The Cowlitz River in southwest Washington is a tributary of the Columbia River. Its tributaries drain a large region including the slopes of Mount Rainier, Mount Adams and Mount St. Helens. There are three dams on the Cowlitz River. These dams tend to filter the water and when most of the rivers in the northwest are unfishable because of rain the Cowlitz stays fishable.
We fish the Cowlitz River year round. Our Cowlitz River fishing calendar actually starts thanksgiving each year when the winter steelhead show in good numbers. We fish the early winter run steadily into January. Then the late winter fish begin to show up. By late February these fish are in the Cowlitz River in good numbers. In March and April the Cowlitz River puts more steelhead in the sport fishers creel than any other river in the Northwest. Our clients consistently take home limits of these hard fighting fresh run, quality fish. On the very light refined tackle we use every hookup is an exciting challenge. You land some and lose some but you will definitely create some unforgettable memories and in the end you will take home your fish.
The spring run king Salmon start showing up in March and fishing quickly gets productive. These are shiny, bright, quality kings. They are hard fighters and the best eating salmon in the world. We catch them trolling herring, back bouncing with shrimp and or fresh salmon roe. Hover fishing with bait is also productive. We catch these nice fish in the Cowlitz River clear into June.
The middle of June the Summer Steelhead move into the Cowlitz River. There is more Summer Steelhead caught and taken home out of the Cowlitz River than any other river in the northwest except for the Columbia River. The water is low and clear, the weather is usually nice and warm. Very pleasant fishing conditions. Enjoy a great day in the outdoors and take home plenty of nice fish. We catch Summer Steelhead in the Cowlitz River to about the first of August.
The Fall King salmon fishing starts in the Cowlitz River about the first of August. By the first of September the Coho and King salmon fishing is going strong. We catch plenty of a mixed bag of Kings and Silvers into late October. This is when we catch the largest kings of the year in the Cowlitz River.