Reel Deal: Ocean salmon season opens soon

Written by Adam Spencer, The Triplicate April 26, 2013 05:50 pm

Butch Haynes of the Sacramento area celebrated his 73rd birthday April 18 by catching a hatchery springer on the lower Rogue River while fishing with guide Andy Martin of Wild Rivers Fishing. The salmon hit an anchovy fished with a size 4 Hilderbrandt gold blade and size 2 Lazer Sharp round bend treble hook. He fought the king with a Wright & McGill Alaskan Heavy Drifter salmon rod.
Butch Haynes of the Sacramento area celebrated his 73rd birthday April 18 by catching a hatchery springer on the lower Rogue River while fishing with guide Andy Martin of Wild Rivers Fishing. The salmon hit an anchovy fished with a size 4 Hilderbrandt gold blade and size 2 Lazer Sharp round bend treble hook. He fought the king with a Wright & McGill Alaskan Heavy Drifter salmon rod. Courtesy of Andy Martin / Wild Rivers Fishing
Heavy wind keeps boats off the ocean around the Mendocino Management Area

To the north, in-river anglers have been pulling spring salmon from the Rogue River for a couple weeks, but here in Crescent City, all eyes are on the ocean salmon opener on Wednesday, when anglers hope to seize on what is predicted to be another good ocean salmon season.

Crescent City ocean salmon season

The North Coast’s sport ocean salmon season starts Wednesday, May 1, but there’s no telling what the bite will be like until anglers hit the water.

There have been reports of salmon jumping and being accidently caught during commercial bottom fishing — possible indicators of a good salmon season.

Crescent City’s only ocean charter operation, Tally Ho Sportfishing, is not planning on salmon fishing on the opener, but Captain Craig Strickhouser said if enough folks ask him to go out salmon fishing, he’ll arrange a trip.  

The ocean sport season lasts from May 1 to Sept. 8, with a two-salmon (not including coho) per day limit and a Chinook minimum size limit of 20 inches.

Plenty of Crescent City anglers have been gearing up for the ocean salmon season, according to folks at Englund Marine, who said that the ocean salmon interest indicates that there may be a formidable sport salmon fleet, which makes it easier to find the schools of fish.

Shelter Cove

In the Mendocino Management Area, which includes Shelter Cove, the ocean salmon season opened April 6.  

Although heavy wind has kept most boats off the ocean in the past week, conditions calmed Wednesday. 

Still, anglers could only muster a modest one salmon per boat on average, according to Russ Thomas of Mario’s Marina.

Thomas said that surfperch fishing from the rocks and jetty is as good as always.

Lower Rogue River

Spring salmon fishing has slowed down on the lower Rogue, possibly due to the high temps seen recently, but last week Butch Haynes of the greater Sacramento area was able to celebrate his 73rd birthday by catching a hatchery spring salmon on the lower Rogue with Andy Martin of Wild Rivers Fishing. The chinook hit an anchovy with a size 4 Hilderbrandt gold blade and size 2 Lazer Sharp round bend treble hook.

Fishing guide contacts: Andy Martin of Wild Rivers Fishing at 541-813-1082; Tally Ho Sportfishing at 707-464-1236; Russ Thomas of Mario’s Marina in Shelter Cove at 707-986-7595.

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