Many sockeye not enough to protect a few, prompting closure on Columbia River


All sockeye fishing closed Thursday evening in the mainstem Columbia River from the mouth up to Pasco, Washington.

Despite an apparent record return of sockeye across Bonneville Dam, nearly all of those salmon are headed for the Okanogan and upper Columbia.

Oregon and Washington are under strict mandates to protect extremely endangered runs into the Snake River system and had to close fishing based on preseason predictions.

Biologists will meet this week to review Bonneville counts and see whether a new prediction will allow continued fishing in the jointly shared waters of the Columbia.

Meanwhile, hatchery steelhead fishing remains open, as does spring chinook fishing above Bonneville Dam.