Sturgeon Fishing the Columbia River 2022
Fishing for the great white sturgeon is why many anglers visit Portland, Oregon. This is because Portland is central to some of the best Sturgeon fishing waters, not only in the United States, but in the entire world! The most popular location to catch Sturgeon is on the mighty Columbia River. In addition, the Willamette River is also a fantastic river to catch Sturgeon. Each river is located minutes away from the Portland Airport. If you are an avid angler, catching a massive White Sturgeon is certainly on your fishing bucket list!
Oregon Fishing Seasons for Sturgeon on the Columbia River
Oregon has done a pretty impressive job of maintaining their Sturgeon population. The giant beasts also known as “prehistoric dinosaur fish” have a huge lifespan, sometimes living over 100 years. This means that if the population isn’t carefully managed, it can dramatically influence the quantity and quality of fish.
Fishing for Sturgeon in Oregon is year round. The only exception is in certain areas around spawning season in May. For the most part, Sturgeon fishing is catch and release. This allows the fish to grow old and become gigantic! Each year, the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife do allow anglers to keep the fish. The bag limit per year is two Sturgeon and there is a very specific slot limit.
If you want to catch an absolute beast of a fish, you want to visit the Columbia River in the summer. The higher the temperature, the better! This is when you can expect to catch “Oversized Sturgeon”. When we talk about oversized, we are talking about fish of freakish sizes. A Sturgeon isn’t considered oversized until they are five to size feet long and start weighing hundreds of pounds. If you can imagine, these massive fish will put you through the fight of a lifetime!
Don’t worry! If you can’t visit the Columbia River during the summer months, you can still catch plenty of Sturgeon and it’s really fun. The smaller fish are plentiful and can be caught in the Columbia River very close to Portland and the PDX Airport. It makes for a great activity to plan at the end of your trip.
Techniques Used to Catch Sturgeon on the Columbia River
Fishing for Sturgeon can be a little tricky when you are on a river with a heavy, steady current. Sturgeons are actually bottom feeders, much like catfish and carp. They sniff around the bottom of the Columbia River looking for tasty things to eat.
If you are looking at catching an Oversized Sturgeon, Shad is usually the best bait to use. We use a special technique to tie and sink the Shad to the bottom of the river where the Sturgeon like to feed. Simply getting the bait on the bottom of the river isn’t enough, you have to get your boat to stay in place while you wait for the fish to guzzle down your bait. We use very large anchors to keep the boat in place and tie a buoy to the anchor lines. This allows us to stay in place while we are waiting to catch a fish, but once the fish is hooked, we can unhook from the anchor and chase the fish down.
You see, when you hook in to a fish that seven to twelve feet long, it’s extremely difficult to muscle the fish in. This is why we help with the boat. As you fight the fish, we will use the boat to gently work our way back to the fish, making the fight easier on the angler and helping to preserve the fish with a shorter fight. Our ultimate goal is to help you catch an epic fish and have a fantastic time.
Why Choose Hook’em Up Guide Service for your 2022 Stugeon Trip?
We have been catching Sturgeon on the Columbia river for more than 20 years. We are on the Columbia almost every day of the year and there is hardly another guide with more experience. We know the best locations to fish for each time of year. Please feel free to give us a call if you would like to learn more or hear one of our 100 percent true fishing stories!