WASHINGTON DEPARTMENT OF FISH AND WILDLIFE
NEWS RELEASE
600 Capitol Way North, Olympia, WA 98501-1091

April 12, 2002
Contact: Tim Waters, (360) 902-2262
Doug Williams, (360) 902-2256

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2002 Coastal salmon seasons focus on strong Columbia River chinook; Puget Sound chinook, wild coho protected in fishing package

PORTLAND - Salmon anglers along the Pacific coast of Washington state this year will be able to fish on a strong return of Columbia River chinook salmon, but must curtail harvests of coho salmon returning to the Columbia.

In other portions of western Washington, anglers should expect roughly the same fishing opportunities as in 2001, according to the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW). The agency has just completed the salmon season-setting process with its co-managers the western Washington treaty Indian tribes, and with the federal Pacific Fishery Management Council (PFMC).

"Columbia River fall chinook are the backbone of this year's ocean fisheries, and anticipated strong runs have resulted in fisheries quotas that are significantly larger than in 2001," said Phil Anderson, chief of WDFW's intergovernmental affairs.

"The great abundance of chinook means additional fishing opportunity in late spring and early summer," Anderson said. "We haven't had the abundance to support these early fisheries since the early 1980s."

The abundance of chinook contrasts sharply with low numbers of Columbia River hatchery and coastal wild coho salmon. The low abundance of Oregon coastal natural stocks, and Canada's Fraser River coho stocks necessitated a drastic reduction of coho quotas in treaty and non-treaty fisheries along the coast.

Recreational chinook salmon fishing from Ilwaco in the south to Neah Bay in the north begins May 25 and runs seven days per week through June 16. Recreational fisheries for coho and chinook begin as early as June 30 in the Westport area, and July 7 in the Ilwaco, LaPush and Neah Bay areas.

The need to conserve chinook salmon, which have federal protection under the Endangered Species Act, and wild populations of coho salmon returning to Puget Sound, defined the limits to commercial and sport fisheries.

"We need to protect all populations of chinook in Puget Sound, and this fishing plan provides that protection. White River spring chinook concerns proved to be especially challenging, and led to the closure of fishing in May and June in the Tacoma area," said Pat Pattillo, WDFW's salmon policy lead.

WDFW has relaxed closures in the winter blackmouth fishery to compensate for this loss of springtime opportunity. Fishing in Marine Area 11 will be open from Nov. 1 through April 10, providing anglers with a chance to pursue healthy hatchery chinook stocks in this area.

Pattillo said there are a number of additional changes to the winter blackmouth fishery, from Area 7 in the north, to Area 10 in the south, and anglers should be sure to check the new "Fishing in Washington" regulation pamphlet, which will be available by May 1.

Although returns of coho to Puget Sound are expected to be down from last year's tremendous runs, there will still be expanding fishing opportunities in a number of areas, including the Port Angeles, Port Townsend and Edmonds areas. These areas will all be open to coho fishing beginning July 1 – one month earlier than in 2001.

Pre-season forecasts suggest that there won't be enough sockeye salmon returning to the Lake Washington system in King County to support what is an extremely popular fishery. However, if in-season counts of returning adult Lake Washington sockeye at the Ballard Locks suggest a significantly higher-than-forecast return, fisheries managers could open a limited fishery.

Fishing for Duwamish/Green River chinook in Elliott Bay has been expanded from four to six three-day weekends, beginning Friday, July 12 and extending through Sunday, Aug. 18.

"This expanded recreational fishing opportunity is the result of successful negotiations between WDFW and the Muckleshoot and Suquamish tribes," Pattillo said. "We share a common interest in securing stable fisheries for the future by ensuring that the we provide the protection needed for this valuable chinook salmon resource."

Details of the Washington's 2002 fishing seasons are listed below:

Marine Area 1 (Leadbetter Point south):

  • May 25-June 16. Open 7 days per week; chinook only, 2 fish per day. Columbia Control Zone closed. Coastwide (Areas 1-4) chinook quota of 20,000.
  • July 7-Sept. 30. (55,700 coho sub quota). Open Sunday-Thursday through Aug. 15, 7 days per week beginning Aug. 16; 2 fish per day, retained coho must have a healed adipose fin clip; closed in Columbia Control Zone; Chinook guideline: 11,200; closed between Cape Falcon and Tillamook Head beginning Aug. 1.

