By Ian Carter
SW Washington fishing quick picture – The Kalama river may be the best chance to catch what remains of the Coho run. Merwin continues to produce limits of Kokanee. It’s a bit of an off week, so I took the time to compile some Winter Steelhead smolt release data from the past four years. Squid fishing is epic in the sound. Sorry about the lack of pictures this week, it should tell you the general premise of this week’s report.
REMINDER, please verify the regulations before fishing any body of water
Overall fishing report for the Lewis isn’t very positive.
The Coho run is all but done with less than 1,000 making it to the hatchery in the past reporting period. There are some additional hatchery winter steelhead beginning to show.
James at Sportsman’s Warehouse in Kelso has heard a few reports of early Steelhead around, which could be leftover summer fish. Some guys are also picking up decent looking Coho higher up. WDFW creel checks for the Kalama showed that twenty-one bank rods kept one coho and released one coho.
John Thompson with Sportsman’s Warehouse in Orchards tells me that some folks are picking up Steelhead plunking the lower river. WDFW didn’t check too many anglers this week. The fishing report from them was lacking success very much. This week’s creel checks showed Cowlitz River I-5 Br downstream – Only three bank rods with no catch. Cowlitz River Above the I-5 Br – Nineteen bank rods kept nine coho.
Flow conditions are great right now. The river is still dropping and running at 6,000cfs. (Wednesday) With the rain in the forecast, that could change at any time, depending how full the reservoirs are. Real time water flow data can be found here USGS-Cowlitz.
This river does get a few early run Steelhead.
Korey at Bob’s Outdoor is still hearing of a decent fishery for Chum. The numbers of Salmon are falling rapidly. Steelhead should begin to show soon.
Merwin continues to be the high point of our area fisheries. When the wind permits, many anglers are getting limits. I’ve also heard of a few larger trout showing up in the catch.
Kress Lake – Fishing the first couple of days post-Thanksgiving was awesome. Things have since dried up a little.
Battleground Lake – Fishing has been better than Kress.
Klineline Pond – 2,000 stocker trout were planted on November 29th.
Lacamas Lake – While the warm water species are done for the winter, WDFW has added over 6,000 stocker size rainbow to the lake last week.
Razor Clams – We are still awaiting positive news from WDFW regarding the opportunity to harvest. Communication has been silent since 11/23/22.
Surf Fishing – Reports are still positive. If you try this weekend, watch the swell forecast.
Crabbing – Lots of large hard crab around for those willing to try.
It’s going to be wet through the entire weekend. Temperatures should remain above freezing. The wind as of today, Wednesday may lay down for a Merwin trip on Sunday. Overnight Friday and into Saturday looks questionable.
Find our weekly Oregon fishing report here.