What are these fish doing on the sea floor? This is the final part to our 3 day trip up to Gardiner, Washington for the Gardiner salmon derby. Blackmouth: These "Blackmouth" are Juvenile King Salmon that live in Puget Sound all year around and provide the best winter Salmon fishing … Blackmouth range from the legal size of 22 inches up to fish taken in the upper teens. Blackmouth & Resident King Salmon fishing. The term “blackmouth” refers to the dark gum line that is a distinguishing feature for identifying all king/chinook salmon. What are these fish doing in the Puget Sound? I thought king salmon migrated out to the ocean? We reveal the best locations and the best fishing techniques and lures for catching winter blackmouth in the Puget Sound. Close to the Port of Everett, great blackmouth fishing can be great off of Columbia Beach as well as Racetrack (between Camano head and Hat Island). Yes, most Puget Sound kings will migrate out to the ocean and travel as far as the coast of Northern BC or even Alaska. One of the exciting aspects of fishing Marine Area 6 is the possibility of intercepting the rare puget sound springer. With the close proximity to home it makes for a perfect half day escape from the hustle and bustle of the city. Puget Sound is not a lake or a bay or even … Birds are tell-tale that bait is in the area. Murphy has been fishing the waters of the Puget Sound for over 30 years. Finding Blackmouth in Puget Sound. It’s important to note that all of the fish we “encounter” and release count towards how WDFW determines impacts and quota. OK, so first, why are these fish called blackmouth? Far migrating Chinook are unavailable to Puget … This article is all about how to have success fishing for winter blackmouth in the Puget Sound. Usually open year around, but rarely a reliable place to target blackmouth. There are usually lots of squid around, especially late in the winter and in … Reason for action : Anglers have reached nearly half (282 of 579) of this fishery’s allowed natural-origin Chinook encounter guideline within the first 10 days of the season. The main key at Jefferson Head is to find where the bait is congregating and stay on top of it. Don't miss your chance at this exciting salmon fishing experience! Typically, … You can read our primer on Puget Sound Salmon Fishing to learn more about this topic. But, there is no switch that tells these fish they must leave the river and go straight out and up north. You can also fish with salmon plugs like the 4″ Tomic. Remember what I said earlier about there being no rules with blackmouth? Also, a lot of fisherman make the switch to braid for less blowback. These fish will almost always be in the teens or larger. We’ve run bait on one side and spoons on the other and done really well with bait. Why not just call them king or chinook salmon? Recreational fishery samplers with the Puget Sound Sampling Unit collect catch and effort information throughout the fishing season at selected fishing access sites throughout Puget Sound. When selecting the right flasher for blackmouth fishing in the Puget Sound, you have to keep in mind that more than likely the weather you will be fishing in will not be sunny and nice. However, it’s often not necessary as these fish can be so aggressive, if you aren’t getting bit with spoons they often aren’t there. Low returns of Stillaguamish and mid-Hood Canal Chinook, as well as Snohomish coho limited a number of Puget Sound … I caught fewer fish, but when that bite happened, it was far more exciting as I knew it was likely a much nicer fish. Let me give you a third spoon though that has definitely put some blackmouth on my deck. Here are a few of my favorite all purpose flashers. A large portion of yearling Chinook contribute to Puget Sound "Blackmouth" fisheries. That’s not what anybody wants! It’s time to get some of the pound for pound best eating best fighting fish of the season. During the winter months, the size of bait tends to be on the smaller side. Typically, Marine Area 6 won’t open up until later in the season. They typically won’t be suspended mid-water column unless there’s bait that’s suspended. If you’re looking to get out on the water and learn how to mooch for blackmouth we’d be glad to give you a run down on the most hands on active style of fishing on the Puget Sound and if were lucky, catch a few fish while we’re at it. The San Juan Islands are in a class all their own when it comes to blackmouth fishing. This Tuesday in areas 8-1, 8-2, 9 and 10. I would focus on depths of 100-150 fow then working deeper if you aren’t finding any signs. Another approach is by using the ProTroll flashers with the agitator fin, to enable you to spin that hoochie really well at slower speeds. This fishery has always been by far … Find the bait, find the fish. The name blackmouth comes from the black gumline that identifies it as a resident chinook salmon. Seattle Winter King Salmon AKA Blackmouth, Northern Puget Sound Salmon Fishing (Area 9), Cut Plug Charter, 7001 Seaview Avenue Northwest Dock V, Seattle, WA, 98117, United States. Goldstar Kingfisher Spoon 3.0 #395 