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Thursday, 29 July 2010 01:22

Fall nookie is better than none!

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Fall nookie is better than none! SPOT NWKA

Anglers can look forward to one of the best returns of chinook salmon in several years when the fall fishing season gets under way Aug. 1 on the Columbia River.

Fisheries managers are forecasting a return of 655,000 adult fall chinook this year, which is up from a return of 429,000 chinook last year. If the run materializes as expected, it would be the largest fall chinook return since 2004.

The outlook for another popular fall fish – coho salmon – is down from last year’s banner run. Fisheries managers are forecasting that 286,600 coho will enter the mouth of the Columbia this year. That compares to a return of 721,000 in 2009.

“Overall, we’re anticipating some excellent fall fishing this year,” said Steve Williams, deputy administrator of the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife’s fish division. “It looks like there are going to be a lot of chinook in the river this year, and while the number of coho doesn’t appear to be as strong as last year it is still shaping up to be a decent return.”

Anglers are reminded that Columbia River fisheries are managed to quotas based on Endangered Species Act (ESA) limitations on wild fish. The flexible nature of these fisheries allows managers to maximize fishing opportunities under the ESA but this also means that regulation changes and season modifications can happen quickly based on actual returns and harvest rates.

ODFW recommends that anglers make sure they understand the latest season dates and regulations before they head out to the river to pursue these prized fish. Anglers are advised to stay tuned for changes that can take place as new information becomes available. Updates can be found on the ODFW website at www.dfw.state.or.us/resources/fishing/reg changes/columbia.asp. ODFW also distributes in-season changes through the news media.

The 2010 fall seasons and regulations were established based on extensive deliberations between state and federal agencies, tribal representatives, and recreational and commercial fishers through a public forum known as the “North of Falcon” process, which takes place each spring.


2010 Columbia River fall salmon and steelhead seasons

COLUMBIA RIVER MAINSTEM, Buoy 10 upstream to Tongue Point

  • Open for adult adipose fin-clipped coho (>16”) and adult adipose fin-clipped steelhead Aug. 1 – Dec. 31, 2010.  Jacks may not be retained in this fishery.
  • Open for adult chinook (>24”) Aug. 1 – Aug. 31 or until harvest guideline is achieved; closed for retention of chinook Sept. 1 – Dec. 31.
  • Daily bag limit is 2 adult salmon/steelhead in combination, of which only 1 may be a chinook, when retention of chinook is allowed.
  • Minimum lengths for adult salmon are 24 inches for chinook and 16 inches for coho

COLUMBIA RIVER MAINSTEM, Tongue Point upstream to a line projected from Warrior Rock Lighthouse on the Oregon shore to Red Buoy #4 to a marker on the lower end of Bachelor Island on the Washington shore

  • Open for adipose fin-clipped coho and adipose fin-clipped steelhead Aug. 1 – Dec. 31, 2010.
  • Open for chinook Aug. 1 – Sept. 11, or until harvest guideline is achieved; closed for retention of chinook (adults and Jacks) Sept. 12 – Dec. 31, 2010
  • Daily bag limit is 2 adult salmon/steelhead in combination, of which only 1 may be a chinook (when retention of chinook is allowed), and 5 jacks.

COLUMBIA RIVER MAINSTEM, from a line projected from Warrior Rock Lighthouse on the Oregon shore to Red Buoy #4 to a marker on the lower end of Bachelor Island on the Washington shore upstream to Bonneville Dam

  • Open for chinook (adults and jacks), adipose fin-clipped coho, and adipose fin-clipped steelhead Aug. 1 – Dec. 31, 2010, or until harvest guideline is achieved.
  • Daily bag limit is 2 adult salmon/steelhead in combination, of which only 1 may be a chinook, and 5 jacks.

COLUMBIA RIVER MAINSTEM, Bonneville Dam upstream to Oregon/Washington border

  • Open for chinook (adults and jacks), coho, and adipose fin-clipped steelhead Aug. 1 – Dec. 31, 2010, or until harvest guideline is achieved.
  • Coho must be adipose fin-clipped if kept downstream of the Hood River bridge.
  • Daily bag limit is 2 adult salmon/steelhead in combination, and 5 jacks.
Read 3240 times Last modified on Thursday, 29 July 2010 21:28

Isaac Miller

About the Author: Isaac Miller considers himself an "equal opportunity angler" and will fish anything that will take a hook. Isaac often makes live internet video broadcasts when fishing from his kayaks, giving up-to-the-second reports on conditions and tackle choices. He also blogs at www.isaac-online.com and is a YakAngler.com Pro Staffer as well as Co-Host for Kayak Fishing Radio's Wild West show, PR Director for Recycled Fish, and co-owner of Green Tackle.

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