Sports: Halibut season reopens today — will weather cooperate?

NEAH BAY — Halibut fishing on the North Coast reopens today after more than three weeks of being closed.

But the season — predicted to be excellent — won’t last long.

“It’s going to be awesome,” Wendy Lawrence at Big Salmon Resort in Neah Bay said Tuesday afternoon.

“Fishing should be great.”

The season in Marine Areas 3 and 4 is reopening to 31,854 pounds of halibut, the final two-area subquota of the year.

The areas will close this Saturday when that poundage is predicted to be fulfilled, according to Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife officials.

Areas 3 and 4 include waters of the Pacific Ocean north of the Queets River, and the Strait of Juan de Fuca east to the mouth of the Sekiu River (United States waters only).

Lawrence recommended fishing at Swiftsure Bank (near the mouth of the Strait), at Blue Dot (18-20 miles west of Tatoosh Island), and off Snow Creek.

Anglers need to note the closed area described on page Nos. 95 and 96 of the state sport fishing rules pamphlet.

Saturday’s closure means there won’t likely be an overlap of halibut and salmon this year on the North Coast.

But rough seas could make the difference.

The National Weather Service is calling for scattered rain today and Thursday off the northwestern tip of the Olympic Peninsula with winds up to 20 knots (about 23 mph) and swells to 6 feet.

Showers and large swells may continue through the weekend.

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The rest of this story appears in Wednesday’s Peninsula Daily News. Click on SUBSCRIBE to get the PDN delivered to your home or office.

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