Columbia River halibut and bottomfish seasons and regulations

All-depth fishery

Fishing Dates WA Anglers (#) WA Halibut (#) Washington (pounds) Oregon (pounds) Total Cumulative Catch Quota

Nearshore fishery

Fishing Dates Washington (pounds) Oregon (pounds) Total Cumulative Catch Quota Remaining* 

2020 preliminary halibut season dates

Pacific halibut are quota managed, days open are dependent on available quota and Marine Areas will close when the quota is projected to be obtained.  The following is intended to show the proposed season structure, but season dates are not guaranteed to be open.

  • Open Thursday, Aug. 6. Then, beginning Aug. 13, open two days per week, Thursdays and Sundays, through Sept. 30 or until the quota is taken. If catch and effort is tracking slower than anticipated, additional days may be added. Proposed additional dates are Friday, Aug. 28; Friday, Sept. 4; and Friday, Sept. 11.

Bottomfish regulations 

The retention of bottomfish, except sablefish, Pacific cod, and all flatfish species (other than halibut), with halibut onboard is prohibited during the all depth halibut fishery .  Lingcod retention is allowed on halibut days in Marine Area 1 north of the Washington-Oregon border. The retention of yelloweye rockfish is prohibited.

Halibut retention with bottomfish on board is allowed in the nearshore area each Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, following the opening of the all depth fishery until the nearshore quota is taken. The nearshore area off WA is shoreward of 46°38.17' N. lat., 124°15.88' W. long., to the WA/OR border at 46°16.00' N. lat., 124°15.88' W. long. (then connecting to the 40 fathom depth contour in Oregon)

Bottomfish restrictions

Columbia River deepwater closure map

The retention of yelloweye rockfish is prohibited at all times.

Recreational fishing for, retention or possession of lingcod is prohibited seaward of a line extending from 46°38.17'N. lat., 124°21.00'W. long. to 46°33.00'N. lat., 124°21.00'W. long at all times. 

NOTE: Bottomfish caught in the Pacific Ocean and landed into a Washington port are subject to Washington personal use fishing regulations including possession limits (WAC 220-305-010).  That is, recreational anglers are prohibited from landing recreational bottomfish in excess of the possession limits in place for the port of landing.

Bottomfish seasons and limits


Recreational fishing for bottomfish will be open from the second Saturday in March through the third Saturday in October, which is March 14 through October 17, 2020. Daily limit is a total of nine bottomfish regardless of species, subject to individual limits shown below. 

In Marine Area 1 fishing for, retention, or possession of lingcod is prohibited seaward of a line drawn from 46°38.167' N. Lat., 124°21.00' W. Lon. (Leadbetter Point) to 46°33.00' N. Lat., 124°21.00' W. Lon. when lingcod is open.


  • Marine Area 1 (Columbia River): Open March 14 – October 17, 2020. See lingcod restricted areas below.
  • The daily bag limit is two per angler


  • Open March 14 – October 17, 2020.  No minimum size. Daily limit 7.  Retention of yelloweye rockfish is prohibited. See bottomfish restricted areas below.


  • Open March 14 – October 17, 2020. No minimum size. Daily limit 1.

Sixgill, Sevengill, and Thresher sharks

  • Closed to fishing for, retaining, or possessing.  Sixgill shark may not be removed from the water.  


  • Open year-round. No minimum size. Daily limit 12, except Shiner perch daily limit 15 is not included in the bottomfish daily limit.