Keep your catch: Sturgeon retention OK'd in June

Sturgeon anglers are in for a treat – for the first time in three years, fishers in the lower Columbia River can catch and keep sturgeon during a six-day season that began Monday, June 5.

Long Beach Peninsula sturgeon fishing

Sturgeon retention will be allowed June 7, June 10, June 12, June 14 and June 17.

Sturgeon retention will be allowed June 7, June 10, June 12, June 14 and June 17. Sturgeon fishing including catch and release is not allowed after 2 p.m. on those days. Fishing limits are one daily and two throughout the six-day season. The fish must be 44 to 50 inches fork length to be retained.

Charters abuzz about sturgeon

The upcoming six-day season marks the first time in three years that anglers will able to pull and keep sturgeon from the Columbia River. Sturgeon can be caught from shore or boat, and local charters know where to find the fish.

The announcement of sturgeon retention caused a buzz on the Long Beach Peninsula.

“As a fisherman, I’m delighted at the limited opening of this fine eating and fighting fish,” said Dave Erickson, owner of Chautauqua Lodge in Long Beach. “I hope it represents the return of what was a very large and popular fishery. I commend the [Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife] for this careful nurturing back to health of an important species of fish. I think this represents yet another great reason for my guests to come down and enjoy the fishing capital of the Pacific Northwest.”

Local charters are equally excited.

“Sturgeon in the lower Columbia River is huge to everyone,” said Butch Smith of Coho Charters & Motel at the Port of Ilwaco. “At one time, a few years ago, it was almost bigger than salmon fishing. We have the world’s best sturgeon fishing, which no other place can compete with.”

Free Fishing & Free Parks Day

Saturday, June 10, is an extra-special day for sturgeon anglers. A Free Fishing Weekend falls on June 9-10, so anglers will not need a license to catch sturgeon those days, although they will have to record landed sturgeon on a catch-record card.

This upcoming Saturday, June 10, is also a Free Parks Day in honor of National Get Outdoors Day. Take advantage of the Free Parks Day to explore Washington state parks like Cape Disappointment and Leadbetter Point for free, no Discover Pass required.

Upcoming events:

SummerFest – Now to Sept 2-4

Columbia Pacific Farmer’s Market – Fridays through Sept. 29

Saturday Market at the Port of Ilwaco – Saturdays through Sept. 23

Waikiki Beach Concert Series – June 10

Beach to Chowder 5/10k – June 17

Northwest Garlic Festival – June 17-18

Waikiki Beach Concert Series – June 24

Savings & coupons:

Peninsula specials & coupons

The Long Beach Peninsula Visitors Bureau facilitates, coordinates and implements the promotion of our communities as a tourist destination. Contact us at (360) 642-2400 or

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