It’s all good on the Hood: Local winter steelhead running now, spring chinook on

Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife announced has announced that the popular spring chinook fisheries on the Hood and Deschutes rivers will open April 15. ODFW managers say they expect strong returns on both rivers, with numbers in the order of 1,300 for the Hood and as many as 13,000 in the Deschutes.

According to Rod French, ODFW fish biologist, this year’s runs should be larger than last year’s, particularly on the Deschutes, where no spring chinook fishing was allowed in order to protect the small number of returning fish. The catch limit for both rivers is two adult adipose fin-clipped salmon per day, and five adipose fin-clipped jack salmon per day. All non-adipose fin-clipped chinook salmon must be released unharmed.

“If the run comes back as predicted, chinook salmon fishing on the Deschutes should be excellent,” French said. “The Deschutes River fishery below Sherars Falls is extremely popular because it offers a great chance to catch a Columbia River spring chinook from the bank. In recent years, as many as 10,000 anglers a year have participated in the fishery.”

On the Hood River, numbers slightly higher than last year are expected. According to French, the Hood River offers another good opportunity to catch a spring chinook from the bank but in conditions that are much less crowded than on the Deschutes.

The season on the Hood will run from April 15 to June 30, from the mouth to mainstem confluence with the East Fork, and the West Fork from the confluence with the mainstem upstream to the angling deadline 200 feet downstream of Punchbowl Falls. The Deschutes season will run through July 31, from the mouth of the I-84 bridge upstream to Sherars Falls.

n For up-to-date fishing regulations, news releases and recreation reports, visit the ODFW’s website at dfw.state.or.us. The Hood River is located in the Central region.

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