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Reel Time Fishing Northwest

Mark Yuasa covers fishing and outdoors in the Pacific Northwest.

August 16, 2011 at 1:51 PM

Steelhead, fall chinook and walleye fishing at their peak in the Columbia River region

Weekend Fishing Opportunities:

Summer steelhead fishing is good in the lower Columbia River.

Fall chinook catches are increasing in the lower River and at Buoy 10.

Walleye fishing is good between Portland and Bonneville Dam.

SALMON, STEELHEAD AND SHAD

The following modifications are now in effect for the mainstem Columbia River from Buoy 10 upstream to the Oregon/Washington border above McNary Dam:

COLUMBIA RIVER MAINSTEM, BUOY 10 LINE UPSTREAM TO THE TONGUE POINT/ROCKY POINT LINE:

Effective August 1 through December 31, this section of the Columbia River is open for adipose fin-clipped adult coho (greater than 16 inches) and adipose fin-clipped steelhead. Effective Aug. 1-28, this section of the river is open for adult chinook (greater than 24 inches). The daily bag limit is two adult salmon/steelhead in combination, only one of which may be a chinook, when chinook retention is allowed. The retention of chum and sockeye is prohibited.

COLUMBIA RIVER MAINSTEM, TONGUE POINT/ROCKY POINT LINE UPSTREAM TO WARRIOR ROCK LIGHTHOUSE/BACHELOR ISLAND LINE:

Effective through Sept. 9, the Columbia River from the Tongue Point/Rocky Point Line upstream to a line projected from Warrior Rock Lighthouse on the Oregon shore to Red Buoy #4 to a marker on the lower end of Bachelor Island is open to the retention of fall chinook, adipose fin-clipped coho and adipose fin-clipped steelhead.

The daily bag limit is two adult salmon/steelhead in combination, only one of which may be a chinook, and five jack salmon. Jack salmon are chinook less than or equal to 24 inches and coho less than or equal to 20 inches. It is unlawful to angle for jack salmon after the adult daily bag limit has been reached.

The retention of chum and sockeye is prohibited. During Sept. 10-30 chinook retention will be prohibited but will remain open for summer steelhead and coho.

Effective Oct. 1 through Dec. 31 this section of the Columbia River will re-open for chinook retention, and the daily bag limit will be modified to two adult salmon/steelhead in combination and five jacks. Seasons may be subject to in-season modifications.

COLUMBIA RIVER MAINSTEM, WARRIOR ROCK LIGHTHOUSE/BACHELOR ISLAND LINE UPSTREAM TO BONNEVILLE DAM:

Effective through Dec. 31, the Columbia River from a line projected from Warrior Rock Lighthouse on the Oregon shore to Red Buoy #4 to a marker on the lower end of Bachelor Island upstream to Bonneville Dam is open to the retention of fall chinook, adipose fin-clipped coho and adipose fin-clipped steelhead.

During Aug. 1 through Sept. 9, the daily bag limit is two adult salmon/steelhead in combination, only one of which may be a chinook, and five jack salmon. Jack salmon are chinook less than or equal to 24 inches and coho less than or equal to 20 inches. Retention of chum and sockeye is prohibited. Effective Sept. 10 through Dec. 31 the daily bag limit will be modified to two adult salmon/steelhead in combination and five jacks. Seasons may be subject to in-season modifications.

COLUMBIA RIVER MAINSTEM, BONNEVILLE DAM TO THE OREGON/WASHINGTON BORDER ABOVE McNARY DAM:

Effective through Dec. 31, this section of the Columbia River is open for fall chinook, coho (only adipose fin-clipped coho may be retained between Bonneville Dam and the Hood River bridge), and adipose fin-clipped steelhead. The daily bag limit is two adult salmon/steelhead in combination and five jacks. Jack salmon are chinook less than or equal to 24 inches and coho less than or equal to 20 inches. It is unlawful to angle for jack salmon after the adult daily bag limit has been reached. The retention of chum and sockeye is prohibited.

Anglers are beginning to catch a few fall chinook in the Lower Columbia, and the steelhead catch rates continue to be good as well.

In the gorge boat anglers averaged 0.07 fall chinook and 1.53 steelhead caught per boat, while anglers fishing the Portland to Longview area averaged 0.31 fall chinook and 0.41 steelhead caught per boat.

