Southwest Washington (Region 5) Fishing Hotline

The following is a brief summary of emergency and permanent sport fishing regulations for salmon and steelhead on the mainstem Columbia River and its tributaries plus fall razor clam seasons on the Washington coast.

Complete information contained in this hotline message can be found in the Fishing in Washington pamphlet.

Friday May 15, 2015

The following is a brief summary of emergency and permanent sport fishing regulations for salmon, steelhead, shad, and sturgeon on the mainstem Columbia River and its tributaries, gamefish in SW WA waters plus razor clam digging on the Washington coast.

Anglers should be aware the permanent regulations in the Fishing in Washington pamphlet remain in effect through June 30. Newly adopted permanent regulations will take effect July 1.

RAZOR CLAMS

Digging will remain closed on ocean beaches for the remainder of the razor clam season because of elevated toxin levels.

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) has canceled two openings that were tentatively scheduled to start May 15 and May 22 due to high levels of domoic acid. WDFW canceled three days of a four-day dig earlier this month due to elevated toxin levels.

Domoic acid, a natural toxin produced by certain types of marine algae, can be harmful or even fatal if consumed in sufficient quantities. Razor clams absorb domoic acid into their fat cells and can retain it there long after the ocean water is free of toxins.

Based on the most recent test results that show increased levels of domoic acid, razor clams will not be safe to eat for the remainder of this month.

SALMON/STEELHEAD

Rocky Point/Tongue Point line upstream to Bonneville Dam – Effective May 16, will be open to fishing for hatchery Chinook, hatchery steelhead, and shad.  Through June 15, no boats for salmon and steelhead from Beacon Rock upstream.  The salmonid limit will be 6 fish of which no more than 2 may be adults.  Only one may be a hatchery adult Chinook.  Release wild Chinook, wild steelhead, and all sockeye

Bonneville Dam to Washington/Oregon Border – Closed to fishing for salmon and steelhead.  Scheduled to reopen June 16.

Deep River – Through June 15, on days when the mainstem Columbia River recreational fishery below Bonneville Dam is open to retention of Chinook, the salmonid daily limit in Deep River will be the same as the adjacent mainstem Columbia River daily limits.  On days when the mainstem Columbia River fishery is closed to Chinook retention, the permanent salmonid daily limit regulations for Deep River apply. 
Mainstem Grays from mouth to South Fork and West Fork Grays from mouth to hatchery intake/footbridge – Effective May 17 through June 5, the salmon and steelhead daily limit will be six fish of which no more than two may be hatchery adult chinook or two hatchery steelhead or one of each.  Salmon minimum size is 12 inches. Release all fish except hatchery chinook and hatchery steelhead. 

Elochoman River from mouth upstream to the bridge located 400 feet below the upper hatchery rack at the site of the former salmon hatchery - Effective May 23 through June 5, the salmon and steelhead daily limit will be six fish of which no more than two may be hatchery adult chinook or two hatchery steelhead or one of each.  Salmon minimum size is 12 inches. Release all fish except hatchery chinook and hatchery steelhead. Selective gear rules will be in effect. 
Cowlitz River from mouth to Mayfield Dam – Effective May 17 until further notice, anglers may retain up to 6 hatchery Chinook of which no more than 3 may be adults.  Release wild Chinook.  In addition, anglers may use two poles with a Two Pole Endorsement from the Lexington Drive Bridge (Sparks Road Bridge) upstream to 400 feet or posted markers below the barrier dam.   
Until further notice, the hatchery steelhead daily limit is 3 fish. Release wild steelhead.

Anglers should note the south side of the river from Mill Creek to the Barrier Dam is closed to all fishing through June 15 per permanent regulations.

Green River from mouth to 400 feet below the Toutle Hatchery intake and South Fork Toutle River from mouth upstream to the 4700 Road Bridge – Effective May 23 through June 5, the hatchery steelhead daily limit will be 2 fish.  Release all fish except hatchery steelhead.  Selective gear rules will be in effect.

Kalama River from the mouth to 1,000 feet below the upper salmon hatchery – Open for hatchery spring Chinook until further notice.  Effective May 17 until further notice, the daily limit will be 6 fish of which no more than 2 may be adults. Release wild Chinook.

Until further notice, the hatchery steelhead daily limit is 3 fish. Release wild steelhead.

Lewis River (including North Fork) – Until further notice, closed to fishing for spring Chinook. Fishing for hatchery steelhead remains open.  North Fork Lewis River from Johnson Creek (downstream from the salmon hatchery) upstream to Merwin Dam is closed to all fishing during the month of May.

Wind River from mouth (boundary line/markers) upstream to 800 yards downstream from Carson National Fish Hatchery except closed 400 feet below to 100 feet above Shipherd Falls and 400 feet below to 100 feet above the Coffer Dam – Effective May 17 through June 30, the Chinook and hatchery steelhead daily limit will be 3 fish of which no more than 2 may be hatchery steelhead.  Downstream from Shipherd Falls, release wild Chinook.  Barbed hooks may be used.  Night closure is in effect.  From the Hwy. 14 Bridge upstream, anti-snagging rule is in effect.  Only fish hooked inside the mouth may be retained

Wind River from mouth upstream to the Hwy. 14 Bridge – Effective May 17 through June 30, each angler aboard a vessel may deploy SALMON/STEELHEAD angling gear until the daily SALMON/STEELHEAD limit for all anglers aboard has been achieved. In addition, anglers with a Two-Pole Endorsement may fish for salmon and steelhead with two poles during the same period. 

Drano Lake – Effective May 17 through June 30, the hatchery Chinook and hatchery steelhead daily limit will be 3 fish of which no more than 2 may be hatchery steelhead.  Release wild Chinook and wild
steelhead.  Barbed hooks may be used

Through June 30, barbed hooks allowed for salmon and steelhead and each angler aboard a vessel may deploy SALMON/STEELHEAD angling gear until the daily SALMON/STEELHEAD limit for all anglers aboard has been achieved. In addition, anglers with a Two-Pole Endorsement may fish for salmon and steelhead with two poles during the same period.

Closed to all fishing on Wednesdays through June. The area west of a line projected from the easternmost pillar of the Highway 14 Bridge to a posted marker on the north shore is open only to bank fishing through June.

White Salmon River from the county road bridge below the former power house upstream to the Northwestern Road Bridge – Effective May 23 through June 30, the daily limit will be two hatchery Chinook or two hatchery steelhead or one of each.  Selective gear rules will be in effect.

Klickitat River – Effective June 1, on the lower Klickitat from the mouth to the Fisher Hill Bridge the trout daily limit will be 3 hatchery steelhead. Release all other trout. On the upper Klickitat from fishway #5 upstream to makers below the Klickitat Salmon Hatchery and from markers above the hatchery upstream to the Yakama Indian Reservation, the trout daily limit will be 3 fish of which no more than 2 may be other than hatchery steelhead. Wild steelhead must be released.

Effective June 1, on the lower and upper Klickitat the salmon daily limit will be 6 hatchery chinook of which no more than two may be adults. Wild chinook must be released.

GAMEFISH

South Lewis County Park Pond

  • May 15 – Entire pond closed to public fishing.
  • May 16 – Pond closed except to children, 14 years old and younger participating in the event.
  • May 16 – Pond reopens to the public after 2 pm.

Kress Lake

  • May 22 – 12:01 a.m. – Entire pond closed to public fishing.
  • May 23 – 10:00 am through 3:00 pm - Open only for juvenile anglers participating in the fishing event and Safety Day Program
  • May 23 – Reopens to the public after 6:00 pm.

STURGEON

Lower Columbia mainstem below Bonneville Dam including all tributaries– No retention.  Catch-and-release angling is allowed.

All fishing for sturgeon is closed in the sturgeon sanctuary from Bonneville Dam downstream 9 miles to a line crossing the Columbia River from navigation Marker 82 on the Oregon shore westerly to the boundary marker on the Washington shore upstream of Fir Point through Aug. 31.

Bonneville Dam to The Dalles Dam including adjoining tributaries Currently closed for sturgeon retention.  Catch-and-release angling is allowed, EXCEPT closed for sturgeon fishing within the sanctuary.

2015 Bonneville Pool Recreational White Sturgeon Summer Fishery
Season: Friday June 19 through Sunday June 21
Friday June 26 through Sunday June 28
Friday July 3 through Sunday July 5
Allowable Catch: White sturgeon between 38-inches and 54-inches fork length.
Sanctuary: Angling for sturgeon prohibited through July 31 from The Dalles Dam downstream 1.8 miles to a line from the east (upstream) dock at the Port of The Dalles boat ramp straight across to a marker on the Washington shore.

The Dalles Dam to John Day Dam and adjoining tributaries – Closed for sturgeon retention. Catch and release allowed, EXCEPT closed for sturgeon fishing within the sanctuary through July 31.  Sturgeon sanctuary is from the John Day Dam downstream 2.4 miles to the west end of the grain silo at Rufus Oregon.

John Day Dam to McNary Dam including adjoining tributaries – Open until harvest guideline is met. The daily limit is 1 fish min. size 43” fork length and max. size 54” fork length. Closed to fishing for sturgeon within the sturgeon sanctuary, which is from McNary Dam downstream 1.5 miles to Hwy. 82 (Hwy. 395) Bridge through July 31. 

2015 Licenses available now!

State fishing and hunting licenses are available for the new season (began April 1, 2015) 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.

Two-Pole Endorsement:

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. Youth and adult anglers must have a fishing license in addition to the two pole endorsement.

Discover Pass:

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/