WA Follows OR, Opens Hells Canyon For Chinook


Hatchery fall chinook retention allowed in Washington portions of the Snake River

Action: Portions of the Snake River will open for retention of hatchery fall chinook.

Locations:    Snake River, from the Highway 12 Bridge – south bound lane, upstream to the Oregon State border (approximately 8 miles upstream from the mouth of the Grande Ronde River).

Zone A:   Highway 12 Bridge – south bound lane to Lower Granite Dam;

Zone B:   Lower Granite Dam upstream to Oregon state line.

Dates:    Immediately through Oct. 31, 2010.

Species affected:   Chinook salmon.

Reason for action: There are large numbers of upriver bright hatchery fall chinook returning to the Snake River. Significant steelhead fisheries occur in the Snake River and hatchery fall chinook are caught incidentally during steelhead fishing.  Retention of hatchery fall chinook is not expected to increase impacts to Endangered Species Act listed wild fall chinook.  Therefore, a limited retention fishery on adipose clipped hatchery fall chinook is authorized. This regulation is compatible with regulations authorized by Oregon and Idaho management agencies allowing harvest of hatchery fall chinook in the Idaho and Oregon boundary waters of the Snake River.

Other Information: Fishing open seven days per week.

Zone A:   The salmon daily harvest limit is two (2) adipose fin-clipped fall chinook jacks (less than 24 inches in length).

Zone B:   Upstream of Lower Granite Dam, the daily limit is two (2) adipose clipped Chinook, only one (1) of which can be an adult chinook (24 inches or greater). Anglers in Zone B must stop fishing for salmon once an adult hatchery salmon has been retained.

Minimum size for chinook that can be retained in the Snake River is 10 inches.  Anglers must use barbless hooks when fishing for chinook or steelhead in the Snake River.  Retained adipose fin-clipped fish must have a healed scar at the location of the missing fin.  All chinook or steelhead with unclipped adipose fins must be immediately released unharmed.  Anglers cannot remove any chinook or steelhead from the water unless it is retained as part of the daily bag limit.  Anglers should be sure to identify their catch because unmarked returning chinook salmon, coho salmon and unmarked steelhead are in the Snake River during this fishery.  Anglers are reminded to refer to the 2010 / 2011 Fishing in Washington sport fishing rules pamphlet for other regulations, including possession limits, safety closures, etc.  Angler catch rates will be monitored and Snake River fall chinook salmon fisheries may be closed prior to Oct. 31 based upon ongoing run size and harvest evaluations.

Information contact:   John Whalen (509) 892-7861


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