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News / Sports / Outdoors

States delay decision on spring chinook reopening

By Columbian news services
Published: April 20, 2024, 5:57am

Washington and Oregon officials say they will wait to decide whether to reopen spring chinook salmon fishing in the lower Columbia River despite anglers having about 40 percent of their early-season allowance remaining.

The states announced Thursday that sportsmen downstream of Bonneville Dam caught 3,460 adult spring chinook from 41,300 fishing trips between March 1 and April 11. Among those chinook, 2,334 adult fish were of upper Columbia-Snake origin, which is 60 percent of the 3,906 allowed prior to the mid-May update.

However it’s getting too close to the peak of the run to give sportsmen more time.

“With abundance building in the lower river, and the potential for very high catch rates, fishery managers are not prepared to consider additional fishing time until a time closer to the upriver spring chinook run-size update,’’ the states said in a joint document.

That update typically occurs in late May, when substantial numbers of upriver spring chinook have crossed Bonneville Dam. Passage at Bonneville is usually 50 percent complete by May 11.

Fishing remains open through upstream of Bonneville Dam. No catch from 18 anglers were reported through April 15.

Fishing report

The latest Columbia River and tributary fishery reports for lower Columbia River from Rocky Point/Tongue Point line upstream to Bonneville Dam.

This sample was taken during the April 9 flight count.

Mainstem Columbia River

SALMON/STEELHEAD

Sec 1 (Bonneville) — 156 bank anglers kept 15 Chinook and released one Chinook; three boats/five rods had no catch.

Sec 4 (Vancouver) — 11 bank anglers had no catch; 17 boats/36 rods kept four Chinook.

Sec 5 (Woodland) — 11 bank anglers released one Chinook; nine boats/25 rods kept eight Chinook and released one Chinook.

Sec 6 (Kalama) — 18 bank anglers had no catch; 20 boats/45 rods kept 10 Chinook and released one Chinook.

Sec 7 (Cowlitz) — 10 boats/19 rods kept three Chinook and one steelhead.

Sec 8 (Longview) — 20 bank anglers kept three Chinook and released three steelhead; 45 boats/95 rods kept 24 Chinook and released one Chinook.

Sec 9 (Cathlamet) — 29 bank anglers had no catch; 16 boats/33 rods kept 11 Chinook and released one Chinook.

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Sec 10 (Cathlamet) — 88 boats/190 rods kept 72 Chinook and released one Chinook.

Columbia River tributaries

SALMON/STEELHEAD

Cowlitz River Interstate 5 Bridge downstream — 101 bank rods kept one jack, one steelhead and released two Chinook and two steelhead; one boat/one rod had no catch.

Cowlitz River above the I-5 Bridge — 11 bank rods had no catch; five boats/13 rods released two steelhead.

Kalama River — 17 bank rods had no catch; 10 boats/24 rods kept five Chinook and released one Chinook and one steelhead.

Lewis River — Eight bank rods had no catch; four boats/seven rods had no catch.

Wind River — Two boats/three rods had no catch.

Drano Lake — Three bank rods had no catch; 43 boats/89 rods kept four Chinook.

Other lakes

Merwin Reservoir — One boat/two rods with no catch.

Yale Reservoir — Two boats/four rods with one small (9-inch) chinook released.

OREGON FISH & WILDLIFE CREEL REPORT

Lower Willamette (downstream of St. Johns Bridge including Multnomah Channel) —
1,264 boats/2,972 anglers with 166 spring chinook kept and 28 released.

Recent trout plants

April 15: Horsethief Lake — 6,000 rainbow, 2.50 fish per pound from Goldendale Hatchery.

April 15: Rowland Lake — 3,000 rainbow, 2.50 fish per pound from Goldendale Hatchery.

April 12: Klineline Pond — 2,000 rainbow, 1.75 fish per pound from Mossyrock Hatchery.

April 11: Klineline Pond — 10,000 rainbow, 2.45 fish per pound from Vancouver Hatchery.

April 10: Battle Ground Lake — 3,000 rainbow, 2.40 fish per pound from Vancouver Hatchery.

April 10: Horseshoe Lake — 3,120 rainbow, 2.60 fish per pound from Mossyrock Hatchery.

April 10: Rowland Lake — 3,000 rainbow, 2.50 fish per pound from Goldendale Hatchery.

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