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Mouth of Klamath Stuffed with Large Adults & Many Jacks

fr_clip_image002_0000.jpgBy Frank Galusha, EasyWriter

Northern California Fishing Report 

Biggest Salmon Run in 28 Years Expected

Chinook RV Reports Excellent Fishing

Kamp Klamath Makes Major Improvements

Opens New Boat Ramp, Shuttle Service & Restaurant

Features World Class Salmon & Surf Fishing

Yuroks Impose Stricter Fishing Rules on Tribe

Fish Counting Begins with Bright Note

 

 

Arcata -- Sara Borok, DFG marine biologist out of Arcata who handles creel counts at the Klamath says “The fish are in.” Several MyOutdoorBuddy sources confirmed this and provided a lot of very positive news including a jack count that makes next year look more promising. Sara wrote:

 

...Just got a call from the river crew...lots of fish are in!!!

 

We are starting to pick up more salmon this week.  There are still lots of jacks or Chinook under 22 inches being caught.  That's real good news for next year. The quota is up to a whole 113! [Meaning a lot more salmon can still be caught before the quota is filled.] There have been 439 jacks harvested.  There haven't been a whole lot of steelhead harvested, but anglers released 1,063 half pounders so far this season.

With all the state budget stuff going on we are short handed, so if anyone wants to come help out on the river...we'd love to have you!”

 

If you want to help, call Sarah. She’s an Associate Fisheries Biologist with the Klamath River Project. Her number is (707) 822-0330

 

Chinook RV Resort Reports Excellent Fishing

 

Klamath -- Steve Peach, co-owner of the Chinook RV Park at the mouth of Klamath River, sent in this report on the 27th from Paul Crandall, an avid angler here.

 

“…I am a fisherman and we have been out the last two mornings. We landed none but lost one and the other three broke our 20 lb test line. Three of the four fish we actually saw we’re in the 25 to 30 lb class. The fourth fish spooled my partner’s reel of all line. We observed four fishermen actually land their five fish and they ranged from 20 to 28 pounds. Yesterday numerous fish were breaking the surface in the river for all to see. The Fall run has indeed started in the last few days and is only just beginning.

 

“When California Fish and Game said the fish are going to be big this year, they were not exaggerating. Approximately 157,000 four year old Chinook Salmon are expected according to Cal Fish & Game in the coming months and they are running a little late as are other species. This is why the Klamath River and Trinity were granted a fall salmon fishing season while other rivers remain closed or will open in November for a short time…” [The upper Sacramento will open in a specific area on November 1]

 

Biggest Salmon Quota in 28 Years on the Klamath River

Kamp Klamath – Aaron Funk, owner of this RV park and campground on the south side of the Klamath River nearest the mouth also sent in a report. Funk is a longtime, dedicated supporter of the Klamath community and the River. He has done all he can to help organize the community’s resources so this isolated area prospers during good and bad times.  

New Boat Ramp 

A recent improvement at Kamp Klamath is a good example. Funk installed a temporary boat ramp at his RV Park this year with room to park 50-plus trucks and trailers. “With the township ramp still out of service, we need this ramp to augment the Roy Rook ramp’s limited parking.” Funk noted. Improvements are underway weekly. 

New Shuttle Service to Mouth 

Funk has also initiated a shuttle service that ferries fisherman from the various camps along the river to Klamath Beach at the mouth of the river where most of the salmon are caught. 

“We have a tri-hull walk-through jet boat operated by a licensed, river-savvy captain. The boat is based at Kamp Klamath but we’re shuttling people from all the riverside campgrounds to the mouth.”  

See Whales Watching People 

“Before this shuttle was available, anglers had to walk for 35 minutes each way in soft sand shore fish the river’s mouth. A lot of folks just don’t want to – or just can’t - make that trek, especially with 30 to 50 pounds of fish in tow. This opens up a great fishing opportunity to a whole new group of anglers. It also enables family members to enjoy this incredible place where the mighty Klamath reaches the mighty Pacific.  

“There is no greater drama unfolding along the Redwood Coast than what is happening along Klamath Beach. You can watch thousands of salmon racing upstream through a gauntlet of sea lions, fish hooks and Yurok nets. You can witness an Osprey crash-diving into the waves, struggling back into the air with a small fish or lamprey eel in its talons. You can walk along the beach and watch giant grey whales follow you and glide onto and over incoming waves. You can experience the spectacle of whales watching people watching whales! 

“A $20 bill and a simple phone call to 707-482-0227 make it all happen.”  

Fishing at the mouth has been extremely good, according to Funk and over the Labor Day weekend there will be a huge tidal swing, so he expects things to get very exciting.  

“Every fish that comes up this river has to pass through the mouth and if you know what you’re doing you will catch fish, especially during a lowering tide. When the tide comes in, you can step over to the ocean side of the sand bar and catch as many as ten red tail surf perch,” Funk said.  

World Class Surf Fishing 

Besides salmon, anglers have been using this area for decades to catch record-breaking red tail surf perch, and lots of them.  

“We catch world-class perch here at Klamath Beach and the nearby rocks, Funk said. “We set out a few months ago to catch the biggest perch of three species. Now, the largest recorded striped [rainbow] perch and calico perch have been caught here. Three years ago the record-breaking red tail perch was caught on Klamath Beach. Now we’re taking bets that we’ll break that record again by the end of September” Funk said. [Floyd Underwood, the holder of the striped perch record, walked into Funk’s office during this interview.] 

Bigfoot Grill & Tavern Now Open 

“We’ve also obtained our tavern and restaurant licenses here at Kamp Klamath,” Funk said. “We have a 1200 square foot deck that overlooks our beautiful meadow and tomorrow morning (Saturday, August 30) we start serving an anglers breakfast. Under the name ‘Bigfoot Grill and Tavern,’ the restaurant will offer lunches [eat in and take-out box] and themed dinner specials.” Nightly highlights will feature Italian and Mexican cuisines, “Turf and Surf”, ribs and chicken BBQ, right on down the line. A 42-inch flat screen HDTV and TIVO capture and display adventure videos, sporting events and other special offerings. 

Additionally, for the past four years, Kamp Klamath has offered an all-you-can-eat BBQ fresh-caught salmon/chicken dinner on Saturday night with tossed green salad, rice pilaf, and vegetable stir-fry jubilee. There’s also a live band and bon fire on Saturday nights. With the addition of the Bigfoot Grill and Tavern guests now have a place to eat out seven days a week and enjoy entertainment on Saturday night.

Yurok Tribe Sets New Rules for Tribal Fishing

Funk had high praise for recent decisions made by the Yurok Tribe. “The Yuroks have decided to close tribal fishing on Wednesdays and Thursdays and between 10 p.m. at 8 a.m. during the remainder of the week. They have also banned drift nets from running down the mouth of the river. It is my understanding that these rules are being successfully self enforced. This is something the Tribes should be proud of and I hope they are getting the praise they deserve,” Funk said.

[MyOutdoorBuddy sends its congratulations to the Yuroks for doing what it can to prevent overfishing at this critical time in the run. This is especially significant in light of the fact that the overall Tribal quota was reduced from 41,000 fish to 27,000 fish this year.  

What’s more, this sends a great message to all recreational anglers: Just because we can doesn’t mean we should take full advantage of this year’s more liberal bag limits. Don’t take salmon you don’t need. Use what you take wisely and return as many to the river as possible in good condition to ensure we meet our escapement goals – (escapement means “the fish that have eluded all predators, including man, and make it back to their spawning grounds”). Hat’s off to the Yurok’s!--FG]

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