Action slow in rivers, salt water but better in lakes

The fishing remains generally slow, with few bright spots. The Kalama River might be worth a visit for steelhead, and the Yakima River is giving up some good catches of rainbow trout. The saltwater action has been slow.


Carbon: The fishing has been very slow, said Keith Semprimoznik at Big J’s Outdoors Store. The number of fish returning to the hatchery has been very low.

Cowlitz: The action is improving, with some nice fish being caught. It’s not red-hot, but if you put in some time in, you can find a few fish. Using corkies and yarn, drifting eggs or pulling plugs have been the most productive methods, said Rob Sweem of R&K Guide Service.

Kalama: A few more steelhead are being caught, giving anglers reason to believe the ‘B’ run fish are starting to move into the river.

Lewis: The North Fork has been producing some steelhead. Try drifting jigs under a bobber. North Fork flows are well below average.

Olympic Coast: The Bogachiel and Sol Duc have been productive. The best methods have been pulling plugs, jigs and bobbers or sidedrifting. The flows on the Calawah and Hoh are well below normal, making fishing tougher.

Smelt: There were fish seen at Gerhart Gardens in the lower Cowlitz river Jan. 29. The state did not receive any catch reports from the Cowlitz River commercial smelt fishery Wednesday night. Sports dipping is open today and Feb. 13, 20, and 27 from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. The daily and possession limit is 10 pounds per person.

Wynoochee: The action has been very spotty, considering the number of people on the river, said Walt Harvey of Verle’s Sports Center in Shelton. Bank anglers should try jigs and bobbers or free-drifting bait. Boat anglers can try pulling plugs as well.

Yakima: The fishing has been good, but the cold water temperatures are keeping the numbers down, according to a report from Red’s Fly Shop. Try stonefly nymphs or small nymphs such as red copper Johns or olive pheasant tails in sizes 16 or 18.


American: Anglers are catching a few trout, rainbow and cutthroat. Slowly trolling a Wedding Ring tipped with a worm has been producing some fish, according to a report on

Offut: An increase in the number of people on the lake has meant an increase in the number of fish brought in, said Becky Pogue at Offut Lake Resort. There are no limits, but the fish are measuring about 18 inches. Night crawlers and yellow Power Bait are working the best.

Washington: The cutthroat trout fishing has improved. Anglers are finding the fish are holding in water about 20 to 40 feet deep. Try trolling a herring or a spinner with a strip of herring meat, according to Kyle Wagoner at Kyle’s Outdoor Adventure Guide Service.


Hood Canal: Anglers are picking up a few blackmouth in Pleasant Harbor, Harvey said. Most anglers are trolling Coyote spoons, Coho Killers or hoochies behind a flasher.

Tacoma: Fishing in the area has been spotty, said Art Tachell at Point Defiance Boathouse Marina. The slag pile has been producing some fish. Try trolling flashers and spoons in water 130 to 150 feet deep. The Quartermaster Harbor has been fairly productive on the incoming tide.

Jeffrey P. Mayor: 253-597-8640