Washington State Fishing Guides
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2014 Winter Steelhead Special Click Here

The Cowlitz River is located in Washington State
and is a main tributary of the Columbia River.

There are two state-run fish hatcheries on the
river which provide great recreational fishing
opportunities year round for both Salmon and

Spring Chinook Fishing on the Cowlitz River

We start targeting spring chinook on the Cowlitz
River in the months of April through May.  Spring
Chinook or "Springers" are the best table fare of all
salmon.  These fish enter the Cowlitz River starting
in April and do not spawn until fall.  We target
these fish in a variety of ways on the Cowlitz
River, including; back-trolling, side-drifting,
hover-fishing, and even bobber fishing.  

Summer Steelhead Fishing on the Cowlitz River

After Spring Chinook fishing on the Cowlitz River
our focus turns to Summer Steelhead fishing on the
Cowlitz River.  The summer steelhead start showing
up on the Cowlitz River around June.  Summer run
steelhead are the most acrobatic and aggressive
species we fish for on the Cowlitz River.  Our
favorite technique is side-drifting, but later in the
summer we like to back-troll plugs and bait.

Fall Salmon Fishing on the Cowlitz River

Fall Salmon fishing on the Cowlitz River begins in
late September and lasts throughout the month of
November.  We generally will start near the mouth
of the Cowlitz River and follow the majority of the
run upstream to the barrier dam.  The two species
of salmon we fish for on the Cowlitz River are King
'Chinook' Salmon and Silvers or 'Coho' Salmon.  We
use a variety of techniques including, side-drifting,
twitching jigs, back-trolling, hover-fishing and casting
hardware.  This is an action-packed fishery with fish
ranging from 5 to 50 pounds.

Winter Steelhead Fishing on the Cowlitz River

Winter Steelhead fishing on the Cowltiz River is one
of our favorite fisheries of the year.  With multiple
hook-ups and lots of action, these aggressive and
hard-fighting fish will keep your blood pumping.  We
fish for Winter Steelhead on the Cowlitz River
from November through March.  The most popular
technique for Winter Steelhead on the Cowlitz is
side-drifting bait.  Don't miss out on this fishery.

Fish Hatcheries on the Cowlitz River

The Cowlitz River Salmon Hatchery produces nearly
13 million fish each year, including about 1.3 million
spring Chinook, 5.0 million fall Chinook and 3.2
million coho salmon.  This hatchery is located near
Barrier Dam and the Barrier Dam boat launch,
directly on the Cowlitz River.  

The Trout Hatchery is located near the Blue Creek
Boat Launch and releases around 1.5 million fish a
year.  The species released here include Summer and
Winter Steelhead as well as Sea-Run Cutthroat
The Cowlitz River is famous for it's steelhead fishing.

The Cowlitz River is a short drive from Portland
International Airport (PDX) and there are many
recreational opportunities for your stay in the area.
The Cowlitz River is near the Famous Mt. Saint
Helens Volcano, which last erupted in the early

Send us an email or call us today to book your
Cowlitz River Fishing Adventure!