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Lower Columbia spring chinook data indicate it’s peak-time for fishing

The spring chinook fishery finally picked up along the Lower Columbia River, and fishing is open below Bonneville Dam Saturday through Sunday after reopening this past Thursday.

The sport fishery will then close and state fisheries officials will meet on Wednesday, and reassess catches to see if an extension on fishing is possible.

During the recent five-day extension (April 13-17), anglers on the Lower Columbia made 11,957 trips and caught 2,264 adult spring chinook (2,029 kept and 235 released) and 59 steelhead (36 kept and 23 released).  Based on sampling, upriver spring chinook made up 70 percent of the kept catch.

The Columbia River from Buoy 10 upstream to Beacon Rock (boat and bank) plus bank angling only from Beacon Rock upstream to the Bonneville Dam deadline will remain open for spring chinook through Sunday. The closure area near the mouth of the Lewis River remains in effect.

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The daily bag limit is two adult salmonids, but only one may be a hatchery-marked chinook; all sockeye must be released per permanent regulation. All other permanent regulations apply.

In the Bonneville section from the Columbia Gorge from Bonneville Dam downstream to the eastern tip of Reed Island, 106 boats with 363 anglers caught 147 spring chinook and released four; 52 Oregon bank anglers caught no fish; and 390 Washington bank anglers caught 26 spring chinook and released three.

In the Camas/Washougal section from eastern tip of Reed Island downstream to the western tip of Lemon Island (includes the mouth of the Sandy and Washougal rivers), 501 boats with 1,036 anglers caught 74 spring chinook and released four; and 12 Oregon bank anglers caught no fish.

In I-5 section from western tip of Lemon Island downstream to light #40 on the eastern tip of Sauvie Island (includes the mouth of the Willamette River), 501 boats with 1,234 anglers caught 69 spring chinook and two steelhead, and released 15 spring chinook; and 18 Washington bank anglers caught no fish.

In the Vancouver section from Light #40 at the eastern tip of Sauvie Island downstream to Warrior Rock Light at the western tip of Sauvie Island, 1,587 boats with 3,924 anglers caught 424 spring chinook and released 56 spring chinook and three steelhead; and 1,163 Oregon bank anglers caught 87 spring chinook and six steelhead, and released 25 spring chinook, and 619 Washington bank anglers caught 27 spring chinook and released five steelhead.

In the Woodland section from Warrior Rock Light downstream to Deer Island light #62 (includes the mouth of the Lewis River and entrance to the Multnomah Channel), 1,097 boats with 2,816 anglers caught 502 spring chinook and released 60 spring chinook; 42 Oregon bank anglers caught no fish; and 1,381 Washington bank anglers caught 88 spring chinook, and released 16 spring chinook and 16 steelhead.

In the Kalama section from Deer Island light #62 downstream to Prescott…

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