Spring Chinook Run Has Begun

Fishermen want to keep it a secret, but the spring Chinook run has begun. A few have been caught just off the Blue Creek boat launch on the Cowlitz River. In addition, steelhead are still rolling through. For now, both Barrier Dam and Blue Creek are almost empty of fishermen, both in boats and on shore.

A check on Thursday had zero fishermen at Barrier Dam on a fine chilly morning. In talking with a few fishermen at Blue Creek who were from east Lewis County, when they heard Barrier was empty of anglers, they decided to try their luck there.

They said just below the boat ramp at Barrier Dam was a nice pool of steelhead waiting to be reeled in.

Pictured fishing at Blue Creek on Thursday are Robert Lachester, Mossyrock, left, and Terry White, Olympia. White said he has been fishing the same spot on the Cowlitz for 20 years. He said it hasn’t been decent fishing for a decade. Lachester agreed, saying “I used to be able to catch fish like mad.” Now, White said, it takes about 1,000 casts per steelhead.

Michael Wagar / mwagar@chronline.com