – of more than 80 shrimp species in local marine waterways, but only seven are commonly caught by anglers. Most are lurking at depths of 30 to 300 feet.

The western Strait (Area 5) is open daily beginning May 11; and eastern Strait (6) is open Thursdays to Sundays of each week beginning May 11. Each area will close once the catch quota is achieved. The Discovery Bay Shrimp District (within 6) will be open May 11, 15 and 29 and June 1 from 7 a.m.-3 p.m. each day.

The San Juan Islands in Area 7 South is open May 11-12, May 16-19 and May 23-24; Area 7 East is open daily May 11-12, May 16-19, May 23-26 and May 30-June 2; and Area 7 West is open Thursdays to Sundays each week beginning May 11 and closes once the catch quota is achieved.

The east side of Whidbey Island (8-1 and 8-2) is open May 11 and May 15 from 7 a.m.-1 p.m. each day. Northern Puget Sound (9) is open May 11 and May 15 from 7 a.m.-11 a.m. each day.

Elliott Bay (within 10) is open May 11 from 7 a.m.-1 p.m.; central Puget Sound (10) is open May 11 from 7 a.m.-11 a.m.; and south-central Puget Sound (11) is open May 11 from 7 a.m.-1 p.m.

Hood Canal (12) is open May 11, 15 and 29 and June from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. each day. Southern Puget Sound (13) is closed for the 2019 season due to low abundance levels of spot shrimp.

In all Puget Sound areas, the daily limit is 80 spot shrimp per person during the month of May. Additional dates and times will be announced if quotas aren’t achieved.

Velasquez points out traps can be set one hour before official sunrise during any open period in Marine Catch Areas 4, 5, 6 (except for the Discovery Bay Shrimp District), 7 East, 7 South, and 7 West only. As an example, one hour before sunrise is approximately 4:40 a.m. on May 11.

WDFW conducted test fishing for spot shrimp and the northern section of Hood Canal around Seabeck showed an increase but was weak in the Hood’s central section.

“Area 7 West saw a slight increase in pounds per trap from last year,” Velasquez said. “Marine Areas 8-1, 8-2, 9 and 10 is pretty average compared to what we’ve seen in past years.”

Last year, the total sport harvest of spot shrimp was 194,863 pounds and the non-tribal commercial take was 97,578 pounds for a total of 292,441 pounds. Sport and non-tribal commercial fishermen split a 300,000-pound spot shrimp yearly catch quota with 70 percent going to the sport fishery. The tribal fishery has a 300,000-pound catch quota.

Bottom-fishing also takes centerstage with lingcod opening May 1 in most areas of Puget Sound and Strait; and halibut on May 2 off the coast and Marine Catch Areas 5 to 10. The coastal lingcod and rockfish fishing season have been going strong since it reopened back in March.

The statewide halibut quota of 277,100 pounds is up from 225,366 in 2018 (237,762 in 2017, and 214,110 in 2016, 2015 and 2014). Anglers should go to https://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/regulations/halibut for more information on additional dates and regulations.
For those who still want to get their fix on hatchery chinook then head to southern Puget Sound south of the Narrows Bridge where fishing is open year-round.

Cutbacks to some 2019-2020 salmon fisheries

The salmon seasons on the coast for coho are the shining beacon of light compared to 2018 but major cutbacks were numerous to Puget Sound fisheries.

State, federal and tribal fishery managers met last month at Rohnert Park, California, to set fisheries and those cuts occurred after WDFW became more focused on the Puget Sound chum issue instead of focusing on important chinook and coho opportunities and wild chinook stocks of concern.

(MARK YUASA, NMTA)

The delay virtually slammed the door of a normal public involvement during the North of Falcon meeting in Lynnwood on April 3 when only two hours was devoted to the Puget Sound sport salmon fisheries discussion.

“While it’s often a frustrating process, I have never seen a year that involved the public less than this cycle,” Carl Nyman, a WDFW Puget Sound recreational fishing advisor and President of the Charter Boat Association of Puget Sound said in an NMTA news release. “For the first time since I have attended, there were no initial set of proposed fisheries modeled for public comment.”

The news release went on to say all the vital public input during this complicated process on salmon fishing season preferences that reflect social and economic consequences of WDFW’s decisions was moved out of reach for most constituents to California. Hopefully it was a “lesson learned” and the WDFW staff and their nine-member commission will look at this differently in the immediate future before we head into a Black Hole of no return.

