Thursday, July 25, 2024

Skagit River opens for hatchery spring Chinook fishing

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MOUNT VERNON - The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) has announced the immediate opening of portions of the Skagit River for hatchery spring Chinook salmon fishing. The action comes after the completion of Federal Endangered Species Act consultations on the 2024-25 Puget Sound salmon fisheries.

Effective immediately through July 15, anglers can fish for hatchery Chinook salmon in two sections of the Skagit River in Skagit County. The first section, from the Highway 536 bridge (Memorial Highway Bridge) in Mount Vernon to Gilligan Creek, is open through May 31. The daily limit is two hatchery Chinook with a 12-inch minimum size, and all other species must be released. Night closure is in effect, and anglers may fish with two poles if they have a Two-Pole Endorsement.

The second section, from the Highway 530 Bridge at Rockport to Cascade River Road (Marblemount Bridge), is open from May 29 through July 15. The daily limit is four hatchery Chinook, including no more than two adults, with a 12-inch minimum size. All other salmon must be released. Night closure and anti-snagging rules are in effect. Gamefish seasons in this section will open on June 1, with daily limits and size restrictions as outlined in the current Sport Fishing Rules pamphlet.

The reopening of these Skagit River salmon fisheries is consistent with preseason fishing plans following the National Marine Fisheries Service's issuance of a biological opinion and incidental take statement (NMFS Consultation #WCRO-2024-00942).

WDFW will actively monitor these fisheries and ask anglers to cooperate with Creel personnel to collect catch information. Monitoring and evaluating fisheries play a crucial role in ensuring salmon conservation goals are met.

For more information on fishing regulations and seasons, anglers should consult the current Sport Fishing Rules pamphlet.

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