The river fishing is picking up, but local anglers are going to have to drive to get to the best action. There have been very good reports for chum salmon in the Green and Skokomish rivers, while the Cowlitz has been the place to go for coho.
Hood Canal: Blake Merwin at Gig Harbor Fly Shop said the chum salmon action was fairly slow on Saturday. He said heavy rain and uncooperative fish slowed a group outing. Fishing early last week had been very good.
Tacoma: The fishing has been very slow. There were just 12 people checked at local ramps last week and no one had a fish, according to a state report. A staffer at Point Defiance Boathouse Marina said a few fish have been caught early this week, mainly in front of the boathouse and off the clay banks. Try trolling flashers and hoochies or mooching.
Cowlitz: Anglers have been hooking lots of coho at the barrier dam. News that people are catching their limits also means people are fishing shoulder to shoulder in some places. People are using eggs with sand shrimp, corkies and yarn, jig and bobber, Blue Fox and Dick Nite spinners, said Marshall Borsom at Fish Country.
Steelhead action at Blue Creek has been a bit slow.
Green: The river is full of chum and they’re biting, said Todd Rock at Auburn Sports and Marine. Hot spots are near the Auburn Golf Course, Metzler Park and the Highway 18 bridge. Lots of anglers are using floats and pink jigs tipped with a tiger prawn, or corkies and yarn in green.
Hanford Reach: Steelhead catch and harvest has been slow in both September and October, but picked up some last week.
Although the October numbers were the lowest on record dating back to 2003, the action picked up last week, said Paul Hoffarth, state fish biologist. Anglers averaged one steelhead for 10 hours of fishing last week.
Humptulips: The river is producing some good catches of coho on spinners.
Kennedy: Fishing for chum at the creek was fair, with 38 anglers catching 14 fish during a creel check Sunday.
Lewis: Fishing has been slow on the mainstem and only slightly better on the north fork for hatchery coho, said a state report.
Puyallup: The river has been high since it reopened Nov. 1, keeping lots of people off the water. People are getting some chum at 115th Street and mouth of Clarks Creek.
Skokomish: Chum fishing has been very good in recent days, according to online reports. Look for fish holding in some of the deep holes.
Yakima: With river levels so low, fly anglers need to concentrate on the midstream ledges and slots, said a report from Red’s Fly Shop. Staffers recommend a two-fly rig with a size 16 Prince Harry and a size 18 Gold Lightning Bug or Red Copper John underneath it.
Mayfield: The lake is producing some nice rainbow trout. Worms, Power Eggs and cocktail shrimp seem to be working well.
Omak: The lake is producing big numbers of fish, but anglers are having to work for them, said Anton Jones of Darrell and Dad’s Family Guide Service. The most productive lure was the Kingfisher Lite from Silver Horde in a variety of colors, he said.
Riffe: There are reports some coho are being caught.
Rufus Woods: The lake is fishing very well for triploid rainbow trout. Bait on slip-sinker rigs is working well.
Jones said they caught some fish on jigs on a recent trip, but bait on slip sinker rigs was the big producer. He said getting close to the pens puts anglers into the concentrations of fish. He said most of the fish were 6- to 8-pound rainbows.