Good Outlook For A Spring Chinook Fishing Season

So far four Chinook salmon have been counted at the Bonneville
Dam on the Columbia River, but all were headed downstream.

Still, the early forecast is a for a good Chinook fishing season
in Idaho this year.

“We’re confident that enough Chinook will return to Idaho this
spring for a mid-to-late April season opening,” anadromous fish
manager Pete Hassemer told the Idaho Fish and Game Commission
Wednesday, January 28.

Predictions based in part on the number of jacks returning last
year, suggest more than 105,000 hatchery Chinook and more than
22,000 wild Chinook may cross Lower Granite Dam this year. Most of
those fish are destined for the Salmon and Clearwater river basins
in Idaho.

The number of returning wild fish is the fourth largest since
1979.

The predicted return of hatchery fish means Idaho recreational
anglers’ share could be more than 9,000 fish on the Clearwater
River, more than 9,000 on the lower Salmon and Little Salmon
rivers, and almost 1,400 on the Snake River.

Idaho Fish and Game fish managers expect to propose fishing
seasons on the Clearwater, Salmon, Little Salmon and Snake rivers
in March, Hassemer said. And in May, they expect to propose summer
seasons on the upper Salmon River and South Fork Salmon River.

Chinook salmon fishing seasons can be set only by the
commissioners.

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