As the summer approaches, the fishing season gets into full swing. The lakes opened in April, the rivers in June and now the Marine Fishery gets going. Razor clam digs have filled in the gaps along the way as well.
Anglers have had the chance to go after spring Chinook salmon where available. Most of the attention is toward the Cowlitz River and Columbia River in this regard. The Columbia is the first choice since there are so many fish passing through to the many supplying rivers upstream.
Most of the time this fishery is a boat affair and many locals have had good success near Cathlamet. I have received several reports of anglers doing quite well from the bank on the Washington side of the river near the Astoria bridge. Simply following the crowds and paying attention to congregating anglers will narrow the field in regards to finding a productive location. Sometimes working the water with a lure will get the job done; but, the most common approach from the bank is plunking.
At this point in time, more and more attention is being given to marine waters. All the reports are coming in favorably. As always, the best report is that which comes in after the fact. Nevertheless, it is time to book a charter and make it happen. With the long weekend coming up, it would be prudent to reserve ahead of time if there are fishing plans in the mix for the Fourth of July holiday.
There are still fish to be caught in our Grays Harbor lakes. Lake Sylvia is one location that gets replenished with trout. Since this lake hosts a state park and the fishing traffic picks up in the summer, it is always a good choice for lake fishing. Lake Aberdeen and Failor Lake would not be a waste of time either. Failor Lake, being somewhat remote, does not get the pressure that Lake Aberdeen or the Vance Creek Ponds near Elma do. It seems where lakes are in close proximity to populations, they usually get a fair amount of fishing attention.
Summer steelhead are on the minds of many anglers. This fishery is popular for many reasons. First, it gets the angler in the outdoors and provides a good measure of seclusion. This translates to just fisher verses fish. It gets the attention of the fishing purists. The approach can be conventional river fishing or fly fishing. Whatever the technique, this fishery can become as involved as one wants it to be.
Furthermore, the food value is definitely a consideration of many. Although, I have heard it said on many occasions, “I love to catch fish but I don’t like to eat fish.” We all love to make friends with such fishermen if we enjoy eating fresh steelhead.
Of all the fisheries I know, steelhead is one of the more technical I have ever run across. It can get very complicated considering the gear, terminal tackle and having said nothing yet about the fish itself.
We are at a point in time here in Grays Harbor when many fishing opportunities await us. Each one can be a big deal in their own right. One of the challenges before people is making the time admist busy schedules.