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Reel Time Fishing Northwest

Mark Yuasa covers fishing and outdoors in the Pacific Northwest.

September 11, 2012 at 4:48 PM

Salmon fishing effort and catches starting to fade off the coast, but fish are still around for those who go

WestportCoho21pds.jpg

A combination of rough ocean conditions and drop in angler turnout on the coast has slowed catch rates for salmon in recent days.

“Effort is dropping everywhere on the coast, and we had some bad weather on Sunday,” said Wendy Beeghly, a state Fish and Wildlife biologist.

“Catches aren’t great at Ilwaco and what we saw was about 0.8 fish per person and almost all the catch was coho,” Beeghly said. “At Westport it was 0.8 fish per person, and about two thirds of the catch was coho and one third was chinook.”

La Push had about 0.85 fish per rod, and Neah Bay anglers averaged 0.4 fish per rod with the catch at both ports being made up of mostly coho.

Charter boats are still doing OK for tuna, and one ran all the way south off Cannon Beach in Oregon, and the fish are moving south and getting harder for private boats to catch.

Beginning Thursday, Sept. 13, anglers off Westport can keep up to two coho daily where it is currently one daily in a two fish bag limit.

The new rule for coho now brings Westport in line with Ilwaco, Neah Bay and La Push.

Anglers can also keep up to two chinook toward the overall two-salmon daily limit in those areas.

Westport, La Push and Neah Bay are open daily for salmon fishing until Sept. 23, and Ilwaco is open until Sept. 30.

(Photo by Kirk and Jean Calkins with a picture of Matthews Calkins with a big 21 pound hooknose coho he caught off Westport during the Labor Day weekend.)

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