The ocean remains the hot spot for salmon fishing, and state Fish and Wildlife officials are meeting Thursday to discuss possibly raising the bag limit at Westport from one to two kings daily, and could begin very soon.
“We may increase the chinook bag limit off Westport and it could happen as soon as this weekend,” said Wendy Beeghly, a state Fish and Wildlife biologist. “We had great catches again (this past week) in Ilwaco, and again for mostly coho with a 1.7 fish per person average. It is still pretty easy (two-salmon) daily limits.”
Beeghly says anglers are getting some nice hatchery coho catches at Buoy-10. The fish in the ocean are varied in size from 4 pounds all the way up to 12 pounds.
“Westport saw an uptick in the chinook catch this past week,” Beeghly said.
At Westport the catch average was one chinook per every two rods, and 0.8 coho per rod, and the best coho catch occurred along the 300 foot depth line. Some Westport boats targeting kings were finding fairly good action off the beach just north of Ocean Shores mixed in with a few hatchery coho.
To the north, La Push anglers averaged 1.4 fish per rod, and the bulk of the catch is coho.
“That is change from past weeks when the chinook outnumbered the coho at La Push,” Beeghly said. “We saw some really good catches at La Push, and quite a bit of effort.”
At Neah Bay, it was decent with a 0.9 fish per rod, and the catch ratio was about two coho to one chinook.
“Tuna fishing remains really good, and the folks we’ve talk say the fish are anywhere from 40 to 50 miles offshore,” Beeghly said. “The bulk of the catch is mainly at Ilwaco and Westport, but boats at La Push and Neah Bay were also finding tuna.”