Spent the last three days in Astoria trying out the salmon fishing. Overall, I'd say it was pretty good, with great weather and consistent action.
Saturday went out with the love of my life, Jan and friend, Lee. We started over by Chinook with way too many other people. Some action but slow for us. We headed back to Hammond/Warrenton along the channel. Got into fish pretty quick and finished the day with four, three silvers and one chinook. My wife caught the largest, this 13 lb silver beauty. Nothing quite as wonderful to spend a day on the river with your wife and getting her into some nice fish [img]graemlins/hearton.gif[/img]
Sunday went out with Lee, my brother and his son. Stayed in the same area, trolling between Hammond and Warrenton/Skipanon. Started slow but had two by noon. Action picked up again around 3 and we wound up with 5 in the boat, 4 silvers and 1 chinook. Here's our group with me on the left, my nephew and brother. My nephew landed his first two keepers, which made him pretty happy :grin: We'd got him into a springer earlier this year with too many fins and a couple 41" sturgeon, but nothing to go home with.
So we tried the same thing on Monday with my brother, nephew and my son. Action kept going about the same, never really hot but picking up a fish every so often. Called it a day a little earlier with three very nice silvers. Kevin caught this bruiser of a 15 lb silver and it gave him a real good fight.
This was my third time to Astoria for fall salmon and it's always been good. The weather was absolutely beautiful and the river stayed pretty calm. We fished fish flashers in front of cut plug herring most of the time. We kept poles at different depths and they all caught fish, from 5' to 30'. One fish hit the herring on the surface as I was putting it on the downrigger. Another fish nailed our herring that we were running at 5' deep right behind the motor in the prop wash (several good hits at this spot). Used one of the new King Kone flashers and it did real well (chartreuse color, largest size). Never really picked up a pattern to the bite, but most fish were caught in the 1 to 3 hours before a slack tide with the slowest bite around the slacks. We caught them going with and against the tide, although a lot of people would only go one direction. Of the 12 fish, only two were hens (are the bucks more aggressive or are the hens staying in the ocean longer?). Last year at this time, we caught almost all nooks, this year almost all silvers. No native silvers were caught. I'd say we did about as good as most other people. If I were to try to figure out this salmon fishing, I'd say you just have to get out there. Just about everything worked at one time or another. The bigger tide changes are hard to fish though, real tough on the bait.
Hope you all get a chance to try this fishery, it's a ton of fun. It has certainly converted me to salmon fishing. Being bank bound until about a year ago, I thought salmon & steelhead took 10 trips for each fish. Wrong [img]graemlins/dork.gif[/img]