Winter and Summer Run Steelhead, Chinook, Coho, Chum, and Pink Salmon, Sea Run Cutthroat, Dolly Varden, Sturgeon, Mountain Whitefish, and Rainbow Trout.
Enters the Puget Sound at the Port of Everett
Take Interstate 405 to Highway 522 at Woodinville and turn east. Drive 12 miles to the bridge that crosses the Snohomish just before the confluence of the Snoqualmie and the Skykomish Rivers. Turn left (north) on Elliot Road and drive two miles to the first of several roads leading to the east (right) toward the river at various points. An alternative is to take Interstate 5 to Everett and drive east on U.S.2 to Snohomish, where two highway bridges cross the river and turn west (right) onto River Road to fish the south side of the river between Snohomish and Everett.
Boat ramps are located on the river in Everett, Snohomish, and off of 115th Avenue S.E., about midway between Snohomish and the Highway 522 bridge. Food, gas, lodging, and tackle are readily available in Everett and Snohomish. Try John’s Sporting Goods in Everett for some insider information with John Martinis.
Rules and Regulations:
See the WDFG rules and regulations pamphlet for further updated details.
The Snohomish River is a river in the U.S. state of Washington, formed by the confluence of the Skykomish and Snoqualmie rivers near Monroe. It flows northwest entering Port Gardner Bay, part of Puget Sound, between Everett and Marysville. The Pilchuck River is its main tributary and joins the river at Snohomish. The river system drains the west side of the Cascade Mountains from Snoqualmie Pass to north of Stevens Pass.
Fishing the Snohomish River:
This river system provides excellent angling opportunities for summer and winter steelhead, resident and sea-run cutthroat trout, resident rainbow trout, Dolly Varden and whitefish. Sturgeon are found in the lower reaches, and many salmon fishing opportunities. Two of Western Washington’s better steelhead and salmon rivers, the Skykomish and the Snoqualmie, join to form this big, slow moving river known as the Snohomish. Since all the sea-run fish bound for the Sky and the Snoqualmie have to pass through the Snohomish, it stands the reason that it can be a productive fishing spot.
The reason it isn’t an even better producer is that it’s so slow, and deep it’s difficult to read. There are not many distinguishable holding spots for salmon and steelhead, so many anglers come here, scratch their head and ask themselves “where do I start casting?”. The river’s size and the nature of the shoreline give boaters a better advantage in the lower portion of the river, and it’s those boater anglers who score the best catches from the Snohomish throughout the year.
The coho run is the backbone for the fall salmon fishery here, with the pinks in the odd years. October is the prime month to fish the river for action. Backtrolling various diving plugs or casting flashy spoons and spinners are the techniques that take them the best. Chartrues for the coho and pink for the pinks. Catchable number of coho’s continue to pass throughout the Snohomish in November, and some large chums are also available by then to add to the intrigue od the morning bite. The pink’s enter the river in September and are present in great numbers. September through to November can offer some great cutthroat and Dolly Varden fishing opportunities.
As for steelhead, the Snohomish shines brightest as a winter steelhead stream, often ranking among the state’s top 10 producing winter steelhead streams. Catches of 2,000 or more winter-runs per season are fairly common on the Snohomish River. December and January,, when large numbers of hatchery fish pass through on their way upstreamto the hatchery facilities at Tokul Creek and Reiter Ponds, are the top months to fish the Snohomish. Back trolling plugs or diver bait combinations account for a good number of winter steelhead, as does plunking with fresh roe clusters, various winged bobbers, or a combination of the two. Summer steelheading is also a good possibility here, but the numbers don’t compare to the winter steelhead catch. The best months being June and July.
Monster Chum Salmon on the Snohomish River: