States set 2021 Columbia River salmon and steelhead seasons

CLACKAMAS, Ore. – Oregon and Washington fishery managers recently announced seasons and regulations for 2021 Columbia River summer and fall salmon and steelhead fisheries.

Improved forecasts for summer Chinook, fall Chinook and coho salmon will allow for increased opportunity to target these fish. However, the forecasts for sockeye salmon and upriver summer steelhead (155,600 and 101,400 respectively) are below average and will require conservative retention seasons.

For the summer season, retention of adult hatchery Chinook will open June 16 and continue through July 5 downstream of Bonneville Dam and through July 31 from Bonneville Dam upstream to the OR/WA border. In both areas, sockeye and hatchery steelhead retention will be allowed June 16 to July 31, but with a reduced bag limit for each.

This year’s adult fall Chinook forecast of 576,400 fish is similar to the actual return in 2020 but the forecast includes 361,500 upriver bright Chinook, which would be 20 percent higher than the 2020 actual return. Fall Chinook retention seasons start Aug. 1 and are longer than recent years, but regulations do vary by river section, and anglers are encouraged to review the detailed descriptions. Hatchery coho retention will be open throughout the fall season based on the much-improved forecast.

Due to the low forecast for upriver summer steelhead, protective regulations will again be in effect for 2021 fisheries. These include a one hatchery steelhead daily bag limit, area-specific retention closures, and Thermal Angling Sanctuaries in portions of Eagle Creek, Herman Creek, the Deschutes River, and the Columbia River near the mouths of these tributaries.

For more information about upcoming Columbia River seasons, including regulation updates, visit ODFW’s online fishing reports at https://myodfw.com/recreation-report/fishing-report/columbia-zone

Reminder the dailybag limit for jack salmon in Oregon is five fish.

2021 mainstem Columbia River summer/fall salmon and steelhead regulations.
Regulations can change during the season so always check the Recreation Report Fishing Report for your zone before fishing, https://myodfw.com/recreation-report/fishing-report/columbia-zone

Summer Season (June 16 – July 31)
Astoria-Megler Bridge upstream to Bonneville Dam

Retention of adult hatchery Chinook allowed June 16 – July 5.
Retention of hatchery steelhead and sockeye allowed. The daily adult bag limit is two salmonids, but only one may be a hatchery steelhead and only one may be a sockeye. All sockeye are considered adults.
Retention of hatchery jack Chinook allowed.
Bonneville Dam upstream to Hwy 395 Bridge (Pasco, WA)

Retention of hatchery Chinook (adults and jacks ), hatchery steelhead, and sockeye allowed. The daily adult bag limit is two salmonids, but only one may be a hatchery steelhead and only one may be a sockeye. All sockeye are considered adults.
Fall Season (Aug. 1 – Dec. 31)
For all fall-season salmonid fisheries, each legal angler aboard a vessel may continue to deploy angling gear until the daily adult salmonid bag limit for all anglers aboard has been achieved.

Buoy 10
Area definition: From the Buoy 10 line upstream to a line projected from Rocky Point on the Washington shore through red navigation buoy #44 to the navigation light at Tongue Point on the Oregon shore.
General regulations during Aug. 1 – Dec. 31: 1) adult Chinook are longer than 24-inches, 2) adult coho are 16-inches and longer, 3) wild coho must be released, 4) all steelhead must be released Aug. 1 – Oct. 31, and 5) retention of jack salmon prohibited through Sept. 30.

Additional regulations by date period are described below:
Aug. 1 – 10: Retention of adult hatchery Chinook and adult hatchery coho allowed. The daily adult bag limit is two hatchery salmon, but only one may be a Chinook.
Aug. 11 – Sept. 6: Retention of adult Chinook and adult hatchery coho allowed. The daily adult bag limit is two salmon, but only one may be a Chinook.
Sept. 7 – 30: Retention of adult hatchery coho allowed. All Chinook must be released. The daily adult bag limit is three hatchery coho.
Oct. 1 – 31: Retention of hatchery coho (adults and jacks) allowed. All Chinook must be released. The daily adult bag limit is three hatchery coho.
Nov. 1 – Dec. 31: Retention of hatchery coho (adults and jacks) and hatchery steelhead allowed. All Chinook must be released. The daily adult bag limit is three hatchery salmonids, but only two may be hatchery steelhead.
Tongue Point/Rocky Point upstream to Warrior Rock/Bachelor Island
Area definition: From a line projected from Rocky Point on the Washington shore through red navigation buoy #44 to the navigation marker at Tongue Point on the Oregon shore upstream to a line projected from the Warrior Rock Lighthouse on the Oregon shore to red navigation buoy #4, then to the piling dolphin on the lower end of Bachelor Island.
General regulations during Aug. 1 – Dec. 31: 1) adult Chinook are longer than 24-inches, 2) adult coho are longer than 20-inches, 3) wild coho must be released, 4) all steelhead must be released Aug. 1 – Oct. 31, and 5) retention of jack coho salmon allowed.

Additional regulations by date period are described below:
Aug. 1 – Sept. 9: Retention of Chinook (adults and jacks) and hatchery coho allowed. The daily adult bag limit is two salmon, but only one may be a Chinook.
Sept. 10 – Oct. 31: Retention of hatchery coho allowed. All Chinook must be released. The daily adult bag limit is two hatchery coho.
Nov. 1 – Dec. 31: Retention of hatchery coho and hatchery steelhead allowed. All Chinook must be released. The daily adult bag limit is two hatchery salmonids.
Warrior Rock/Bachelor Island upstream to Bonneville Dam
Area definition: From a line projected from the Warrior Rock Lighthouse on the Oregon shore to red navigation buoy #4, then to the piling dolphin on the lower end of Bachelor Island upstream to Bonneville Dam.
General regulations during Aug. 1 – Dec. 31: 1) adult Chinook are longer than 24-inches, 2) adult coho are longer than 20-inches, 3) wild coho must be released, 4) all steelhead must be released Aug. 1 – Oct. 31, and 5) retention of jack coho salmon allowed.