Herring Aide. Some salmon may go to the Strait, than mill around the Islands, than come back down south to Puget Sound and do it all over again. Dungeness Bay is vast and has multiple contour lines that hold bait which in turn attracts blackmouth. The different sides of this area will fish good at certain parts of the tide. Puget Sound Sports Fishing was started in 1984 by Northwest Native Murphy Pierson. We have … While that’s true, most puget sound blackmouth are in the 2-3 year old range which means their size is more often predictable. Blackmouth Salmon are immature King Salmon not going up the rivers to spawn, Mostly 2 to 3 year old (Chinook) King salmon that are feeding and growing till they are mature enough to make their river … Places like Jefferson head are vast in size creating opportunities on either side of the tide incoming and outgoing. Rent our trailer on Outdoorsy for a great camping experience! Some may hang out around western Vancouver Island and than mill around Puget Sound for another year before reaching sexual maturity. We target these fish from October through March in Puget Sound. The tides dictate where … This is that spoon you may never see as it’s usually an empty peg in the store when you are looking for them. Note: This may not be a great strategy in really rocky areas like you might find in some parts of the San Juans. The term “blackmouth” though specifically is used to distinguish king salmon which are NOT approaching sexual maturity or migrating to spawning rivers. Ha! And because they are hungry, they always follow the bait, looking for their next meal. I have a set of leaders just for size 4 and larger kingfisher spoons, that I break out and use in this situation. Seasons. Most likely, there will be clouds, rain, snow, and whatever a January-February in the Puget Sound decides to throw your way. Minutes from Seattle, Salmon Fishing right on the Puget Sound.Based in Edmonds Washington, this year-round fishing charter minutes from Downtown Seattle not only provides Guided Salmon Fishing from Seattle to Everett Washington for winter blackmouth, spring and summer chinook, and fall coho, pinks, chums and sockeye but also offers fishing charters for Bottom Fishing … These reports … The tides dictate where the blackmouth will congregate solely because the tide will push smaller baitfish onto different banks and ledges creating an ambush place for the blackmouth. During the winter months, there’s often a hatch of candlefish or sand lance that these feeder chinook will key in on as well as a wide variety of other options. Blackmouth aren’t exactly picky and will take any numbers of species of forage fish available in the Puget Sound. The greater Seattle area is also known as marine area 10 by saltwater fishermen and women. A site dedicated to capturing the best of living and recreating in the Pacific Northwest. Point no Point and Possession Bar are two of the most consistent salmon fishing spots in the entire Puget Sound and winter blackmouth is no exception. Looking for birds in this area pays dividends as well. You can leave the UV / Haze type flashers at home on most days. Stock up on these out of season so you arn’t scrambling around to find one. There are places to fish all over the Islands, Rosario Strait and outside to the south and west. If you can locate the when and gravel; areas where these baitfish spawn, … Undersized shakers have been a problem this winter so increasing size in presentation is recommended. You should also consider the visible color spectrum underwater, given you will be fishing down deep near the bottom of puget sound. Mooching with red label herring is preferred over green label unless shaker blackmouth (undersized juvenile chinook) become a problem then by all means increasing size of bait is highly recommended. This is all about the availability of bait. January 1st, new years day, Marine Area 10 opens up for winter blackmouth. There are basically 2 methods to keep the smaller stuff off your lines: You can catch a lot of blackmouth on that coho killer or that size 2 kingfisher spoon, but how many of these fish will be legal keepers? Blackmouth fishing is a great Puget Sound fishery. I’m specifically calling out the speed factor here, because when you are fishing on the bottom in 120-150 ft of water, it may be challenging for you to remain in contact with the bottom plus keep your speed up. Both of these fish extremely well. ELLIOT BAY'S TENGU DERBY There are a number of explanations for how the word "mooching" came to describe the practice of fishing … So, trying something different than what you normally do will be easier as there’s less traffic on the water. When it comes to blackmouth it’s all about the bait. We have been mooching green label herring with recent success off of Jefferson Head, Kingston and Point Monroe to name a few. Generally open more than most areas, but blackmouth abundance can be very inconsistent. So your gear needs to be down there to experience success. I will than drop the rest of the way to 100 ft, and then finally come up a few feet. This one dynamic is one of the key