The Buoy 10 Salmon Fishing Season is still over a month away in Astoria, but that’s not stopping us from getting on fish that are feeding off the mouth of the Columbia River. The Pacific Ocean Salmon Season opened up last Saturday, June 22nd, to plenty of fishing action and fresh salmon fillets all around.
It’s a Coho Salmon show right now in Astoria! The Columbia River is expecting to see close to a million Coho this fall, and they are already showing up and preparing for their run. Over the course of the summer, these giant schools of salmon will move around with the anchovy schools in the ocean. Prevailing currents and winds will move the bait around, but right now we’ve got salmon right off the mouth of the river! Sometime beginning in August, these schools of Coho will decide it’s time to cross the bar and head up the river. With the forecasted run for 2019, it’s safe to say we’ll be fishing for salmon all the way through September!
If you’re wondering where the Chinook are, Chinook aren’t always available in numbers until they hit the river. Some years we’ll do very well north of the Columbia River, while other years, the fish tend to run deeper than we are able to effectively fish. The local dory fleet actually refers to the Chinook Highway in 220 feet of water with target levels for these fish between 60 and 200 feet. Again, this isn’t every year, but this may answer some of your questions. One thing is for sure, we’ll see a larger Chinook take once we hit August. If the ocean fires up prior to that, we’ll consider ourselves lucky. Fortunately for us, ocean Chinook will just be a nice addition to the already good fishing we’re experiencing.
While Coho may not be a big as Chinook, they more than make up for that with their extreme aggressiveness. Much of their feistiness is a result of the feeding frenzy they are in as they try to put on as much weight as possible before heading for freshwater. The coho we’ve caught in the past 6 days are typical size for this early, around 5-7 lbs, with blood red meat. These salmon will continue feeding and may gain close to a pound per week leading up to our Buoy 10 fishery. Can you say 12-14 pound Coho?!?!
On days when the ocean doesn’t cooperate for salmon fishing, we go after Trophy Sturgeon in the Columbia River Estuary. Fishing has been very good lately. The other day we stopped counting at the 40th fish we reeled in. Sturgeon love to fight and give us a ton of action during the day. It’s not uncommon to have multiple anglers hook fish at the same time. The crazy thing is, Sturgeon fishing in July will only get better. Talk about action! When conditions allow, we offer combo trips for salmon and catch-and-release sturgeon.
For questions or booking information, feel free to contact us! We can even guide you in the right direction with places to stay, things to do, and places to eat during your visit!