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I believe the coho do turn south but mostly head west where oxygen concentrations for forage is good and temperatures are favorable. I also think the deeper the water the less the "bouncing around" they get and ocean currents stir up "food fish". My unproven theory has a reasoning I believe is logical... When Coho are starting to inundate the "home spawning grounds" it is very typical that we get them south and west of the CR. Schools used to be a regular thing but recently the schools are few and far between but can be found in krill and anchovie rich areas. They're not that different from Chinook as far as forage/fattening up is concerned but remember, Chinooks come from the cold water in the north.They get into shallow areas where forage like crab larvae, krill and small bait fish meets their demands v Coho coming from the west south west and finding forage near rich, structured, off shore pockets of forage. When the ocean is roughed up and the sandy seafloor gets stirred up, they move to deeper water just as the forage would for security as well as predation protection.
That's just my theory, I have no "science" to prove it and "my" reasoning hasn't been able to rebut it so far. HOWEVER, the evidence of where we go to get Coho V Chinook has proven itself year after year. Of course the two can be found in both areas but OVERWHELMINGLY speaking (as far as the CR area is concerned).......... Coho are South, higher in the deep water column and Chinooks are found North and deep in what ever water they are in, even in shallow water.
Sounds plausible to me, but, there must be some chinook who hang around the Columbia all year and are not coming from northern waters. I only say this because there are chinook available just off the mouth during the early chinook only season and throughout the summer before the upriver brights and tules arrive to ascend the Columbia and make up the Buoy 10 fishery. I don't think those chinook are there yet. But, there certainly are some chinook around now.
 

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Its a slow year for sure when this thread is only at 59 almost a month into the season. I see more people interested in crabbing than fishing, go figure. Thats fine with me as the wife and I both have dealing with some kind of crude that has us coughing our heads off and by no means wanting to chase Coho dinks on a lumpy ocean.
I read and read and think twice about going even wish I was there and then I blame the weather, ocean or just no boat to jump on that day. We're fishermen and the salty breeze and the weathered look we adorn has a dignity we prefer. We're called "old salts" for a reason.
As for that nasty cough and hacking up "stuff", I hear ya! The pollen levels/allergies have been plaguing us all. Hope ya get over it soon! The Ho's are playing with your mind as they are mine yet we know we will get many a chance to fill our inner spirit with salty trips filled with immense and thrilling adventures not to mention our freezer with lucious table fare. Hang on, your day is coming!!! Right now I live for the challenge and enjoyment the little buggers can bring.
 

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Remember there isn’t a single run of Chinook that go up the Columbia. The only way to determine if a fish is part of a particular run is with tags. If a Springer is caught off the mouth in September, it might be considered a resident. I don’t know if any studies have been done to prove there are resident fish that never leave the area. It would be most likely that Jacks are residents. A fish in the salt more than a year and a half, probably isn’t.
 

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Remember there isn’t a single run of Chinook that go up the Columbia. The only way to determine if a fish is part of a particular run is with tags. If a Springer is caught off the mouth in September, it might be considered a resident. I don’t know if any studies have been done to prove there are resident fish that never leave the area. It would be most likely that Jacks are residents. A fish in the salt more than a year and a half, probably isn’t.
The last few years, all chinook are smaller than they used to be on a regular basis. During the early June chinook season several years back we caught some 15 to 20 pounders. I can only assume that they were chinook that were hanging around the Columbia mouth and did not migrate north or south for some reason. I guess it is possible that they were springers of some sort. As you said, the only way to really know is to have tags in them.

Like others, I find it rather interesting how few reports there have been about CR salmon fishing, coho or chinook. I thought it would be better by this point. I assume that there are the normal number of fishers out there.
 

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Got a late start today (about 830) with a crew of kids that did amazing at capitalizing on chances. We started at CR and just trolled SW all the way out to 330. Killed 6 Coho, released 1 Nate, lost 2 fish at the boat. Never heard of a bite anywhere worth running to, so just worked our program.

Bar crossing back in about 2 was bigger than I woulda thought, but kids loved it. Dad prefers flat water.

These things need to start staging if a million plus are coming...
 

