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Reel Time Fishing Northwest

Mark Yuasa covers fishing and outdoors in the Pacific Northwest.

August 24, 2009 at 9:23 PM

Pink fishing good in Puget Sound, and Columbia River area fishing reports

Just got back this morning from a day trip searching for pinks and coho in Central Puget Sound, and even though we were late getting out we did find some fair action off Shilshole Bay south to West Point.

“We’ve been finding some pretty pink fishing, and have ahd some 16 fish days,” said Gary Krein, owner of All-Star Charters in Everett. “The weekend was good for us, and I know of other boats in the area who did well too. Some of the other charters also got a couple of kings.”

Pink action has been good just about everywhere you looked in Puget Sound. Places like Edmonds down to Meadow Point, Jefferson Head, Lincoln Park off West Seattle, Dash Point south to Tacoma, the Puyallup River and the west side of Whidbey Island. Elliott Bay has clsoed after today (Aug. 24) for salmon and will reopen Sept. 1. Check the regulation pamphlet for details on this an additional fisheries opening next month.

The head scratcher has been the Humpy Hollow area north to Mulkiteo where pink fishing has been good one day and lousy the next.

We are heading into the final week of the hatchery king fishery in northern and Central Puget Sound (Area 9 and 10), which closes after Aug. 31. Fishing has been somewhat lackluster, but a few are being caught at places like Point No Point, Kingston, Dolphin Point, Southworth, Tacoma area, Midchannel Bank and Point Monroe.

Here is a rundown on what happened in the Columbia River area this past week:

Salmon/Steelhead

Cowlitz River – Boat anglers in the lower river are catching fall Chinook and steelhead.

Last week, Tacoma Power recovered 422 summer-run steelhead adults, 50 spring Chinook adults, six jacks, 81 spring Chinook mini-jacks, 45 fall Chinook adults, five jacks, one coho adult, 10 sea-run cutthroat trout and three sockeye salmon adults during five days of operation at the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery separator.

During the week Tacoma Power employees released 33 spring Chinook adults, four jacks and one coho salmon into the Cispus River above the mouth of Yellow Jacket Creek, 43 fall Chinook adults and four jacks into Mayfield Lake at the Ike Kinswa State Park boat launch, and 73 spring Chinook mini-jacks into Riffe Lake at Mossyrock Park. Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife personnel transported ten cutthroat trout to the Tilton River.

River flows at Mayfield Dam are approximately 2,460 cubic feet per second with a visibility of over 13 feet on Monday, August 24.

Kalama River – Bank anglers are catching some summer run steelhead.

Lewis River – Boat anglers are catching some summer run steelhead.

Wind River – Boat anglers are catching some summer run steelhead. A half-dozen boats observed here yesterday morning.

Drano Lake – Including fish released, boat anglers averaged 1.8 steelhead per rod. Just over half the fish were released. Just over a hundred boats found here yesterday morning.

White Salmon River – Bank anglers are catching fall Chinook and steelhead. Nearly 70 watercraft were spotted here yesterday though none were sampled last week.

Buoy 10 – Mostly coho in the catch with close a fish per rod on some days. Through August 19, there have been an estimated 18,000 anglers with 3,200 chinook and 9,200 coho.

Lower Columbia below Bonneville Dam – Effort and Chinook catches are increasing, especially for boat anglers. Last Saturday August 22, nearly 1,100 boats and 550 WA and 133 OR bank anglers were counted during the flight. The highest number of boats (224) were found at the mouth of the Cowlitz.

Last week we sampled 1,054 bank anglers with 198 steelhead, 66 adult and 8 jack fall Chinook, 1 adult coho, and 1 sea-run cutthroat. In addition, we sampled 1,320 boat anglers (568 boats) with 211 adult and 17 jack fall Chinook, 94 steelhead, and 3 adult coho. Nearly 2/3 of the steelhead caught were kept.

Bonneville Pool – Boat anglers are catching a mixture of bright and tule fall Chinook at the mouths of the White Salmon River and Drano Lake.

Hanford Reach – All ahead slow. WDFW staff sampled 7 boats (23 anglers) this past week. Two boats (8 anglers) were fishing for salmon along with 6 bank anglers at Ringold. No catch reported.

Sturgeon

Lower Columbia below Bonneville Dam – Continues to be light effort during the current catch-and-release fishery. Just 7 boats and 15 bank anglers were counted during Saturday’s flight.

Walleye

Lower Columbia below Bonneville Dam – Boat anglers around Camas/Washougal are catching some fish. Sixteen boats were counted from there to the gorge last Saturday.

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