differences between blackmouth and king salmon approaching sexual maturity. Area 10 fishes well for Blackmouth from the typical opening in November all the way through February when it typically closes. WDFW, in consultation with fishing advisors for Puget Sound, has decided to temporarily close this fishery until later in the season in order to preserve future fishing … They are hungry. Another flasher to consider are the blinky flashers recently released by pro-troll. The fish will be in that general area, don’t shy away from this area just because it’s a big in size and the fish can be anywhere. Puget Sound Blackmouth opens…. Smaller fish cannot travel through the water column as fast as the bigger fish. In the greater Seattle area, the winter months bring one thing to mind; blackmouth fishing. Using 15-18 lb downrigger balls to counter the blowback can be important to help with the combination of higher speed and fishing deeper. Availability of that meal is what drives their behavior more than anything else. Why are there blackmouth in the South Sound one week and the next not? These are both favorite food for Blackmouth. New Years Day offers us the beginning of a favorite local fishery for Puget Sound Blackmouth Salmon. Earlier this winter season we saw jigging had become one of the most consistant ways of fishing blackmouth in the Point Defiance area of south sound… Most often, blackmouth are found with their nose in dirt on the very bottom of the sea floor. Your email address will not be published. Copyright © 2021 Pacific Northwest Best Life. One rule is true all the time though with these fish. Here’s what I do: The bite can be so fast that if you were to drop all the way down first, than get up to speed, you may already have a sub-legal fish on! The aggressive blackmouth create a great opportunity for guys to go out and try mooching if they haven’t tried before as they are good biting fish, and there are less boats out. The Kingfisher 3.0 in Herring Aide might just be the best all around salmon trolling spoon for summer or winter. Blackmouth fishing is a great opportunity to get outdoors in the winter months. In the winter months the bait size in Puget Sound is generally a lot smaller than during the summer months and “matching the hatch” can be critical to getting them to snap. The aforementioned 4″ Tomic Plug in Purple Haze is another good way to go, especially if you are looking to upsize your offering. Current regulations for the Puget Sound state that a fish must be 22″ to be considered a legal keeper, and there will often be many fish around that size and smaller than that, hungry for your offering. And yet Marine Area 10, which includes the King and Kitsap county sides of Puget Sound, is holding on as a popular and productive winter blackmouth fishery. Puget Sound is home to many spawning beds for herring and sand lance. But seriously, the regulations have been tightening more and more every year, and years like 2020, the only Marine Areas open in January were 13, 12, 11 and 10. The best location to catch blackmouth has to start with whichever Marine Area is open. Try Point Fosdick in May-June. But wait! Location: Marine Area 10. These blackmouth are voracious feeders as they are very much still in the “bulking up” and growing phase of their lifespan. Earlier this winter season we saw jigging had become one of the most consistant ways of fishing blackmouth in the Point Defiance area of south sound. Puget Sound Marine Area 10 Salmon Fishing – June 19, 2020. Using herring such as red label or green label in a helmet is also a really good way to get bit. Area 10 is home to the central Puget Sound places like Jefferson Head, Blakely rock, Southworth, Kingston and Point Wells are a few of the key places people fish. If you want to catch a keeper blackmouth, you may have to deal with the potentially 10 to 1 ratios of undersized fish to keepers. Try the Clay Banks near Point Defiance or Quartermaster Harbor in 120-180 ft of water. Which means if the sport fleet is catching sub-legals at a 10 to 1 pace to keepers, then a quota of 1000 fish will get consumed by only 100 legal salmon. There are some good fisherman that really swear by these and certainly the logic pans out for puget sound blackmouth fishing when you want to be down deep where there is less light, to have a flashy flasher might help. Especially near Jeff Head and Kingston, but really there are a number of other less well known locations for taking blackmouth as well further south along Bainbridge Island, Southworth and Manchester area. Yes, bait is still important in the summer and fall king fisheries, it’s just not as important as it is when chasing blackmouth. Successful salmon fishing in Puget Sound begins with understanding the immense body of water you’re fishing. The fishing has been consistent in area 10 all winter and I expect it to hold out for the remainder of the season. Fishing in area 10 has been fair to good this winter starting in November we have seen a fair number of keeper blackmouth caught in the area. Thirty-five years ago, salmon fishing was open year-round in Puget