Washington

36 Fishing Charters

Washington Fishing Charters

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Top Washington Destinations


Top Fishing Charters in Washington


Staying true to the West Coast tradition of diverse fishing possibilities, Washington fishing charters will showcase everything the Pacific Northwest is known for. Considering this is a state with over 5,000 lowland lakes, and 2,800 high-country lakes, anything less than a stellar experience with Washington fishing charters would be surprising.

The saltwater scene might not be as expansive as the freshwater, but it’s certainly productive. Washington Tuna charters are among the most popular on the Pacific coast. Westport, in particular, has a reputation for awesome Albacore Tuna fishing nearly every summer. Add to that some ever-popular Salmon, Halibut, Lingcod, and Rockfish, and you’ve got yourself a winner.

Where to fish

Picking between freshwater and saltwater fishing grounds is just the start when you’re fishing in the state of Washington. Here are some of the most popular fishing destinations in The Evergreen State year after year.

Puget Sound

If we were to think of Washington as a successful musician, then Puget Sound would be the greatest hits collection. This is because you can find most of the different types of fishing the state is known for right in this spacious inlet. Especially when it comes to Salmon fishing - Puget Sound is where you want to be when the season hits.

Seattle, Tacoma, and other big cities on the sound make up some of the best fishing in Washington. If you can pick a single time to visit Jet City to do some angling, we’d highly recommend the winter Chinook season, which peaks from November until mid-January. As for the Salmon season, Puget Sound should be on your radar anywhere from early July until late September.

If you hear people talking with excitement about something called a Blackmouth Salmon, don’t be confused. That’s a common local name for juvenile Chinook, a very popular fish to go after ‘round here.

San Juan Islands

Once known far and wide as the number one destination for bottom fishing in the whole of Washington, the San Juan Islands fell victim to overfishing. This resulted in new and highly restrictive regulations coming in force to protect the local Lingcod and Rockfish populations. The silver lining here is that Salmon fishing is still going strong, with Chinook being found during the entire year.

Westport

The prize jewel of Washington’s offshore fishing attractions, Westport Tuna fishing has been a major driver of the local fishery for more than half a century. Nowadays, anglers still rejoice every summer when the Tuna’s migration path brings them some 60 miles off the coast. Salmon fishing is also immensely popular, in spite of the relatively short seasons measured in mere weeks instead of months.

River Fishing

Keeping in mind it’s the biggest river in the whole Pacific Northwest, it’s small wonder that the Columbia River dominates the river fishing scene in Washington. While it unfortunately no longer holds the title of the world’s number one Salmon producer, it’s still home to some excellent fishing.

The productive river streams in the western part of Washington attract upwards of 100,000 anglers annually. The Steelhead rivers that flow into the Pacific are known to anglers all over the country for world-class fishing. The most famous of these is the Quillayute system, comprised of the Bogachiel, Calawah, and Sol Duc Rivers.

Lake Fishing

With thousands of lakes all over the country, recommending just a couple is far from easy. Lakes in Washington are usually divided according to whether they belong in the eastern or western part of the country.

When it comes to Trout fishing, Washington is blessed with more than 2,000 lakes that are open to year-round fishing. The best performing lakes in the west include Padden and Silver Lakes in Whatcom County, Mountain and Cascade Lakes in San Juan County, as well as many, many more. Anglers not afraid to do a little hiking should definitely visit the Olympic Mountains, where more than a thousand lakes awaits them. The cool thing about them is that most anglers won’t make the trip into the high country, leaving some of these waters ripe for exploring.

Those of you in the market for Bass lakes should not despair, as there are plenty of those to go around. The best ones for Largemouth Bass fishing include the Big Lake in Skagit County, Mason Lake in Mason County, Lacamas Lake, in Clark County, and others besides. As for Smallmouth Bass, look no further than Lake Sammamish in King County.

Waters east of the Cascade Range hold plenty of appeal as well. In fact, Grant Country with its Blue, Park, Nunnally, and Merry Lakes is probably the absolute best Trout fishing destination in the state. Just don’t forget that Lake Trout are known as “Mackinaws” by most anglers, and you’ll be good to go.

Fishing Techniques

Of course, what good is knowing where the lakes are if you don’t know how to catch the fish? When it comes to Steelhead, you’ll find most anglers stick to drift fishing for the most part. The secret to successful drifting is to get enough weight on the line so it can seamlessly move with the current. Another good thing to do is to try drifting Leadhead jigs beneath floats.

Saltwater fishing, though, is a whole other beast entirely. Tuna trips, for example, are usually long, overnight trips, where anglers will troll with hex-head jigs until they locate the fish. Once they do, however, they’ll switch to lighter gear, most commonly live Anchovies on single hooks.

Fly anglers should match their gear to the sort of fish they plan to go after. There’s no need to go heavier than a 6 wt rod if you want to go after Cutthroat and Rainbow Trout with streamers or dry flies. However, if Steelhead is more of your thing, then make sure to pack a 7 or 8 wt rod — you’ll need it.

