The Pink salmon horde has started to arrive in the central and south Puget Sound. Millions of Pink (Humpy) salmon are on their way back to local river systems.
In Marine Area 11, the waters from Redondo down to Browns Point is the prime highway for pinks returning to the Puyallup River. The area from shore out a couple hundred yards is your trolling target area for Pink salmon. Off the mouth of the Puyallup River is great trolling in Late August.
Dock and beach fishing hotspots are Redondo Pier, Dash Point Pier the beach area around Browns Point Lighthouse, and off the Les Davis Pier in Tacoma. Pink Buzz Bombs are the number one choice for beach fishing. Cast them out, let them fall reel and let them drop as you retrieve them.
Pinks travel in schools, so when you hookup on a pink leave all the gear out and try zigzagging as your will normally encounter multiple hook ups. Prime depth on the downriggers is 20 feet down to 60 feet, but as the sun gets bright, try dropping down 90-100 feet or more.
The top trolling setup is a white 8-inch flasher, 16 inches of leader and a hot-pink Gold Star hoochie. Put this combo 10-15 feet out behind the downrigger ball. Troll slow, 1-1.5 miles per hour. I have also had great success on a Silver Horde cotton candy (pink color) Kingfisher lite spoon run solo off the downrigger. Pinks normally run 3 to 5 pounds with the occasional in the 8-10-pound range.
Once you harvest a pink it’s extremely important to take care of them to ensure proper table fair. Bleed the fish immediately, cut both gill plates and let them bleed out. After bleeding clean the fish and ice them ASAP. Bury them in ice to rapidly chill them.
When handed this way the Pink salmon is great for the BBQ or smoker.