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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I love salmon fishing for my ex and I broke up and now I have no idea how to read a tide chart :beathead:. When do I want to go salmon fishing on the columbia river and how can I read it for myself in the future?

08/27/2010 Fri 01:43AM LDT 0.0 L
05:52AM LDT 0.0 H
01:45PM LDT 0.0 L
06:10PM LDT 0.0 H

08/28/2010 Sat 02:17AM LDT 0.0 L
06:30AM LDT 0.0 H
02:11PM LDT 0.0 L
06:31PM LDT 0.0 H

08/29/2010 Sun 02:52AM LDT 0.0 L
07:10AM LDT 0.0 H
02:39PM LDT 0.0 L
06:55PM LDT 0.0 H

Thanks so much!:rolleyes:

Dues past due
234 Posts
1. Click on 'Tides' along the top banner of this forum.
2. Locate the tidal calendar for the station closest to your intended fishery.
3. When the graph is going up, the water is too. When the graph is going down, the water is too. When the graph is changing directions, the tidal movement is too.
4. Learn what the water height means at your local spots and whether or not there's enough back casting room to even fish.
5. Most people fish the 1-2 hours on either side of the slack tide, 'fishing through' it if there's enough time. Some prefer the high slack, some the low; different spots may produce differently but I'm not authorized to comment on the specifics.

Now that you're single (and I assume without child), that gives you 4 hours to fish with the slack somewhere in the middle- lucky bastard.

Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the reply! I am still way confused but I will just have to do more research! Well not single anymore! My current boyfriend has got me into fly fishing which I love, but he doesnt fish the columbia so its all up to me! But yes I am lucky, I can fish as long as I want when I want!:thumb:

Still truckless now farther away
1,693 Posts
Well welcome and good luck. Enjoy the forum and you will also get more answers I would think from people who are familiar with the River. Go talk to Wayne at Pritchards the shop up stream on the Kalama he should be a good start and he's been there 25 years.

4,153 Posts
if you are fishing the buoy 10 salmon runs, the vast majority of the fishing is on the incoming tide. fishing the ebb can be pretty dangerous, depending on how low on the river you happen to be, as the current and tide combined have taken many unsuspecting newbies out into the surf, very dangerous to say the least.

Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thank you... I didn't realize how dangerious it can be... but luckly my boyfriend that I will hopefully be taking with me used to be a rescue swimmer in the Navy. So he wont let me get too close :eek: And to the post a few before.... I always put the little ones back... but I have to say I love eatting the big ones... So If your not gonna eat it, then throw it back! ;)

3,280 Posts
Tides can be confusing but are really quite understandable with some basic knowledge.

At this lattitude there are generally 2 high tides and 2 low tides each day. There is roughly 6 hours and 15 minutes between high and low tide on the average.

Though tides are technically a measure of current it is easier to look at tides as a rising and falling of the waters surface. Each day will have a major and minor high and low tide. Major high being the greatest rise in surface elevation and the most extreme drop in elevation of the surface is the major minor. So a hypothetical example
6am high tide 10 feet
12 noon low tide -1 foot
6pm high tide 6 feet
midnight low tide 2 feet
next morning high tide 11 feet

So what does this mean?
From 6am until noon the surface of the water will drop from 10 feet above 0 to -1 foot below 0 or simple math an 11 foot drop of the surface of the water at high tide to the low. From low tide at noon to 6pm the surface of the water will rise 5 feet from the low.

Tide is an up and down movement of the elevation of the surface of the water. 0 is the average of all the ups and downs of the tidal movement in a simplistic explanation.

There are various marine calendars that show the sign wave of tides imposed over dates with time. They are a good thing to have and will help make sense of the tides.

The greater the difference between the rise and fall the greater the current. There are nautical charts available for almost everywhere that show the strengrh of tidal flow and how currents change depending on the degree of flow.

For example
In Puget Sound twice a year there are the highest major and minor tides and they are concurrent in June and December usually.
A High tide of 14 feet followed by a low tide of -4 feet is somewhat common. That is a change in surface elevation of 18 feet! That means the surface of the sound will DROP 18 feet in about 7 hours! That is a lot of water movement and some serious current. The water moving up or down requires movement and that movement is the current. So the greater the rise of fall the greater the movement of water and then spead out over time and the flow (current) can be determined. As the tide changes from say low to high the current flow starts off slow and then increases and then drops off. If you are familiar with math it is a bell curve. Half way through the tide change there is maximum current (speed of water movement).

Now lets apply this to a river with its own current. When the ocean tides are coming in the curent of the river will be overwhelmed and may actually flow backwards due to the force of the incoming water from the ocean. When the tide changes and is going out then the rivers current will be increased due to the fall in water levels and the river is running downhill at a steeper angle and the current increases.

This is all driven by the ocean in simplistic terms. Picture a glass of water and tip it sideways and observe the water climb up higher on one side and lower on the other. This is simplistically what is happening on a grander scale. There are many factors that control this movement. The moons orientation has a lot to do with it.


He called me an Elitist ?? LOL ..what a moron
682 Posts
Welcome to the boards Krystal!
As GT mentioned, the area your asking about has been pretty productive on incoming tides. Although it's hit and miss, I wouldn't discount out bound tides too. I will also emphasize caution in that area. Be safe and have fun!
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