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I'm fascinated with the idea that some Chinooks don't go far west, south or north from the CR area. I might understand that idea better if it were indeed just the Jacks doing that because they are TYPICALLY smaller and they're not a three-four year fish. Like Dog said... there isn't just one run that transits the river. There's Spring summer and fall fish all of which seem to return in 3-4 years (so far as I know). So now we go back to where do they go and because they are released at different times/conditions etc.. does that affect/effect where they go? PIT tag info is kept secret as far as I know. And the point to this conversation is, if the summer or fall run of Chinook are coming in the numbers the forecasters propose they'd better be showing up! Now I know Coho are supposedly inundating us (a million fish so they say). Again... where are they? Stories from anglers off Oregon ports now say they are plentiful. Why would they stop short of the "breeding river" then swim into it from 50 miles away? Doesn't make sense. Fall fishing will be CRAZY if the F&W released them late. I'm thinking about the B run of Coho but what about the late Chinooks! With no water and or hot water what will they run to? Selfishly speaking we'll be OK down here in the lower river, but the up river (above the dams) anglers are gonna get the stiff arm there. I'm betting they shut down early winter fishing.
 

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Got a late start today (about 830) with a crew of kids that did amazing at capitalizing on chances. We started at CR and just trolled SW all the way out to 330. Killed 6 Coho, released 1 Nate, lost 2 fish at the boat. Never heard of a bite anywhere worth running to, so just worked our program.

Bar crossing back in about 2 was bigger than I woulda thought, but kids loved it. Dad prefers flat water.

These things need to start staging if a million plus are coming...
Fished on the Nancy J…your dock mate. We went up hill off of 1 and went 240deg out to 300. Bonked 4, lost a couple, and threw back one really nice fin. Left Hammond at 540, and was starting our run back at 915. Not a wide open bite but enough action to keep it interesting.


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Fished on the Nancy J…your dock mate. We went up hill off of 1 and went 240deg out to 300. Bonked 4, lost a couple, and threw back one really nice fin. Left Hammond at 540, and was starting our run back at 915. Not a wide open bite but enough action to keep it interesting.


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We saw the boats north of us and another friend up there got 4 as well. Good to see you guys were out again today. I was worried the captain got bad news from the knee doc.
 

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I'm fascinated with the idea that some Chinooks don't go far west, south or north from the CR area. I might understand that idea better if it were indeed just the Jacks doing that because they are TYPICALLY smaller and they're not a three-four year fish. Like Dog said... there isn't just one run that transits the river. There's Spring summer and fall fish all of which seem to return in 3-4 years (so far as I know). So now we go back to where do they go and because they are released at different times/conditions etc.. does that affect/effect where they go? PIT tag info is kept secret as far as I know. And the point to this conversation is, if the summer or fall run of Chinook are coming in the numbers the forecasters propose they'd better be showing up! Now I know Coho are supposedly inundating us (a million fish so they say). Again... where are they? Stories from anglers off Oregon ports now say they are plentiful. Why would they stop short of the "breeding river" then swim into it from 50 miles away? Doesn't make sense. Fall fishing will be CRAZY if the F&W released them late. I'm thinking about the B run of Coho but what about the late Chinooks! With no water and or hot water what will they run to? Selfishly speaking we'll be OK down here in the lower river, but the up river (above the dams) anglers are gonna get the stiff arm there. I'm betting they shut down early winter fishing.
We need to get the Chum King involved in answering these questions. He knows his stuff and would be able to explain the situation, if we could get his attention to it. There is a summer run of chinook that ascends the Columbia now and has been present upriver by Pdx for at least a few weeks now. So, we know that those chinook are out there in the ocean off the Columbia. It is my understanding that the vast proportion of Columbia chinook that exit the river take a right and go off to Alaska where they get hammered by the Alaskan and Canadian commercial chinook trollers. But, those who survive the Alaska/Canada onslaught will be coming thru in August and September as upriver brights and tules and will be available in greater numbers off the Columbia. But, it seems like there are always some around as was seen in the early June chinook fishery which saw some chinook caught, although not as big as the later arriving tules and uprivers. So, they could be part of a group that hangs around the Columbia.

As for the coho, it makes some sense that they either went left or right when exiting the Columbia to find their feed elsewhere and will be gathering in greater numbers off the mouth as the urge to return upriver increases. Perhaps now, they are still down farther south by Newport, Depoe and Garibaldi. In years past, guys did fairly well early in the summer coho season by heading down as far south as Cannon Beach/Seaside, so some may spend their summers down there before returning to the mouth.
 

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I know its still 2 weeks away but what does everyone think fishing will be like the 1st week in the river?? I'm really going to try and target the coho this year but wondering if there will be enough in the river that first week?? Anyone have any thoughts on that?
 

