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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Alan Liere’s fishing-hunting report for May 25

By Alan Liere For The Spokesman-Review

Fly fishing

Grimes Lake will open June 1 for three months. Grimes has some large Lahontan cutthroat. A size 14 Adams fished within 30 feet of the shore will put them in the net.

Water levels on the North Fork of the Coeur d’Alene River are dropping, and Silver Bow Fly Shop guides said fishing will be about as good as it gets all year.

Fishing bigger stonefly patterns has been productive. A large variety of insects has hatched, from stones, to drakes, to caddis, and there is plenty of dry fly fishing . Salmon flies are mostly done.

The St. Joe River has been hovering at a high but fishable level. It should continue to drop as most of the snowpack is gone. Stones and Chubbies with droppers should do well. Streamers and nymphs will also get it done.

Lake fishing for trout slowed down last week, but the bite picked up this week as the weather cooled. Damsel- and dragonfly nymphs and chironomids have been productive.

The Spokane River reopens Saturday. It will be high. Stay out of the water and fish along the banks with big Chernobyls, streamers and indicator rigs.

Trout and kokanee

A friend trolled Loon Lake last week and put six big kokanee in the boat, landing all that he hooked.

Deer Lake trollers are catching mackinaw, but the trout seem to have disappeared. A better bet for trout would be Waitts, Jumpoff Joe and Diamond lakes to the north of Spokane, and Badger, Fish Trap and Clear lakes to the south.

Salmon and steelhead

Reel Time Fishing in Clarkston said the Clearwater River spring chinook run this season is the latest recorded.

In recent weeks, counts over Bonneville have reached good levels and good fishing is expected for the next few weeks; the harvest share is at 3,345 fish, which will keep the season open seven days a week.

Water flows out of the Clearwater drainage are expected to drop this week, creating a perfect catching environment. For more information, call (208) 790-2128.

The spring chinook salmon fishing on the Snake River was opened temporarily for four days this week. Anglers in location A (below Little Goose Dam) can still participate Friday. Anglers in location B (below Ice Harbor Dam) can fish Thursday.

Tacoma-Vashon Island (Marine Area 11) salmon season opens June 1 and will operate Thursday through Sunday each week.

The daily limit is two, only one of which can be a hatchery chinook, and it must be at least 22 inches. There is no size minimum on other salmon species, but chum and wild chinook must be released.

Marine Area 10 salmon fishing season opens June 1 through July 12 except waters of Elliot and Shilshole bays.

The daily limit will be two. Chinook and chum salmon must be released.

Year-round fishing piers (Bremerton Boardwalk, Illahee State Park Pier, Seacrest Pier and Waterman Pier) remain open under rules listed in the 2022/23 rules pamphlet.

The Idaho Fish and Game Commission has reduced bag limits for chinook salmon fishing on the Salmon River and Little Salmon River.

While chinook counts at Bonneville Dam improved dramatically in mid-May, the return to the Little Salmon River is not expected to meet the preseason forecast, which prompted the reduced bag limit to extend fishing opportunity.

Spiny ray

Friends and I fished The Dalles area of Lake Roosevelt for walleye this week, finding a good (but not spectacular) bite on male fish.

The treble stinger hook we added to the large-green curlytail jigs increased hook-ups substantially. Anglers should try impaling a nightcrawler on the jig hook, stretch it back and hook it again on the treble stinger.

Potholes Reservoir walleye are done spawning and will be retreating to the main lake and back into the sand dunes to recover and feed.

Anglers should try fishing for walleye in the shallower sand dunes with jerk baits, swim baits and lipless crank baits. They should try fishing the deeper fish with a Slow Death Hook/Smile Blade rig with a crawler and bottom bouncer. Walleye fishing has also turned on in the Lyons Ferry area of the Snake River.

Evan Adams, a young angler who fishes Diamond Lake, said the southeast side of the lake has been good for smallmouth and largemouth bass. He said both species have been hitting weightless Texas-rigged Senkos.

Walleye anglers on Rufus Woods are finding schools of fish and using jigs to entice them to bite. They must release anything over 22 inches. Sometimes this meant not keeping anything at all as there are many large walleyes in the reservoir.

Other species

This year’s Carp Classic on Moses Lake was a huge success with perfect weather and good visibility for shooting carp with a bow.

Big fish money was taken by the team of Kenny Vansteenkist and Nick Jamison, who also took Big 10 Fish money with 228 pounds.

Alex Mendosa and Victor Mendoza arrowed 102 carp – the largest amount by a single team. Two large goldfish (5.8 pounds and 5.3 pounds, respectively) were taken by Chris Overland and Marie Lotz. In all, 13,000 pounds of carp was removed from the lake.

The annual Quincy Valley Chamber of Commerce Pike Minnow Derby wrapped up last Sunday.

Anglers had to deal with high winds, so many opted to fish in areas that weren’t ideal, but they were easier places to manage their boats.

The adult division turned in 1,379 pikeminnows weighing 884 pounds. In the youth division, the children caught 119 fish, weighing 65 pounds.


Turkey season in Washington will end after Wednesday. I have put in several days in the woods without seeing a tom, but a friend from across the state came over, hunted a few hours and killed a bird that ran across a logging road in front of him.

The Idaho turkey season ended Thursday.

Under new rules designed to prioritize the resource for Canadian outfitters and offset an increase in competition, nonresident waterfowl hunters must buy a $218 permit, which is good for seven days, either through a lottery or a Canadian outfitter.