Posted on Leave a comment

COHO SALMON

WDFW FISHING RULE CHANGE
Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife
1111 Washington St. SE, Olympia, WA 98501
wdfw.wa.gov
Sept. 21, 2022
Upper Columbia River salmon fishery update
Action: Opens coho retention from Priest Rapids Dam to Wells Dam.
Species affected: Salmon.
Locations, effective dates, and rules:
Columbia River:
From Priest Rapids Dam to Rock Island Dam:
Sept. 22 through Oct. 15: Salmon:Min. size 12″. Daily limit 6, including no more than 2 adult Chinook and no more than 2 coho.
From Rock Island Dam to Wells Dam:
Sept. 22 through Oct. 15: Salmon: Min. size 12″. Daily limit 6, including no more than 2 adult hatchery Chinook and no more than 2 coho. Release wild adult Chinook.
From Wells Dam to Hwy. 173 Bridge at Brewster:
Immediately, through Sept. 30: Salmon: Min. size 12″. Daily limit 6, including no more than 2 adult hatchery Chinook and no more than 4 sockeye. Release wild adult Chinook and coho.
From Hwy. 173 Bridge at Brewster to the rock jetty at the upstream shoreline of Foster Creek (Douglas County side):
Immediately, through Oct. 15: Salmon: Min. size 12″. Daily limit 6, including no more than 2 adult hatchery Chinook and no more than 4 sockeye. Release wild adult Chinook and coho.
Reason for action: Returns of upper Columbia River-bound coho salmon are sufficient to meet conservation objectives and to provide for sport angler harvest between Priest Rapids Dam and Wells Dam.
Additional information:
Fishing closures around dams remain in effect and as described in the 2022-2023 Sport Fishing Rules Pamphlet (https://www.eregulations.com/washington/fishing/
).
Two-pole fishing is allowed with valid a two-pole endorsement in the mainstem Columbia River for the seasons described above.
Barbed hooks allowed.
Anglers are reminded that the Colville Confederated Tribes will be collecting broodstock and fish for ceremonial and subsistence. Please be respectful of this activity.
WDFW will be monitoring these fisheries closely and may close the season early if necessary due to excessive incidental catch-and-release impacts to ESA-listed summer steelhead.
Anglers are advised to check WDFW’s website for fishery rule change updates at https://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/regulations/emergency-rules
. Also, you can receive all in-season rules changes as they are announced by signing up for email notification through WDFW Regulation Updates at wdfw.wa.gov/about/lists
.
Information contact: Region 2 Office (Ephrata): 509-754-4624 or email TeamEphrata@dfw.wa.gov .
Fishers must have a current Washington fishing license, appropriate to the fishery. Check the WDFW “Fishing in Washington” rules pamphlet for details on fishing seasons and regulations. Fishing rules are subject to change. Check the WDFW Fishing hotline for the latest rule information at 360-902-2500, press 2 for recreational rules. For the Shellfish Rule Change hotline call 360-796-3215 or toll free 1-866-880-5431.
Coho Salmon Identification
Coho salmon are a member of the pacific salmon family. They are known for having white gums and black tongues. They can be a silver color or a red to wine color depending on their age and whether they are male or female. Their back and heads are usually a dark blue-green color.
Most salmon that you will catch will weigh an average of around 5 to 15 lbs and be around 17 to 24 inches in length. Larger coho salmon can reach sizes up to 38 inches and weigh upwards of 30+ lbs.

Coho are anadromous, so they can survive in both freshwater and saltwater. They usually spawn in rivers and migrate to saltwater to feed and grow, returning once again to freshwater for spawning.
Seasonal Patterns
Fall
In early fall to early winter, coho salmon begin to make their spawning runs, depending on the location you are in. They return to the freshwater streams they were born in to spawn. If you’re fishing the spawning run, they can be caught in coastal streams as they swim their way upstream. They like to spawn in smaller streams with gravel bottoms.
Winter
In the wintertime, coho can be readily caught in small rivers and streams. The mouths of coastal rivers tend to be productive places to fish. You can also catch them near harbor mouths. Look for areas that have an influx of warmer water and are full of baitfish. In the great lakes regions, deeper offshore sites with 150+ feet of water are good places to look as well.
Spring
When the water starts to warm up in the springtime, certain pockets of lakes warm up faster and begin to teem with baitfish activity. This is where you will catch coho hunting. Later in the spring they will move offshore.

