Fall fishing season has kicked off in Skamania County! The season opened on August 1st, and runs through October. Come and experience it with us! This time of the year, the weather is great and there is a bounty of salmon. From scenic drift boat trips down a mountain river to comfortable and spacious power boat fishing on the mighty Columbia, come enjoy Washington’s best salmon fishing!

fall fishing in Skamania County, Washington

Learn More About the Types of Salmon in the Columbia River

Fall Chinook

Chinook are the largest salmon species and are lovingly referred to as the “King”. Adult Chinook can grow to over four feet in length,  typically weighing between 10 – 45 lbs. The Chinook salmon has a greenish back, silver sides, and a silver belly. It has a black mouth and is covered with black spots on its back, dorsal fin, and tail. The older the fish get the darker they get. By the time the males are ready to spawn, they are almost completely black and have snouts that resemble hooks.

Chinook salmon typically mature in their third or fourth year. Chinook migrate back to the Columbia in the fall, spring, and summer. Some varieties of chinook remain in the river’s deep areas until the water is ideal for them to go on to their spawning sites.  


Coho salmon, sometimes called silver salmon, are a shiny river fish with a silver color that turns red when the fish swims upstream to breed. The back and upper tail are covered in black spots and their mouths are completely black except for a small white line along their gums. The average size of Coho salmon is 8 lbs.

In the fall of their third year, Coho adults head back to the Columbia . The female will lay in numerous spawning nests and will lay between 3,000 and 4,000 eggs in total.


Steelhead salmon are actually a variation of a rainbow trout that migrate to the ocean. Steelhead salmon are generally solid gray and can have an occasional red streak on their sides and they darken as they mature.

Unlike other salmon species, which die after spawning, Steelhead can spawn multiple times, returning to the ocean, and migrating back upstream to spawn.


Young Sockeye salmon have silvery sides, bellies, and greenish-blue backs and transition to bright red bodies as they become adults. The upper jaw and snout are black while the lower jaw is light gray and the average adult Sockeye weighs between 6-8 lbs. 

Sockeye require a lake nearby to rear in. Once hatched, young sockeyes will stay in their natal habitat for about a full year before they journey out to the ocean. They stay in the ocean for one to four years.

Book Your Trip 

We are lucky to have one of Washington’s premier guides located in Skamania County! Upper Columbia Guide Service  takes people fishing on Washington’s finest waters for an unforgettable experience! The Pacific Northwest is their home, let them show you around. Their professional guides will find you fish and create the best fishing trip possible for you, your family and friends! Visit their website to get started!