Follow us:

Reel Time Fishing Northwest

Mark Yuasa covers fishing and outdoors in the Pacific Northwest.

November 17, 2011 at 1:31 PM

Enough fishing action to keep anglers busy through Thanksgiving


Here is what some local fishing experts, store owners and managers and state fisheries biologists has to say about where to go fishing in the days ahead.

Joe Hymer, a state Fish and Wildlife biologist in Vancouver:

“We’ve been out (sampling) this week, and they are still getting some chinook, coho and sea-run cutthroats mainly on the Upper Cowlitz, and some steelhead. It is kind of spotty in lower river.”

“In the Kalama there is not a lot of effort and not a lot of catch. The North Fork (Lewis River) boat guys are doing OK around Cedar Creek for coho and chinook although some are getting dark. Not a huge amount of effort anywhere.”

“We are starting to hear a few more reports of winter steelhead, and it looks like a few more are showing up here and there. This next rain event will be a good test, and then on Thanksgiving it looks like another rain event.”

Hymer says there are winter steelhead at Cook Creek on the Quinault, and the Willapa had some, and the Cowlitz had quite a few and they’re starting to see a dribble on the Lewis too.

“Not a big effort out in the Lower Columbia, and they are catching some sturgeon. We should have lot of opportunity around Thanksgiving be it for trout (five southwest Washington lakes open the day after turkey day) or winter run steelhead or razor clams on the coast.”

Mike Chamberlain at Ted’s Sports Center in Lynnwood:

“Things have slowed down a little bit, and the coho fishing has slowed down quite a bit. They are starting to see some nice winter steelhead on the coastal streams, and we should get more fish as this front moves through.”

“There is great lake trout fishing at Lake Chelan. Still doing well at Rufus Woods on the triploid trout. Most of the crab reports I’ve gotten have been quite good.”

Kent Alger at 3-Rivers Marine and Tackle in Woodinville:

“In the Skykomish I would say it is on tail end of coho although my buddy got six coho on Sunday fishing around Monroe, and he killed one out of the six so that tells you what they look like and their condition. I know of seven legit winter steelhead taken so far on the Skykomish, and they were caught by guys side drifting for silvers, and another guy got one back trolling and another one got one throwing jigs.”

“The fishing conditions on the coastal (Humptulips, Bogachiel, Hoh, Sol Duc, Calawah and Satsop) streams will be a coin toss and will be judged by how much rain we get. The Bogey has got a lot of steelhead in it.”

“Blackmouth fishing has been kind of just hit and miss, and I got some good reports form Elger Bay of three fish killed up to 12 pounds, and a buddy of mine killed one at the Tin Shed (off Possession Bar) dragging Tomic Plugs. I know (Gary) Krein (owner of All-Star Charters in Everett) has been doing pretty good and whacking crab as well on their fishing trips.”

Alger says those looking for tips on the Puget Sound winter chinook fishery can attend Krein’s seminar at noon this Saturday, Nov. 19 at 3-Rivers Marine and Tackle in Woodinville. Details: 425-415-1575.

Gary Krein, owner of All-Star Charters in Everett:

“We’ve been doing very well in Area 9 (off Possession Bar) and on (Tuesday) we did quite surprisingly well, and it is much better fishing than last year. We’ve gotten a lot of action and lots of shakers (chinook under the 22-inch minimum size limit) and lots of fish close to 22 inches and it is such a fun winter fishery.”

“We are trolling plugs and spoons, and of course the spoons get a lot of the action. There appears to be enough bait around once the tides get running strong enough. The best fishing has been close to the bottom, and I’ve been staying within 20 feet of the bottom anywhere from 125 to 130 feet out 200 feet of water.”

“(On Tuesday) I saw everybody around us catching fish and that was eight boats total, including the (state Fish and Wildlife) test fishery guys who ended up with four fish. I ended up with four keeper fish, and 24 legal size Dungeness crabs in four crab pots. There are a good amount crab around, and it is as added extra bonus for us. Lots of hard (shell) crabs, and we had to sort through 20 or 30 crabs filled up on the pots to get our keepers. It has been averaging about four keepers per crab pot and I have been going in about 50 to 70 feet of water. I know a person who went out in Saratoga Passage, not clear up to Elger Bay (on Tuesday) and they didn’t do good and couldn’t get any legal fish. It has been pretty spotty in southern portion (of Saratoga).”

Doug Hanada, President of the Tengu Winter Blackmouth: Derby:

The derby held every Sunday, saw an 11-pound, 9-ounce hatchery chinook caught by Irene Kiga. It was the second legal-size chinook since the derby began four weeks ago, and the second fish after eight consecutive Sundays dating back to last season.

“Tough fishing in the bay on Sunday, but it finally gave up a nice-sized blackmouth to one lucky member. Deadsticking off Harbor Island early in the morning proved to be the winning combination. Only 32 members turned out, and reported hooking just a handful of shakers wherever they fished. Not a lot of bait around this time and there was nothing in the stomach of the lone keeper.”

The Tengu Derby is held at daybreak on Sundays through Dec. 18 at Seacrest Boathouse in West Seattle. Details are available by calling 206-324-7600.

(Photo courtesy of the Tengu Derby Club is Irene Kiga with a nice winter blackmouth caught in Elliott Bay.)



No personal attacks or insults, no hate speech, no profanity. Please keep the conversation civil and help us moderate this thread by reporting any abuse. See our Commenting FAQ.

The opinions expressed in reader comments are those of the author only, and do not reflect the opinions of The Seattle Times.

The Seattle Times

The door is closed, but it's not locked.

Take a minute to subscribe and continue to enjoy The Seattle Times for as little as 99 cents a week.

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited content access is included with most subscriptions.

Subscriber login ►
The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription upgrade.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. For unlimited access, please upgrade your digital subscription.

Call customer service at 1.800.542.0820 for assistance with your upgrade or questions about your subscriber status.

The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. Subscribe now for unlimited access!

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited content access is included with most subscriptions.

Activate Subscriber Account ►