April 3, 2014
CLACKAMAS, Ore. – Spring Chinook anglers on the lower Columbia River will get six more days of salmon fishing under a season extension adopted today by Oregon and Washington fishery managers.
The spring Chinook season that was originally scheduled to close after April 7 will now go through April 14, except for Tuesday, April 8, when the recreational fishery will be closed to allow for a potential commercial fishing period.
High and turbid water conditions meant a slow beginning to the spring Chinook season. Through March 31, anglers have harvested only 5 percent of their available upriver spring Chinook allocation. Managers predict that by April 7 anglers will have kept fewer than 3,000 of the 12,400 fish pre-season expectation.
Water conditions and fish abundance are expected to improve over the next week and a half. According to Jeff Whisler, ODFW’s assistant Columbia River fisheries manager, staff is predicting that by the end of the season extension 89 percent of the fishery’s allocation of upriver spring Chinook will be used.
However, Whisler cautions that predicting the number of fish that will be caught during the six day extension is difficult and anglers should be alert for further modifications to the fishery. Over the next week, the states will continue to closely monitor the salmon returns and recreational catch to determine whether further modifications to the spring Chinook season are appropriate. In-season regulation changes are posted on the ODFW Web site.
The bag limits and areas open to fishing remain the same during the extension: From Buoy 10 upstream to Beacon Rock (boat and bank) plus bank fishing only from Beacon Rock upstream to the Bonneville Dam deadline. Anglers may keep two adult salmonids a day, of which only one may be a Chinook. Only adipose fin-clipped fish may be kept.