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Reel Time Fishing Northwest

Mark Yuasa covers fishing and outdoors in the Pacific Northwest.

September 10, 2009 at 9:23 PM

Good times keep on rolling for most fish runs in the Columbia River

The Lower Columbia River Technical Advisory Committee met on Sept. 9 to review stocks status and fisheries.

The group didn’t update the Upriver Bright fall chinook run size, but stated the run appears to be early and may be less than the predicted 269,700 adults.

Here are some other data they updated:

The Bonneville Pool Hatchery run was downgraded to 41,000 adults at the Columbia River mouth based on a determination that BPH timing is about five days early. The BPH pre-season forecast was 56,500.

The 2009 season has seen remarkable fall chinook jack counts at Bonneville Dam. The total count is already the second highest since at least 1990.

The cumulative jack count at Bonneville Dam to date is over twice those back to at least 1990.

At Bonneville Dam, a record daily fall chinook jack count of 4,293 fish occurred on Sept. 9.

Adult fall chinook counts at Lower Granite Dam are tracking at similar levels to 2008 when the Snake River wild run size at the Columbia River mouth was 6,400. Fall chinook jack counts are at record levels.

The group has updated the Group A steelhead run to 565,000 fish compared to the preseason forecast of 278,900 fish at Bonneville Dam.

The overall summer steelhead run may be close to the record run of 630,200 fish observed in 2001.

The projected sport effort and catch from the Lower Columbia mainstem from the Rocky Point/Tongue Point line upstream to Bonneville Dam is projected to be 94,200 angler trips with 14,200 adult chinook and 6,210 steelhead kept plus 3,800 steelhead released from Aug. 1-Sept. 13. Pre-season, 15,100 adult fall chinook were expected to be caught through December.

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