Looking ahead to warmer times, toast your hands over the spring chinook forecast for the Columbia River, recently released by Washington/Oregon salmon managers.
Columbia run predictions are notoriously iffy, but if it comes to pass, some 227,000 springers will make their way up the Columbia and Snake this spring. That would be above the 10-year average and about 100,000 kings more than were counted in 2012.
The Columbia opens for spring chinook Jan. 1 below the I-5 bridge, but fishing doesn’t usually get fully underway until March.
Regulations call for 70 percent of the non-tribal half of the harvestable fish to go to recreational fishermen, and 30 percent to commercials.