Chinook retention to close on the Cowlitz River, Cispus River, and Lake Scanewa

Cowlitz River - (Cowlitz County)

Photo Credit: Courtesy of WDFW

by WA Department of Fish & Wildlife Staff

Action: Closes Chinook salmon fishing.

Effective date: March 1, 2020 until further notice.

Species affected: Chinook salmon.

Location: Cowlitz River, Cispus River, and Lake Scanewa.

Reason for action: The 2020 Cowlitz River spring Chinook run forecast is 1,440 fish. Based on this forecast, the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery is not expected to meet its broodstock goals. Closing the salmon fishing season will increase the number of hatchery fish available for broodstock and help ensure future hatchery returns. Based on the forecast, we do not expect to have hatchery Chinook to transport above Cowlitz Falls Dam to support a Chinook salmon fishery in the upper Cowlitz basin. 

Additional information: Salmon harvest on the Cowlitz River may be allowed if in-season data, including hatchery returns, show the actual run size is large enough to support harvest. All other permanent rules remain in effect, including allowed harvest of hatchery coho and hatchery steelhead in the effective locations described above.  Please refer to the 2019-20 Sport Fishing Rules pamphlet for complete rule information.

Information contact: Region 5 Ridgefield office, 360-696-6211. For latest information, press *1010.

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