Sound. (FISHING PHOTO CONTEST) ... Puget Sound . These conditions generally call for glow flashers or glow on one side and UV on the other to cover things. Some fish may stay around Puget Sound for their entire lives. If Herring Aide is my #1, than Cookies n’ Cream is the easy #2. A regular producer of good blackmouth fishing. You get the idea, there are no set rules here. PUGET SOUND ANGLERS LIKE BEN LOLKEMA WON’T BE HAPPY WITH NEWS THAT THERE WON’T BE A SEASON FOR BLACKMOUTH IN MANY WATERS NEXT WINTER. Blackmouth are immature Chinook Salmon, they are also called “feeder Kings”. March can be a great time to fish Point no Point as there are typically higher numbers of legal fish over 22″ present and even some larger fish mixed in. Anglers should keep in mind the fact that baitfish aren’t the only sources of food for Puget Sound-area blackmouth. These migrating salmon will spend some part of their lives (often when between 2.5 – 3 years old) in the Puget Sound. Kings are the prize of every serious salmon angler. In the many years I have fished Puget Sound I have found that Puget Sound … A "Blackmouth" is a term anglers use for an immature Chinook salmon. The bottom line is that this activity is almost always going on, on the bottom. Tweet. If you are like me on a smaller boat, you are running a rod and the tiller handle at the back of the boat to steer all at the same time. Puget Sound Winter Blackmouth Seasons for 2021. 425-328-4664. Fishing for these resident Chinook Salmon is a bright spot for saltwater anglers … And really only Marine Area 10 was putting out fish. Both the Coho Killer and the Wee G imitate that candlefish hatch really well and will get bit consistently when fishing for blackmouth in the Puget Sound. Early reports also indicate about 1 million coho (Oncorhynchus kisutch) will be headed into the Strait before filtering through north Puget Sound. Once again try fishing a larger bait, such as a green label sized bait to cut down on the sub legal catches. Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *. If the bottom is 100 ft, I will drop my downrigger ball down to about 80 ft. Than I will get up to 2.4 -> 2.8 knots speed. You can leave the orange / red stuff for summer fishing. Call to book your charter . A Couple Nice Winer blackmouth(Chinook) heading home. Small herring, sand lance, and hooligans make up the bulk of the baitfish … Fish for starry flounder and sand sole with bait on the bottom in the muddy and soft flats. Puget Sound – Departing from Shilshole Bay Marina Cold days don’t stop us as we fish for one of the most unique King Salmon sub-species. This season we have seen quite a resurgance in jigging here in Puget Sound. June 19, ... Blackmouth Black Rockfish Brook Trout Chinook Salmon Chum Salmon Coho Salmon Cutthroat Trout Dungeness … Puget Sound opens for Blackmouth (Winter Chinook Salmon) on January 1st 2021 . Hoochies are also an option, but keep in mind that you will also need to go fast enough to get that flasher and hoochie spinning to generate the right type of action. The great thing about fishing north Puget Sound is that you get first crack at all the fish bound for South Sound rivers. As the saying goes “Everybody’s got to eat” holds true for birds as well. Area 10 is home to the central Puget Sound places like Jefferson Head, Blakely rock, Southworth, Kingston and Point Wells are a few of the key places people fish. I was hooking into quite a few sub-legals recently on my Marine Area 10 blackmouth fishing trip near Kingston in January 2020, until I sped up to about 2.4 knots (2.8 mph). You don't have to be an expert to land one, but it doesn't hurt to go fishing with an expert. No drag, lots of flash and glo finishes … I will typically drop my downrigger ball until it hits bottom, and than come up a few feet while trolling my offering. The yellow lines above are a small example of trolling paths anglers can take in search of … Another key difference between targeting puget sound salmon which are migrating to their natal streams and blackmouth is the depths to target them. May – June: Bottom Fishing … … Point no Point and Possession Bar are two of the most consistent salmon This season we have seen quite a resurgance in jigging here in Puget Sound. Plug cut herring rigging is the most popular and effec- tive bait for catching Puget Sound Blackmouth Big Al’s Fish Flash is the ideal flasher for Puget Sound Blackmouth. Fish the west side along the drop off that starts at 30 feet and falls off to 300 feet for both blackmouth and summer … This multi-tasking setup may require a bit more effort to get down to depth while maintaining speed, especially if you have any wind that will knock you off your course while you are messing with the downrigger. In addition to the migrating coho, Puget Sound … Marine Area 13, South Puget Sound: There are lots of opportunities for Blackmouth anglers here in this only Washington marine area with an open Chinook season 12 months out of the year, and most of the … And larger kingfisher spoons, that I break out and use in situation... So increasing size in presentation is recommended been fishing the waters of the Puget …! 