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Old 07-11-2019, 10:38 AM   #1
Badsmerf
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Default New to the area, questions....

Hi guys. New to the Vancouver area. Grew up in SE Alaska, so glad to be back in the PNW. The fishing is a little different here than there from what I've gathered (been lurking/reading for about a year).

First question: are the fish in the river as good to eat as in the ocean? We never kept the brown hatchery fish by Juneau, and all fish were caught in the ocean. It sounds like there is decent access to salmon/steelhead around me to flyfish, just wondering if the quality is worth keeping fish? I'd love to catch my own fish, but a boat will be down the road for me.

Why aren't fiberglass sport fishing boats more popular? Once I do decide to get a boat, I'd want something like a 35' Bertram to be comfortable fishing and crossing the bar. Do most only fish halibut opener to the end of salmon? Isn't there crabbing opportunities from Oct to May?

I'll have more, just figuring this all out, and don't have any fisher friends yet. I also have 4 kids between 3-10, so don't have a ton of time. Hoping to kind some help here, possibly a few dudes I could hang out with.

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Old 07-11-2019, 12:07 PM   #2
Fishfeet
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Default Re: New to the area, questions....

Quote:
Originally Posted by Badsmerf View Post
Hi guys. New to the Vancouver area. Grew up in SE Alaska, so glad to be back in the PNW. The fishing is a little different here than there from what I've gathered (been lurking/reading for about a year).

First question: are the fish in the river as good to eat as in the ocean? We never kept the brown hatchery fish by Juneau, and all fish were caught in the ocean. It sounds like there is decent access to salmon/steelhead around me to flyfish, just wondering if the quality is worth keeping fish? I'd love to catch my own fish, but a boat will be down the road for me.

Why aren't fiberglass sport fishing boats more popular? Once I do decide to get a boat, I'd want something like a 35' Bertram to be comfortable fishing and crossing the bar. Do most only fish halibut opener to the end of salmon? Isn't there crabbing opportunities from Oct to May?

I'll have more, just figuring this all out, and don't have any fisher friends yet. I also have 4 kids between 3-10, so don't have a ton of time. Hoping to kind some help here, possibly a few dudes I could hang out with.
Badsmerf.
You'll probably want to check out the Salty dawg forum on here.
Most of your questions would probably be answered on there.
They are full of salty language there.
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Old 07-11-2019, 04:10 PM   #3
The Pew
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Default Re: New to the area, questions....

Do river fish taste good- depends. Spring chinook running through Portland are some of the best salmon you’ll ever eat. Many fish passing the Portland area still have many river miles left before they spawn and die. As you learn the run timings and where fish are headed you can sort out the eating fish, smoking fish and picture fish.

Why aluminum boats- we are spoiled in the northwest by having great builders that build exactly what you want. Most folks start out on a drift boat or jet sled running rivers so when they move up to a big boat they go with the builders they know and are from the area. The ability to fully customize your build, lighter weight for easier towing, less depreciation and better fuel economy are all reasons folks like their aluminums.

People from the east coast think we are crazy to pay what we pay for a tin can when glass boats are available cheaper and tend to ride better in the ocean. I think if a glass boat builder really studied our market and came out with 2-3 northwest models they could make a killing.

Do folks just fish May to October in the ocean- rough winter ocean conditions, hunting season, school year and life tend to pull people off the water by September.

Port of choice has an impact as well.

For example Newport has halibut, salmon, tuna, bottom fish over the summer and fall. When the ocean lays down, Newport has great bottom fish year round and good winter crabbing.

Astoria/Illwaco tends to be more halibut, salmon, tuna in the summer through fall and crabbing in the river over the winter because bottom fish isn’t as prevalent of a fishery for that area and the Columbia bar doesn’t give up many days for recreational boats in the winter.

My boat stays in the water April-October in Newport and then gets stored their over the winter so on nice days I can run over. I fished seven days from January to April this last year. Not bad for a working guy with family obligations.

If you haven’t read up on albacore fishing you should start.

I’d highly recommend next February coming to the Salem Saltwater Show. It’s a great show to learn a little about our area and meet folks that live fishing the ocean. It’s not miles if booths selling ginzu knives but rather part social gathering, part trade show and part seminars.


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Old 07-11-2019, 08:36 PM   #4
Badsmerf
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Thanks for the great reply The Pew! I have read up on the tuna fishing opportunities, and it looks like a future addiction. I might like crab more than salmon... so that would be motivation to keep as boat in the water as long as crabbing is good. Thanks for the invite to Salem, I will check it out.
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Old 07-12-2019, 03:58 PM   #5
Roady
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Default Re: New to the area, questions....

Welcome to the area. I grew up in Anchorage and moved down to Washington as a teenager. Didn’t start fishing the rivers down here until my late 20’s and almost didn’t stick with it. It was nothing like up north and it took me a few years to catch a Washington steelhead or salmon.

Last year, I also went clam digging for the first time since living in Alaska. That was also a re-learning experience. Haha


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Old 07-13-2019, 09:51 AM   #6
badkarma
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Default Re: New to the area, questions....

Talk to the guys on the bank. They may appear to not be friendly at first but once you get past that they love telling you how to fish!
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