Need to Know

Anyone over the age of 15 requires a license to be able to fish in Washington. This applies regardless of whether you plan on fishing with a charter guide or on your own. However, if you’re fishing for the likes of Common Carp, Crawfish, Bullfrogs, Smelt, or unclassified marine invertebrates, you do not need a license. Be sure to check the WDFW Licensing website for any changes, and to also buy a fishing license online.

Washington waters attract armies of anglers with diverse interests. Check it out in person, and you’ll be coming back for more year after year!

Washington
Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent 4.43
Based on 23655 reviews by FishingBooker anglers

January

When a new year gets going, most anglers will be busy going after Blackmouth Salmon to notice. Join them and see for yourself what the fuss is about.

February

Come February, Puget Sound is swarming with Blackmouth Salmon and Cutthroat Trout. Anglers in places like Seattle and Tacoma will be all over the piers catching Squid.

March

Winter might be over and done with, but the Chinook bite is still going strong. Out in the jetties, get ready for some awesome Lingcod fishing.

April

April is when the winter Chinook fishing dies down, and the harvest season draws to a close. On the bright side, the time for spring Salmon is upon us.

May

If you’re up for some bottom fishing, there’s hardly a better time to get started. With Rockfish, Lingcod, and Flounder, what else do you need?

June

Did somebody say Summer Steelhead? Head on down to the Columbia River and fish your heart out. In Seattle, Lingcod season is about to end in a week or two into June.

July

Anglers in Puget Sound are getting ready for the up and coming Salmon season there, while Westport is in the middle of the traditional Albacore summer rush.

August

There’s not a bad place to go fishing in Washington during August. Saltwater or freshwater, rivers or lakes, conventional or fly, feel free to run with it.

September

The wonderful variety of fishing all over Washington continues to enthrall anglers all over, especially over at Puget Sound. It’s Salmon fishing season at its absolute finest.

October

October usually marks the end of lake fishing, with anglers switching to rivers if they haven’t already. The winter Steelhead run is just around the corner.

November

Blackmouth Salmon is the star attraction in Puget Sound this time of year. At the same time, anglers from all over are going crazy about winter Steelhead.

December

Sturgeon and Steelhead rule the river waters in December. Not that anybody’s complaining. There’s nothing quite like fishing to keep you warm during the cold days.

Washington Fishing Calendar

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Take plenty of layers, under your waders, because it can be super cold out there.
5.0 Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent
Take plenty of layers, under your waders, because it can be super cold out there.
Derick  B.
Derick B. Anacortes, WA
Make sure you are dressed appropriately for the weather, bring rain gear and waders.
5.0 Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent
Make sure you are dressed appropriately for the weather, bring rain gear and waders.
Daniel  V.
Daniel V. Los Angeles, CA
This is very convenient for those living in the Seattle-area, especially during the Coho run. Not even 10 minutes of sailing and you are on the fish. Very much worth it.
5.0 Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent
This is very convenient for those living in the Seattle-area, especially during the Coho run. Not even 10 minutes of sailing and you are on the fish. Very much worth it.
Christopher  M.
Christopher M. Tacoma, WA
Yes, I have had several fishing charters before. for awesome experience Chasing Fin is the way to go.
5.0 Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent
Yes, I have had several fishing charters before. for awesome experience Chasing Fin is the way to go.
William  M.
William M. United States
It was fun but once it rained it got very cold. The fish were not biting very much at this time. I believe a later warmer time of year would have been better as far as catching fish. The trip itself was very fun.
5.0 Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent
It was fun but once it rained it got very cold. The fish were not biting very much at this time. I believe a later warmer time of year would have been better as far as catching fish. The trip itself was very fun.
Lori  R.
Lori R. Seattle, WA
If you are planing to drift the river on your own its advisable to fish with a guide until you learn the river as it does have some rough spots. There is some bank access and the local folks are friendly and fun to fish around.
5.0 Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent
If you are planing to drift the river on your own its advisable to fish with a guide until you learn the river as it does have some rough spots. There is some bank access and the local folks are friendly and fun to fish around.
Chuck  G.
Chuck G. Port Orchard, Washington

