Salmon Fishing in the Clearwater Mainstem Closed

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Salmon Fishing in the Clearwater Mainstem Salmon fishing on the mainstem Clearwater River downstream of the South Fork Clearwater River closed at the end of fishing hours Sunday, June 15.

Fishery managers for the Idaho Department of Fish and Game estimate that as of June 8 anglers had harvested about 50 percent of the state’s harvest share of adult hatchery Chinook salmon returning to the Clearwater River drainage. By June 15, anglers had caught about 64 percent. Harvest is estimated by daily angler surveys.

To ensure sufficient fishing opportunities in the tributaries, the state’s remaining harvest share will be used to continue existing fisheries. These fisheries include North Fork Clearwater, Middle Fork Clearwater, South Fork Clearwater and Lochsa rivers. Fishing is expected to improve on these rivers, but so far have accounted for only 7 percent of the harvest.

To ensure sufficient harvest opportunities in the South Fork Clearwater and Lochsa rivers, additional closures could occur in the future on the North Fork Clearwater and Middle Fork Clearwater rivers. Fishery managers will provide an update on fishery status and potential fishery closures in the Clearwater River basin every Monday until the season closes.

By managing the remaining portion of the state’s harvest share in this manner, fishery managers expect some salmon fishing in the Clearwater River basin to remain open through the July 4 weekend. All salmon fishing in the Clearwater River basin will close once the remainder of the state’s harvestable share of Clearwater River hatchery Chinook salmon is harvested.

Jack Chinook salmon and adult Chinook are each defined by regulation and have separate bag limits. The jack bag limit is two per day and six in possession statewide. By regulation, jacks should not be recorded on the salmon permit.

Adult bag limits are fishery specific and all adults must be recorded on the permit card. An angler must cease fishing when he or she has caught the adult bag limit.