Buoy 10:

  • August 1-Sept. 30. Open 7 days per week; 2 fish per day; retained coho must have a healed adipose fin clip; release sockeye and chum. Barbed hooks are allowed.
  • Oct. 1-March 31: Open 7 days per week; 6 fish per day, 2 adults; retained coho must have a healed adipose fin clip; release sockeye and chum. Barbed hooks allowed.

North Jetty: Open 7 days per week when Marine Area 1 or Buoy 10 area is open. When Buoy 10 or Marine Area 1 is open, the daily limit and maximum size restrictions follow the most liberal regulations of those areas. Barbed hooks are allowed.

Marine Area 2 (Queets River to Leadbetter Point):

  • May 25-June 16: Open 7 days per week; chinook only, 2 fish per day. Coastwide (Areas 1-4) chinook quota of 20,000.
  • June 30-Sept. 8: (39,280 coho subquota) Open Sunday-Thursday through Aug. 15, 7 days per week beginning Aug. 16; 2 fish per day, retained coho must have a healed adipose fin clip; chinook guideline: 32,000.

Area 2.1 (Willapa Bay):

  • June 30-Aug. 15: Open concurrent with Marine Area 2, when Area 2 is open for salmon. Area 2 rules apply.
  • Aug. 16-Jan. 31: Six-fish limit, two adults; 12-inch minimum size limit. Single-point barbless hooks.

Area 2.2 (Grays Harbor):

  • West of Buoy 13 line: Open concurrent with Area 2 when it is open for salmon; Area 2 rules apply.
  • East of Buoy 13 line: June 30-Aug. 31: Open concurrent with Marine Area 2, when Marine Area 2 is open for salmon; Area 2 rules apply.
  • Sept. 1-Nov. 30: Six fish limit, two adults, of which only one may be an adult chinook; 12 inch minimum size limit; single point barbless hooks.

Westport boat basin and Ocean Shores boat basin:

  • Aug. 16-Jan. 31, six-fish limit, four adults; 12-inch minimum size limit, barbed hooks allowed; night closure and non-buoyant lure restriction.

Marine Area 3 (Cape Alava to Queets River):

  • May 25-June 16: Open seven days per week, chinook only, two fish per day. Coastwide chinook quota of 20,000.
  • July 7-Sept. 8: (2,770 coho subquota). Open seven days per week, two fish per day. Retained coho must have a healed adipose fin clip; chinook guideline 1,600. LaPush late season area set-aside: Sept. 21-Oct. 6: 100 coho and 100 chinook.

Marine Area 4 (Neah Bay):

  • May 25-June 16: Open seven days per week; chinook only, two fish per day. Coastwide (Areas 1-4) chinook quota of 20,000.
  • July 7-Sept. 8: (11,780 coho subquota). Open seven days per week, two fish per day, and all retained coho must have a healed adipose fin clip; Chinook guideline is 2,600 fish; Chinook non-retention east of Bonilla-Tatoosh line; release chum Aug. 1-Sept. 30.

Marine Area 5 (Sekiu):

  • May 1-June 30 closed.
  • July 1-Sept. 30: Two fish limit, one chinook (22 inch minimum size); unmarked coho release, chum release, chinook retention permitted beginning July 8 and continuing until Area 5 quota of 2,000 chinook is taken, afterwards, release chinook.
  • Oct. 1-31 Closed
  • Nov. 1-30 : Two-fish limit, one of which may be a chinook (22 inch minimum size.)
  • Dec.1-Feb. 14 closed.
  • Feb. 15-April 10: One-fish limit, chinook must be at least 22 inches.
  • April 11-30: Closed.

Marine Area 6 (East Strait of Juan de Fuca):

  • May 1-June 30: Closed
  • July 1-Sept. 30: Two fish daily limit, chinook and unmarked coho release, chum release; 1,000 foot closure around the mouth of the Elwha River. Dungeness Bay closed..
  • Oct. 1-31: Closed, except Dungeness Bay, which is open with a two-coho limit.
  • Nov. 1-30: Two-fish daily limit, one of which may be a chinook (22 inch minimum size).
  • Dec. 1-Feb. 14: Closed.
  • Feb. 15-April 10: One fish daily limit, chinook must be at least 22 inches. Dungeness Bay closed.
  • April 11-30: Closed.

