Grant’s Getaways: Fall Salmon
The signs of seasonal change are easy to see along Oregon’s rivers and streams where fall colors really light up the scene. But there’s another sign hidden in the water that you can’t see: salmon are coming home!
Oregon’s fall salmon fishing is big time outdoors recreation as thousands head to bays and rivers to catch big fish. That’s where we headed this week: where freshwater meets the ocean on a getaway to catch a salmon and then discovered new ways to cook the catch.
When daylight’s a glimmer on the eastern horizon, three generations of the Mill’s family agree that salmon fishing in the Nehalem River estuary is full of promise.
There was some something special about the Coho salmon: it was a wild fish that was born in the gravel. You could tell it was wild because it had an adipose fin – a half moon shaped fin in front of the tail. Hatchery salmon have that particular fin removed when they’re babies. Wild coho salmon have made a turn around and anglers are fortunate that they can catch and keep them this season.
Nehalem River estuary anglers are allowed to keep 1 wild Coho a day – 2 for the season until a quota of 1200 wild fish is reached. Anglers are also allowed to keep one additional hatchery Coho or a Chinook.
It’s the first time in 20 years that anglers have been allowed to harvest wild Coho and it signals a remarkable recovery that the state and federal fish and wildlife agencies began in the early 90’s.
About the Author: Grant McOmie
Grant McOmie is a Pacific Northwest broadcast journalist, teacher and author who writes and produces stories and special programs about the people, places, outdoor activities and environmental issues of the Pacific Northwest. A fifth generation Oregon native, Grant’s roots run deepest in the central Oregon region near Prineville and Redmond where his family continues to live.
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