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Smelt Reports for 2008/2009

Scroll down for current report.


Decent smelt jigging at the Cornet Bay pier. The La Conner pier is producing smelt and herring for jiggers.


Smelt and Herring 10/02/2008

Smelt and herring at Cornet Bay pier on North Whidbey Island: "I was at the Cornet Bay pier on Sunday, and smelt fishing has been very good, with lots of people doing quite well," said Mike Chamberlain at Ted's Sports Center in Lynnwood. "Use a Gamakatsu smelt herring rig with a half-ounce to three-quarter ounce of lead. There is also some nice-sized herring mixed into the catch."


Smelt 10/23/2008

"Good smelt jigging at Cornet Bay [on Whidbey Island]."


Smelt 11/06/2008

SMELT: Still good jigging at Cornet Bay, incoming and high tide, white Gamakatsu jigs, off the Deception Pass State Park pier. Cheap and easy, according to Anthon Steen at Holiday Sports in Burlington (360-757-4361). No license necessary, and all you need is a jig, a bucket, and a rod/reel.



MARINE AREA 8-1: Fishing for surf smelt has been very good in Coronet Bay. Sampling taken Sunday at the Coronet Bay public ramp showed that 14 anglers caught 302 smelt.



Cornet Bay pier, North Whidbey Island — Friday: 11 anglers caught 195 smelt; Saturday: 16 anglers caught 175 smelt; Sunday: 70 anglers caught 270 smelt.


Smelt 12/16/2008

Cornet Bay Pier, North Whidbey Island -- Wednesday: Four anglers caught 83 smelt; Thursday: One boat with four anglers caught 11 smelt and 15 kelp greenling; Saturday: One angler caught 47 smelt and 50 herring.


Smelt 01/01/2009

Smelt are still being caught at the Cornet Bay pier, and we've heard of some caught at the Everett waterfront," said Mike Chamberlain at Ted's Sports Center in Lynnwood.


Smelt 01/15/2009

Quite a few seals were observed Sunday in the County Line Park/Oak Point area in Longview and Monday commercial fishers caught 175 pounds of smelt in the Cathlamet area. Water temperature was 41 degrees in the Cathlamet area Sunday and 42.2 degrees at Mayfield Dam on the Cowlitz.


Smelt 01/21/2009

Smelt: People dipping at Carnival Market dipped a few bright, large males on Saturday. Elsewhere on the Cowlitz, effort and catch was low to nil, according to a state report.


Smelt 01/24/2009

Smelt: Recreational fishing was poor last week, according to the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife. No smelt were caught Wednesday during test dipping on the Cowlitz River. However, a few sports fishers dipped small amounts of smelt there Jan. 17.


Smelt 02/19/2009

Cowlitz River could yield plenty of smelt on Saturday By Bob Brown | For The Olympian Published February 19, 2009

Smelt have moved into the Cowlitz River, and prospects look good for this Saturday's sport fishery, said Joe Hymer of the Department of Fish and Wildlife's Vancouver office.

A commercial fisher landed 2,000 pounds during last Sunday's fishery. In addition, lots of birds were observed on the lower river Tuesday. Sports dipping on the Cowlitz River is allowed only from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturdays through March 31. The daily limit is 10 pounds per person per day. This is equivalent to one-fourth of a five-gallon bucket.

Smelt 02/25/2009

Smelt: Some fishermen, though certainly not all, got their 10-pound limits Saturday, Hymer said. The best action was from Castle Rock to Camelot. There were quite a few people dipping.

Smelt 02/26/2009

Some anglers though certainly not all fishing for smelt in the Cowlitz got their 10-pound limits Saturday, said Joe Hymer of the Department of Fish and Wildlife's Vancouver office. Best action happened from Castle Rock to Camelot. Effort was fairly high. The majority of smelt caught were males, some of which were 9 inches. A high percentage of the catch was spawned out.

Karen Varshock, of the Department of Fish and Wildlife's Vancouver office, said there have been several telephone calls asking if it legal to snag or jig smelt. State rules point out that the only acceptable method for catching smelt in the Columbia and Cowlitz rivers are with dip nets.

Anglers are reminded 10 pounds is about one-fourth of a 5-gallon bucket. Birds were actively working in the Willow Grove area (downstream of the mouth of the Cowlitz) Monday.

Anglers can dip for smelt on the Cowlitz only from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. on Saturdays.


Smelt 03/11/2009

Smelt: There were no reports of dipping success in the Cowlitz Saturday.


Smelt 03/12/2009

There have been no reports of dipping success in the Cowlitz Saturday; however there were reports of a few more commercial landings of fresh smelt (about 168 pounds) in the mainstem Columbia on Monday (March 2) and only a few pounds landed Thursday (March 5).

The total commercial landings of smelt in the mainstem Columbia have been about 5,500 pound through March 5.


Smelt 03/18/2009

Smelt: There were no reports of dipping success Saturday and no signs of activity in the river early this week.