Chinook Season Opens on Portions of Klamath, Trinity Rivers
Sport fishing for Chinook salmon in the Klamath River Basin is set to begin July 1 and will continue through the fall according to salmon quota and fishery regulations that were adopted by the California Fish and Game Commission during its May teleconference meeting.
The season begins with a shortened spring-run Chinook salmon fishery enacted in response to the state listing of “Upper Klamath/Trinity River Spring Chinook Salmon” as threatened under the California Endangered Species Act. The truncated spring-run Chinook salmon recreational fishery will open July 1 and run through Aug. 14 on the lower Klamath River (downstream of the Highway 96 bridge at Weitchpec) and through Aug. 31 on the Trinity River (upstream of the confluence of the South Fork Trinity River). The daily bag limit remains one Chinook salmon (no size restrictions), with a possession limit of two Chinook salmon. This shortened season structure eliminates the core months of April, May and June when the majority of spring-run move through the Klamath and Trinity rivers on their way to natal areas where the most at-risk spring-run populations spend the summer and spawn.
The fall-run Chinook salmon recreational fishery in the Klamath River will continue Aug. 15 as Klamath River fall-run Chinook begin to enter the river in larger numbers. In the Trinity River, the recreational fall-run Chinook season begins Sept. 1. The fall-run Chinook basin in-river quota for this fall period is 2,119 adult Chinook salmon for the 2022 season. Klamath River fall-run Chinook numbers remain low, requiring limited opportunity for harvest while this stock of salmon rebounds from the effects of challenging environmental conditions.
The bag limits will remain the same as in 2021, with a two-fish daily bag limit, with no more than one fish over 23 inches (such as one adult and one jack). The possession limit remains the same at six fish, with no more than three fish over 23 inches (effectively three daily bag limits).
The in-river recreational adult fall-run Chinook salmon quota is divided among four sectors in the Klamath River basin:
3,500 feet downstream of Iron Gate Dam downstream to the Highway 96 bridge – 360 fish.
Highway 96 bridge downstream to the mouth of the Klamath River – 1,060 fish.
There is a sub-area closure at the mouth of the Klamath River when 15 percent of the basin allocation has been harvested – 318 fish harvested below the Highway 101 bridge triggers this closure.
Old Lewiston Bridge to Highway 299 West bridge at Cedar Flat – 350 fish.
Denny Road bridge downstream to the confluence with Klamath River – 349 fish.
Anglers may keep track of the quota status of open and closed sections of the Klamath and Trinity rivers by calling California Department of Fish and Wildlife’s information hotline at (800) 564-6479.
For more information regarding Klamath River fishing regulations, please consult the 2022-2023 California Freshwater Sport Fishing Regulations, which will be available online in July at wildlife.ca.gov/regulations.