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IMO looking more and more like there's little chance that there will be a million or so coho back to the Columbia this year. Yes, its still a bit early but coho fishing success has been a bit flashy. The catch rates for ocean Area 1 the last two weeks averaged 0. 88 coho an angler. About average for this time of year and less than in 2020 (1.1per). In 2014 when a million coho returned the catch rate for the same weeks was 1.3 an angler and Westport Area 2 was good too. This year Westport has been poor for coho so far. Granted catch rates for Area 1 vary considerably early in the season and dont line up well with eventual return to the Columbia but things better start popping soon if the prediction is going to be close. For Area 1 the highest success rate has come the latter part of July and early August. I have doubts about a big CR coho return.
 

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IMO looking more and more like there's little chance that there will be a million or so coho back to the Columbia this year. Yes, its still a bit early but coho fishing success has been a bit flashy. The catch rates for ocean Area 1 the last two weeks averaged 0. 88 coho an angler. About average for this time of year and less than in 2020 (1.1per). In 2014 when a million coho returned the catch rate for the same weeks was 1.3 an angler and Westport Area 2 was good too. This year Westport has been poor for coho so far. Granted catch rates for Area 1 vary considerably early in the season and dont line up well with eventual return to the Columbia but things better start popping soon if the prediction is going to be close. For Area 1 the highest success rate has come the latter part of July and early August. I have doubts about a big CR coho return.
Patience, grasshopper...
 

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I'm starting to agree with Darth baiter. I hope the fish prove me wrong, but we are working awfully hard to get Coho.

I fished the furthest from the mouth that I have all year today, to finally find some fish. Not red hot, but we filled tags and had a couple doubles. Clip rate was poor today at about 50%.

Oh yeah, pretty sure working with dad on the ocean has broken my 11 year old.

959289
 

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I'm starting to agree with Darth baiter. I hope the fish prove me wrong, but we are working awfully hard to get Coho.

I fished the furthest from the mouth that I have all year today, to finally find some fish. Not red hot, but we filled tags and had a couple doubles. Clip rate was poor today at about 50%.

Oh yeah, pretty sure working with dad on the ocean has broken my 11 year old.

View attachment 959289
You are doing well by going that far. We never went much past the CR on Sunday. Very slow between buoy 3 and CR
Killed one released one. Several feeder nooks.
Really nice ocean and good people.
Sloppy bar coming in at max ebb.

Going way way south on Friday.
 

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I'm starting to agree with Darth baiter. I hope the fish prove me wrong, but we are working awfully hard to get Coho.

I fished the furthest from the mouth that I have all year today, to finally find some fish. Not red hot, but we filled tags and had a couple doubles. Clip rate was poor today at about 50%.

Oh yeah, pretty sure working with dad on the ocean has broken my 11 year old.

View attachment 959289
I mark a ton of fish, when they bite they are full. While I suspect they run is over estimated too, there are still more fish then last year I think.


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It was a beautiful ocean today even without a bunch of fish. Being well into the incoming when we got out there we figured the fish might be closer so we started at 2 and trolled toward the CR with nothing. Picked up and ran to 300' depth and found a whole bunch of debris and weeds so we went a little farther. Got a couple of little ones and then us and the weeds found each other again so we moved back in to about 250'. Got a small coho that went into the box, then little bigger coho for the box and a third clipped coho that was nicer yet that I foolishly lost thinking I could lift him in with the leader like I did the others. Nothing at all after that.

We hooked several little shakers out there too. It looks like a there are quite a few fish around but they have a lot of growing to do. Everything today was caught in ~58° water, and every hookup today was with a Krippled Fishing anchovy helmet. I only have one of those and it was the first time I tried it, but with the dinky bait we are getting they seem to be just the ticket.

We came back in during the puny ebb and did 25-30 mph all the way, which requires really nice water for a C-Dory.
 

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I mark a ton of fish, when they bite they are full. While I suspect they run is over estimated too, there are still more fish then last year I think.


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I had pretty good fishing last year right up till the quota was caught, and many days pretty close in.

I will say, the water looked different today. More plankton type stuff. Birds were working, looked like more life out there. Hopefully its about to pop wide open.
 

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I know its still 2 weeks away but what does everyone think fishing will be like the 1st week in the river?? I'm really going to try and target the coho this year but wondering if there will be enough in the river that first week?? Anyone have any thoughts on that?
My thoughts are that if you have the metal, and mettle, to go outside, there will be a LOT more coho out there than in the river. The 2021 official B-10 report thread might give you more informed opinions.
 
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