Kayak fishing on the Cowlitz River in Washington state during the fall and winter for coho salmon are some of the most productive adventures on the water each year.
This past weekend after a big rain storm hit the west coast the dam opened up to the river to a flow about 6800 cfs. Day one was a slow day and we caught some tired old fish and put up with a fair bit of rain. However the second day was a lot more action packed. My friend Todd and I were able to land limits each of coho including on fish that was 33″+ and 14lbs on the scale. The average fish was about 8lbs. Additionally we caught kings, sockeye, cutthroat trout and suckerfish on the Cowlitz.
For gear I primarily used three setups. The pink worm jig, the salmon spoon and a bobber with shrimp setup.
Here are a couple of recent kayak fishing videos in search of king salmon during several excursions to Buoy 10, Westport and “Marine area 1”.
The first trip my friend Todd and I fished Westport first then Buoy 10. We crossed the Grays Harbor bar with our kayaks. We paddled and let the current take us about 15 miles out for several hours of fishing. This area is about the 200 foot depth mark. I hooked up to one strong king for a little bit but otherwise we came up skunked. Here is the map with launch area and fishing zone marked.
We decided to head on out to Buoy 10 where eventually we picked up fish close to the Cape Disappointment area. It was a good turnaround after getting skunked at Westport.
During the second excursion I had a great trip seeing a gray whale, crossing the Columbia River bar and catching a small Chinook. The fish was caught three or four miles west of the north jetty at Cape Disappointment. Interactive map below.
Here is an approximation of this trip on a map as I was unable to retrieve the map data from my Lowrance for precision marks.
I am including a video below regarding salmon tackle and setup for kayak fishing. Best of luck if you’re trying to hook up a king , coho, or any kind of salmon.
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