Free Fishing Day on Sept. 1

Fishing the North Coast by Kenny Priest
The Times-Standard, every Thursday in the Sports Section

Saturday is Statewide Free Fishing Day:
On Saturday September 1, people may fish California’s waters without a sport fishing license. All regulations, such as bag and size limits, gear restrictions, report card requirements, fishing hours and stream closures remain in effect. On Free Fishing Days, every angler must have the appropriate report card if they are fishing for steelhead, sturgeon, or salmon in the Smith and Klamath-Trinity River Systems. For more information visit,

Klamath and Trinity River Quota Updates:
According to Dan Troxel, an Environmental Scientist on the Klamath River Project, 639 adult salmon have been harvested from the Highway 96 bridge at Weitchpec to the Klamath mouth towards the quota of 1,745 as of Sunday, Aug. 26. Of those, 226 adults were caught below the Hwy. 101 bridge. The spit fishery will close when 524 adults are caught below the 101 bridge. Only the spit area will close to fishing once this quota is met, fishing will remain open upriver of the spit until the 1,745 quota is met. Field samplers will be surveying below highway 101 bridge on Monday and Thursday according to Troxel. Counts will be monitored closely as the holiday weekend approaches and necessary decisions will be made on Friday if needed. Anglers may keep track of the Klamath and Trinity river quotas by calling 800-564-6479. For Klamath and Trinity fishing regulations, visit

The Trinity River will open to fall-run Chinook salmon fishing Sept. 1 and run through Dec. 31, with a sport quota of 1,152 adults. The quota will be split evenly; 576 adults for the main stem Trinity downstream of the Old Lewiston Bridge to the Highway 299 West bridge at Cedar Flat and 576 adults for the main stem Trinity downstream of the Denny Road bridge at Hawkins Bar to the confluence with the Klamath. The main stem downstream of the Highway 299 Bridge at Cedar Flat to the Denny Road Bridge in Hawkins Bar is closed to all fishing September 1 through Dec. 31.

Lower Klamath
The river came up quite a bit this week from releases at Iron Gate, and the river got pretty mossy reports Mike Coopman of Mike Coopman’s Guide Service. “Most of the boats saw a decline in scores due to the moss, but there’s plenty of fish around. Pushes of fresh salmon have been coming daily, but they’re moving really fast. The best bite has been first thing in the morning, and you’ll want to find that spot that no one has beat on. The fishing and boat pressure have been really putting them off the bite. Along with a mixture of jack and adults, we’re still caching our share of adult and half-pound steelhead,” Coopman said.

Lower Rogue
The Rogue Bay slowed somewhat as many of the kings holding in the bay shot upriver with cooler water temperatures according to Martin. He said, “Fresh salmon showed up Sunday, Monday and Tuesday but it took a few hours per fish for the guide boats to get a fish a rod. The bite began to switch over to a morning bite on Tuesday.”

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