Earlier today (Aug. 30) it sounded like the chinook retention sport fishery at the Buoy-10 area on the Lower Columbia River mouth was going to stay open longer than expected (scheduled to close after Aug. 31), but state fisheries officials decided against it.
The reason why the fishery won’t be extended despite having enough left in the catch allocation is due to impacts on lower river wild tule chinook stocks.
Thus, the chinook retention season will end after Tuesday, Aug. 31, although the Buoy-10 fishery will remain open for hatchery marked coho and steelhead.
The good news is those still yearning to catch a chinook can head out into the ocean off Ilwaco just outside the mouth of the Columbia River, which is open through Sept. 30.
Recent reports indicate a lot of kings and hatchery coho are still milling anywhere from just off the CR Buoy to as deep as the 290-foot line some 14 to 15 miles due west in the ocean.
Through Aug. 29, 6,459 chinook and 6,388 hatchery coho have been caught on 42,125 angler trips at Buoy-10.
The sport catches from Aug. 23-29 was 2,867 chinook and 3,812 hatchery coho on 17,083 angler trips.
The preseason catch expectations are 12,500 adult chinook (52 percent of catch allocation) and 11,900 adult hatchery coho (54 percent).
Other options for kings and hatchery coho are Westport (open through Sept. 19), and La Push and Neah Bay (open through Sept. 18). Both areas are still providing good salmon fishing as well.
(Photos taken by Mark Yuasa, Seattle Times staff reporter)