Kalama River

kalama_river
Species:
Summer and Winter Run Steelhead, Spring and Fall Chinook, Coho Salmon, Sea-Run Cutthroat
Location:
North of Kalama, Southwestern, Washington
Directions:
Take Interstate 5 to Kalama River Road, about 2.5 miles north of Kalama, and follow it up east, up the north side of the river.
Facilities:
All amenities can be found in Woodland or Kalama.
Fishing the Kalama River:
Long a favorite for boat and bank anglers alike, the Kalama is a gem among southwest Washington stream. Easy access via I-5 and Kalama Road certainly doesn’t diminish the popularity of this clear, green river. But popularity means fishing pressure, so there are times when solitude is not an option.
Salmon and Steelhead provide year-round fishing opportunities. The river produces Steelhead every month of the year, but summer-run fish dominate the catch. May, June, July, and August al offer excellent Steelhead fishing, with catches ranging from 300 to 500 fish during those four months. Anglers fishing from the mouth of Summers Creek downstream to the rivers mouth use egg-clusters, ghost shrimp, crawfish tails, nightcrawlers, spinners, spoons, and the usual steelhead bobbers to catch summer runs. From Summers Creek up to the falls, the Kalama is open to fly-fishing only, and fly rodders do as well on this stretch as the bait and hardware downstream. Even though the Kalama was once considered a top-rate producer of summer and winter steelhead, and even though more smolts are stocked here, winter steelhead has dropped off in the past few years.
As for salmon, the Kalama offers decent Spring Chinook fishing from April to June. Fish from 10-25 pounds make up most of the catch, but now and then the river gives up a big springer in the 30+ range. Back-bouncing or drifting bait here works here, as well as diver and bait rigs or trolling plugs. In the fall anglers catch both chinook and coho, but all adult chinook must be released.

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