Marine Area 7 (San Juan Islands):

  • May 1-June 30: Closed
  • July 1-31: Two-salmon daily limit of which one may be a chinook (22 inch minimum). Closed waters are: Rosario Strait, including Lummi Rocks, Peapod Rocks, Lydia Shoal due south to Black Rock, southerly to the easternmost point on James Island, and southerly to the marker on Bird Rocks, westerly to the marker across to Lopez Pass. Bellingham Bay closed.
  • Aug. 1-Sept. 30: Two fish limit, one chinook (22 inch minimum), release unmarked coho, release chum. Closed Waters: Southern Rosario Strait and Eastern Strait of Juan de Fuca (east boundary defined by a line drawn true south of Salmon Banks buoy), Bellingham Bay closed Aug. 1-15; Samish Bay closed.
  • Oct. 1-31: Open with a two-salmon daily limit; all chinook must be released. Samish Bay closed Oct. 1-15.
  • Nov. 1-Nov. 30: Open with a two-salmon daily limit of which one may be a chinook (22 inch minimum size).
  • Dec. 1-Jan. 31: Closed.
  • Feb. 1-March 31: One-salmon limit (chinook must be at least 22 inches.)
  • April 1-30: Closed.

Bellingham Bay terminal area:

  • Aug. 16-Oct. 31: Four fish daily limit, two chinook (22 inch minimum size); Samish Bay closed through Oct. 15.
  • Nov. 1-April 30: Same as Marine Area 7.

Marine Area 8-1 (Deception Island, Hope Island, Skagit Bay):

  • May 1-July 31: Closed.
  • Aug. 1-Oct. 31: Two-fish limit, chinook must be released.
  • Nov. 1-30: Open with a two-fish daily limit of which one may be a chinook (22 inch minimum size)
  • Dec. 1-Jan. 31: Closed.
  • Feb. 1-March 31. Open, with a one-fish daily limit (chinook must be at least 22 inches).
  • April 1-30: Closed.

Marine Area 8-2 (Port Susan and Port Gardner):

  • May 1-July 31: Closed
  • Aug. 1-Oct. 31: Open with a two-fish daily limit, chinook must be released.
  • Nov. 1-30: Open with a two salmon daily limit, of which one may be a chinook (22-inch minimum size).
  • Dec. 1-Feb. 14: Closed
  • Feb. 15-April 10: Open with a one-salmon daily limit, chinook must be at least 22 inches.
  • April 11-30: Closed

Marine Area 9 (Admiralty Inlet):

  • May 1-June 30: Closed
  • July 1-Sept. 30: Open with a two-salmon daily limit, chinook and chum must be released
  • Oct. 1-31: Open with a two-salmon daily limit, chinook must be released.
  • Dec. 1-Jan. 31: Closed
  • Feb. 1- March 31: Open with a one-fish daily limit, chinook must be at least 22-inches.
  • April 1-30: Closed

Edmonds Pier: Edmonds Pier: Open year-round with a two salmon daily limit, of which one may be a chinook (22-inch minimum size); chum must be released Aug. 1-Sept. 30.

Hood Canal Bridge: Open year-round with a two-fish daily limit, of which one may be a chinook (22- inch minimum size); chum must be released Aug. 1-Oct. 15; chinook must be released July 1-Aug. 31.

Marine Area 10 (Seattle-Bremerton):

  • May 1-June 30: Closed
  • July 1-Oct. 31: Open with a two-fish daily limit, chinook release, chum release Aug. 1 to Sept. 15; Shilshole Bay (east of Meadow Point/West Point line) closed July 1- Aug. 31; Elliott Bay (east of West Point to Alki Point line) closed July 1-Aug. 31, (except Elliott Bay fishing piers and Elliott Bay season). Special gear restrictions in the Duwamish Waterways area when open.
  • Nov. 1-30: Open with a two-fish daily limit, of which one may be a chinook (22-inch minimum size).
  • Dec. 1-15: Open for catch-and-release fishing only.
  • Dec. 16-31: Open with a two-salmon daily limit, of which one may be a chinook (22-inch minimum size).
  • Jan. 1-Feb. 28: Open with a one fish daily limit, chinook must be at least 22 inches. Agate Pass closed.
  • March 1-April 30: Closed.

