Harts: The fishing has improved, especially the crappie. Some the recently stocked 1 1/2-pound rainbow trout have been caught this week, as well as a 21-pound catfish was caught earlier this week.
Hicks: While the trout might not be large, they do seem willing to hit your bait. Trolling a green Wedding Ring-style lure, with a piece of worm, behind a dodger has been working well. The larger fish are holding about 15 feet down.
Mineral: An angler caught a 9-pound trout, fishing off the dock with a pink Power Egg. White Power Eggs have been working well. Use a 4-foot leader. Boat anglers are catching plenty of 17-inch fish, trolling with Cowbells or woolly buggers.
Potholes: Weather conditions have made fishing difficult in the past week. The largemouth bass have started to hold on their spawning beds. Try casting plastic worms toward visible beds out to 8 feet of water. The larger fish are holding between 3-8 feet of water. Spinnerbaits and swim jigs also are working. The smallmouth bass are in prespawn mode. Look for them on flats in water 3-5 feet deep close to water 15 feet or so. Walleye fishing has been fair because the fish are scattered right now.
Silver: The water temperatures are rising, meaning the largemouth bass and the crappie are starting to spawn. The trout fishing has been very good, with people catching limits of 10- to 12-inch fish. Most people are fishing Power Bait with a garlic scent off the bottom on a 4-foot leader.
Spanaway: The lake was stocked Friday with 6,000 10-inch rainbows. Still fishing on the south side has been the best. Try using a dough bait and a worm on a 4-foot leader.
Ward: Look for cutthroat trout holding 15-25 feet down. People trolling have been successful with an orange crankbait or a pink shrimp-like fly.
Columbia: A drastic cut in the forecasted return makes it unlikely recreational fishing will reopen before the June 15 transition to summer seasons. Earlier this week, fish managers cut the spring chinook return from 160,800 fish to 83,000 fish. As of Wednesday, 37,899 spring chinook adults and 3,108 spring chinook jacks had passed Bonneville Dam.
Yakima: This might be the time to head for the Yak. Water levels have dropped to around 2,500 cubic feet per second. That means there is good access for wade fishing. The water clarity is good. And the Mother’s Day caddis hatch has begun. An organized bike ride will limit access in the canyon on Sunday.
Halibut: The state has added another day of fishing to many marine areas. Marine areas 2-10 will be open Sunday as originally planned. Then areas 3-10 will be open Thursday. Catch data shows there is enough of the quota remaining to allow for another day of fishing. After Thursday, the state will conduct another review to see more fishing will take place.
North Sound: Some better tides should improve fishing for ling cod and shrimp.
South Sound: People trolling with a flasher and s spoon have been hooking some chinook near Point Gibson, the sand spit/Green Point and Wollochet Bay. Jigging also is working, as an angler landed a 15-pound, 2-ounce chinook near Point Gibson. Shrimping will be open from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday (May 20) in Marine Area 13 (south of the Tacoma Narrows Bridge) and Marine Area 12 (Hood Canal).
Contributors: Peter Fisher at MarDon Resort, state Department of Fish and Wildlife, Art Tachell at Point Defiance Boathouse, salmonuniversity.com, Red’s Fly Shop, northwestfishingreports.com, U.S. Corps of Engineers, Harts Lake Resort, Bill Kenney at Henley’s Silver Lake Resort, Bud Herlitzka at Spanaway Lake Boathouse, Doreen Douglas at Mineral Lake Resort.
Jeffrey P. Mayor: 253-597-8640