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Columbia River Salmon Fishing

Columbia River Summer Salmon caught near Kalama, WA


* September 29th Update: Columbia River Wide Open for Salmon *

Beginning October 1st, Chinook retention will reopen from Buoy 10 through Warrior Rock, which has been limited to Coho only fishing for the past few weeks. That means the entire length of the Columbia River will be open for both Chinook and Coho Salmon retention through October 31st! The limit for most of the river is 2 salmon, but at Buoy 10 the limit is 3 salmon! Only 1 chinook may be kept wherever we’re fishing, but there are fish throughout the river

The final section of the Lower Columbia River will reopen for salmon fishing on Friday, September 17th, 2021! The Coho count at Bonneville Dam is over 118,000 fish this season, which is the highest passage by this date since 2001. There are a lot of fish throughout the river and the counts at Bonneville show how big the numbers are this fall. Since the start of the fall season, over 178,000 Coho have been counted at the dam (the 10 year average is 63,000). That’s a lot of fish, and we’re taking advantage of that by fishing in Astoria, the Portland area, and the Gorge. Let us know if you’d like to get out.

Columbia River Salmon (above Buoy 10):

Today ODFW announced that Chinook retention will be reopened from Tongue Point to Warrior Rock. There is a 2 fish limit and Coho must be fin clipped.

The stretch of the Columbia River from Warrior Rock to Bonneville Dam will be open for Chinook and hatchery Coho retention with a 2 fish limit. One fish may be a Chinook. We’re super excited about having the river open up again. ODFW feels that we are past the point where the Tule population would be affected and is opening things up as quickly as they can.

We’re fishing above Bonneville Dam as well.  Fishing near the mouths of the Deschutes or Klickitat Rivers is a fall favorite of many customers, and we expect to be chasing salmon there through September and into October.

Happy man holding a chinook salmon at Buoy 10 on the Columbia River.

Buoy 10 Coho:

Chinook retention reopens in Astoria on October 1st and we can keep both native and hatchery fish. The current limit is 3 fish, 1 of which may be a Chinook. With over 1.5 million Coho forecasted for the fall, so we still have a lot, I mean a lot, of Coho expected in the Columbia. Astoria should offer some action packed days on the water through October.

Let us know if you would like to get out on the water. There is still lots of Columbia River salmon fishing to be done in 2021.

Limits of Chinook on the Columbia River

Columbia River Salmon Fishing is some of the best Salmon fishing in the world. We spend our time fishing from The Dalles to the mouth of the river in the Astoria/Ilwaco area. This 160+ mile stretch of river boasts Spring, Summer, and Fall Salmon runs. Essentially, there are Salmon in this stretch of the Columbia River from March through October.

The year starts with the arrival of the Columbia River Spring Chinook Salmon in March. These fish are known as the best eaters of any Salmon in the world. I know this sounds a little like I’m rooting a little too much for the home team, but tests have shown that the fat content in Columbia River Spring Chinook Salmon is 7-10 times greater than that of other runs of Salmon. These fish regularly go for $25-$35 per pound in the Portland area. I can’t imagine what they would cost in Chicago. Check out the options below and let me know how I can help you set up your trip.

For any questions you might have, or to simply book a trip, feel free to contact us. We’re always happy to help in any way we can.