Best Lures for Catching Pink (Humpy) Salmon in Rivers

Pink Salmon are a very popular catch for many Pacific Coast fishermen. Here in the Puget Sound region, we see huge returns every odd numbered year (example: 2013, 2015, 2017). There are a few really productive lures that catch Pinks (Humpies) with amazing effectiveness!

This article is designed to give you an advantage as you prepare for your next Humpy Salmon fishing trip! Good luck!

Dick Nite Spoons

A crowd favorite on select Pacific Northwest rivers, these tiny lightweight spoons have a tantalizing flutter that drives Pink Salmon wild! Drift Fish them or Cast & Retrieve, these lures work very well from tidewater to upper river areas.

Dick Nite Spoons

Dick Nite Spoons

P Line Humpy Jig

One of my personal favorites! A great lure for not only saltwater beach fishing but also in the tidally influenced lower stretches of our Pink Salmon rivers, this lure works great. The P Line Humpy Jig is a painted metal jig that is designed to attract all salmon species, but has worked very well for Pinks. This lure comes in a variety of color combinations, and I especially like the smaller Humpy Jigs when Pinks are a little squeamish. These lures are available from ½ oz up to 2 oz.

Pline Humpy Jig

Pline Humpy Jig

Plunking for Pink Salmon

Grab a few hooks, swivels, pink Spin & Glos and your favorite bait and hit the lower river! As Humpies migrate up through the lower stretches of their rivers, many plunkers using this simple method to catch their limits. Use enough lead to keep your lure stationary in the current. Tip the hook with either raw prawn or a sand shrimp tail.

Plunking Tackle for Humpy Salmon

Plunking Tackle for Humpy Salmon

Brads Wiggler & Lil Wiggler

Brads Wigglers and Lil Wigglers are great fished from a boat or retrieved towards the bank. These are a great alternative to the staple lures and methods. Any metallic or solid pink color options are very productive.

Brads Wiggler

Brads Wiggler

Aero Jig Marabou

These 1/8 oz and ¼ oz Steelhead jigs are deadly effective for Humpies. Pink, White or Pink/White color patterns are all great!

Aero Jig Marabou

Aero Jig Marabou

Buzz Bomb

The grand-daddy of all salmon fishing lures. Small Buzz Bombs work well in the slow, deep, tidal stretches of the lower Skagit, Snohomish and Stillaguamish, as well as along Puget Sound beaches.

Buzz Bomb

Buzz Bomb

Wordens Maxi Jig

This is one of the newest high quality Steelhead jigs on the market. These jigs are best fished under a float, or twitched with light tackle rods. Maxi Jigs are available in a variety of Humpy catching combinations of pink, white and red. High quality Owner hooks are ultra sharp, so don’t worry about that!

Worden's Maxi Jig

Worden’s Maxi Jig

Pink Worm Jig

Grab a pack of 3 inch or 4 inch Steelhead Worms and a pack of ¼ oz or 3/8 oz Jigheads and you have an inexpensive and very effective Humpy lure. Just thread a Pink Worm on a pink or white Jighead, simple as that! The waggin tail of a Steelhead Worm is sure to catch the attention of nearby Pink Salmon.

Pink Worm Jig

Pink Worm Jig

Hoochie Jigs

Similar to the Pink Worm Jig, the Hoochie Jig is often premade but offers a very durable and effective option for river fishing. If you are making your own, add a small drop of super glue to the shank of the Jighead hook before threading on the Hoochie squid.

Hoochie Jig

Hoochie Jig

I wish you all the greatest success on your next Pink Salmon fishing trip, and hopefully these lures produce many daily limits for you, friends and family!

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Andrew Moravec

Andrew Moravec has been sharing his passion for fishing with folks around the Pacific Northwest for over a decade. He has worked in the Tackle Industry as a buyer, managed a Sporting Goods Shop, as an Alaskan Fishing Guide, a Westport Deckhand, and currently is operating Fishing Charters in Seattle, Washington.
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  1. ya in the skagit just plunk sand shrimp or vibrax spinners, brads wigglers the pinks will hit anything realley

  2. still catching em in concrete FISH ON

  3. Taylon /

    I want to fish the skagit river at night does anybody have any tips on what the best lure to use and any tip on the river would be greatly appreciated:)

  4. Thanks!

  5. Avatar of Andrew Moravec

    Hello Keon! While I’ve never fished up there, I would imagine a pink marabou or rabbit jig under a float would do the trick! Good Luck!

  6. Hi I am from Vancouver and would like to know what are the best lures for Pinks for the upper Squamish river. Thanks

  7. Richard. To much weight and u will get caught on bottom alot with more weight. Try switching to lighter line that seems to work great for my and smother real? Longer rod all effect casting distance

  8. Nathan /

    I find the deception pass is a really nice pass its in oakharbor a great spot is off little north beach when its not crowded

  9. Richard /

    What is the best set up when it comes to fishing with dick nites in the river? Triple swivel with a 1 once weight?

    In other words how do I get enough weight on my line to really get it out there and drift?

    Also I’ve been fishing with hoochie jig and I’m doing alright with it, but again, is there an effective way to add weight to get it out further? Any help would be appreciated thanks!

  10. Avatar of Andrew Moravec

    Hello Jay,

    You have many great fishing options for Pink Salmon very close to home! Here are two other posts that might help… for the shorebound salmon angler there isn’t a more beautiful place than the west side of Whidbey Island including Deception Pass State Park. I also have previously written about the options on the Snohomish River, so check these two pages out… good luck!



  11. I live in Lynnwood I have 2 sons and we would like to catch some fish from the bank. I would like to
    Know where is a good place to take them to land some . Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.


  1. Humpy Salmon Fishing on the Snohomish River | Riptidefish - [...] For a full listing of lures and methods visit BEST LURES FOR PINK (HUMPY) SALMON IN RIVERS [...]

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