Spring Chinook fishing opens June 21 on Imnaha, Wallowa rivers

By Observer staff June 09, 2014 04:15 pm

The Imnaha and Wallowa rivers in Northeast Oregon will open to hatchery spring Chinook fishing June 21.

The Imnaha River will be open from the mouth upstream 45 miles to Summit Creek Bridge. The Wallowa River will be open from the deadline at the lower end of Minam State Park upstream to the mouth of the Lostine River.


Anglers may retain two adipose fin-clipped spring Chinook adults and five adipose fin-clipped jacks per day, with two daily jack limits in possession. Chinook jacks are salmon between 15 and 24 inches in length. Anglers do not need to record jack catch on their combined angling tags, but it is illegal to continue fishing for jack Chinook once the adult bag limit is met. Unmarked (wild) fish must be released carefully and unharmed.  A valid Columbia River endorsement is required for this fishery. 


Both fisheries will be open until further notice.  As with past seasons, ODFW will conduct regular fishery monitoring to determine how catch and harvest compares to annual sport fishery quotas. 


“Our observations of tagged fish in the Columbia River indicate enough fish will return to open these fisheries,” said Jeff Yanke, ODFW district fish biologist in Enterprise.  “We will continue to monitor the run over the next two weeks and set our fishery quotas just before the fishery opens."


Much of the area open to fishing is bordered by private lands, and anglers are reminded to obtain permission before entering private land and to pick up trash when leaving. Anglers also are asked to be respectful of any tribal members they may encounter who are fishing for Chinook using traditional methods.