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Reel Time Fishing Northwest

Mark Yuasa covers fishing and outdoors in the Pacific Northwest.

October 4, 2011 at 4:50 PM

Columbia River’s Hanford Reach chinook catch and angler turnout last week could be one for record book

The king bite in the Hanford Reach area of the Columbia River is reaching its peak, and the catch and trips taken were likely of record-sized proportions for a one-week period.

State Fish and Wildlife staff interviewed 479 boats last week with 513 adult chinook, 126 jack chinook and two coho.

This past week was likely a record for both total angler trips and chinook caught in a week for the Hanford Reach area, according to Paul Hoffarth, a state Fish and Wildlife biologist in Pasco.

Anglers averaged slightly better than one salmon per boat. An estimated 2,608 adult chinook, 641 jack chinook and five coho were harvested this past week. There were an estimated 6,070 angler trips this past week.

For the season, 5,705 adult chinook, 1,259 jack chinook and 37 coho have been harvested.

On Sept. 30, the in-season return estimate for the Hanford Reach was updated. The adult return estimate is now predicted to be 64,361 adult chinook (not including hatchery returns). The in-season estimate dropped 6,000 adult chinook from the previous estimate (Sept. 23) but state Fish and Wildlife is still predicting a strong return.

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