Puget Sound salmon anglers, including those fishing in derbies, need to make sure they are following the regulations. Some fisherman in last week’s South King County PSA Salmon Derby were disqualified after being checked by enforcement officers from the state Department of Fish and Wildlife. The most common infractions were using a barbed hook, not having a license and failing to make the catch card before resuming fishing.
FLY FISHING: The searun cutthroat trout action has been good as of late. In addition to hitting bait fish patterns, the trout also are taking terrestial dry flies such as a Stimulator or steelhead caddis fished in the evening.
ILWACO: The salmon fishing keeps getting better, with last week’s average catch of 1.67 salmon per person the best of the season. The coho catch outpaced the chinook catch by a 5-1 ratio.
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SOUTH SOUND: Dan Rice of Gig Harbor netted a 20.85-pound salmon to win the $3,500 first prize in the South King County Puget Sound Anglers salmon derby last weekend. Tom Fisher took second ($1,500), with a 19.46-pound fish, followed in third ($1,000) by Bob Vick, who landed a 19.29-pound salmon. Overall, there were 58 chinook weighed for the event. The Gig Harbor chapter of PSA holds its derby Saturday at Point Defiance Boathouse.
WESTPORT: The best action seems to be in close to shore, a few miles north of the North Jetty. Most charter boats are fishing in water 30-90 feet deep. Some of the chinook are weighing 20 pounds after being cleaned. Last week’s average catch was 1.31 salmon per person. Matthew Carr won the youth division, landing a 20.5-pound salmon.
BUOY 10: The action has been fair, based on creel checks. On Wednesday, 75 anglers were checked and they had 22 chinook.
COWLITZ: The river finally seems to be producing consistent catches of steelhead, at the barrier dam and in the Blue Creek area. Try side drifting with eggs or shrimp.
NISQUALLY: Anglers are reminded the river will be closed Monday-Wednesday, part of a series of closures this month and next meant to reduce fisherman conflicts.
PUYALLUP: The river is set to open to recreational fishing in one week.
YAKIMA: Grasshopper patterns cast close to the bank are consistently producing fish throughout the day. The key is to have a drag-free drift through likely holding areas and being patient on the hook set. Many trout are hitting the flies, but not biting them until a second pass.
POTHOLES: Perch 8-12 inches are being caught at the mouth of Crab Creek and off fishing docks. The crappie action has been very good in the Lind Coulee arm. Bass anglers are having luck early in the morning or in the evening. Trout anglers are trolling needlefish and plugs in 20-30 feet of water near Medicare Beach and in front of the Potholes State Park.
SPANAWAY: People are catching limits of rainbow trout fishing the southeast corner of the lake, using Power Eggs on a 5-foot leader. The dock action has been spotty, but people are catching some trout. Fly anglers are using chironomids or bloodworms.
TANWAX: The fishing for largemouth bass has been very good this week. Casting a watermelon-colored crawfish imitation into the weed beds has been producing lots of strikes.
WENATCHEE: The sockeye salmon fishing has been good to very good, with thes best action taking place in the morning. They key is finding the schools of biting fish, which seem scattered around the west end of the lake.