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While the hordes of pink salmon keep streaming through the Strait of Juan de Fuca and into Puget Sound, the front end of the migrating coho run is also beginning to gain strength.

“We hooked four coho in a little more than one hour (on Wednesday), and kept one 8-pound hatchery fish, plus we released one 30-pound king and a half-dozen humpies (a term used for male pink salmon that form a distinct hump on their back at spawning time),” said Chris Mohr, owner of Van Riper’s Resort in Sekiu.

“The coho are just starting to show up, and it usually turns on around Sept. 10. The humpies are still everywhere, and the (Puget Sound) run is almost two weeks later than usual.”

The commercial purse seine test-fishing catches of pinks remains stable in an area referred to as “Area 20” off the southeast side of Vancouver Island. The run-size estimate of Fraser River pinks is now 24 million compared to a preseason forecast of 8.9 million. No inseason updates are made for Puget Sound pink stocks, but the forecast is more than 6.2 million.

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That is good news for local anglers, who reported very good catches of late for pinks from Everett clear down into the Tacoma area.

Catches of pinks and a few coho is decent in front of the Edmonds Marina; Mukilteo south to Shipwreck-Possession Point boundary; Meadow Point to West Point near Shilshole Bay; Browns Bay; Jefferson Head; Possession Bar; and Alki Point south to Tacoma. Elliott Bay is open daily for pinks, and fishing has picked up in the east waterway and the “combat pier fishery” near the Spokane Street Bridge.

Pier and beach anglers were finding good action for pinks at Lincoln Park off West Seattle, Golden Gardens, Seacrest Pier, Dash Point Pier, Browns Point, Deception Pass, Point No Point, Des Moines, Redondo and the west side of Whidbey Island.

There are three salmon fishing derbies happening in Sekiu, Mount Vernon and Edmonds. The No Fin, You Win Hatchery Coho Derby is Saturday in Sekiu. Cost is $15. Details: 360-963-2334.

The Ray Reep Salmon Derby is Saturday at Edgewater Park in Mount Vernon. Cost is $15. Details:

The Puget Sound Anglers Sno-King Chapter Edmonds Coho Derby is Saturday. Cost is $30 by the Friday registration deadline. Details: 206-920-2468 or email or

Looking ahead: All coho may be kept at Sekiu beginning Sept. 15; Grays Harbor is open for kings on Sept. 16-22; and the Everett Coho Derby is Sept. 21-22.

Fishing Report
Location  Comment
Marine Areas Anglers can now keep wild and hatchery coho off Ilwaco, and starting Friday off Westport. At La Push and Neah Bay only hatchery coho may be kept. Slow for salmon off Ilwaco, but good for close to a king or coho per rod at Westport. Fair to good for mostly hatchery coho, and a few chinook and pinks at La Push and Neah Bay. Fair for albacore tuna off the entire coast with most boats finding fish 30 to 50 miles offshore. Slow to fair for hatchery kings at Dolphin Point off Vashon Island; Tacoma area; Gig Harbor; and Southworth. Fair to good for kings, coho and pinks in San Juan Islands. Quilcene Bay is worth a try for coho. Willapa Bay king fishing has been slow.
Biting: YesRating: 3 stars
Statewide rivers At Buoy 10 near the Lower Columbia mouth, fishing was fair for hatchery coho. Very good for pinks in the Puyallup, Nisqually, Snohomish, Skagit, Lower Skykomkish, Nooksack and Green. Some early chinook caught in the Hanford Reach area of the Columbia. Slow to fair for kings in the Skokomish. Try for coho at Drano Lake. Snake is open for hatchery chinook.
Biting: YesRating: 3 stars
Statewide lakes Lake Sammamish is open for kings, and Lake Washington opens Sept. 16 for coho. Beaver Lake near Issaquah was recently planted with 1,200 rainbow trout averaging about 1 pound. Good for perch in Lake Washington. Slow to fair for trout at Angle, Green, Mineral, Roosevelt, Pass and Lone. The Potholes is good for perch, walleye, bass and trout.
Biting: YesRating: 3 stars