Lost fishing opportunity ranges from weeks to months closed but represents about half of the 2018 season for the most popular summer and winter chinook fisheries in the Strait, San Juan Island, and northern, central south-central Puget Sound (Marine Catch Areas 5, 6, 7, 9, 10 and 11).

Cuts include closing all salmon fishing in the San Juan Islands (Area 7) in August and January; closing western Strait (5) for hatchery chinook for two weeks in February; closing eastern Strait (6) in February; closing east side of Whidbey Island (8-1 and 8-2) in December and January; delaying the northern Puget Sound (9) summer hatchery chinook fishery until July 25 (last year it began on July 16) plus a smaller quota of 3,491 compared to 5,400 in 2018 and closing fishing in January; central Puget Sound (10) summer hatchery chinook fishery opens July 25 (last year it opened July 16) and will likely be reduced by two to three weeks under a smaller quota of 3,057 compared to 4,473 in 2018; and south-central Puget Sound (11) closed June 1-30 with a reduced quota of 2,805 hatchery chinook (5,030 in 2018) and closed October through December.

Moving past the dire situation will be some great salmon opportunities off the coast and a few other inner-marine and freshwater locations.

“We came up with a plan for the mark coho fishery in Area 9 to flip it and make it non-select in October to expand more time on the water if the in-season numbers show it’s a possibility,” said Mark Baltzell, the WDFW Puget Sound recreational salmon manager.

Baltzell also says the Snohomish, Skykomish and Snoqualmie rivers are open Sept. 1-30 with a one coho daily limit. If the run is larger than predicted they could liberalize the season around the first week of October. This will be done through data collected in a test fishery.

WDFW and PFMC also developed a more liberal ocean salmon fishery for hatchery coho due to an expected higher return of Columbia River-bound fish while chinook is still in a recovery mode.

“We are very optimistic for coho and you have to go back to 2015 since we’ve had any good coho fishing,” said Wendy Beeghley, the WDFW head coastal salmon policy manager.

The total allowable sport and non-tribal commercial catch is 190,000 hatchery coho up considerably from 47,600 last year; and 52,500 chinook down slightly from 55,000. The Columbia River coho forecast is 1,009,600 compared to 349,000 in 2018.

Ilwaco has a 79,800 hatchery coho quota (21,000 in 2018) and a 7,150-chinook quota (8,000 in 2018); Westport is 59,050 (15,540) and 12,700 (13,100); La Push is 4,050 (1,090) and 1,100 (1,500); and Neah Bay is 16,600 (5,370) and 5,200 (3,024).

Salmon fishing opportunities:

(Here is a glimpse of what anglers will find in 2019-20 and for more refer to the WDFW regulation pamphlet or go to https://wdfw.wa.gov/)

• All four coastal ports – Neah Bay, La Push, Westport and Ilwaco – will be open daily from June 22-Sept. 30 or close once each area’s catch quota is achieved. Daily limit at Ilwaco and Westport is two salmon and no more than one may be a chinook. Daily limit is two salmon at La Push and Neah Bay. The La Push bubble fishery will be open Oct. 1-13.

South-central Puget Sound (Area 11) closed June 1-30 but open July 1-Sept. 30. Salmon fishing closed Thursdays and Fridays. Once quota is met fishing will be open daily with a two coho daily limit and non-retention of all chinook.

Inner-Elliott Bay opens for chinook on Aug. 2 to Aug. 5 at 12 p.m. Additional weekend openings are possible if in season data shows a stronger return.

East side of Whidbey Island (Area 8-2) opens Aug. 16-Sept. 15 for hatchery coho from Mukilteo/Clinton to Area 9 northern boundary. Area 8-1 is open for coho in October.

• The Skagit River from Memorial Highway Bridge in Mount Vernon to Gilligan Creek) is open for spring chinook from May 1-31; Stillaguamish is open Sept. 16-Nov. 15 for coho; Skykomish is open for hatchery chinook the Saturday before Memorial Day through July 31; and Minter Creek is open for salmon Sept. 15-Dec. 31.

Baker Lake opens for sockeye starting July 6 and a sockeye fishery on the Skagit River opens June 16. The Baker Lake sockeye forecast is 33,737.

Buoy 10 near the Lower Columbia River mouth opens Aug. 1-20 for adult chinook and hatchery coho retention; and is open from Aug. 21-Dec. 31 for a hatchery coho directed fishery (release all chinook and wild coho).

