The following is a brief summary of emergency and permanent sport fishing regulations for razor clams, smelt, salmon, steelhead, sturgeon, and shad on the mainstem Columbia River and its tributaries.
Complete information contained in this hotline message can be found in the Fishing in Washington pamphlet.
Wednesday, March 5, 2014
Cowlitz River - Open Saturday March 8 from 6 AM to noon. Dip nets may be used from the bank only. Daily limit is 10 pounds per person (about ¼ of a five-gallon bucket). Possession limit is equal to one daily limit.
The mainstem Columbia and all other Washington Columbia River tributaries remain closed.
Clam diggers looking forward to the next razor clam dig on Washington beaches now have two more months of possible options to consider.
Digging is not allowed at any beach before noon. Under state law, diggers can take 15 razor clams per day and are required to keep the first 15 they dig. Each digger's clams must be kept in a separate container.
Proposed digs are tentatively scheduled on the following dates, beaches, and low tides. They will not receive final approval until new marine toxin tests have been conducted.
- March 26, Wednesday, 3:52 p.m.; 0.3 feet; Twin Harbors
- March 27, Thursday, 4:48 p.m.; 0.1 feet; Twin Harbors
- March 28, Friday, 5:38 p.m.; 0.0 feet; Twin Harbors, Long Beach, Mocrocks
- March 29, Saturday, 6:23 p.m.; 0.0 feet; Twin Harbors, Long Beach, Mocrocks
Seasonal switch to morning tides
- March 30, Sunday, 6:53 a.m.; -0.1 feet; Twin Harbors, Long Beach, Mocrocks
- March 31, Monday, 7:39 a.m.; -0.5 feet; Twin Harbors
- April 1, Tuesday, 8:22 a.m.; -0.7 feet; Twin Harbors, Long Beach
- April 2, Wednesday, 9:05 a.m.; -0.6 feet; Twin Harbors, Long Beach
- April 3, Thursday, 9:49 a.m.; -0.3 feet; Twin Harbors, Long Beach
- April 14, Monday, 6:46 a.m.; +0.2 feet; Twin Harbors
- April 15, Tuesday, 7:24 a.m.; -0.3 feet; Twin Harbors, Long Beach
- April 16, Wednesday, 8:03 a.m.; -0.6 feet; Twin Harbors, Long Beach
- April 17, Thursday, 8:43 a.m.; -0.8 feet; Twin Harbors, Long Beach
- April 18, Friday, 9:26 a.m.; -0.8 feet; Twin Harbors, Long Beach,
- April 19, Saturday, 10:14 a.m.; -0.7 feet; Twin Harbors, Long Beach
- April 20, Sunday, 11:06 a.m.; -0.4 feet; Twin Harbors, Long Beach
Mainstem Columbia River and most Washington tributaries - Barbless hooks are required to fish for salmon and steelhead. Check the 2013-2014 Washington Sport Fishing Rules for more information.
Through May 15, the mainstem Columbia River is open for retention of adipose fin-clipped steelhead and shad ONLY during days and in areas open for retention of adipose fin-clipped spring Chinook.
Mainstem Columbia from Buoy 10 upstream to the I-5 Bridge – Open to fishing for hatchery Chinook and hatchery steelhead through April 7 (except closed on Tuesdays March 25 and April 1). The adult salmonid limit is 2 fish of which no more than one may be a hatchery Chinook.
Mainstem Columbia from the I-5 Bridge upstream to Bonneville Dam – Through April 7 (except closed on Tuesdays March 25 and April 1), open to fishing for hatchery Chinook and hatchery steelhead. No boats from Beacon Rock upstream. The adult salmonid limit is 2 fish of which no more than one may be a hatchery Chinook.
Bonneville Dam to Washington/Oregon Border - Effective March 16 through May 9, open to fishing for hatchery Chinook and hatchery steelhead. Bank fishing only from Bonneville Dam to Tower Island power lines located about 6 miles below The Dalles Dam. The adult salmonid limit will be 2 fish of which no more than one may be a hatchery Chinook.
Deep River from the mouth to town bridge - Through June 15, the daily limit for salmon may not include more than one hatchery adult chinook during those days when the adjacent waters of the mainstem Columbia River are open to retention of spring Chinook.
Kalama River from mouth upstream to the upper hatchery (Kalama Falls Hatchery) – Until further notice, all Chinook must be released.
Mainstem Lewis River from mouth to forks and North Fork Lewis River from mouth of forks upstream to Merwin Dam – Until further notice, all Chinook must be released.
North Fork Lewis River from Johnson Creek to Merwin Dam – Through May 31, closed to all fishing.
Annual limit – The annual catch limit for white sturgeon is two fish per license year in Washington’s waters. Retention of white sturgeon is not allowed by anglers fishing in the lower Columbia River below Bonneville Dam, the Washington coast, and Puget Sound and their tributaries. Catch-and-release fishing for the species is allowed in those areas.
Bonneville Dam to The Dalles Dam including adjoining tributaries - Sturgeon may be retained through March 9. The daily limit is 1 fish, min. size 38” fork length and max. 54” fork length. Catch-and-release fishing is permitted on non-retention days. A summer retention period is planned for some time in June.
The Dalles Dam to McNary Dam including adjoining tributaries - Until respective harvest guidelines for each reservoir are reached. The daily limit is 1 fish, min. size 43” fork length and max. 54” fork length.
State fishing and hunting licenses are available for the new season (begins April 1, 2014) by phone (866-246-9453), online https://fishhunt.dfw.wa.gov/), and from licensing dealers around the state (http://wdfw.wa.gov/licensing/vendors/). A Vehicle Access Pass to lands owned by WDFW is free with most types of fishing and hunting licenses.
This endorsement allows you to use two fishing poles on most freshwater lakes, ponds, a few sections of certain rivers, and a few marine areas. You must have a fishing license in addition to the two pole endorsement.
At $35, an annual pass provides access to nearly seven million acres of state-managed recreation lands, including state parks, water-access points, heritage sites, wildlife and natural areas, trails and trailheads.
New this year is the option to choose the activation date for an annual Discover Pass purchased online or from an authorized WILD licensing dealer. Those who buy an annual Discover Pass through the WILD system can now activate the pass immediately or anytime within one year of the purchase date. On-line gift buyers can select a future start date so long as they allow 10 days to receive their Discover Pass by mail.
For details on purchasing a Discover Pass, see http://discoverpass.wa.gov/.