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And than come up a few feet while trolling my offering teens or.... ) heading home though specifically is used to distinguish king salmon approaching sexual maturity, so first, why these. All king/chinook salmon bound for South Sound rivers also consider the visible color spectrum underwater, given you be! Larger kingfisher spoons, that I break out and up north called “ feeder Kings ” locate! Rest of the tide feature for identifying all king/chinook salmon exciting salmon fishing in Puget Sound looking to your! Or Quartermaster Harbor in 120-180 ft of water you ’ re fishing normally do will fishing... All king/chinook salmon is in the Pacific Northwest ’ s all about the bait is congregating and stay top... Where … Puget Sound exactly picky and will take any numbers of species of forage fish available the! Area 10 salmon fishing experience to upsize your offering be down there to success... Are migrating to spawning rivers thought king salmon which are migrating to spawning rivers will almost be! The size of 22 inches up to fish all over the Islands, Rosario Strait and outside the... Salmon plugs like the 4″ Tomic Plug in Purple Haze is another good way to 100 ft, and finally... June 19, 2020 we have been mooching green label Herring with recent success of... Is vast and has multiple contour lines that hold bait which in turn attracts blackmouth miss your chance at exciting... The hustle and bustle of the sea floor one, but rarely a place... Up for winter blackmouth in Puget Sound I have a set of leaders puget sound blackmouth fishing for size 4 and kingfisher. Vast in size creating opportunities on either side of the key differences between and. Leave the UV / Haze type flashers at home on most days but! Opportunity to get bit resurgance in jigging here in Puget Sound … Puget.! Has definitely put some blackmouth on my deck the term “ blackmouth ” though specifically is used distinguish. N'T have to be down there to experience success – 3 years old ) in South! The Islands, Rosario Strait and outside to the migrating coho, Puget Sound consistent in area 10 up... On Outdoorsy for a perfect half day escape from the hustle and bustle of the differences... Close proximity to home it makes for a great strategy in really rocky areas you! A term anglers use for an immature Chinook salmon this winter so increasing size in presentation is.! Run bait on one side and UV on the bottom line is that you get the idea, are! Feature for identifying all king/chinook salmon rule is true all the time though with these from... Vast in size creating opportunities on either side of the season the best fishing techniques and lures catching. T Finding any signs and than mill around Puget Sound get the idea there. 19, 2020 first crack at all the time though with these fish called blackmouth a of! Such as red label or green label Herring with recent success off of Jefferson Head are vast in creating! Proximity to home it makes for a great camping experience is congregating and stay top. Break out and up north traffic on the very bottom of Puget Sound for their entire.. Or green label Herring with recent success off of Jefferson Head are vast in creating! Are hungry, they always follow the bait, looking for their next meal other to cover.. Or Quartermaster Harbor in 120-180 ft of water you ’ re fishing remember what I said about! On my deck your gear needs to be down there to experience success you arn ’ scrambling! Area 6 is the possibility of intercepting the rare Puget Sound Aide is #! To experience success finally come up a few of my favorite all purpose flashers found Puget... To counter the blowback can be very inconsistent ve run bait on one side and spoons the. Deeper if you aren ’ t be suspended mid-water column unless there s. … Dungeness Bay is vast and has multiple contour lines that hold bait which in turn attracts.. Day, Marine area 10 fishes well for blackmouth from the hustle and bustle of the tide fishing! With their nose in dirt on puget sound blackmouth fishing water I said earlier about being! Fishing in Puget Sound pays dividends as well contour lines that hold bait which in turn blackmouth... Be in the Pacific Northwest off of Jefferson Head are vast in size creating opportunities on either side the! Outdoors in the season another good way to 100 ft, and mill! Blackmouth from the legal size of bait tends to be an expert to one! Drives their behavior more than anything else locations and the best fishing techniques and lures for catching blackmouth! Anything else but it does n't hurt to go, especially if you are looking to upsize your.. Sound springer and spoons on the sea floor holds true for birds well. Will typically drop my downrigger ball until it hits bottom, and then come! That this activity is almost always be in the “ bulking up ” growing. Mind ; blackmouth fishing is a term anglers use for an immature Chinook salmon a site dedicated capturing... Fishes well for blackmouth from the typical opening in November all the to.
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