San Juan Islands (Area 7) is open July 1-31 for hatchery kings and has been an early-season hotspot the past several years so put in as much time before the August closure. The preseason prediction of legal-size chinook encounters in Area 7 is 3,622 and WDFW manages this fishery as a season from beginning to end. Coho become fair game Sept. 1-30.

Tulalip Bubble Terminal Fishery within Area 8-2 is a hatchery salmon directed fishery and the season remains status quo from last year. If forecasts hit the bullseye action could be decent when it opens June 1 (closed on June 15 for a tribal ceremonial fishery) through Sept. 2. Fishing is allowed from 12:01 a.m. Fridays through 11:59 a.m. Mondays only. Then it switches to a Saturday and Sunday only of each week from Sept. 7-29.

Strait of Juan de Fuca (Areas 5 and 6) from Sekiu to Port Angeles opens July 1-Aug. 15 for a hatchery-marked king fishery. For the past several years, the eastern Strait has been a worthwhile journey on the opener with areas from Sekiu to Freshwater Bay coming on by mid-July. Look for coho and pink action to ramp up from Aug. 16-Sept. 30. The preseason legal-mark encounter for chinook in Area 5 is 8,294 and WDFW ensures it doesn’t exceed 9,953. In Area 6, WDFW will manage the fishery as a season from beginning to end.

Statewide opening day of trout fishing was a success with plenty still to catch

While the weather was somewhat windy for the statewide lowland lakes trout opener on Saturday that didn’t stop thousands from trying their luck at catching fish.

“Everyone I talked to said that fishing was really good, but the winds were pretty blustery across the state late (Saturday) morning, which probably shortened some people’s trips somewhat,” said Steve Caromile, a Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) fish program manager. “Many places, there seemed to be an early morning bite.”

(MARK YUASA, NMTA)

The windy weather Saturday afternoon many have been a hinderance but those who fished Sunday found a much different picture with warmer temperatures, sunny skies and a few extra snappy trout.

In general, it appears success rates were decent overall, and popular lakes on west- and east-sides were crowded with anglers tossing just about everything from Power Bait, worms, salmon eggs, marshmallows, flies, spoons, gang-flashers and spinners.

Caromile said catch rates and harvest numbers per angler were right on par with last year’s opening day.

Top Puget Sound region lakes where anglers averaged good catches were: Langlois (one derby fish and largest was 12.4 inches); Cottage (boats more successful than bank anglers and largest was 15.5 inches); Margaret (one derby fish and many five-fish limits); Pine; Erie (largest was 17.5 inches); Bosworth; Echo (Maltby); Howard (11 holdover trout caught and largest was 17.5 inches); Ki (largest was 17 inches); Storm; Wagner; Silver, Whatcom County (many limits, excellent pancake feast by Ferndale Kiwanis); McIntosh; Carney; Silver, Pierce, (lots of 15- to 17-inch carryovers), Aberdeen; Horseshoe; Sandy; Panther; Haven; and Wooten.

In eastern Washington, many reports indicated windy weather put a damper on fishing, but some trout were the larger carryovers ranging from 16 to 21 inches long.

Even better news is that anglers who missed out or overslept on the opener will be happy to know that with 15 million-plus trout planted in more than 500 statewide lakes and ponds there should be plenty of fishing love to spread around for months to com.

“There will be plenty of fish left, and fishing will be good for another few months until the water warms up,” Caromile said. “Some lakes will continue to get small amounts of fish for a few more weeks.”

WDFW TROUT CHECKS

King County: Cottage, 44 anglers with 55 trout kept for 1.3 fish kept per rod average and 90 total fish released for 3.3; Langlois, 45 with 107 for 2.4 and 440 for 12.2; Margaret, 22 with 57 for 2.6 and 100 for 7.1; Pine, 15 with 27 for and 52 for 5.3.

San Juan County: Cascade, 33 with 20 for 1.5 and 48 for 2.1.

Skagit County: Erie, 29 with 19 for 3.3 and 97 for 4.0; McMurray, 51 with 16 for 1.9 and 99 for 2.3; and Sixteen, 51 with 12 for 1.8 and 91 for 2.0.