Coho Salmon Equipment Recommendations
Rods and Reels
Both spinning gear setups and conventional rods and reels are popular choices for fishing coho. Some anglers even carry multiple rods for things like twitching jigs and other tactics. We recommend a medium to heavy rod with moderate to fast action. If you’re using a spinning rod and reel, an 8’ 6” to 9’ 6” length rod is a good bet. Make sure you choose a reel that can handle 100 yards of 10-15 lb test line.
If you’re after larger coho salmon a conventional rod and reel might be your best choice. Again around 8’6” to 9’6” in length. Though you can go shorter if needed.

• A popular technique among Columbia River Salmon anglers is plunking. When using this method, the aim is to cast your line in an area that is on your Salmon of choice’s migratory route and wait it out. Plunking involves setting up an 8–9′ extra-heavy rod, paired with a 40–60 lb braided line topped off with bait fish.

Lures and Baits
• The most popular natural bait to use for coho fishing is salmon eggs. Many anglers will cure their own eggs to use as bait, though you can also buy pre-cured ones. Try fishing salmon eggs with a slip bobber the next time you are targeting coho, and you might find it to be very productive.

Plugs
Coho salmon are known to hold in waters with little to no current. River mouths, small streams, and lakes even, where the current is slowed or nonexistent are good places to be casting plugs. You can cast from a boat, or if the coho are close to shore casting from the bank will work good too. Cast directly over where the coho are holding and try to get the plug a few inches off the bottom.

Spinners

Plugs
Coho salmon are known to hold in waters with little to no current. River mouths, small streams, and lakes even, where the current is slowed or nonexistent are good places to be casting plugs. You can cast from a boat, or if the coho are close to shore casting from the bank will work good too. Cast directly over where the coho are holding and try to get the plug a few inches off the bottom.
Spoons
The wobbling action of a good spoon lure can be irresistible to hungry coho salmon. You can cast or troll them effectively and get good results. They tend to work surprisingly well when the coho are bulking up for the spawning season.
Spinners aren’t often used for coho salmon, but they can work well when fished properly. The key is to get your spinner near the bottom. Usually you want to cast it upstream and reel it back to you through the area the coho are in. Make sure to retrieve it at a tempo that keeps in near the bottom.
Salmon Eggs
The most popular natural bait to use for coho fishing is salmon eggs. Many anglers will cure their own eggs to use as bait, though you can also buy pre-cured ones. Try fishing salmon eggs with a slip bobber the next time you are targeting coho, and you might find it to be very productive. You can drift fish or float fish with salmon eggs.
Fishing Line
Stick with around an 8 to 15 lb test line if you are using a lighter spinning rod and reel. For heavy casting, gear use a 15 to 20 lb test line. You can use monofilament, braided, or even fluorocarbon line depending on your preferences.
Hooks
Coho are commonly fished with octopus hooks and treble hooks. Usually, it is best to go a size smaller than you would for other kinds of salmon. Size 4 to 2/0 hooks are good options depending on your bait size.
Tips to Catch More Coho Salmon
Increase Your Casting Distance
Coho tend to be easily spooked by boats, so if you are boat fishing, you need to try to get a little sneakier when you are targeting coho. A spooked coho will be less likely to bite your bait or lure. To avoid scaring away the fish, you will want to use a longer rod to increase your casting distance. Some anglers will also get their boat out of the water and walk along the bank after they find where the fish are holding.
Learn to Spot the Activity
When coho are making their runs you need to be on the lookout for activity and be prepared to search new places. There are a few things you can look for that will help you locate the coho. Jumping coho for example, is generally a good sign, though some believe jumping fish are hard to catch. Other signs to look for include gull activity near the surface. Generally, if there is gull activity, they are hunting something, and that something could be the spot the coho are holding.
Use the Right Lure
Coho are often more easily caught with smaller lures than larger ones. Choosing the right colors is also important. A bright fluorescent chartreuse color is something we always recommend you carry in your coho toolbox.
MAUK FISHING STUFF
1408 SUNSET
BREWSTER,WA
BAIT AND TACKLE
FISHING REPORTS DAILY

Visits: 20
Today: 0
Total: 71772