Fall Chinook and Coho Fishing
September 1 marks the first day of the fall Chinook salmon fishing season on parts of the Snake, Clearwater, and Salmon rivers, as well as the second-ever coho season on the Clearwater River.
Chinook Salmon Season Details
The 2015 fall Chinook forecast is 37,000 hatchery and naturally-produced fall Chinook to the Snake River basin.
The Snake River will open for fall Chinook fishing from the Washington-Idaho border upstream to Hells Canyon Dam.
Fishing on the Snake River from the Cliff Mountain Rapids (about a mile downstream of Hells Canyon Dam) will be open until October 31, but could be closed sooner depending on the actual number of fish that return and the amount of harvest. The stretch between Hells Canyon Dam and Cliff Mountain Rapids is scheduled to remain open until November 17, or until further notice.
The Clearwater River, from its mouth upstream to Memorial Bridge in Lewiston; and the Salmon River, from its mouth upstream about three-fourths of a mile to Eye of the Needle Rapids, will be open until October 31, or until further notice.
A valid fishing license and salmon permit are required to fish for fall Chinook. Only adipose-clipped salmon may be kept. The daily bag limit is six adult fall Chinook salmon, the possession limit is 18 adult fall Chinook. There is no season limit on adult fall Chinook.
Only adult fall Chinook (24-inches and longer) must be recorded on the angler's salmon permit. There is no daily, possession, or season limit on fall Chinook jacks (those less than 24 inches).
Coho Salmon Season Details
This fall, anglers will enjoy the second consecutive coho salmon season in over 30 years. Fisheries managers predict between 18,000 and 5,000 coho will return to Idaho, enough to provide a tribal and non-tribal sport fishery.
The coho season will run through November 15 on the mainstem and Middle Fork Clearwater River from the mouth upstream to Clear Creek near Kooskia, and on the North Fork Clearwater River downstream from Dworshak Dam.
Anglers can keep two coho salmon per day and have 6 in possession. The season limit is 10.
Coho released from the Nez Perce Tribe's hatchery program have not had their adipose fins clipped. Anglers are reminded that they may keep coho salmon with an intact adipose fin, but fall Chinook salmon with adipose fins must be released unharmed. With both salmon in these rivers, anglers are encouraged to carefully identify their catch before harvest.
Color fish illustrations are printed in the general fishing seasons and rules brochure and online at: online.
The 2015 fall Chinook seasons and rules pamphlets are available at license vendors and Fish and Game offices. Both the Fall Chinook and Coho pamphlets are available online.
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