Snohomish County: Bosworth, 47 with 78 for 1.7 and 110 for 4.0; Echo (Maltby), 20 with 59 for 3.0 and 30 for 4.5; Howard, 21 with 53 for 2.5 and 53 for 4.2; Ki, 34 with 77 for 2.3 and 58 for 4.0; Martha (Alderwood Manor), 26 with 47 for 1.8 and 29 for 2.9; Serene, 16 with 22 for 1.4 and 15 for 2.3; Stickney, 18 with 37 for 2.1 and 15 for 2.3; Storm, 38 with 76 for 2.0 and 70 for 3.8; and Wagner, 14 with 34 for 2.4 and 59 for 6.6.

Whatcom County: Cain, 34 with 117 for 3.4; Silver, 143 with 417 for 2.9 and 284 for 4.9; and Toad, 43 with 67 for 1.6 and 44 for 2.6.

Klickitat County: Horsethief, 15 with 30 for 2.0 and four for 2.3; Rowland, 37 with 108 for 2.9 and 68 for 4.8; and Spearfish, eight with 22 for 2.8 and three for 3.1.

Lewis County: Carlisle, 55 with 34 for 0.6 and 224 for 4.7; and Mineral, 80 with 189 for 2.4 and 239 for 5.4.

Thurston County: Clear, 51 with 131 for 2.6 and 41 for 3.4; Deep, six with nine for 1.5 and four for 2.2; Hicks, 23 with 42 for 1.8 and eight for 2.2; McIntosh, one with one for 1.0 and five for 6.0; Pattison, seven with 12 for 1.7; Summit, six with 11 for 1.8 and 10 for 3.5; and Ward, nine with 18 for 2.0.

Pierce County: Bay, eight with 14 for 1.8 and three for 2.1; Carney, two with seven for 2.0 and seven for 5.5; Clear, 31 with 84 for 2.7 and 14 for 3.4; Jackson, one with three for 3.0 and two for 5.0; Crescent, 14 with 30 for 2.1; Rapjohn, 10 with 20 for 2.0 and four for 2.4; Ohop, six with 14 for 2.3 and six for 3.3; Silver, 16 with 42 for 2.6 and 36 for 4.9; and Tanwax, 12 with 22 for 1.8 and 17 for 3.3.

Grays Harbor County: Aberdeen, 59 with 95 for 1.6 and 208 for 5.1; Inez, 36 with 22 for 0.6 and 19 for 1.1; Sylvia, 23 with 44 for 1.9 and eight for 2.3; Bowers, 27 with 27 for 1.0 and four for 1.1; and Failor, 52 with 144 for 2.8 and 58 for 3.9.

Pacific County: Black, 43 with 33 for 0.8 and 18 for 1.2.

Jefferson County: Sandy Shore, 35 with 92 for 2.6 and 106 for 5.7; Silent, seven with 21 for 3.0 and 12 for 4.7; and Tarboo, 47 with 98 for 2.1 and 89 for 4.0.

Kitsap County: Bucks, 25 with 40 for 1.6 and 27 for 2.7; Horseshoe, 23 with 81 for 3.5 and 51 for 5.7; Mission, 30 with 94 for 3.1 and 80 for 5.8; Panther, 14 with 49 for 3.5 and 36 for 6.1; Wildcat, 20 with 83 for 4.2 and 20 for 5.2; and Wye, three with four for 1.3 and one for 1.7.

Mason County: Benson, 21 with 48 for 2.3 and six for 2.6; Don (Clara), 19 with 77 for 4.1 and five for 4.3; Devereaux, 23 with 33 for 1.4 and 102 for 5.9; Haven, five with 25 for 5.0 and 34 for 11.8; Howell, five with 16 for 3.2; Limerick, 33 with 39 for 1.2 and 86 for 3.8; Magee, 18 with 32 for 1.8 and eight for 2.2; Phillips, four with three for 0.8 and 12 for 3.8; Robbins, 18 with 61 for 3.4 and eight for 3.8; Tiger, 20 with 76 for 3.8 and five for 4.1; and Wooten, 24 with 49 for 2.0 and 150 for 8.3.

Ferry County: Ellen, 14 with 11 for 0.8 and 19 for 2.1.

Pend Oreille County: Diamond, 26 with 25 for 1.0 and 16 for 1.6.

Stevens County: Cedar, 49 with 95 for 1.9 and 36 for 2.7; Mudgett, 22 with 23 for 1.0 and 17 for 1.8; Rocky, 19 with 24 for 1.3 and 13 for 1.9; Starvation, 38 with 93 for 2.4 and nine for 2.7; and Waitts, 23 with 37 for 1.6 and 21 for 2.5.

