Skagit Coho Limit Boosted With 2 Bonus Hatchery Fish

A larger coho return than forecast to the Skagit has state managers boosting the hatchery fish limit on the mainstem from the mouth to Marblemount.

Starting today anglers will be able to keep an additional two clipped coho on top of the previous two-silver bag.


Andrew Fowler, the WDFW district fisheries biologist, says that inseason state-tribal test fisheries near the mouth led managers to revise their expectations from 49,000 to nearly 87,000 wild and hatchery coho.

That also allowed for additional tribal fisheries to occur. To accommodate those and prevent gear conflicts, the Skagit from the Highway 9 bridge in Sedro Woolley to the mouth of the Baker River near Concrete is closed to sportfishing today, tomorrow and Friday through 2 p.m.

That might make for tougher fishing when that stretch and waters right above it reopen Friday afternoon, but among the gear recommendations from Fowler are Dick Nites and twitching jigs.

“I’d focus on the upper river at this point, but there are still fish coming in,” he adds.

As of Sept. 30, 1,825 adult coho and 55 jacks had returned to WDFW’s Marblemount Hatchery.

Minimum size on coho is 12 inches; Chinook and chums must be released.