2024 Columbia River Spring Salmon Season

March 30, 2024

2024 Columbia River Spring Salmon Season and When We’ll be Fishing

It’s the season that ignites the hearts of every devoted salmon fisherman in Oregon and Washington with excitement! As we eagerly prepare for the upcoming spring salmon fishing season, anticipation grows, and anglers are stocking up on the latest fishing gear for the adventure ahead. At Columbia River Fishing Adventures, one of the top Columbia River salmon fishing guides, we are overflowing with enthusiasm as we gear up for the prime season of spring salmon fishing. The thrill of the chase, the excitement of the catch, and the camaraderie on the river await – an experience you can’t afford to miss! Join us for an unforgettable journey into the world of spring salmon fishing – it’s time to create enduring memories and reel in the catch of a lifetime. Get ready, get set, and let’s make this fishing season one for the books!

Fishery managers from Oregon and Washington have set the stage for an exhilarating spring Chinook salmon season on the Columbia River. Following a joint state hearing, initial recreational fishing seasons have been established to kick things off with a splash.

Starting on March 1 downstream of Bonneville Dam and April 1 upstream of the dam, anglers can gear up for an unforgettable fishing experience. The regulations will temporarily replace the standard rules for the mainstem Columbia River between Buoy 10 and the Oregon/Washington border. Monitoring catch rates and fishery performance throughout the season will allow for potential additional fishing days based on an in-season update of the expected upriver spring Chinook run size in mid to late May.

Downstream of Bonneville Dam, anglers can cast their lines between March 1 and April 5, with a bag limit of two adult hatchery salmonids per day, one of which may be a Chinook. Shad may also be retained during this time. The designated open area ranges from the Buoy 10 line upstream to Beacon Rock for both boat and bank angling, while bank angling is permitted from Beacon Rock upstream to the Bonneville Dam deadline. Specific boundaries have been outlined to ensure a fair and enjoyable fishing experience for all.

Moving upstream to Bonneville Dam towards the Oregon/Washington State Line, the season runs from April 1 to May 2 with the same bag limit as downstream of the dam. Anglers should take note that the use of barbless hooks is mandatory when angling for salmon or steelhead in the mainstem Columbia River waters from the mouth upstream to the OR/WA state line.

Given that conservation remains a top priority, fishery managers will closely monitor performance and adjust regulations as needed to ensure the protection of the ESA-listed upriver Chinook salmon. The 2024 spring Chinook forecast indicates slightly lower returns compared to previous years, emphasizing the importance of sustainable fishing practices.

In conclusion, the upcoming spring Chinook salmon season promises thrills and excitement for anglers along the Columbia River. Stay informed about any changes or updates to the regulations by checking the official website before heading out for your fishing adventure. Let’s make this season one to remember while supporting fish conservation efforts in the region.

Guided Columbia River Salmon Fishing Trips with CRFA

As winter fades away and the promise of spring fills the air, anglers along the Columbia River eagerly anticipate the start of salmon fishing season in Oregon. April through June mark the prime months for salmon fishing on the Columbia and Willamette Rivers, offering abundant opportunities for those seeking the thrill of reeling in these prized fish. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the key strategies for successful salmon fishing in Portland, Oregon during this exciting time. We will focus on two popular techniques: anchor fishing with plugs and trolling herring. Discover all that Columbia River fishing guides have to offer and book your unforgettable spring fishing adventure today!

Plug Fishing

Columbia River Fishing Guides and Columbia River Fishing Adventures are known as one of the most successful guides on the Columbia River. During the early spring months of salmon fishing on the Columbia River in Portland, Oregon, anglers often rely on anchor fishing with diving plugs to target and attract salmon effectively. One popular choice among anglers is the Mag Lips plug, known for its ability to dive deep, swim straight, and consistently entice salmon bites.

