Yakima River spring Chinook fishing season opens today

The Yakama Nation and Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife opened the Yakima Reservation boundary Reach to spring Chinook fishing today, June 3. The aseason will extend through Thursday, June 30.

The species that can be taken are hatchery Chinook salmon.

Anglers are allowed to fish on the Yakima River from the Highway 223 Bridge (at Granger) upstream to the Burlington Northern railroad bridge, approximately 1,200 feet downstream of the Sunnyside (Parker) Diversion Dam (20.9 river miles).

The Yakama Nation and the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife fishery managers are forecasting a harvestable return of adult hatchery spring Chinook salmon to the Yakima River in 2011. Opening the "Reservation Boundary Reach" increases opportunity to harvest hatchery spring Chinook in one of the most productive sections of the Yakima River for salmon fishing.

Non-tribal anglers who fish from either river bank (north or south shore), islands or from boats (or other floating devices) in the river reach bordering the Yakama Nation Reservation, extending from the SR 223 Granger Bridge upstream to the Burlington Northern railroad bridge downstream of Sunnyside Dam, must purchase a Yakama Nation tribal fishing permit, in addition to a 2011 WDFW freshwater fishing license and the Columbia River Salmon/Steelhead Endorsement. This section of river bordering the reservation is open to salmon fishing for non-tribal members courtesy of the Yakama Nation.

There is a daily limit of two hatchery Chinook, with a minimum size of 12 inches.

Hatchery salmon are identified by a missing adipose fin and a healed scar in the location of the missing fin. Wild salmon (adipose fin intact) must be immediately released unharmed and cannot be removed from the water prior to release.

There is a special gear restriction for all species of fish taken from the river. Only one, single (point), barbless hook with a hook gap from point to shank of 3/4 inch or less is permitted. Use of bait is allowed.

No fishing in the Yakima River is allowed during night-time hours.

Tribal and state officials note, however, that fishing for steelhead remains closed. All steelhead must be immediately released unharmed and cannot be removed from the water prior to release.

Log in to comment