Chinook Fishery Update in the Upper Salmon River 7.12.18
By angelamontana

Posted: July 13, 2018

Here is a message from Greg Schoby with Idaho Fish & Game with a Chinook salmon fishery update for the Upper Salmon River:

All,

Here’s the weekly update for the upper Salmon River Chinook fishery…

Challis to Sawtooth

The upper portion of the fishery from the Hwy 93 bridge south of Challis upstream to Sawtooth Hatchery closed on Saturday 7/7/18 at the close of fishing hours. It was quick fishery with lots of fish caught in the upper river. During the last week of this fishery, catch rates were good, and anglers harvested an estimated 185 adult Chinook, bringing the season total to 392.  It was a short fishery due to the low number of adult Chinook we had returning to Sawtooth and some hot fishing, but I’m happy that anglers were able to get out and make the most of it.

Ellis area

The section of the Salmon River from Ellis (mouth of the Pahsimeroi) downstream approximately 6.5 miles to the Colston Corner boat ramp opened to Chinook angling on Saturday 7/7/18. This stretch of river was quite a bit different than the upper river  – in this fishery Chinook anglers averaged an estimated 57 hours per Chinook salmon caught and 75 hours per Chinook salmon kept. We estimated a total 13 adult Chinook harvested during the opening weekend of this fishery (see table below, provided by Jon Hansen and Brent Beller)

Chinook seem to be moving through the fishery and not slowing down much  – the table below shows the trap catch at the Pahsimeroi Hatchery. After opening weekend, 105 Chinook were trapped at the Pahsimeroi Hatchery on Monday (7/9), and 107 were collected at the trap yesterday (Wednesday 7/11). Pahsimeroi Hatchery has trapped a total of 559 Chinook this season.

# of Chinook trapped
Date Adult Jack/jill Total
6/19/2018 2 1 3
6/21/2018 8 8
6/22/2018 5 5
6/25/2018 34 2 36
6/26/2018 32 2 34
6/27/2018 10 1 11
6/29/2018 40 5 45
7/2/2018 76 5 81
7/3/2018 26 2 28
7/5/2018 57 6 63
7/6/2018 32 1 33
7/9/2018 95 10 105
7/11/2018 97 10 107
Total 514 45 559

River conditions remain good throughout the upper Salmon River, but the weather certainly isn’t helping.  Air temps have been in the 90’s since the end of last week and it doesn’t look like it is supposed to cool down anytime soon.

On a brighter note, tomorrow (Friday) the Pahsimeroi Hatchery staff will be recycling ~100 Chinook from the hatchery back into the Salmon River to give anglers another shot at them.

Thanks, and best of luck to all!

Greg Schoby – Idaho Fish & Game