Salmon season set for Shelter Cove

Fishing the NC 4_13 photo

Six-year old Asha Quilan-McDermott, left, from Arcata took top honors in last Saturday’s Perch’n on the Peninsula fishing tournament with his junior’s division tournament record 15.39-inch Redtail perch. Also pictured is Blake Santos, whose 13.62-inch Redtail earned him second-place in the junior’s category. Photo courtesy of Samoa Peninsula Fire District

The axe officially fell on Tuesday — Salmon ports from Eureka to Gold Beach will remain off limits for recreational salmon fishing this year.

Because of the historically low numbers of adult Klamath River fall Chinook, a lingering effect of five years of drought water mismanagement and poor ocean conditions, the PFMC reaffirmed their decision to officially close recreational salmon fishing within the California and Oregon KMZ areas.

Fisheries to our south, which have far less impact on the Klamath River salmon, fared much better. From Horse Mountain south to Point Arena, which includes Shelter Cove and Fort Bragg, the recreational season runs from April 1 through May 31 and August 15 through November 12.

On the commercial side, fisheries from the Florence South Jetty to Horse Mountain will be closed for the entire season to reduce impacts on Klamath River fall Chinook. Between Horse Mountain and Point Arena, there will be a 3,000 Chinook quota ocean fishery during the month of September, after 2017 Klamath River fall Chinook spawners have entered the Klamath River.

Still to be determined is the in-river fishery on the Klamath River. Within Alternative 1, which was the plan selected by PFMC, it states that Klamath River recreational fishery will have an allocation of 129 adult Chinook. This extremely hot-topic will be discussed and a decision could be reached during Thursday’s Fish and Game Commission meeting held in Sacramento. Locally, you can participate via teleconference at the CDFW office in Arcata at 50 Ericson Court. The meeting begins at 10 a.m. and the agenda and meeting documents can be found online at

Shelter Cove/Marine Forecast
Since the opener, there have been just a couple of fishable days due to the wind and only a handful of salmon have been landed. Hopefully that will change in the next few days as the ocean conditions are forecasted to improve. On Friday, winds will be out of the northwest at 5 to 10 knots and northwest waves of two feet at three seconds and northwest at eight feet at 13 seconds. Winds will be similar on Saturday, with waves out of the north of two feet at three seconds and northwest at seven feet at 13 seconds. Winds will pick up on Sunday, coming from the southeast 10 to 20 knots. Waves will be southeast of five feet at four seconds and northwest of five feet at 12 seconds. Conditions can and will change. For an up-to-date forecast, visit

“Extremely Wet” year designation for Trinity River
The official water year designation for the Trinity River in 2017 is “Extremely Wet” as determined by the April 1st reservoir inflow forecast of 2,265,000 acre-feet, which allows for releases to the river of 815,000 acre-feet according to the Trinity River Restoration Program.

The recommended flows are expected to increase beginning April 21, reaching their highest levels on April 26-29. Flows will then gradually decrease through August. The Trinity Management Council flow-release hydrograph recommendation is awaiting approval by the U.S. Department of Interior. For more information, visit

HASA dinner on Saturday
The annual HASA fundraiser dinner will be held from 6-9 p.m. Saturday at the Arcata Community Center located at 321 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Parkway in Arcata. Tickets are $25 for adults and $10 for children. Food will be provided by Ramone’s and there will also be a raffle and auction at the event. Tickets are available from the following Eureka merchants: Bucksport Sporting Goods, Englund Marine, Pacific Outfitters, RMI Outdoors, W&W RV & Sporting Goods, and Mad River Tackle located in Arcata. For more information, email

Rowdy Creek Hatchery Fundraiser coming April 29
The Lucky 7 Casino’s Tolowa Even Center will be hosting the annual Rowdy Creek Fish Hatchery Fundraiser Dinner and Auction on Saturday, April 29. There will be a cocktail and appetizer social hour at 5:30 p.m.,with dinner starting at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $50 per person and must be purchased before April 17. Discounted rooms are available courtesy of Lucky 7 Casino located at 255 N. Fred Haight Drive, Smith River. For more information, contact Susan at 707-218-7523.

The Rivers
Main Stem Eel
As of Wednesday, the main Eel was running at 17,500 cfs on the Scotia gauge and predicted to rise overnight to over 25,000 cfs. It remains high and dirty, and will need a couple weeks of dry weather to clear.

Smith River
“I haven’t been fishing much over the last week, mostly due to the weather,” guide Mike Coopman said. “The reports that I have been getting is there are still a lot of down-streamers in the system. The water is still high, and with more rain in the forecast, it looks like it will remain high through the weekend. With a couple weeks left in the season, it looks to be good fishing if we can get some good conditions.”

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