Bad Fishing But More of It
by Jeffrey P. Mayor
The News Tribune, April 16, 2011
Columbia spring fishery extended to Tuesday
Columbia River anglers will get four more days to catch hatchery-reared spring chinook salmon below Bonneville Dam because tough fishing conditions have held this year's catch below expected levels since late last month. Fishery managers from Washington and Oregon have extended the season through Tuesday.
Through Friday, lower-river anglers were projected to have caught and kept a total of 5,900 spring chinook, including 4,600 upriver fish that count toward the 7,700-fish harvest guideline.
This year's harvest guideline for the lower river fisheries is based on a projected return of 198,400 upriver fish, minus a 30 percent "buffer" to guard against overestimating the run. Based on the estimated catch through Tuesday, the fishery will close with a buffer of approximately 43 percent, said Guy Norman, southwest regional director.
Cowlitz: Anglers are catching a few chinook, mainly from the barrier dam to the trout hatchery. The main attraction remains the steelhead fishing. The difficulty is that one day the fishing is on, and the next it's shut off.
Olympic Coast: The rivers are still in pretty good shape, said Curt Reed at Waters West. The Hoh closed on Friday, while the Sol Duc is producing some late steelhead and spring chinook.
Skookumchuck: The river is still producing consistent catches of steelhead despite high water.
Yakima: Although the water remains high, fly anglers are catching trout on stonefly patterns. Look for fish in the slow water spots downstream of islands, rock piles or on the inside bends, said a report from Red's Fly Shop.
American: The kokanee fishing remains very good. Anglers are having success trolling, mostly with a Wedding Ring tipped with a worm or maggot, with the fish holding 20-30 feet deep.
Bradley: The trout fishing has been very good at this Puyallup lake. It's also drawing quite a few anglers. Try Power Bait or worms.
Eastside: Lakes like Nunnally and Burke are producing good catches of rainbow trout, even through anglers had to contend with the wind earlier this week. Flies like dark Woolly Buggers or lures like Roostertails are good options.
Isabella: Troll spoons for cutthroat trout and pop gear or woolly buggers or worms and dough baits for rainbow trout, said Ron Adams at Verle's Sports Center. Other lakes like Lost and Spencer also are fishing well.
Offut: The fickle weather has made the fishing tough, said Becky Pogue at Offut Lake Resort. The water temperature is 49 degrees and that has slowed the action as well.
Clam dig: Long Beach and Twin Harbors will be open for a razor clam dig Tuesday-Friday until noon, plus April 23 until 1 p.m. Copalis and Mocrocks will be open for digging Thursday-Friday until noon and April 23 until 1 p.m. The low tide times are: Tuesday: 8:07 a.m. (-1.8 feet); Wednesday: 8:54 a.m. (-1.7 feet); Thursday: 9:42 a.m. (-1.4 feet): Friday: 10:33 a.m. (-0.8 feet); and April 23: 11:27 a.m. (-0.2 feet). Kalaloch is closed until further notice.
North Coast: There haven't been many reports, but when the weather hasn't kept people ashore, the ling cod action has been fair to good off La Push.
South Sound: There has been no one on the water lately, Adams said.
Tacoma: Salmon fishing continues to be slow. A few small native fish have been caught and released off Point Dalco, said Art Tachell at Point Defiance Boathouse.
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