Eastern Washington: Steelhead/salmon: Fishing for hatchery steelhead and fall chinook salmon continues in southeast Washingtons Snake River.
The daily catch limit for fall chinook salmon is six fish. Anglers must release all salmon other than adult hatchery chinook (at least 24 inches) and jack salmon (less than 24 inches). The minimum size for chinook that can be retained in the Snake River is 12 inches. For steelhead, the daily catch limit is one hatchery fish.
Anglers must cease fishing for salmon and steelhead once their adult daily limit for either salmon or steelhead has been retained.
Anglers fishing for chinook or steelhead must use barbless hooks. All adult chinook and steelhead with unclipped adipose fins must be immediately released unharmed.
Trout/mixed species: October is often a very good time to fish many of the regions popular rainbow trout lakes, rivers and streams. Randy Osborne, WDFW central district fish biologist, notes that fall insect hatches are providing trout food, so anglers who use flies or lures that mimic that forage can be successful.
Some of Spokane Countys best trout lakes close Sept. 30, but Osborne says there are enough exceptions to keep fishing productive. Clear and Liberty lakes provide trout, bass and other fish through October, and Amber Lake remains open through November. A number of year-round waters, including Eloika, Sprague, and Lake Spokane (or Long Lake), continue to be productive for trout, largemouth bass, black crappie, and yellow perch.
Many Ferry, Stevens and Pend Oreille county waters, most of which are open through the month, produce good catches of rainbow trout and other species.
Lake Roosevelt, the Columbia River reservoir off Grand Coulee Dam, provides some of the best year-round fishing. Anglers should find good action on big rainbows and walleye, especially in the northernmost reaches of the reservoir.
Most rivers and streams in the region close Oct. 31, but sections of some major waterways remain open year-round or into next spring, some with specific restrictions listed in the sport fishing rules pamphlet.