Outdoors blog: Spring chinook update

By Al Thomas, Columbian Outdoors Reporter



Here’s a Monday afternoon update regarding spring chinook in the lower Columbia:

Test netting —
There were 16 drifts made on Sunday in the Wahkiakum and Cowlitz portions of the river with a catch of three spring chinook and eight steelhead.

Two of the chinook were lower Columbia-origin salmon, while one was headed for upstream of Bonneville. One of the three fish was wild. Among the eight steelhead, five were hatchery and three were wild.

This is not the ratio of chinook to steelhead that state managers like to see prior to a commercial fishery and the chinook per drift is — obviously — very low.

Dam count — Twenty-two adult spring chinook were counted Friday at Bonneville. That was the first double-digit day this year. The cumulative count through Friday is 68 adult spring chinook and one jack.

Sport fishing — Washington sampled 2,348 anglers with 82 adult chinook and one jack, which is a fish per 28 trips. All but one chinook came from boaters. Seventy-six percent of the catch were fish headed for upstream of Bonneville.

In the estuary, 123 boaters were sampled with 13 chinook kept and two released. Between Warrior Rock and Kelley Point, the numbers were 293 boaters with 11 chinook kept and four released. Between Davis Bar and Portland airport tower, there were 550 anglers sampled with 21 chinook kept and two released.