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Reel Time Fishing Northwest

Mark Yuasa covers fishing and outdoors in the Pacific Northwest.

September 23, 2013 at 4:01 PM

State Fish and Wildlife Columbia River regional fishing reports


Cowlitz River – Anglers are catching a mix of fall Chinook, coho, steelhead, and sea run cutthroats.  Bank angling is best near the salmon hatchery while boaters continue to catch fish in the lower river.

Last week Tacoma Power recovered 931 fall Chinook adults, 46 jacks, 413 coho salmon, 647 jacks, 22 summer-run steelhead, nine spring Chinook adults, one jack, eight mini-jacks and 35 cutthroat trout during five days of operations at the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery separator.

During the past week Tacoma Power employees released 71 fall Chinook adults, 16 jacks, eight spring Chinook adults, 50 coho adults and 23 jacks into the Cispus River above the mouth of Yellow Jacket Creek and released 390 fall Chinook adults, 13 jacks, 220 coho adults, 597 jacks and five cutthroat trout into the Tilton River at Gust Backstrom Park in Morton. Also, 41 fall Chinook adults, 5 jacks, 77 coho adults and 26 jacks were released into the upper Cowlitz River at the Skate Creek Bridge in Packwood.

River flows at Mayfield Dam are approximately 3,000 cubic feet per second on Monday, September 23. Water visibility is 12 feet.

Kalama River – Bank anglers are catching some fall Chinook and coho.

Lewis River – Both the mainstem and North Lewis are producing coho plus stray hatchery fall Chinook.  Effective October 1 any Chinook, adipose fin clipped or not, may be retained on the Lewis including the mainstem and North Fork.  In addition, the North Fork Lewis from Colvin Creek to the overhead powerlines below Merwin Dam will remain open two additional weeks (through October 15) for fall Chinook, hatchery coho, and hatchery steelhead.

Washougal River – Bank anglers are catching some fall Chinook.

Drano Lake – Boat anglers are catching fall Chinook.  The lake will be closed to all fishing from 6 pm Tuesdays to 6 pm Wednesdays in October.

Klickitat River – Anglers are catching fall Chinook throughout the system.  Effort has been heavy in the lower river with 50 vehicles from Lyle Falls downstream.  In the upper river above the falls, 136 bank & 49 boat anglers were sampled with 74 Chinook kept, 4 released, and 0 steelhead.

For the Lyle Falls Trap data, see http://www.ykfp.org/klickitat/Data_lyleadulttrap.htm.

Yakima River – From Paul Hoffarth, WDFW District 4 Biologist in Pasco:  Effort and harvest picked up this past weekend on the Yakima River.  WDFW staff interviewed 134 anglers between September 16th and 22nd.  29 adult Chinook and 7 jacks were sampled.  An estimated 189 adult fall Chinook and 41 jacks were harvested this past week from 1,178 angler trips.  Anglers averaged 1 Chinook for every 8 hours fished.

Buoy 10 – Some coho and a few Chinook are being caught.  Effective October 1, the salmonid daily limit increases to 6 fish of which 2 may be adult salmon or hatchery steelhead or one of each. Salmon minimum size is 12 inches. Any Chinook, adipose fin clipped or not, may be retained.  Release all salmon other than Chinook and hatchery coho.

Lower Columbia below Bonneville Dam – Last week we sampled 1,779 salmonid anglers (including 512 boats) with 666 adult and 21 jack fall Chinook, 8 adult coho, and 2 steelhead.

Above the Lewis (Sec. 1-4):  All but one of the 128 adult fall Chinook were kept.  Below the Lewis (Sec. 5-10):  134 (25%) of the 538 adult fall Chinook caught were kept. Of the 375 known origin fish released  below the Lewis, all but 2 were wild.

From the Rocky Point line upstream to the Warrior Rock line –  Effective October 1 any Chinook, adipose fin clipped or not, may be rened.  Release all salmon other than Chinook and hatchery coho.

Bonneville Pool – About 50 boats off the Klickitat and 30 off the White Salmon yesterday.  Boat anglers averaged 2/3 Chinook per rod.

The Dalles Pool – Boat anglers averaged just over ¾ adult Chinook per rod.

Hanford Reach – From Paul Hoffarth, WDFW District 4 Biologist in Pasco:  The number of anglers nearly doubled this week compared to the previous week. The good news is so did the number of Chinook harvested per boat.  Anglers averaged 1 Chinook per boat this past week.

Staff interviewed anglers from 404 boats (944 boat anglers) and 160 bank anglers fishing for Chinook that harvested  381 adult Chinook and 65 jacks (1.0 Chinook per boat).  Harvest for the week was estimated at 1,910 adult Chinook and 316 Chinook jacks.  Based on the interviews, an estimated 5,293 angler trips were conducted between September 16th and 22nd.

For the season, 3,044 adult Chinook and 588 jacks have been harvested.  There have been 13,411 angler trips for the fishery through September 22.


The Dalles Pool – Boat and bank anglers are catching some legals.  Through August, an estimated 172 (57.3%) of the 300 fish annual guideline had been taken.


Mineral LakeNo report on angling success. September 30 is the last day to fish for the year.

Goose Lake north of Carson – Planted with 1,300 cutthroats averaging over a pound each on Sept. 18.  No report on angling success.





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