Columbia River Spring Chinook Season
by Chester Allen
The long squabble between Oregon and Washington over the ultra-popular Columbia River spring chinook season is finally over.
About 300,000 wild and hatchery springers -- mostly hatchery -- are expected to return to the Columbia this spring. That's the third-biggest run since 1977.
Of course, this run is tiny compared to the millions of spring chinook that once returned to the Columbia, but I won't rant about that right now.
Anyway, sport anglers will fish for Columbia River spring chinook salmon through March and April.
Fishing will be open from the West power lines on Hayden Island downstream to Buoy 10 each day from March 1 to 15. Angling will be limited to Thursdays through Saturdays from March 16 through April 18.
Fishing will open from the West power lines on Hayden Island upstream to Bonneville Dam each day from March 1 through March 22. Angling will be limited to Wednesdays through Saturdays from March 23 through April 22. Fishing will be open every day from March 16 through April 30 from the Tower Island power lines above Bonneville Dam to McNary Dam.
Anglers must release all wild chinook -- fish with intact adipose fins -- hooked on the Columbia during these seasons. Anglers must also release all wild steelhead.
Anglers can keep one hatchery chinook salmon and one hatchery steelhead downstream of Bonneville Dam. Anglers can keep two hatchery chinook or two hatchery steelhead or one of each from McNary Dam downstream.
For more information, visit wdfw.wa.gov.
Good luck out there!
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