Follow us:

Reel Time Fishing Northwest

Mark Yuasa covers fishing and outdoors in the Pacific Northwest.

February 15, 2012 at 2:29 PM

Two spring chinook caught by one lucky angler in Willamette River

More spring chinook have appeared in a catch along the Lower Columbia River, but this time on the Oregon side.

Joe Hymer, a state Fish and Wildlife biologist in Vancouver says one angler appeared to be in the “springer zone” this week in the Willamette River on the Oregon side of the Lower Columbia where he hooked three spring chinook, and landed a two-fish daily limit.

A commercial test fishery in the Lower Columbia on Tuesday reported catching winter steelhead but no spring chinook. The next test fishery will be Feb. 21, and depending on the outcome a commercial spring chinook fishery could occur on Feb. 23.

The fish counts at Bonneville Dam through Monday showed no chinook have appeared since Jan. 20 when an adult and jack chinook were seen.

The upriver Columbia River spring chinook forecast is 314,200 compared to a forecast last year of 198,400 and an actual return of 221,200. It would be the fourth largest dating back to 1980, with the largest return of 440,300 happening in 2001.

The second largest occurred in 2002 when 335,000 upriver springers returned, and the third largest was 315,000 in 2010.

Harvest guidelines adopted will allow anglers fishing below Bonneville Dam to catch and keep up to 14,500 hatchery-reared spring chinook before the run forecast is updated in May.

Spring chinook fishing is currently open to boat and bank anglers on a daily basis from Buoy 10 near the mouth of the Columbia River upstream to the I-5 bridge.

Under the new rules, the sport fishery will expand upriver to Beacon Rock from March 1 through April 6. During that period, the sport fishery will close on three Tuesdays – March 20, March 27 and April 3 – to accommodate commercial fisheries.

Starting March 1, bank anglers will also be allowed to fish from Beacon Rock up to the fishing boundary below Bonneville Dam.

Above Bonneville Dam, the fishery will be open to boat and bank anglers on a daily basis from March 16 through May 2 between the Tower Island powerlines six miles below The Dalles Dam and the Washington/Oregon state line, 17 miles upriver from McNary Dam. Bank anglers can also fish from Bonneville Dam upriver to the powerlines during that time.

Starting March 1, anglers fishing downriver from Bonneville Dam may retain one marked, hatchery-reared adult spring chinook as part of their daily catch limit. Above the dam, anglers can keep two marked adult spring chinook per day effective March 16.

As in years past, only hatchery-reared spring chinook marked with a clipped adipose fin may be retained. Any unmarked wild spring chinook must be released unharmed.

Comments

COMMENTS

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 seattletimes.com 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 seattletimes.com 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 seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Activate Subscriber Account ►