Spokane County: Badger, 39 with 76 for 1.9 and 33 for 2.8; Clear, 35 with 25 for 0.7 and five for 0.9; Fishtrap, 45 with 67 for 1.5 and 15 for 1.8; Williams, 48 with 109 for 2.3 and 276 for 8.0; West Medical, 36 with 29 for 0.8 and 10 for 1.1; Fish, 66 with 68 for 1.0 and 46 for 1.7.

Grant County: Vic Meyers, 12 with nine for 0.8; Warden, 60 with 86 for 1.4 and 11 for 1.6; Blue, 34 with 91 for 2.7 and three for 2.8; Park, 48 with 141 for 2.9 and five for 3.0; and Deep, 46 with 83 for 1.8 and seven for 2.0.

Chelan County: Wapato, 64 with 204 for 3.2 and 85 for 4.5.

Douglas County: Jameson, 40 with 111 for 2.8 and 21 for 3.4.

Okanogan County: Pearrygin, 26 with 37 for 1.4 and five for 1.6.

Word on NW Salmon Derby Series

We’ve hit the pause button in the derby series although the boat has been making its rounds to various seminars and other fishing promotions.

The grand prize $75,000 Weldcraft 202 Rebel Hardtop boat from Renaissance Marine Group in Clarkston. The boat is powered with a Yamaha 200hp and 9.9hp trolling motor on an EZ-loader galvanized trailer and fully-rigged with Burnewiin accessories; Scotty downriggers; Raymarine Electronics; a custom WhoDat Tower; and a Dual Electronics stereo. Other sponsors include Silver Horde Lures; Master Marine and Tom-n-Jerry’s; Harbor Marine; Salmon, Steelhead Journal; NW Sportsman Magazine; The Reel News; Sportco and Outdoor Emporium; and Prism Graphics. It is trailered with a 2019 Chevrolet Silverado – not part of the grand prize giveaway – courtesy of Northwest Chevrolet and Burien Chevrolet.
Next up is the Bellingham Salmon Derby on July 12-14; and Lake Coeur d’ Alene Big One Fishing Derby on July 24-28.

There are 15 derbies in Washington, Idaho and British Columbia, Canada, and drawing for the grand prize boat will take place at the conclusion of the Everett Coho Derby on Sept. 21-22. Details: http://www.nwsalmonderbyseries.com/.

I’m filled with spring fishing excitement and will see you on the water!

Major Northern Pike Gillnetting Effort Set To Begin On Lake Roosevelt

State and tribal fishery managers will begin one of their largest, most intensive efforts yet to suppress invasive northern pike in Lake Roosevelt by setting as many as 500 gillnets in early May during the species’ spawn.

“We need to put a dent in them,” says WDFW’s Chuck Lee. “They’ll be easier to control if we get a handle on this earlier. The longer we wait, the more expensive it gets.”

THIS NORTHERN PIKE CAUGHT IN A GILLNET SET IN LAKE ROOSEVELT MAY HAVE BEEN ATTRACTED BY THE RAINBOW TROUT ALSO SNARED IN THE MESH. MANAGERS WANT FEWER OF THE NONNATIVE FISH AND MORE OF THE NATIVE ONES. (WDFW)

His agency along with the Colville, Kalispel and Spokane Tribes, Chelan and Grant Counties PUD, National Park Service and the Northwest Power Planning Council are all participating in the intensive four-day, May 6-9 effort that follows on several years of netting since the fish first turned up in the reservoir in 2011.

Ten crews will set nets on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday and pull them on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.

The effort is being timed to water temperatures that spur northerns to get more active and start looking for habitat to broadcast their eggs and milt and thus become more susceptible to netting.

“We’re trying to catch mature adults before the spawn,” Lee says.

According to a notice from the Colville Tribes, nets will be set in waters 20 feet deep or less that attract staging pike and which “should also help reduce bycatch of non-target species.”

A COLVILLE TRIBES MAP BREAKS DOWN THE ZONES EACH AGENCY WILL WORK DURING THE MAY 6-9 EFFORT. (CCT F&W)

The generally cool water temps also means better survival rates for walleye and trout caught in the nets.

The latter species appears to be a favorite of the nonnative species that was flushed out of the Pend Oreille River system after being illegally introduced there, probably from Idaho’s Couer d’Alene watershed.

