|Oregon Coast Notes|
|Huge spring chinook run predicted for Columbia River|
That's a particularly joyful arrangement this winter, with the awesome announcement last week by Washington/Oregon fisheries biologists that they're predicting a Columbia River spring chinook run of 470,000 fish in 2010. If that many of the big, sleek, hard-charging salmon do show up, it would be the largest return to the Columbia since 1938. Last year's fishery, short but oh so sweet, was on a run of 169,300 springers.
Granted, biologists have had a spotty record recently with their run predictions, leading to confusion... But the members of the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC), which advises the two states on Columbia fisheries science, say they've developed new computer models that hopefully will result in predictions closer to the mark.
...“The number of spring chinook jacks returning in 2009 was four times greater than anything we've seen before, which made the number a statistical anomaly,” he said. “We're still projecting a strong return for upriver springers next year, but we've tempered the jack return with other indicators.”
Run predictions of the seven models chosen by TAC range from 366,000 to 528,000 fish, and the committee agreed on the average, 470,000.
If that even comes close, you're going to see a line of boat trailers heading down I-5 like ants heading to a picnic, with me right in the middle.
...I recommend the fishery highly. They're prime, fat, active salmon, easily accessible to small boats, and the standard gear setup and fishing techniques don't require rocket science.
It's not particularly pristine fishing, right in downtown Vancouver with 18-wheelers thundering overhead on the I-5 bridge, but hey, it's close and easy and civilized.
Better start sprucing up relations with the neighbor — the one with the boat...