The key to success with this method is to strategically anchor the boat in specific areas along the river that offer favorable conditions for salmon. These locations may include fast seams, breaks, rocks, docks, wing dams, underwater structures, or spots where river currents create eddies. By focusing on these high-traffic areas, anglers increase their chances of encountering migrating salmon.

When deploying the diving plugs, it is essential to keep them at a depth of around 15 feet, as this is where salmon are often found during this season. The plugs are meticulously designed to mimic the movement of baitfish, making them irresistible to hungry salmon.

To maximize the effectiveness of this technique, anglers must carefully adjust the boat’s position, depth, and speed of the plugs to ensure a precise lure presentation. By actively engaging with the behavior of salmon and employing strategic anchoring tactics, anglers can significantly improve their chances of landing a prized salmon during the prime salmon fishing season in Portland, Oregon.

Overall, anchor fishing with plugs offers anglers a rewarding and engaging approach that combines skill, strategy, and an intimate understanding of salmon behavior, culminating in a memorable fishing experience along the Columbia River in early spring.

Trolling for Columbia River Spring Salmon

Trolling with herring is a well-known and effective technique used by anglers during the prime salmon fishing season on the picturesque Columbia River in March and April. This method involves trailing a carefully rigged herring behind a moving boat, allowing it to replicate natural swimming patterns and attract nearby salmon. By covering a significant expanse of the river, anglers joining guided expeditions with Columbia River salmon fishing guides can significantly enhance their chances of encountering feeding fish.

When trolling for salmon with seasoned guides from Columbia River Salmon Fishing Guides, participants must not only adjust the depth and speed of the presentation but also incorporate attractors such as flashers or dodgers. These enhancements serve to heighten visibility and entice curious salmon towards the bait, increasing the likelihood of a successful strike. This strategic mix of natural bait and attractors creates a captivating presentation that entices salmon in the Columbia River area during the early spring months, ensuring a memorable and rewarding fishing adventure.

Prepare for an exhilarating salmon fishing experience like no other on the mighty Columbia River by entrusting your adventure to the professional guides at Columbia River Fishing Adventures! Immerse yourself in a tailored excursion that caters to your individual preferences and needs, led by skilled and passionate full-time guides with over 20 years of guiding expertise.

Set off on a journey through the picturesque local waters of the Columbia River, guided by experts who possess in-depth knowledge of the area’s prime fishing locations. Whether you’re a seasoned angler seeking new thrills or a novice eager to learn, our guides are dedicated to providing personalized instruction and top-of-the-line equipment for a successful outing.


Calling all thrill-seekers and fishing enthusiasts! Get ready to experience the excitement of Oregon salmon fishing on the iconic Columbia River with Columbia River Fishing Adventures – one of Oregon’s top guide services.

Oregon’s Columbia River is renowned for its Three Big runs of salmon, making it a prime destination for anglers seeking a diverse and exhilarating fishing experience. Spring, summer, and fall are the prime seasons for salmon fishing, offering a variety of runs that cater to all preferences and skill levels.

Spring ushers in the first Chinook run, where anglers can reel in these delicious-tasting fish weighing between fifteen to twenty-five pounds. Coastal bays come alive with Chinook during this time, providing a stunning backdrop for your fishing adventures.

As summer rolls around, get ready for the thrilling “June Hog” Chinook run in June, where you can target impressive fish weighing up to fifty pounds along the Columbia River. The challenge and excitement of landing one of these massive catches will surely get your heart racing!

And finally, as fall approaches, gear up for the grand finale with the last Chinook run of the year starting in August and lasting well into October. Experience the awe-inspiring sight of these giants journeying back from the ocean to the coastal bays, Columbia River, and Willamette River. Reel in impressive fish weighing 25 pounds or more, providing a perfect blend of size and flavor for a rewarding fishing experience.

Join us at Columbia River Fishing Adventures for an action-packed salmon fishing excursion that will leave you with cherished memories and a deep appreciation for Oregon’s natural beauty. Book your adventure today and let us guide you to the heart of Oregon’s best salmon fishing action!

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