The good news is that a number of area rivers open to fishing today. The bad news is many of these same streams are not in the best of shape.
Take the Cedar River as an example. A popular Westside trout water, the river was running at 1,510 cubic feet per second on Friday morning – twice as high as normal. The Skookumchuck is another river that opens today but is running high.
Clear (Pierce County): Still-fishing 30 feet deep with a maggot has been producing a good number of kokanee, said Len Throop of Eatonville Outdoors. Try Power Eggs fished off the bottom for trout.
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Rapjohn: Trolling with Wedding Rings or Woolly Buggers in the morning has been producing good catches.
Offut: The action for trout remains very good, a staffer at Offut Lake Resort said. Try using lime-green Power Bait fished off the bottom or trolling with dark Woolly Buggers or large nymphs.
Silver (Pierce): The fishing is very good. Try small spinners such as Kastmasters or Roostertails or Power Bait fished off the bottom.
Spanaway: Anglers should note that there is a new $3 charge to enter the park in their vehicle, said Bud Herlitzka at Spanaway Park Boathouse. Also, the park is closed Wednesdays and Thursdays through Sept. 30. The fishing has been good both trolling or still-fishing with Power Bait. There have been some limits caught.
Spencer (Mason): The trout fishing has been good here and on Isabella. Try spinners and spoons for trolling, or worms and Power Bait. The bass action also seems to be improving as the fish move on to their spawning beds. Topwater lures and plastic baits are working for bass, said Ron Adams at Verle’s Sports Center.
Tanwax: The cold weather has kept the trout active, said Dave Potter at Rainbow RV Resort. Most anglers are catching limits off the dock with a worm under a bobber or yellow Power Eggs with fish oil. Boat anglers are doing better trolling with Wedding Rings tipped with worms.
Columbia: A state report from creel checks at Chinook and Ilwaco showed charter boat anglers last week averaged one legal kept for every 7.3 rods, and private boaters averaged one every 10.9 rods. Daily shad counts at Bonneville Dam have reached their highest levels of the season, hitting 28,414 fish on Wednesday and 14,712 on Thursday.
Cowlitz: Guides online are reporting that the fishing has been OK, with some spring chinook and summer-run steelhead being caught. The action should focus more on steelhead in the coming weeks. Last week, Tacoma Power employees released 60 springer adults and 18 jacks into the upper river at Skate Creek Bridge in Packwood.
Kalama: The river is running high and brown. Before the rain, the pressure has been light overall, according to a state report, although some steelhead are being caught. No spring chinook were sampled last week.
Lewis: The effort has been very light. A state report said more steelhead than salmon are being caught. On the East Fork Lewis, steelhead anglers may now fish with bait, and the area has been expanded upstream to 400 feet below Horseshoe Falls, with closures around other falls.
Olympic Coast: The rivers should be fishable this weekend as steelhead fishing reopens, said Bob Gooding of Olympic Sporting Goods. Try the Bogachiel and Calawah. He said the spring-chinook fishing has been OK on the Sol Duc.
Yakima: Conditions might be off because the river level rose by nearly a third on Thursday. Although the river is now near normal levels, that sudden increase might have put the fish off for now. If you want to give it a try, head above the Teanaway. The pale morning dun hatches have been bringing trout to the surface.
Tacoma: Fishing remains fair, with people catching a mix of blackmouth and mature chinook. Mooching has been most effective. Others are trolling with plugs or hoochies. Try off the clay banks, “the Shelf” area and Point Dalco, said Art Tachell at Point Defiance Boathouse Marina.
Jeffrey P. Mayor: 253-597-8640 firstname.lastname@example.org