SW WA Fishing Report

(COURTESY JOE HYMER, PSFMC)

Salmon/Steelhead

Grays River –  Bank anglers downstream from the weir continue to catch some stray hatchery Select Area Bright fall Chinook.

Cowlitz River – Anglers on the lower Cowlitz are catching a mixture of fall Chinook, coho, steelhead, and sea-run cutthroats.  Near the salmon hatchery the catch is primarily fall Chinook.

Anglers from boundary markers at the mouth to 400 feet below Mayfield Dam Powerhouse may now retain one wild adult Chinook as part of the two adult Chinook daily limit.

Last week, Tacoma Power recovered 1,583 fall Chinook adults, 109 jacks, 75 summer-run steelhead, 23 spring Chinook adults, three mini-jacks, 590 coho adults, 75 jacks, and eight sea-run cutthroat trout during five days of operation at the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery separator.

Tacoma Power employees released 18 spring Chinook adults, 321 coho adults, 43 jacks, and 18 spring Chinook adults into Lake Scanewa, three spring Chinook mini-jacks and six cutthroat trout at the Barrier Dam Boat Launch, 1,307 fall Chinook adults, 104 jacks, three sea-run cutthroats, 10 coho adults and 2 jacks into the Tilton River at Gust Backstrom Park in Morton, and 240 coho adults, 27 jacks, and two spring Chinook adults at Franklin Bridge in Packwood.

River flows at Mayfield Dam are approximately 3,420 cubic feet per second on Monday, September 20, 2010. Water visibility is 10 feet.

Kalama River – Bank anglers were catching some fall Chinook, coho, and steelhead over the weekend.  All Chinook must now be released through the end of the year.

Lewis River – Effort and catch have increased around the salmon hatchery.  Hatchery coho are the primary catch though some hatchery fall Chinook and hatchery steelhead are also being caught.  Flows below Merwin Dam were approximately 2,700 cfs this morning, slightly above the long-term mean for this date.

Beginning October 1, all chinook must be released from the mainstem and North Fork Lewis and fishing from any floating device will be prohibited on the North Fork Lewis River from Johnson Creek upstream to Colvin Creek.  In addition, the area from Colvin Creek upstream to Merwin Dam closes to all angling from October through mid December.

Washougal River – Good for fall Chinook earlier last week.  Approximately 3,000 fish had entered the hatchery later in the week.

Drano Lake – No report on angling success.  In October, fishing is closed 6 pm Tuesdays to 6 pm Wednesdays.

Bonneville Pool – Approximately 50 boats off the mouth of the Klickitat last Saturday September 18.  Anglers are catching some fall Chinook.

Buoy 10 – Continues to be slow for hatchery coho.  Effort remains light.

Effective October 1, the salmon and steelhead daily limit increases to 6 fish of which 2 may be adult hatchery coho or hatchery steelhead or one of each.  Salmon minimum size is 12 inches.  Release all salmon other than hatchery coho.

Lower Columbia below Bonneville Dam – In general, success for fall chinook was best for boat anglers in Vancouver and just below Bonneville Dam with ½ fish per boat average while boaters at the mouth of the Cowlitz averaged about an adult coho per boat.

We sampled 119 salmonid bank anglers from Bonneville Dam downstream to the Rocky Point/Tongue Point line with 6 adult and 1 jack fall Chinook  and 2 steelhead, an average of a salmonid kept per every 13.2 rods based on mainly incomplete trips. In addition, we sampled 417 salmonid boat anglers (194 boats) with 54 adult and 6 jack fall Chinook, 33 adult coho, and 7 steelhead, an average of a salmonid kept/released per every 4.2 rods based on mainly completed trips.  About half the adult coho caught were kept.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Effective Wednesday September 22, 2010 The Chinook daily bag limit will increase to two (2) adult fish in the Mainstem Columbia River (from the Warrior Rock boundary upstream to Bonneville Dam).

Hanford Reach – WDFW staff interviewed 347 boats/807 anglers  with 322 chinook, 1 coho, and 17 steelhead harvested last week in the Hanford Reach.
White Bluffs and Vernita boat ramps showed the highest catch rates with Ringold also showing good catches as well.

JAMIE CARR OF SPOKANE WAS AMONG THE ANGLERS FINDING CHINOOK ON THE HANFORD REACH RECENTLY. (LAZER SHARP PHOTO CONTEST)

Chinook effort and catch are up from last year. WDFW interviewed 204 boats with 183 chinook and 1 coho harvested during the same week in 2009.

STURGEON

Lower Columbia below Bonneville Dam – Light effort and catch during the current catch and release only fishery.

From the Wauna powerlines upstream to Bonneville Dam, white sturgeon may be retained Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays only beginning October 1.    Daily limit 1 fish.  Minimum fork length 38 inches and maximum fork length 54 inches.

WALLEYE

Lower Columbia below Bonneville Dam – Boat anglers in the Camas/Washougal area averaged just over 2/3 walleye kept per rod.

TROUT

Mineral Lake – No report on angling success.  September 30 is the last day to fish for the year.

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