SW Washington Fishing Reports

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The Guides Forecast

The Guides Forecast

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SW Washington Fishing Update by Terry Otto

Wade Ramsey and Taleena Marsh with Buoy 10 coho. Photo courtesy Wade Ramsey

Wade Ramsey and Taleena Marsh with Buoy 10 coho. Photo courtesy Wade Ramsey

Buoy Ten Chinook closes after today, but coho still on. Local hog lines doing better, and tributaries filling with fall fish.

Vancouver Metro Area

Chinook fishing closes in the Buoy ten fishery after today. In the Vancouver area Chinook fishing is picking up, and local anglers are getting the fish to take wobblers and more in local Columbia River hog lines. Tributaries are seeing a flush of fall salmon, and fishing is getting exciting in some of them, especially the North Fork Lewis River. Trout fishing in high lakes is improving as the fish prep for the winter, and local warm water fisheries are still doing very well.

Kokanee fishing is picking up quite a bit in both Merwin and Yale, and the fish are reaching some really nice sizes as they prep for the spawn.

Lewis and Washougal Rivers Fishing Report—Big numbers of salmon have entered the Lewis River, and the fishing has been very good. Many of the fish are wild Chinook and Chinook jacks, which cannot be kept until October 1, but there are lots of coho jacks and adults, as well as summer steelhead for anglers to fill a limit with. The best bite for boat anglers has been at the hatchery, where the Meat Hole is jammed full of salmon. Most anglers are hover fishing with salmon eggs, and they are doing very well. The river is very low, and if bank anglers can reach the deep water, they are getting the fish on a variety of offerings. Spinners, drifted corkies, and bobber and salmon eggs are all getting plenty of action.

Chinook are trying to enter the lower sections of the Washougal River, and they are being joined by a few stray coho and summer steelhead. With the weir in place, anglers need to concentrate their efforts in the lower three river miles. The river is also still really low and clear, which will mean a tough bite, but the fish that have moved in will hold well. Bobber and bait is the best way to target the Chinook, which are mostly tules. When targeting the coho, twitching jigs works well.

Merwin and Yale Lakes Fishing Report—fishing has improved recently at both lakes, according to Stacie Kelsey of the WDFW Inland Fished Program. The fish are feeding hard ahead of their fall spawn, and are growing larger buy the week. The fishing is about as consistent as it has been all year, with the schools hanging in the 20-to-60-foot depth range. Trolling with kokanee flashers, and hootchies tipped with corn is still the best way to get these fish to bite.

Longview Area
Cowlitz and Kalama River Fishing Report—
A few fall Chinook have been poking their noses into the river, but not many as yet. A few coho are getting around, but once again, there are only a few. Overall, fishing is slow. The summer steelhead bite has slowed down to almost nothing, according to Dave Mallahan of Dave’s Guide Service (360-201-9313). Few boats have been fishing the river lately as a result of the slow fishing.

Bobber-dogging with bait has been the best bet for the summer steelhead, but with that run pretty much over, most anglers are turning to fall salmon. The attention will shift to the reach below the Barrier Dam in the upper river now that the fall fish are beginning to show. Still, pressure is light as yet.

Salmon are pulling into the lower Kalama River, but with the low water they are not moving upstream much. Also, with the fish collection weir in place below the Modrow Bridge, there are very few fish in the upper river. Anglers are reminded that the river is closed to fishing for, or retaining, steelhead below the railroad bridge at I-5. Only fin-clipped hatchery Chinook and coho may be kept. Anglers are getting a few to bite on bobber and bait, spinners, or by twitching jigs.

Columbia River Gorge
Salmon Fishing Report—
Drano Lake is fishing fair for Chinook, and in the latest creel survey, 10 boats/19 rods kept five Chinook and released one Chinook and eight steelhead. Trolling 360 flashers ahead of bait, spinners, or plugs has been effective. A few bank anglers are getting fish, too. The Wind River is also now producing a few fall Chinook as well, and trolling 360 flashers ahead of bait or plugs has been working. Anglers are starting to gather at the mouth of the White salmon River and the Klickitat River as well.

Check out Terry’s detailed report (he crushes it every week!) and forecast in this week’s paid version for SW Washington Members!

More information and weekly reports are available from our website, https://www.TheGuidesForecast.com/
 

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