Baker Lake Sockeye


the sultan of swing
I see bake lake sockeye fishing will be open on the 23 of july this year . Do they ever open the river up for sockeye fishing? I was fishing the skagit last weekend and the mouth of the baker river was teeming with sockeye


Well-Known Member
Baker Lake sockey

WDFW has opened the lower Baker River section to sockeye fishing in some years. Not lately though.

Baker Lake sockeye fishery opens July 23

OLYMPIA - For the second straight year, anglers will be able to fish for sockeye salmon in Baker Lake, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) announced today.

From July 23 until further notice, anglers can retain up to three adult sockeye salmon that exceed 18 inches in length from the log boom barrier at Baker Dam upstream to the mouth of the upper Baker River. All other salmon, as well as bull trout, must be released.

Brett Barkdull, a fish biologist for WDFW, said this year’s return is expected to meet spawning production goals. As of today, 8,285 sockeye had returned to hatchery facilities at Baker Lake.

"About 3,600 of those sockeye salmon have been released into Baker Lake," said Barkdull. "We expect that number to continue to increase as we approach Saturday’s opener."

Barkdull reminds anglers that the Baker and Skagit rivers remain closed to salmon fishing.


Active Member
For years only a small section of the river was open and now in the last couple years only the lake has been open. Not sure of the reasoning for this, but maybe someone with more knowledge of this fishery could chime in. Last year was a zoo once word got out the fishing was good. I imagine this season will be even worse.

One thing I have noticed of the sockeye fisheries in this region is they are notoriously tight lipped in the rivers, but seem to get more aggressive in lakes.
Yeah lake fishing for Sockeye is so finess. A downrigger and a dodger and red hooks. Drag them in and fillet those colored up suckers out and think they are something good to eat. Yuck! Catch a few out in the salt and you will never ever ever again try to eat a fresh water colored up Sockeye.

Well, I am going to try this fishery out. Float tube, 8 weight, shooting head sinker with intermediate running line, no. 1 lake clear wabbler followed by a pink flash fly. I will simply be trolling with the fins. 20 to 45 feet does not sound unreasonable. How do you think I will do? Any better suggestions? I hope to catch one, but more so hope to not be run over.

Old Man

Just an Old Man
I don't think that anybody in their right mind would float that lake in a float tube. It pretty big and the wind can come up at any time. I would think twice before floating on that lake in a inner tube.

Chad Lewis

NEVER wonder what to do with your free time
Old Man has a good point about the wind. I did an overnighter on Baker Lake with my kayak and had to paddle eight miles back to my car through one foot wind waves, and into the wind. In a float tube you'd never, ever-ever make it to where you're going. You'd end up hiking around the entire lake to get back.