the Chetco estuary expels the kings of quality | Fishing the north coast


If you are looking for an opportunity to catch great kings fresh from the ocean, the Chetco Estuary is the place to be. Salmon have been calling in tidal waters since early September. They will be there until the rain allows them to go up the river. Following the rain last Monday, which caused flow rates to drop from less than 100 cubic feet per second to nearly 1,000 cfs, some salmon were able to come out of the tide. But there should be a lot more salt to take their place. “Salmon fishing has really taken off in the Chetco Estuary,” said Andy Martin of Wild Rivers Fishing. “More than 50 kings were disembarked on Saturday and several dozen more on Monday. There is a good mix of trevally and wild kings and hatchery. The good fishing attracted a crowd of boats. half of the rising tide and the beginning of the falling tide. “

On the Chetco, the daily catch limit for salmon is two adult fish per day and no more than one adult wild chinook. Anglers may harvest adult hatchery chinook until the daily bag limit is reached. Once the daily adult limit is collected, anglers can no longer continue to fish for jack salmon. The river remains closed above mile 2.2 due to low flows.

On the Smith River, tidal water fishing was not as good. But it may not be for lack of fish. The rain that fell last week pushed flows to over 900 cfs, and schools of jacks and darker adults moved in. According to Britt Carson of the Anglund Marine in Crescent City, there aren’t many fish stopping over in the estuary at this time. “There were a few boats that dragged sardines and anchovies, as well as anglers that threw Kastmasters and Cleos,” he said. The Smith River is currently closed above the mouth of Rowdy Creek due to low flows.

Weekend marine forecast

The winds will start to ease on Friday and the ocean seems to be very fishable this weekend. On Wednesday afternoon, Friday’s forecast calls for northerly winds of 5 to 10 knots with northwest waves of 5 feet to five seconds and westerly waves of 3 feet to 16 seconds. The winds will be northerly at 5 to 10 knots on Saturday with northwest waves of 5 feet at nine seconds. Sunday is shaping up to be a little worse with northerly winds of 5 to 15 knots and northerly waves of 6 feet to six seconds and northwesterly waves of 4 feet to 13 seconds. These conditions can and will change by the weekend. For up-to-date weather forecasts, visit or To monitor the latest Humboldt bar conditions, visit You can also call the National Weather Service at 443-7062 or the Woodley Island office at 443-6484.

Dungeness crab trials in progress

Dungeness crab testing for domoic acid has started on the west coast. To date, two locations have shown results. Monterey Bay was tested on September 21 and only one of six samples was tested above the 30 parts per million threshold. Trinidad was also tested on September 21 and there was no detection of domoic acid. DomoicAcid.aspx.


The oceans:


Prior to Monday, there had not been much activity off Eureka due to the rough seas. Gary Blasi of Full Throttle Sport Fishing ventured into the halibut fishing grounds on Monday in less than ideal conditions and quickly set limits. The weather was better on Tuesday but the bite was slower. Very few boats were on the water.

Shelter Cove

According to Jake Mitchell of Sea Hawk Sport Fishing, the redfish bite has been excellent this week. “It has been a bit slow at times, but I’m still getting good limits every day,” he said. “Most of the effort has been made at the Old Man this week. The salmon bite has resumed in recent days and most boats have been restricted over the weekend directly to the Coast Guard buoy.


Harsh ocean conditions kept Brookings’ fleet on the docks all last week and over the weekend, Andy Martin of Brookings Fishing Charters reported. He said: “We expect a better time this weekend, with a Pacific halibut shot late in the season. The lingcod fishery had improved before the bad weather.

The rivers:

Lower Klamath

Effort and harvesting of salmon slowed considerably in the lower Klamath. Apparently the mouth is still sanded, making it difficult for fish to enter the river. If and when it opens, we should see more cool kings as well as the coho entering. The daily bag limit is two chinook salmon 23 inches or less and two hatchery rainbow trout.

Kenny Priest (he / he) operates Fishing the North Coast, a Humboldt fishing guide service specializing in salmon and rainbow trout. Find him on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and For up-to-date fishing reports and information on the North Coast River, email [email protected]

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