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Reel Time Fishing Northwest

Mark Yuasa covers fishing and outdoors in the Pacific Northwest.

September 13, 2010 at 8:31 PM

Coho in Puget Sound and Strait of Juan de Fuca pretty much a no show for now

So far the Puget Sound coho runs are lagging big time.

To give you an idea of how bad it is, one just has to look at the Ballard Locks fish counts to get an idea for the current gloominess.

“Still no coho,” were the words attached from the Muckleshoot Tribal fish biologist Mike Mahovlich who sends out twice-weekly updates on the Lake Washington sockeye, chinook and coho runs.

On Sept. 12, only 37 coho were counted bringing the estimated run size for now to 4,706 coho. Here are some total returns to the lake on days prior that: Sept. 11, 115 coho; Sept. 10, 119; Sept. 9, 74; Sept. 8, 55; Sept. 7, 64; Sept. 6, 35; Sept. 5, 39; Sept. 4, 55; Sept. 3, 13; Sept. 2, 58; and Sept. 1, 46.

The cumulative total so far is 709 coho. Now that number really bites.

Want to dig deeper then take a look at these numbers of coho caught over the past week from the Sekiu area:

Olson’s Resort, Sekiu — Sept. 9: 51 boats with 120 anglers caught nine coho, seven rockfish and two flounder; Sept. 10: 13 boats with 26 anglers caught three coho; Sept. 11: 60 boats with 154 anglers caught 16 coho and 18 rockfish; Sept. 12: 35 boats with 91 anglers caught four coho and one rockfish.

Van Riper’s Resort, Sekiu — Sept. 9: 40 boats with 91 anglers caught 15 coho, 25 rockfish and three kelp greenling; Sept. 10: 42 boats with 97 anglers caught nine coho, 21 rockfish, one lingcod and one kelp greenling; Sept. 12: 26 boats with 58 anglers caught six coho.

Further east in the Strait of Juan de Fuca at Port Angeles the ramp checks can speak for themselves as well:

Port Angeles West ramp — Sept. 10: Three boats with six anglers caught one coho; Sept. 12: One boat with two anglers caught one coho.

Ediz Hook ramp, Port Angeles — Sept. 10: Six boats with 14 anglers caught no fish; Sept. 11: 14 boats with 27 anglers caught no fish; Sept. 12: Five boats with 13 anglers caught no fish.

Another take on how ugly the coho season is so far is to take a look at the Edmonds Coho Derby results from this past Saturday, Sept. 11.

About 900 anglers participated for a successful turn out, but the catch on the other hand was lousy with just 129 coho weighed-in. Compare that to last year’s derby which drew about 1,000 anglers with a catch of 405 coho.

“It was really slow fishing,” said Tony Floor, director of fishing affairs for the Northwest Marine Trade Association who also runs the Northwest Salmon Derby Series. “The best coho fishing occurred right in front of Edmonds, and the winning fish and some of the larger fish caught in the derby came off the Spanish House (at Brown’s Bay).”

Derby results: 1, Charles Lee, 13 pounds-8.32 ounce coho, $5,000; 2, Shonn Gay, 13.0, $2,000; 3, Greg Van Zanten, 12-5.76, $1,000; 4, Leonard Emry, 11-13.60; 5, Chris Erickson, 11-2.08; 6, Carl Martin, 10-15.84; 7, Rick Rice, 10-8.48; 8, Jeff Wall, 10-8.0; 9, Tonefong Saechao, 10.0; 10, Bill Jenson, 10.0.

Kids results: 1, Breeanna Martin, 8-14.56; 2, Christian Lewis, 8-13.92; 3, Peter Matulich, 8-1.92.

Hopefully more coho will arrive in time for the Everett Coho Derby on Saturday and Sunday (Sept. 18-19) at the 10th Street ramp in Everett. Cost is $25. For details got to the Everett Coho Derby Web site.

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