FINS, FUR & FEATHERS: Go fish the Tulalip Bubble

For those of you wishing to put a nice king on the grill, the best times are a happenin’ on the Tulalip Bubble. These kings are lingering in the bay looking for their birth river that is not there. With the good weather we have been having, now is the best time to get out there and try your hand at one of these lunkers.

The action has not been automatic, but reports have been promising enough that I would recommend giving it a try if a big king is what you are after. Be sure to check the regulations since this is not a seven days a week fishery.

Another area that would be a good bet with all the nice weather is the west side of San Juan Island. If you go be prepared to encounter other boats in the area and not all will be fishing. There are a few whale watching boats in the area and for good reason. Pods of orcas have been going through with some regularity. When they do the fishing tends to slow down and takes a while to rebound, but you can fish and enjoy a show by nature that should not be missed.

With the dry weather, the rivers have settled into a typical summertime pattern and this has been a plus for steelhead anglers. Without the fluctuating water levels the fish are holing up in the usual places. There appears to be good numbers in most local rivers and fishing pressure has been pretty light and one fish per angler has been the norm. A few cutts have also been reported in the waters and numbers should increase as the fish milling about in the bays make their way upstream.

Weather helps shellfish efforts

Warm weather and decent tides have been the boon for people after shellfish. Keep an eye on your tide tables, there should be a few more good tides coming up exposing some very good clam and oyster beds. Remember to shuck your oysters on the beach and call the red tide hotline before harvesting any shellfish. While you are at it, a few mussels added to your take is a fantastic addition to any meal.

For those willing to put in the work, decent catches of crab can be had. You will not necessarily limit out, but enough for a good meal can be had. For those of you that are still after shrimp, the remaining portion of Marine Area 7 is now closed for spot shrimp. You can still target other species, but the same depth restrictions as in the southern portion are in place.

Time for hunters to get ready

Warm weather has been great for the angler, but it does not help those of us that are impatient and want to get out and hunt. The woods have been pretty quiet with very few bear hunters taking on the elevated temps. If you do go out concentrate on the very early mornings or just before sunset and stick to the edges of the cool, dark timber. The bruins don’t want to be out in the heat with that heavy fur coat and will be holed up during the warm hours of the day. While you are out and about, keep an eye for grouse, the season is just a few short weeks away and you could kill two birds with one stone so to speak.

I hope that if you wanted to apply for the special raffle hunts you did so already. The deadline was Aug. 14 and results should be out by the Aug. 15.

Hunters had best be getting things ready, the general archery, early goose and grouse season are set to open very soon.

Sockeye season happened quickly

Ok, let’s try this again. A couple of weeks ago I reported that it did not appear that there would be any sockeye season on Lake Washington this year, then a last minute rush of incoming fish prompted the state to have a short season. There was hope that the quota would not be met and there could be another, albeit short, season. Unfortunately, or fortunately depending who you ask, there was an unprecedented catch in those short few days, thus the state confirms that there will be no further sockeye season on Lake Washington for the remainder of the year.

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