Chinook options continue to improve
The hatchery king fishery in central and northern Puget Sound has been frustrating at times, but don't throw in the towel just yet. The latest reports indicate...
Seattle Times staff reporter
Seattle native and lifelong angler Mark Yuasa blogs on fishing in the Pacific Northwest.
The hatchery king fishery in central and northern Puget Sound has been frustrating at times, but don't throw in the towel just yet.
The latest reports indicate a giant wall of kings are still milling in Strait of Juan de Fuca, the west side of Vancouver Island and Admiralty Inlet off Whidbey Island.
"It was pretty good, and I haven't seen it this good for chinook in 20 years or so around Port Angeles," said Larry Bennett, the head state Fish and Wildlife fish checker in the Strait. "Usually the kings just dribble in, but that isn't the case this summer."
In the western Strait, places like Sekiu, Pillar Point and Freshwater Bay have all produced fairly good action for hatchery kings and some coho.
Further east off Admiralty Inlet, anglers were encountering fantastic king fishing.
"There looked like more fish caught up there (at Midchannel Bank off Port Townsend) than on opening day (July 16)," said Brett Barkdull, a state Fish and Wildlife biologist who recently fished the bank.
Places like Foulweather Bluff, Possession Bar, Point No Point, Pilot Point, the Edmonds area, Richmond Beach and Kingston have improved this week.
"It finally started to pick up around here for kings," said Pete Sergeeff a state Fish and Wildlife checker at the Don Armeni ramp in West Seattle. "It doesn't matter where you go. The tides are better for fishing this week, plus the fish seem more aggressive and willing to bite."
Good spots are Dolphin Point off Vashon Island, Lincoln Park and Brace Point near Fauntleroy, Southworth and Yeomalt Point.
The South King County Puget Sound Anglers Derby was held last Saturday, and more than 360 anglers caught 47 fish. Kyle Klein caught a 27-pound, 2-ounce king off Dolphin Point and took home $3,500.
While salmon action off the coast is good, the early arrival of tuna has gotten many into a fishing frenzy.
"We saw some pretty good tuna catches this week, and Ilwaco had a lot of effort for an average of five to six tuna per person and the highest private boat has more than 10 per rod," said Wendy Beeghley, a state Fish and Wildlife biologist. "The tuna were anywhere from 25 to 40 miles offshore."
At Westport, charter boats averaged more than 10 tuna per rod, and private boats caught four to seven per rod. Neah Bay and La Push tuna anglers had some success, but not as much effort.
On the salmon front, Westport anglers averaged close to 0.75 fish per rod with about two chinook caught for every coho. At La Push, it was just over a fish per rod with a 2-to-1 ratio of chinook to coho. At Neah Bay, it was about a fish per rod with more coho in the catch. At Ilwaco, it was a bit under a fish per rod, and more chinook showed up.
Mark Yuasa: 206-464-8780 or firstname.lastname@example.org
|Statewide sockeye fishing||Effort remains high, and sockeye catches were fair at Baker Lake. Through Monday, 15,536 were transported to Baker, and the total trapped is 24,612 with an in-season update of about 45,000. East of the Cascades, the Lake Wenatchee fishery is very good with many anglers getting their three-sockeye daily limits. Fish count at Tumwater Dam shows about 32,000 have entered the lake, but it is tapering off. Fishing is open through Aug. 31 from one hour before sunrise to one hour after sunset each day. The Upper Columbia River sockeye fishery at Brewster and Wanapum remains hot for sockeye and a few chinook.|
|Statewide lakes||Good for perch, bass and cutthroat in Lake Washington and Sammamish. Fair for kokanee in Lake Stevens. Fair to good for trout in Lone, Shoecraft and Goodwin. Good for large lake trout in Lake Chelan. Try Potholes Reservoir for trout, bass and walleye. Good for planted trout in Mayfield Lake and Lake Scanewa.|
|Statewide rivers||Slow to fair at Lower Columbia mouth from Buoy-10 to Astoria-Megler Bridge for chinook and coho. Slowed for steelhead in the Lower Columbia, but good reports came from below Bonneville Dam. Fair catch of steelhead in Bonneville Pool near the mouths of Drano Lake and White Salmon River. Fair for steelhead and chinook in the Cowlitz between the hatcheries. Good for steelhead, walleye and chinook caught in The Dalles Pool of Columbia River. Samish River is open for kings but spotty. Slow to fair for steelhead in Skykomish. Hatchery chinook fishing is open through Aug. 15 from Skykomish mouth to Wallace River mouth.|
|Slow to fair for kings in the San Juan Islands. More kings caught off the Edmonds Pier and Seacrest Pier in West Seattle. Slow to fair for hatchery kings off Tacoma, the Narrows area and Hood Canal south of Ayock Point. Very good crabbing in Puget Sound and Hood Canal; all are open Thursdays through Mondays only.|