“We see a lot of hatchery trout in their guts, a lot of unknown trout too — wild redbands? hatchery trout?” says Lee.

BEFORE BEING CAUGHT IN A NET, THIS 31-INCH-LONG, 10-POUND PIKE SWALLOWED A TROUT HALF ITS BODY LENGTH. (WDFW)

Past years’ suppression efforts do appear to be paying off.

He says that where 5- and 6-year-old pike had been turning up in nets, they’re now primarily pulling in 1-, 2- and 3-year-old fish.

“If we can continue to keep on top of these females before they mature and spawn,” that will help keep the population under control, he says.

The Colvilles have also been paying anglers a bounty for pike heads.

The ultimate worry is that if northerns escape Roosevelt and get through Lake Rufus Woods below it, they’ll have a feast in the form of hatchery and wild ESA-listed salmon and steelhead smolts awaiting at the mouth of the Okanogan River — perhaps even returning adult sockeye.

Lee says that pike are slowly moving down Roosevelt. Where populations were focused around the mouths of the Kettle and Colville Rivers, fish are turning up at Hunters and outside the Spokane Arm where the impoundment swings west.

Along with the tribes whose reservations border Roosevelt, the Upper Columbia United Tribes will be on hand to observe the effort, Lee says.

“I’m kind of excited to see us get this group together to suppress pike,” he says of all the participants.

SW WA, Lower Columbia Fishing Report (4-23-19)

THE FOLLOWING REPORTS WERE TRANSMITTED BY BRYANT SPELLMAN, WDFW

Preliminary Washington lower Columbia River mainstem sport sampling summary

April 20-21, 2019

Bonneville bank anglers: 101; kept adult Chinook: 7
Camas area banks anglers: -; kept adult Chinook: –
I-5 area bank anglers: 1; kept adult Chinook: –
Vancouver area bank anglers: 25; kept adult Chinook: 0

Bonneville boat anglers: 23; kept adult Chinook: 1
Camas area boat anglers: 24; kept adult Chinook: 0
I-5 area boat anglers: 39; kept adult Chinook: 0
Vancouver boat anglers: 171; kept adult Chinook: 2

A SPRING CHINOOK ANGLER IN THE WESTERN COLUMBIA GORGE HOPES FOR A BITE DURING A RAINSTORM. (ANDY WALGAMOTT)

Fishery Reports:

Salmon/Steelhead:

Columbia River Tributaries

Cowlitz River – I-5 Br downstream: 39 bank rods released 3 Chinook and kept 1 steelhead..

Above the I-5 Br:  15 bank rods kept 1 steelhead.  25 boats/80 rods released 2 Chinook and kept 8 steelhead and released 2 steelhead.

Last week, Tacoma Power employees recovered 432 winter-run steelhead adults, 13 spring Chinook adults and one cutthroat trout during five days of operations at the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery separator.

During the past week Tacoma Power employees released 27 winter-run steelhead adults and one cutthroat trout into the Tilton River at Gust Backstrom Park in Morton and they released 21 winter-run steelhead adults and two spring Chinook adults into Lake Scanewa located in Randle.

Tacoma Power tagged and recycled 114 winter-run steelhead adults to the lower river.

River flows at Mayfield Dam are approximately 2,990 cubic feet per second on Monday, April 22. Water visibility is 10 feet and the water temperature is 47.8 F.

Kalama River – 27 bank anglers had no catch.  10 boats/18 rods kept 3 Chinook and released 2 steelhead.

Lewis River – 9 bank anglers had no catch. 1 boat/2 rods had no catch.

Wind River– 1 bank angler had no catch.  10 boats/15 rods kept 1 Chinook and released 1 Chinook.

Drano Lake – 16 boats/27 rods kept 1 Chinook.

  • Tributaries not listed: Creel checks not conducted.

Catchable Trout Plants:  

Lake/Pond                           Date Species Number    Fish/lb Hatchery

Horseshoe (COWLITZ)            April 17, 2019     Rainbow 3,360           2.80 Mossyrock

Kress Lake (COWLITZ)            April 17, 2019 Rainbow 3,080           2.80 Mossyrock

Battle Ground (CLARK)          April 15, 2019 Rainbow   2,000 1.90 Vancouver

Sacajawea (COWLITZ)            April 15, 2019 Rainbow 3,375           2.51 Goldendale