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Reel Time Fishing Northwest

Mark Yuasa covers fishing and outdoors in the Pacific Northwest.

August 7, 2012 at 9:28 AM

Columbia River regional fishing reports

Salmon and Steelhead

Cowlitz River – Anglers are catching some adult Chinook and summer run steelhead, mainly between the hatcheries.

Last week Tacoma Power recovered 950 summer-run steelhead, 274 spring Chinook adults, 28 jacks, 44 mini-jacks, one fall Chinook adult, one sockeye salmon, and one sea-run cutthroat trout during five days of operations at the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery separator.

During the past week Tacoma Power employees released 114 spring Chinook adults and 11 jacks at the Day Use Park in Lake Scanewa above Cowlitz Falls Dam, 72 spring Chinook adults, eight jacks, and one cutthroat into the upper Cowlitz River at Packwood and 58 spring Chinook mini-jacks into Riffe Lake at the Mossyrock Park boat launch.

A total of 79 summer-run steelhead and five sockeye salmon adults were transported to the lower Cowlitz River and released at the Interstate-5 boat launch, and one summer-run steelhead and one sockeye salmon were recycled to the Barrier Dam during the week.

River flows at Mayfield Dam are approximately 3,180 cubic feet per second on Monday, July 30.

Wind River – Effort was light last Saturday morning. No report on angling success.

Drano Lake – Anglers are catching summer run steelhead. 48 boats were counted here last Saturday morning.

White Salmon River – Bank anglers are catching some summer run steelhead in the White Salmon but the best success have been observed in the mainstem Columbia just west of the mouth.

Lower Columbia below Bonneville Dam – During the first five days of August we sampled 2,090 salmonid anglers (including 241boats) with 523 steelhead, 24 adult and 6 jack fall Chinook, and no sockeye or coho. 296 (54%) of the steelhead were kept. All of the adult Chinook were kept as were 4 (67%) of the jack Chinook though all were legal to be retained.

Salmonid effort remains highest off the Washington bank with over 800 anglers counted during last Saturday’s effort flight count. There was also just over 400 salmonid boats observed during the flight.

Bonneville Pool – Boat anglers off the mouths of Drano Lake and the White Salmon River are catching summer run steelhead. There were 20 boats outside Drano and a dozen off the White Salmon last Saturday morning.

The Dalles Pool – Bank and boat anglers are catching summer run steelhead though most of the fish were wild and had to be released.

Sturgeon

Lower Columbia mainstem from the mouth to Marker 82 – Only a handful of sturgeon boats during the current catch-and-release only fishery.

The Dalles Pool – Bank anglers released some legals. The handful of boats sampled had only released sublegals and oversize fish.

Walleye and Bass

The Dalles Pool – Boat anglers averaged just over a walleye kept per rod. The couple bass boats sampled had released an average of 45 fish per boat. Bank anglers are also catching some walleye and bass.

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