Sports

Reluctant salmon at Keystone

While Michael Jenkins, left, records his catch, nephew Kaeli takes a good look at the pink salmon his uncle caught off the beach at Keystone Sunday morning.  - Tim Adams/Whidbey News-Times
While Michael Jenkins, left, records his catch, nephew Kaeli takes a good look at the pink salmon his uncle caught off the beach at Keystone Sunday morning.
— image credit: Tim Adams/Whidbey News-Times

Fishing for pink salmon in the misty rain at the Island County Park, Driftwood, at Keystone is only for the die-hards and the dedicated.

On warm, sunny days, anglers number in the hundreds standing shoulder-to-shoulder along the beach, but less than a dozen were out braving the elements Sunday morning.

Steve Nelson from Oak Harbor said the fish were there, but weren’t interested in hitting lures.

“I’ve been out here since 6:30 a.m. and the fish jumping were all over and spinning on the surface,” he said. “I’ll bet I went through every color of buzz bomb I have and I still haven’t caught anything.”

Salmon were observed jumping later in the morning but they were further out in the water, just beyond casting distance.

Several boats were trolling with downriggers, but those anglers weren’t meeting with any success, either.

Fifteen-year-old Michael Jenkins, a student at Oak Harbor High School, was a little luckier and pulled in the first fish of the day at around 10:30 a.m.

“I caught this one on a pink buzz bomb and I’ve only been out here about a half hour,” he said.

With a little help from his young nephew, Kaeli, Jenkins had little trouble getting the good-sized fish into the net and up on the beach.

Fishing should improve in the next few days with the recent rains drawing the salmon in at such locations as Deception Pass, Bush Point and Keystone as they head for the rivers.

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife estimates as many as 5.1 million pink salmon will enter Puget Sound this year.

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