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Washington Coast Opens Ocean Salmon Season With Good Numbers

Published 06/15/22 at 4:25 PM PST
By Oregon Coast Beach Connection staff

Washington Coast Opens Ocean Salmon Season With Good Numbers

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(Washington Coast) – Sport anglers along the Washington coast will soon get their first opportunities to catch wild salmon along the region. Neah Bay and La Push (known as Marine Areas 4 and 3) start on Saturday, June 18. Marine Area 1, known as Ilwaco, gets going on June 25; and Westport (Marine Area 2) begins on July 2.

Some of it is just in time for Father's Day - and it's a close shot from the north Oregon coast.

Fish managers in Washington State's capital expect a good forecast of nearly 1.2 million coho, which is close to the actual number of 1.1 million that returned in 2021. They're expecting some 485,000 in fall Chinook along the Washington coast, which is up from the 2021 return of 481,300.

“We have strong coho forecasts for the Columbia River and coastal Washington and a large coho quota that reflects that,” said Kyle Adicks, intergovernmental salmon manager with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW). “We had to delay opening dates a little to protect Chinook stocks, particularly lower Columbia tules.”

Weather, of course, will be a big factor along the Washington coast. Adicks noted that with good conditions the public could be looking at prolific fishing for Chinook and coho in all marine ocean areas. There will be plenty of monitoring of catches, however, as each area could create a different situation for quotas or other adjustments.

Season details are listed below.

Ilwaco (Marine Area 1):

Open daily from June 25 through Sept. 30: Daily limit 2, no more than 1 of which may be a Chinook. Chinook minimum size 22”. Hatchery coho minimum size 16”. Other salmon species no minimum size. Release wild coho.

Columbia River Control Zone is closed to fishing for salmon, except open to fishing from the north jetty when adjacent waters north of the Control Zone are open to fishing for salmon or the Buoy 10 fishery is open to fishing from salmon. The Chinook guideline in Area 1 is 7,700 (7,200 in 2021) and the Area 1 coho quota is 84,000 (42,400 in 2021).

Westport-Ocean Shores (Marine Area 2):

Open daily from July 2 through Sept. 30: Daily limit 2, no more than 1 of which may be a Chinook. Chinook minimum size 22”. Hatchery coho minimum size 16”. Other salmon species no minimum size. Release wild coho.

Willapa Bay (Marine Area 2-1) and the portion of Grays Harbor (Marine Area 2-2) west of the Buoy 13 line also open July 2 under the same rules as Marine Area 2. Regulations for Marine Areas 2-1 and 2-2 change in August, and details are listed in the Sport Fishing Rules Pamphlet. Fishery managers anticipate the 2022-2023 edition of the pamphlet will be available online in late June and scheduled to begin arriving in stores shortly after.

Grays Harbor Control Zone is closed beginning August 8. The Marine Area 2 Chinook guideline is 12,070 (12,925 in 2021) and Area 2 coho quota of 62,160 (20,440 in 2021).

La Push (Marine Area 3):

Open daily from June 18 through July 31: Daily limit 2. Chinook minimum size 24”. Hatchery coho minimum size 16”. Other salmon species no minimum size. Release wild coho.

Open daily from Aug. 1 through Sept. 30: Daily limit 2. Chinook minimum size 24”. Hatchery coho minimum size 16”. Release wild coho and chum.

Closed Oct.1-4.

Open daily from Oct. 5-8 in terminal fishery north of 47°50'00 N. lat. and south of 48°00'00" N. lat. Daily limit 2. Chinook minimum size 24”. Release all salmon other than Chinook.

The Marine Area 3 Chinook guideline is 995 (1,300 in 2021) and the Area 3 coho quota is 4,370 (1,430 in 2021). The season Area 3 Chinook quota is 125.

Neah Bay (Marine Area 4) west of Bonilla-Tatoosh line:

Open daily from June 18 through July 31: Daily limit 2. Chinook minimum size 24”. Hatchery coho minimum size 16”. Other salmon species no minimum size. Release wild coho.

Open daily from Aug. 1 through Sept. 30: Daily limit 2. Chinook minimum size 24”. Hatchery coho minimum size 16”. Other salmon species no minimum size. Release wild coho and chum.

Neah Bay (Marine Area 4) east of Bonilla-Tatoosh line:

Open daily from June 18 through July 31: Daily limit 2. Chinook minimum size 24”. Hatchery coho minimum size 16”. Other salmon species no minimum size. Release wild coho.

Open daily from Aug. 1 through Sept. 30: Daily limit 2. Hatchery coho minimum size 16”. Other salmon species no minimum size. Release Chinook, wild coho and chum.

The Marine Area 4 Chinook guideline is 6,110 (5,825 in 2021) and the Area 4 coho quota is 17,470 (5,730 in 2021).

Waters east of a true north-south line through Sail Rock are closed through July 31.

Throughout the summer, anglers can check WDFW's webpage at wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/reports/creel/ocean for updates.


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Westport, courtesy Washington State Parks


Ilwaco, courtesy Washington State Parks

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