Elliott Bay: July 1-Aug. 31: Closed, except Fridays through Sundays, July 12-Aug. 18, two fish daily limit, 22-inch minimum size on chinook, release all chum Aug. 1-31. Special gear restrictions in Duwamish Waterways area when open. Sept. 1-April 30: Same as Area 10.

Sinclair Inlet: July 1-Sept. 15: Open south of Manette Bridge, south of line west from Battle Point and west of line south from Point White, with a two-salmon daily limit, chinook must be at least 22 inches; chum must be released Aug. 1-Sept. 15. Sept. 16-April 30: Same as Area 10.

Area 10 Piers: Seacrest Pier, Pier 86, Waterman Pier, Bremerton Boardwalk, Illahee State Park Pier: Open year ‘round with a two fish daily limit, one chinook (22-inch minimum size), release all chum Aug. 1-Sept. 15.

Marine Area 11 (Tacoma-Vashon):

  • May 1-June 30: Closed.
  • July 1-Oct. 31: Open with a two-salmon limit (chinook must be at least 22 inches), Commencement Bay closed through July 31.
  • Nov. 1-Dec. 31: Open with a two-salmon daily limit, of which one may be a chinook (must be at least 22 inches).
  • Jan. 1-April 10: One fish daily limit, chinook must be 22 inches. Commencement Bay closed April 1-10.
  • April 11-30: Closed.

Dash Point Dock, Point Defiance Boathouse Dock, Les Davis Pier, Des Moines Pier and Redondo Pier: Open year ‘round with a two fish daily limit, one chinook (22-inch minimum size).

Marine Area 12 (Hood Canal):

  • May 1-June 30: Closed
  • July 1-Aug. 31: North of Ayock Point closed.
  • Sept. 1-Oct. 15: North of Ayock Point, open for coho only with a four-fish daily limit.
  • July 1-Oct. 15: South of Ayock Point, open with a four-salmon daily limit, only two of which may be chinook (22-inch minimum size); chum must be released.
  • Oct. 16-Dec. 31: Open with a four-fish daily limit, one chinook, with a 22-inch minimum size.
  • Jan. 1-Feb. 14: Closed.
  • Feb. 15-April 10: Open with a one-salmon daily limit, chinook must be 22 inches.
  • April 11-30: Closed.

Quilcene-Dabob Bay: Closed May 1-Aug. 15; open for coho only with a four-fish daily limit from Aug. 16-Oct. 15; open with a four-fish daily limit, one chinook, which must be 22 inches Oct. 16 to Dec. 31; Closed Jan. 1-Feb. 14; Open Feb. 15-April 10 with a one-fish daily limit, chinook must be 22 inches; Closed April 11-30.

Hoodsport Hatchery Zone: Open July 1-Dec. 31. Same as Marine Area 12 except a four-fish daily limit, only two chinook greater than 24 inches, chum release July 1-Oct. 15 and a night closure.

Marine Area 13 (South Puget Sound):

  • May 1-June 30: Open with a two-fish daily limit, one of which may be a chinook (22-inch minimum size); Carr Inlet closed.
  • July 1- Oct. 31: Open with a two-salmon daily limit; chinook must be at least 22 inches; wild coho must be released; Carr Inlet closed July 1-31, except open to flyfishing only to coho; Minter Creek mouth closed through Sept. 30; Budd Inlet closed July 16 through Oct. 31.
  • Nov. 1-Dec. 31: Open with a two-salmon daily limit, one of which may be a chinook (22-inch minimum size).
  • Jan. 1-Feb. 14: Catch and release fishing only.
  • Feb. 15-April 10: Open with a one-salmon daily limit; chinook must be at least 22 inches.
  • April 11-30: Catch and release fishing only.

Fox Island Pier: Open year-round with a two-salmon daily limit, of which only one may be a chinook (22-inches minimum size); wild coho must be released July 1-Oct. 31.