The following is a brief summary of emergency and permanent sport fishing regulations for salmon, steelhead, sturgeon, shad, bass, walleye, and catfish on the mainstem Columbia River and its tributaries plus adopted and proposed razor clam seasons on the Washington coast. For additional permanent rules, see the 2015-16 Washington Sport Fishing Rules pamphlet.
Long Beach remains closed to razor clam digging. Tests there indicate domoic acid levels still exceed the amount deemed under state public health standards.
The mainstem Columbia and all Washington Columbia River tributaries are currently closed to fishing for Columbia River smelt (eulachon).
The daily white sturgeon limit is 1 fish and the annual limit is 2 fish even if the angler holds both a Washington and Oregon license.
Lower Columbia mainstem and its tributaries below Bonneville Dam – Catch-and-release fishing only.
Bonneville Dam upstream to The Dalles Dam including adjacent tributaries - Starting January 1 until further notice, retention fishing for sturgeon will be open seven days a week. The daily limit will be one white sturgeon per person. Minimum size is 38 inches fork length; maximum size 54 inches fork length. State fishery managers anticipate a Joint State Hearing in early 2017 to set the winter season retention closure date.
The Dalles Dam upstream to McNary Dam including adjacent tributaries - Starting January 1, retention fishing for sturgeon will be open seven days a week until harvest guidelines are reached. The daily limit will be one white sturgeon per person. Minimum size is 43 inches fork length; maximum size 54 inches fork length
Columbia River Mainstem
Starting January 1, anglers may retain up to two hatchery adult Chinook salmon per day on the mainstem Columbia from the I-5 Bridge downstream. Upstream of the I-5 Bridge will be closed to fishing for salmon.
Columbia River Tributaries
Starting January 1, anglers may retain up to two hatchery adult Chinook salmon per day on the lower Cowlitz, Kalama, and Deep rivers. On the Lewis River (including North Fork), the daily limit will be one hatchery adult Chinook per day. All other permanent regulations are in effect.
State fishing and hunting licenses are available for the new season (begins April 1, 2016) by phone (866-246-9453), online https://fishhunt.dfw.wa.gov/), and from licensing dealers around the state (http://wdfw.wa.gov/licensing/vendors/). A Vehicle Access Pass to lands owned by WDFW is free with most types of fishing and hunting licenses.
This endorsement allows you to use two fishing poles on most freshwater lakes, ponds, a few sections of certain rivers, and a few marine areas. You must have a fishing license in addition to the two pole endorsement.
At $35, an annual pass provides access to nearly seven million acres of state-managed recreation lands, including state parks, water-access points, heritage sites, wildlife and natural areas, trails and trailheads.
Those who buy an annual Discover Pass through the WILD system can now activate the pass immediately or anytime within one year of the purchase date. On-line gift buyers can select a future start date so long as they allow 10 days to receive their Discover Pass by mail.
For details on purchasing a Discover Pass, see http://discoverpass.wa.gov/