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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I'm new to trolling for silvers in the big river. I will be down in the Longview area, and the mouth of the cowlitz. I've got downriggers and am eager to try for some coho this year. My idea is to run a flasher with 12-18 inch leader with a spinner following. Does this sound good? Also I have some bigger rapalas, crippled herring and flatfish. What depth should I start, 20'? Any advice welcome, thanks!
 

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"I've got downriggers." Just because you have them doesn't mean you should use them. Why not fish the way everyone else does? Interpretations of the word "flasher" can mean different things. Can you be more specific? I don't know enough about targeting Silvers up river from Astoria area to recommend anything but I'd probably go with a dodger and a spinner a couple feet behind.
 

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"Conform or be cast out"

If you're not in the thick of things with other boats, give your downriggers a shot. It's not been too weedy when I've been out and I think the river has maybe cooled another degree or two.
 

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Death Before Downriggers should be the mantra on the big C!
I think folks are worried that downriggers would become standard and then they would have to go buy a boat full of them.
Since the guides wouldn't be able to manage a six pack of clients plus all of the downriggers I don't think we have to worry about it.
 
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Always surprises me how much some people hate downriggers. They're a tool and a really good tool. Not all tools are right for every job however.
Honestly it's become fashionable to ignore that tool. They're great for many situations as you can always turn tight, know exactly where your gear is, and you can downsize your gear since you're not hauling 10 to 16+ ounces of lead up. I would vastly prefer to fight a fish from a downrigger over a lead rod.
I will however be fishing a lead rod 90% of the time during the next 90 days because it's the right tool.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
"I've got downriggers." Just because you have them doesn't mean you should use them. Why not fish the way everyone else does? Interpretations of the word "flasher" can mean different things. Can you be more specific? I don't know enough about targeting Silvers up river from Astoria area to recommend anything but I'd probably go with a dodger and a spinner a couple feet behind.
Well for starters, I don't know how everyone else does..... That's why I'm here
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
The only salmon fishing I've done was in the sound, long ago. Downriggers were pretty important back then, in that area. I use them for all types of fishing, why would they be a problem in the lower Columbia? Bottom changes too quick?
 

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Well for starters, I don't know how everyone else does..... That's why I'm here
If you're not dragging around a pound of lead on each rod, you don't have big enough balls.
Lead balls that is.
Skateboard flasher (protroll), spinner, pound of lead. That's about all anyone uses anymore.

Back in that day we'd flat line wiggle warts behind the boat (red, orange, sometimes pink or black and red). Sometimes mag warts. That was before protrolls came along.
 

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The only salmon fishing I've done was in the sound, long ago. Downriggers were pretty important back then, in that area. I use them for all types of fishing, why would they be a problem in the lower Columbia? Bottom changes too quick?
Downriggers are a Puget Sound thing and I wouldn’t recommend it on the CR....I’m sure it would work fine although. I know hardcore Puget sound fisherman who Lov fishing the Columbia because they get to leave their downriggers up north at home.

Use Lead and I don’t know if the mouth of the cowlitz is open. ?

I’m sure some pro troll guys will chime in on how to’s on that technique.

If the weather allows I would fish buoy 10 with delta divers or lead on the flood tide with a spinning bait. Anchovies or herring. . You only need to strip out 10 to 14 poles some days to catch fish.


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If you're not dragging around a pound of lead on each rod, you don't have big enough balls.
Lead balls that is.
Skateboard flasher (protroll), spinner, pound of lead. That's about all anyone uses anymore.

Back in that day we'd flat line wiggle warts behind the boat (red, orange, sometimes pink or black and red). Sometimes mag warts. That was before protrolls came along.
Plugs or Warts still work well “Somedays” for Fall fish in the CR. Nobody uses them so how do we really know nowadays . People would probably look at you like you where a clueless idiot if you put a orange mag wart on. Also Hard to flat line in the crowds but I brought some tuna wrapped mag lips to the mouth of the Cow a few August ago and swashed em.
We where in w the spinner fleet of fisherman so we used lead to get em down and keep em close to the boat.
Also the Camas area had a well know Wiggle wart fishery late for coho. That was FUN. I wonder if those folks still use plugs??????


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Watched a guy above fisher island when the area was open. He was running downriggers and it looked so much easier. He did just fine fishing and catching and it wasnt a big deal to any of us that were pulling around a pound of lead and protrolls with a spinner hanging off its a$$.
 

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I think folks are worried that downriggers would become standard and then they would have to go buy a boat full of them.
Since the guides wouldn't be able to manage a six pack of clients plus all of the downriggers I don't think we have to worry about it.
If I wanted to I could run 6 salmon rods on the 4 downriggers I own. To me it's just not worth the hassle for shallow fishing.


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First point: Right now it’s closed below Warrior Rock.

2nd point: With boats often very close together, there are tangles. For the most part when everyone is using a lead set up it’s a simple untangling and both boats go on their happy way. A hot fish running into downrigger wires/lines could really complicate things.

Lastly: the bottom depth can vary widely and there’s lots of snaggy things on the bottom of the CR. Better to lose a lead than a downrigger ball.
 

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I do quite well on the fall fish with mag warts (the old original warts, select colors, red is not one of them). I can't pull them in the crowds but I have my spots where they are quite effective.
 
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