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Skykomish River Fishing Guide

The Skykomish regularly ranks in the top ten rivers in Washington for hatchery Steelhead.

Anglers interested in float fishing, drift fishing, spoons and spinners, plugging, and flyfishing will  find plenty of suitable water on the Skykomish River.

The largest hatchery production come from the Reiter Ponds hatchery.  Steelhead hatchery plants on both the Sultan and Wallace Rivers help spread the fish throughout the river . 170,000 summer run plants and approximately 200,000 winter run plants make the Skykomish one of the North Puget Sound regions top bets for harvesting a hatchery Steelhead year round.

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Wild Steelhead still return to the Skykomish in numbers in both the summer and winter, though wild winter run escapement since 2001 has been at or below escapement levels, prompting the closure of the popular spring March/April catch and release fishery on the Skykomish.  Trophy fishing for the Skyís big wild runs can still be had the latter part of  January and February, however, and trophy class Steelhead havenít quit coming home to this river. 


Winter Steelhead

Winter hatchery fish catches begin near Thanksgiving and continue to build thru the runs peak in late December, with good fishing continuing thru the month of January.

For bank angling the Reiter hatchery facility near Index is an excellent bet any day of the week and its location is

The most popular water for drift boats is from High Bridge down to Sultan, approximately 8 miles.  Hatchery Steelhead can be found throughout this stretch of water and sled traffic doesnít typically get heavy until the end of the float near the Wallace Flats.  Drifting small egg clusters and sand shrimp works well here, as does backtrolling Tadpolly and Hot Shot plugs and bait divers rigged with a Spinín Glo and shrimp tail.  There is also plenty of excellent floatfishing water on this stretch and pink worms, jigs, sandshrimp, and egg clusters presented under a float will all draw strikes from hatchery fish.

The stretch of river from Sultan down to Monroe is heavily dominated by sled traffic with most of the hatchery fish taken on small corky and yarn combo's side drifted.  Backtrolling plugs can also work.  Backtrolled bait with divers and or plugs. 

Summer Steelhead

The Skykomish is a great river for summer Steelhead.  The river opens June 1st for large numbers of both summer run Steelhead and when allowed Spring/Summer Chinook Salmon

Fall Salmon

Fall Silver and Chum Salmon can be found throughout the river.  Early in the season start near Monroe, then follow the fish through the river above Wallace Flats. 

Skykomish River Map

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Book a Trip now with Skykomish River Fishing Guide Eli Rico