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Reel Time Fishing Northwest

Mark Yuasa covers fishing and outdoors in the Pacific Northwest.

March 18, 2010 at 11:59 AM

Poor Hood Canal chinook and coho returns will drive how salmon fishing seasons are crafted

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No unexpected, earth shattering news came out of the first North of Falcon salmon meeting in Olympia on Tuesday, March 16, although there are concerns for two Hood Canal salmon stocks.

“We have issues for coho and chinook in Hood Canal, and those will affect how we craft the Puget Sound fisheries,” said Gary Krein, owner of All-Star Charters in Everett and a member of the state Fish and Wildlife sportfishing advisory board.

“We don’t know yet how much constraints those two runs will have, but we will have to make some adjustments downward to solve those issues,” Krein said. “There are some collective issues for both the tribal and nontribal fisheries, and we both have a burden to get solved.”

Krein says it is still early in the process of setting salmon seasons and “there will be lots of work to do” between now and when the final seasons are set April 11-15 at the Pacific Fisheries Management Council meetings in Portland, Ore.

“Expecting any expansion of sport fisheries in Puget Sound is out of the question,” said Krein, although many who are involved in the process will be happy to come out with something similar to last year’s sport fisheries. “Those Hood Canal coho and chinook swim in all areas of Puget Sound, and are caught in all those areas too.”

Upcoming meetings: Coastal regional fisheries meeting is 6 p.m. March 24 at the Raymond Elks Club; Puget Sound regional fisheries meeting is 6 p.m. March 25 at the state Fish and Wildlife’s Mill Creek office; coastal regional fisheries meeting is 9 a.m. March 30 at the Natural Resources Building in Olympia; final North of Falcon meeting is 9 a.m. April 6 at the Lynnwood Embassy Suites.

(Photo by Mark Harrison, Seattle Times staff photographer)

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