In Troutdale boat anglers averaged 0.05 fall chinook and 0.35 steelhead caught per boat. Catch rates for bank anglers in the gorge are good but slow elsewhere.

At Buoy 10 this past weekend anglers averaged 0.15 fall chinook and 0.02 coho caught per angler.

Gorge Bank: Weekend checking showed 23 adipose fin-clipped steelhead kept, plus 22 unclipped steelhead released for 150 bank anglers.

Gorge Boats: Weekend checking showed one fall chinook adult and 13 adipose fin-clipped steelhead kept, plus 10 unclipped steelhead released for 15 boats (39 anglers).

Troutdale Boats: Weekend checking showed three fall chinook adults, one fall chinook jack and 12 adipose fin-clipped steelhead kept, plus 11 unclipped steelhead and one sockeye released for 65 boats (136 anglers).

Portland to Longview Bank: Weekend checking showed four adipose fin-clipped steelhead kept, plus one unclipped steelhead released for 105 bank anglers.

Portland to Longview Boats: Weekend checking showed 43 fall chinook adults, one fall chinook jack and 45 adipose fin-clipped steelhead kept, plus 12 unclipped steelhead and two unclipped coho released for 140 boats (313 anglers).

Estuary Bank (Jones Beach to Clatsop Spit): Weekend checking showed one adipose fin-clipped steelhead kept for two bank anglers.

Estuary Boats (Tongue Point to Buoy 10): Weekend checking showed 68 fall chinook, five adipose fin-clipped coho, and one adipose fin-clipped steelhead kept, plus five fall chinook and 14 unclipped coho released for 168 boats (486 anglers).

STURGEON

BUOY 10 UPSTREAM TO WAUNA POWERLINES:

Effective Monday, Aug. 1 through the remainder of the year sturgeon retention is prohibited.

The following modifications were adopted at the Feb. 8 Compact/Joint State Hearing for the 2011 mainstem Columbia River sturgeon fishery from Wauna powerlines (River Mile 40) downstream to the mouth at Buoy 10, including Youngs Bay and all adjacent Washington tributaries.

The modifications include:

Prohibit the retention of sturgeon seven days per week during Monday, Aug. 1 through Saturday, Dec. 31, 2011.

The retention of green sturgeon is prohibited.

Catch and release of sturgeon may continue during retention closures.

WAUNA POWERLINES UPSTREAM TO BONNEVILLE DAM:

Effective Monday August 1 through Friday October 7 sturgeon retention is prohibited. All sturgeon angling is prohibited from Marker 82 upstream to Bonneville Dam during May 1 through August 31 to protect spawning sturgeon.

The following modifications were adopted at the February 8 Compact/Joint State Hearing for the 2011 mainstem Columbia River sturgeon fishery from the Wauna powerlines (River Mile 40) upstream to Bonneville Dam, including all adjacent Washington tributaries.

The modifications include:

Prohibit the retention of sturgeon seven days per week during Monday, Aug. 1 – Friday, Oct. 7, 2011.

Allow the retention of sturgeon three days per week on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday and prohibit the retention of sturgeon four days per week on Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday beginning Saturday, Oct. 8 through Saturday, Dec. 31.

Retention of green sturgeon is prohibited as per permanent regulations.

Catch and release of sturgeon may continue during sturgeon retention closures.

Effective May 1 – Aug. 31, 2011 all sturgeon angling, including catch and release, is prohibited between Marker 82 near the upper end of Skamania Island and Bonneville Dam.

BONNEVILLE DAM UPSTREAM TO THE OREGON/WASHINGTON BORDER:

In Bonneville, The Dalles, John Day, and McNary Pools the retention of sturgeon is prohibited through Dec. 31 because the white sturgeon catch guidelines have been reached. Catch and release fishing will be allowed throughout the remainder of the year in all four pools.

Sturgeon retention is closed on the lower Columbia River. Catch and release angling is allowed downstream of Marker 82 near Multnomah Falls. Retention season is scheduled to reopen Saturday October 8 between Wauna Powerlines and Bonneville Dam.

WALLEYE

Gorge Boats: No report.

Troutdale Boats: Weekend checking showed eight walleye kept for four boats (eight anglers).

Portland Boats: Weekend checking showed four walleye kept for two boats (four anglers).

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