Puget Sound’s calm waters will soon be invaded by millions of Pink Salmon, the Northwest’s diamond in the rough. The 2013 Pink Salmon forecast is one of the best on record, with an estimated 6,229,129 fish headed back to Puget Sound rivers and streams this summer.
As these Humpy Salmon march towards their natal streams, they will saturate every popular fishing area in the Sound and create the greatest fishing opportunity our region has to offer!
Pink Salmon are the most abundant of the Pacific Salmon species, they are also the smallest. Humpies average only five pounds, but what they lack in size they make up for in willingness to take a lure. The Pink Salmon is on a strict 2 year life cycle, meaning that we only see this massive return of salmon on odd numbered years (example: 2013, 2015, 2017). Several rivers in Washington do have a Humpy run on even numbered years, but in much smaller numbers. The mild flavor of a Pink Salmon fillet appeals to many who dislike the stronger flavors of the King, Sockeye or Silver Salmon.
The majority of Puget Sound’s Pinks return to rivers in the Central Sound. The Skagit River, Snohomish River system, Green River and Puyallup River are the areas greatest producers of Pink Salmon. Historically, the Skagit River, Stillaguamish River and Snohomish River were Puget Sound powerhouses for Pink Salmon production. Oddly enough, yet to the glee of many anglers the Green River went from a Pink Salmon run of several thousand to well over one million within a few life cycles. The same phenomenon is happening to the Nisqually River at the extreme southern end of Puget Sound, we have never experienced such a strong return to the Nisqually, with a forecasted return of over 700,000 Pink Salmon.
Expect a strong season for Pink Salmon here in the Sound. As the millions of Humpies return, phenomenal fishing will first occur near the entrance to the Straits at Neah Bay & Sekiu, a week later Port Angeles anglers will witness great catches, followed by the beach anglers fishing West Whidbey Island and by mid to late August, the Central Sound will be chalk full of Humpies (and boats). Throughout the season anglers will chase the fish as they return and eventually the action will shift from saltwater to river, as the season gradually draws to a close.
Nature only affords us this amazing fishing opportunity every other year. Take advantage of great fishing when it is here, for as long as it lasts!
North Puget Sound Pink Salmon Forecast 2013
- Nooksack River (Bellingham, Wa): 154,075
- Skagit River (Mount Vernon, Wa): 1,230,376
- Stillaguamish River (Arlington, Wa): 409,700
Central Puget Sound Pink Salmon Forecast 2013
- Snohomish River (Everett, Wa & Monroe, Wa): 988,621
- Green River (Seattle, Wa): 1,352,362
- Puyallup River (Tacoma, Wa): 1,240,854
South Puget Sound Pink Salmon Forecast 2013
- Nisqually River (olympia, Wa): 764,937
- South Sound Misc: 765
Hood Canal Pink Salmon Forecast 2013
- Hood Canal: 55,314
Strait of Juan de Fuca Pink Salmon Forecast 2013
- Straits: 32,125