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Snake River spring chinook fisheries to open

Action/Species affected: Spring chinook salmon fishing to reopen on three locations in the Snake River.


A) Below Ice Harbor: Snake River from the South Bound Highway 12 Bridge near Pasco upstream about 7 miles to the fishing restriction boundary below Ice Harbor Dam;

B) Below Little Goose: Snake River from Texas Rapids boat launch (south side of the river upstream of the mouth of Tucannon River) to the fishing restriction boundary below Little Goose Dam. This zone includes the rock and concrete area between the juvenile bypass return pipe and Little Goose Dam along the south shoreline of the facility (includes the walkway area locally known as "the wall" in front of the juvenile collection facility);

C) Clarkston: Snake River from the downstream edge of the large power lines crossing the Snake River (just upstream from West Evans Road on the south shore) upstream about 3.5 miles to the Washington state line (from the east levee of the Greenbelt boat launch in Clarkston northwest across the Snake River to the WA/ID boundary waters marker on the Whitman County shore).

Dates: Each area is open three days per week until further notice.

Areas B and C (Below Little Goose Dam and near Clarkston) open Thursday, June 4, and will be open only Thursday through Saturday each week.

Area A (Below Ice Harbor Dam) open Sunday, June 7, and will be open only Sunday through Tuesday each week.

Daily Limits: 6 hatchery chinook (adipose fin clipped), of which no more than two may be adult chinook salmon. For all areas open for chinook salmon harvest, anglers must cease fishing for chinook when the hatchery adult limit has been retained for the day.

Possession Limits: During these fisheries possession limits for spring chinook salmon will be increased to allow three daily limits in fresh form.

Reason for action: 1) Based on a May 26 in-season run update, and a recent upstream shift of harvest allocation from the lower Columbia River, spring chinook fisheries can reopen in the Snake River on a 3-day rotating schedule (three days per week per location). 2) An enhanced daily bag limit for chinook will be in place for this fishery to allow anglers opportunity to harvest available hatchery fish prior to warmer water temperatures anticipated by mid-June. Chinook possession limits for this fishery have been increased to three daily limits in fresh form, in an effort to promote this fishery as a destination-based opportunity. This action will allow anglers to possess a reasonable amount of fish during their stay.

Other Information: The minimum size of any retained chinook salmon is 12 inches. Jacks are less than 24 inches long. The adipose fin-clipped chinook salmon that can be retained must have a healed scar at the location of the missing fin. All chinook salmon with the adipose fin intact must be immediately released unharmed. All adult steelhead must be released unharmed through June 15. Beginning June 16 up to 3 hatchery (adipose fin clipped) steelhead may be retained on the Snake River.

In addition: Anglers fishing for all species, in the locations open for chinook salmon, during the days of the week the salmon fishery is open in that area, must use barbless hooks. Only single point barbless hooks are allowed when fishing for sturgeon.

A night closure is in effect for salmon and sturgeon. It is unlawful to use any hook larger than 5/8 inch (point of hook to shank) when fishing for all species except sturgeon. Anglers cannot remove any chinook salmon or steelhead from the water unless it is retained as part of the daily bag limit.

Anglers are reminded to refer to the 2014/2015 Fishing in Washington Sport Fishing Rules pamphlet for other regulations, including safety closures, CLOSED WATERS, etc.


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