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Originally published Wednesday, June 4, 2014 at 8:24 PM

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Steelhead fishing on Skykomish River is a good bet

A look at this week’s top fishing spots.


Seattle Times staff reporter

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There are ample fishing choices to reel in, and some of the top spots are the local western region rivers and marine areas.

“This was one of the best steelhead openers I‘ve seen, and the hottest fishing is happening on the Skykomish River,” said Mike Chamberlain, owner of Ted’s Sports Center in Lynnwood who reported the opener at Reiter Ponds produced between 150 and 200 steelhead.

“It has cooled down since it opened, but still good,” Chamberlain said. “There are fish at Reiter Ponds for the bank anglers, and likewise for the boats fishing between Sultan and Monroe.”

The Cascade River and Skagit River from Highway 530 Bridge at Rockport to Marblemount Bridge opened Sunday for hatchery kings. “It wasn’t red hot, but there was some fish caught, some released, and a mix of wild steelhead and bull trout (released),” said Brett Barkdull, a state Fish and Wildlife biologist.

A creel check from the Skagit on Sunday showed 79 bank anglers caught seven adult hatchery kings and one jack king, and 19 boat anglers kept two adult hatchery kings.

On the marine-fishing scene, south central Puget Sound in the Tacoma area opened for hatchery chinook with a catch average of one fish for every seven rods.

“The early king fishing was decent, and the best spot the last few days has been around the Girl Scout Camp (in Colvos Passage),” said Art Tatchell, manager of the Point Defiance Park Boathouse. “Most are 8 to 13 pounds, and the biggest I’ve seen was a chrome-bright king just under 22 pounds.”

Other good spots were the Gig Harbor shoreline; Point Evans just north of Narrows Bridge; and the Clay Banks and the “Flats” off Point Defiance Park.

The Edmonds Pier is open for salmon fishing, and anglers casting 2- to 2½-ounce Point Wilson and Dungeness Stinger jigs are hooking some chinook up to 18 pounds.

The coastal hatchery king fishery opened Saturday, and the best action came off Ilwaco and Westport.

Free Fishing Weekend is this weekend, when a license isn’t required, but catch-record cards are necessary for salmon, steelhead and halibut.

Fishing Report
Location Comment
Marine areasExpect fair to good fishing for halibut on Saturday - the final day of fishing -in the Strait of Juan de Fuca from Sekiu to Port Angeles, San Juan Islands, east side of Whidbey Island and northern and central Puget Sound. Southern Puget Sound south of the Narrows Bridge is open daily for Dungeness crab and has been fairly good. Central Puget Sound is open north of a line from Point Monroe to Meadow Point for salmon catch-and-release fishing. The Tulalip Bay terminal salmon fishery is also open Fridays to noon Mondays, but closed on June 21. Southern Puget Sound is currently open for hatchery chinook. Lingcod and black rockfish fishing remains excellent at Westport, La Push and Neah Bay.
Biting: YesRating: ★★★  
Statewide riversThe Lower Columbia is hot for shad fishing below Bonneville Dam and at Steamboat Landing in Washougal. The shad count at Bonneville Dam has soared to 750,378, and 94,964 moved upstream Monday; and 84,472 on Tuesday. Slow to fair in Lower Columbia for hatchery spring chinook and steelhead. Bank anglers near barrier dam on Cowlitz have reported fair action for hatchery spring chinook. Good for spring chinook in Icicle River. Slowed down for spring chinook in Wind River and Drano Lake, but fair in Klickitat River. Slow and turbid water in Yakima River for hatchery spring chinook, but good for channel catfish and smallmouth bass. Good for walleye and bass, and fair for spring chinook in The Dalles and John Day pools.
Biting: YesRating: ★★★★   
Statewide lakesWestside lakes planted May 27-28 with more trout are Black in Thurston County, 1,570 trout; Depression in Whatcom, 3,666; and Mineral in Lewis, 2,038. Others recently planted were Black in Pacific County; Sawyer in King; Bradley, Clear, Tanwax and Kapowsin in Pierce; Duck and Aberdeen in Grays Harbor; Loomis and Western in Pacific; and Offutt in Thurston. Other good trout lakes are Green, Rattlesnake, Walker, Beaver, Echo, Alice, Desire, Meridian, Wilderness, Cottage, Padden, Pine and Gissburg. For latest plants go to http://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/plants/weekly/. In Eastern Washington, look for trout at Jameson, Coffeepot, Williams, Warden, and Conconully Lake and Reservoir. Good at Potholes Reservoir for walleye, bass and trout. Lake Chelan is good for lake trout and kokanee. Fair to good for cutthroat trout in Lake Washington. Fair to good for kokanee Stevens, American, Meridian and Roesiger.
Biting: yesRating: ★★★  


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