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A chinook salmon fishery is set to open Wednesday on the lower Skagit River for the first time in nearly 30 years.

The state Department of Fish & Wildlife announced Monday that a spring fishery for hatchery chinook will be open through May.

From May 1-31, anglers can catch and keep up to two hatchery chinook caught in the area from the Memorial Highway Bridge in Mount Vernon to Gilligan Creek southeast of Sedro-Woolley, according to a news release.

State and tribal fishery co-managers recently agreed to open the fishery this year based on the number of wild and hatchery chinook forecast to return to the river.

“We’ve seen a sufficient number of spring chinook returning to the Skagit River in the last several years to allow us to open this section of the river,” Fish & Wildlife’s regional fish manager Edward Eleazer said in the release. “This is essentially a new opportunity for most anglers.”

As the fish make their way upstream, a hatchery chinook fishery will open June 1 on the upper Skagit River, from the Highway 530 Bridge at Rockport to the Cascade River Road, as well as on the Cascade River from the mouth to the Rockport-Cascade Road Bridge.

More details on fisheries can be found in Fish & Wildlife’s Sport Fishing Rules Pamphlet, at wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/regulations.

— Reporter Kimberly Cauvel: 360-416-2199, kcauvel@skagitpublishing.com, Twitter: @Kimberly_SVH, Facebook.com/bykimberlycauvel

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