Additional regulations by date period are described below:
Aug. 1 – Oct. 31: Retention of Chinook (adults and jacks) and hatchery coho allowed. The daily adult bag limit is two salmon, but only one may be a Chinook.
Nov. 1 – Dec. 31: Retention of hatchery coho and hatchery steelhead allowed. All Chinook must be released. The daily adult bag limit is two hatchery salmonids.
Bonneville Dam upstream to The Dalles Dam (also see Thermal Angling Sanctuaries regs below):
General regulations during Aug. 1 – Dec. 31: 1) adult Chinook are longer than 24-inches, 2) adult coho are longer than 20-inches, 3) only hatchery coho (adults and jacks) may be retained downstream of the Hood River Bridge, 4) all steelhead must be released Aug.1 – Oct.31, and 5) retention of jack salmon allowed.

Additional regulations by date period are described below:
Aug. 1 – Oct. 31: Retention of Chinook and coho allowed. The daily adult bag limit is two salmon, but only one may be a Chinook.
Nov. 1 – Dec. 31: Retention of Chinook, coho, and hatchery steelhead allowed. The daily adult bag limit is two salmonids, but only one may be a Chinook.
The Dalles Dam upstream to Hwy 395 Bridge (Pasco, WA) (also see Thermal Angling Sanctuaries regs below):

General regulations during Aug. 1 – Dec. 31: 1) adult Chinook are longer than 24-inches, 2) adult coho are longer than 20-inches, 3) all steelhead must be released Sept. 1 – Dec. 31, and 4) retention of jack salmon allowed.

Additional regulations by date period are described below:
Aug. 1 – 31: Retention of Chinook, coho, and hatchery steelhead allowed. The daily adult bag limit is two salmonids, but only one may be a Chinook and only one may be a hatchery steelhead.
Sept. 1 – Dec. 31: Retention of Chinook and coho allowed. The daily adult bag limit

2021 summer/fall salmon and steelhead regulations for Columbia River Thermal Angling Sanctuaries (Eagle Cr., Herman Cr., Deschutes River) and the lower John Day River.

Permanent regulations apply for other sections of these tributaries.

Eagle Creek (Central Zone)
Area definition: From the angling deadline in Eagle Creek (200 feet downstream of hatchery fishway entrance) downstream to the mouth at the mainline railroad bridge.

June 16 – July 14: One hatchery steelhead allowed in the adult salmonid daily limit.
July 15 – Sept, 15: Closed to angling.
Sept. 16 – Nov. 30: Closed to salmon angling/retention.
Dec. 1–31:Permanent regulations apply.
Eagle Creek Mouth (Columbia River Zone)
Area definition: The mainstem Columbia River adjacent to the mouth of Eagle Creek from the mainline railroad bridge northwest to a line projecting from a marker on the Oregon shore approximately 200 feet downstream of Eagle Creek, through red navigation buoy #4, and terminating at a marker on the Oregon shore approximately 325 feet upstream of Eagle Creek.

June 16 – July 14: See rules for Columbia mainstem Bonneville Dam to The Dalles Dam.
July 15 – Sept. 15: Closed to angling.
Sept. 16 – Dec. 31: See rules for Columbia mainstem Bonneville Dam to The Dalles Dam.
Herman Creek (Columbia River Zone)
Area definition: From the mainline railroad bridge downstream to markers at mouth.

June 16 – July 14: See rules for Columbia mainstem Bonneville Dam to The Dalles Dam.
July 15 – Nov. 30: Closed to angling.
Dec. 1–31:See rules for Columbia mainstem Bonneville Dam to The Dalles Dam.

Herman Creek Lagoon (Columbia River Zone)
Area definition: Herman Creek Lagoon/Cove east of a line from the northwest tip of the jetty, south to a marker on the Oregon shore.

June 16 – July 14: See rules for Columbia mainstem Bonneville Dam to The Dalles Dam.
July 15 – Sept. 15: Closed to angling.
Sept. 16 – Dec. 31: See rules for Columbia mainstem Bonneville Dam to The Dalles Dam.
Deschutes River (Central Zone)
Area definition: From markers at lower end of Moody Rapids downstream to the mouth at Interstate 84 Bridge.

June 16 – Dec. 31: One hatchery steelhead allowed in the adult salmonid daily limit except closed to angling July 15-Sept. 15.

Deschutes River Mouth (Columbia River Zone)
Area definition: The mainstem Columbia River adjacent to the mouth of the Deschutes River from the Interstate 84 Bridge north to a line projecting from the flashing red navigation marker #2 located approximately 1.5 miles downstream of the Deschutes River mouth on the Oregon shore, upstream to the red navigation marker #4, then to the lower South Channel Range “B” marker located on the Oregon shore approximately 0.7 mile upstream of the Deschutes River mouth.

June 16 – July 14: See rules for Columbia mainstem from The Dalles Dam upstream to Hwy 395 Bridge (Pasco, WA).
July 15 – Sept. 15: Closed to angling.
Sept. 16 – Dec. 31: See rules for Columbia mainstem from The Dalles Dam upstream to Hwy 395 Bridge (Pasco, WA).

John Day River (Northeast Zone)
Area definition: From the mainline railroad bridge at the mouth, upstream to a marker ¼ mile below Tumwater Falls.

June 16 – August 31: One hatchery steelhead allowed in the adult salmonid daily limit
September 1 – December 31: Closed to steelhead retention