Pink Salmon from Whidbey Island

I have a few questions about techiniques for pursuing Pink Salmon from the shoreline of Whidbey Island. What are some basic techniques, such as line weight and type, and flies? I will be flying out to fish in late August through early September. I grew up on the island, but have not pursued the pinks with a fly rod yet. Any Suggestions would be greatly appreciated.


Active Member
6 or 7 weight rod... floating or intermediate line... pink and white clousers, baitfish patterns, chartuse clousers, pink or chartuse spiders...
Fish the points and rips. There should be plenty of fish and finding them should be too much of an issue.


Active Member
A 6-weight is plenty of rod. I usually fish a floating or intermediate-sink line. Pink seems to be the color of choice for flies though I've done well on chartreuse as well. I've had good results with my Hubert Humpy:
hook: size 4-6 Gamakatsu SS15, or equivalent.
thread: white 6/0
body: pearl diamond braid
wing: pink rabbit strip
gills: red floss
eyes: silver bead chain
Tie in the diamond braid and rabbit strip at the bend of the hook. Leave enough rabbit strip to reach to the hook eye. Wrap the diamond braid forward and take a few turns of red floss behind the hook eye. Bring the rabbit strip forward and tie it down. Tie in the bead chain eyes. Trim the rabbit strip so the total length is about twice the length of the hook shank. Sometimes I gussy it up a little with a few strands of Flashabou over the back. It works well in salt or fresh water for pinks, coho, bull trout and sometimes cutthroat. Other colors that have worked well are olive and white.

I'll try to figure out how to post a picture.
troutfly247: look for jumping fish. Some folks sit on the beach watching the water until they start seeing a jumper, which usually means a lot more fish below. Pinks have a telltale jump: when airborne, their body takes on a shape like a question mark - ?. The Silvers and cutthroat will be more straight up or angled leaps, but body still mostly straight.

Late August should still put you on the run. There should be plenty of Silvers available off of Whidbey also. A stiff 6 wgt rod is my choice for pinks, I use a floating line, intermediate or sink tip III, depending on the time of day generally, with the patterns referenced by D3Smartie; Preston's fly looks like a winner. Hook size 4-6 seems right to me too.
I hate to be the stinker, but I have to believe that projections would be calling for a pretty weak pink run this year. Remember the October floods of 2003? They were likely very hard on the August and September spawning of that year's pink run.

Maybe somebody on the board works for WDFW or has connections there or with the Tulalips. He or she could tell us if the 2003/2004 screw-trap data gives us any idea what to expect.


Active Member
I heard the trap data was better than anticipated, at least for the Skagit. Still, I can't believe the numbers will be like they were in 03. That flood was a huge event.


AKA Joe Willauer
This is some what related but im going to be on the south end of whidbey island this weekend and was wondering if there would be any salt fishing oppurtunities for resident silvers or sea runs, feel free to PM me if ouve got some really good info.


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