With the Fall fast approaching in Washington it’s time to start taking advantage of some of the fisheries we have here in the state!
Puget Sound salmon options are a little light this year, but the Tulalip Bubble near Everett will be open weekends from September 17 through September 25 for a limit of 2 hatchery coho. https://fortress.wa.gov/dfw/erules/efishrules/erule.jsp?id=1865
Green River will be reopening for Coho from 1st Ave South bridge up to 405 on September 16. Troll Brad’s Wigglers or small cut plug herring for the best action. https://fortress.wa.gov/dfw/erules/efishrules/erule.jsp?id=1866
Lake Washington is a great fishery come the fall for many species but even more so this year with the chance to catch Coho salmon starting September 16. Fishing for Coho in Lake Washington is typically done by trolling either a Brads Wiggler or Storm Wiggle wart off a downrigger, other tactics consist of trolling a protroll or shortbus finned flasher with either herring, a brads superbait or a mini hoochie as you would use for cutthroat. http://wdfw.wa.gov/news/sep0816b/
In addition to the salmon fishing anglers can take advantage of the awesome perch and bass fisheries that Lake Washington boasts in the fall. For the perch fishing look for schools of perch around deep weed lines or deep water points or structure in 20-40’. To catch these fish use a drop shot rig with a piece of night crawler or small jigs like a Swedish Pimple to get your limit of these great eating fish. Bass fishing in the fall on lake Washington will take place around any of the deep weed lines, bridge pilings or many rocky bottom areas in the lake between 15-35’. Techniques to catch these fish consist of football head jigs with some sort of crawdad or sculpin style trailer like a Yamamoto hula grub, a drop shot rig with some sort of finesse worm such as a fisher brothers ds minnow or a Roboworm, throwing a swim bait on a jig head as well such as a Keitech fat swing impact can be a great way to target some chunky Smallmouth in the fall.
The Cowlitz River has been hot for both salmon and steelhead. The upper part of the Cowlitz has been great for summer run steelhead with most the fish coming from side drifting. Reports of big angry summer run hatchery steelhead has been the norm with multiple hookups per day.
The lower Cowlitz has been great to red hot for salmon with the fish being taken either by trolling or sitting on anchor. Those trolling are finding great success with trolling a Protroll finned flasher with a brads superbait behind that as well as guys pulling bait. Those sitting on anchor are having success with putting down Simon Wobblers as well as the Superbaits with bloody tuna scent.
The Columbia River has still been great for both Chinook and Coho salmon. Those finding success are trolling both protroll finned flashers or shortbus flashers. Behind the flashers anglers are either trolling with cut plug herring or brads superbaits filled with tuna or herring scent. Some of the areas that have been productive have been the Wind/Drano Lake area as well as the mouth of the Klickitat river. https://fortress.wa.gov/dfw/erules/efishrules/erule.jsp?id=1864
Local lakes will start picking up for trout as the water temperatures start to cool bringing the trout to a more active feeding cycle. Some of the top lakes in the area consist of cottage lake, beaver lake, pine lake, as well as lake langlois. Trout will be willing takers of small spoons such as dick nites or spinners trolled like a wedding ring. For those that want to fish bait, powerbait on a slip sinker rig will be the best producer.
Bass in the local lakes will be looking to feed up in the fall and will be aggressive as the water temps cool. To catch the bass look to target shady cover such as docks, wood laydowns, pads or surface vegetation. They will be willing biters to Yamamoto Senkos, spinner-baits, jigs, and crank-baits with a little bit of top-water mixed in.