Miller’s Sportfishing
Miller’s Sportfishing
Fishing charter in Montesano
5.0 Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent 8 reviews
Hey the guy said were gonna catch fish and that is exactly what we did, excellent service, was completely all about us catching fish. No complaints at all, will definitely be back fishing with jim.
Mike  M.
Mike M. United States
Miller’s Sportfishing
Miller’s Sportfishing
Fishing charter in Montesano
5.0 Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent 8 reviews
Today was a great day of fishing and visiting. Mike gave a great day using his extensive knowledge of the Satsop that allowed us to be successful. Gear and boat are top notch. Thanks Mike for a great day of fishing
Jeffrey  M.
Jeffrey M. United States
Big Fish Washington
Big Fish Washington
Fishing charter in Hoquiam
5.0 Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent 24 reviews
We had a fabulous time fishing with Mike. We caught about a dozen large fish (coho and chum). Mike was very knowledgeable, knew all the good spots to fish, and was great company. We highly recommend Mike and will definitely be back! Thank you so much for a great time!
Jacqueline  F.
Jacqueline F. Puyallup, Washington
Cut Plug Charters
Cut Plug Charters
Fishing charter in Seattle
5.0 Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent 76 reviews
Had the best experience with cut plug! Great experience, great captain, great equipment and environment. I would definitely do it again
Kyra  E.
Kyra E. Saint CLR SHORES, MI
360 Fishing – Olympic Peninsula
360 Fishing – Olympic Peninsula
Fishing charter in Forks
5.0 Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent 6 reviews
Tom knows the river, knows what bait to use. Experienced angler who knows the ins and outs of the river. Would recommend 10/10!
Will  K.
Will K. Greenwich, CT
Big King Salmon Charters
Big King Salmon Charters
Fishing charter in Edmonds
5.0 Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent 77 reviews
This was so much fun! I took my son as a birthday gift. It was end of the season so we weren’t expecting much, but thanks to Captain Chris’ experience we ended with 3 gorgeous Coho Salmon. Chris was very knowledgeable and my son had a wonderful day!
Marlena  V.
Marlena V. Poulsbo, Washington
Miller’s Sportfishing
Miller’s Sportfishing
Fishing charter in Montesano
5.0 Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent 8 reviews
Fishing with Jim is an absolute blast, he’ll get you on the fish and keep you there! He goes above and beyond for his clients and is one of the nicest guys! Don’t hesitate and book now !
Jordan  T.
Jordan T. United States
Anvil Outdoors Guide Service
Anvil Outdoors Guide Service
Fishing charter in Washougal
5.0 Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent 6 reviews
We had an excellent time. Only 1 person on the boat caught anything but I guess thats why it is called fishing. Will do this again
Timothy  R.
Timothy R. Idaho Falls, ID
Big Fish Washington
Big Fish Washington
Fishing charter in Hoquiam
5.0 Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent 24 reviews
Captain Big Fish Mike definitely knows what he is doing. He knows every bend in the river too. I can’t imagine any different guide resulting in a greater chance of catching fish. Not only did we limit out, he staged it so our catch was spread through the day and we left right on time. He also ensured my wife caught her first salmon, when she couldn’t cast, and tied her a special spinner for the trip. Will definitely rebook.
Michael  A.
Michael A. Oregon City, Oregon
Big Fish Washington
Big Fish Washington
Fishing charter in Hoquiam
5.0 Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent 24 reviews
Lots of good times! Mike was very knowledgeable . We were in fish all day!
Kenneth  H.
Kenneth H. Ocean Shores, WA
Big King Salmon Charters
Big King Salmon Charters
Fishing charter in Edmonds
5.0 Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent 77 reviews
Took my family out for a end of summer fishing trip. The boat was comfortable and the captain was nice, informative and helpful.
Diana  M.
Diana M. Edgewood, WA
Big Fish Washington
Big Fish Washington
Fishing charter in Hoquiam
5.0 Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent 24 reviews
We had a great time fishing with Mike! He was incredibly knowledgeable and patient (we had a couple of very green fisherwomen). Overall a wonderful day on the water!
Jacqui  H.
Jacqui H. Olympia, Washington
Messin' Around Fishing Charter
Messin' Around Fishing Charter
Fishing charter in Bremerton
4.3 Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent 50 reviews
Expect the unexpected . We were fortune to fish 3 Coho and saw the two killer whales right in front of the boat!
Brian  C.
Brian C. Seattle, WA
Cut Plug Charters
Cut Plug Charters
Fishing charter in Seattle
5.0 Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent 76 reviews
Second time we went out using Cut Plug Charters and with Captain Kyle, taking some clients out. Excellent experience all around, I know the group had fun and it was an enjoyable experience. Some good catches!
Alexander  L.
Alexander L. Tacoma, WA
Miller’s Sportfishing
Miller’s Sportfishing
Fishing charter in Montesano
5.0 Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent 8 reviews
Captain Jim was a great guide. Within 5 min of starting fishing we had a fish on the line. He is very knowledgeable about the tools you need to catch fish. I would book him again for another great fishing adventure.
Rob  A.
Rob A. Lacey, WA
Miller’s Sportfishing
Miller’s Sportfishing
Fishing charter in Montesano
5.0 Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent 8 reviews
I took my dad and son out with Jim salmon fishing on the Columbia. Jim is great at making everyone comfortable and making sure they're enjoying themselves. We landed 13 fish and almost limited out Jim worked hard all day keeping us on fish. This was by far the best trip we've been on and would highly recommend Miller Sportfishing for all ages and experience levels. Can't wait to book another trip.
Jacob  I.
Jacob I. United States
Cut Plug Charters
Cut Plug Charters
Fishing charter in Seattle
5.0 Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent 76 reviews
Justin put our party of three on coho salmon and within 45 minutes we had our first. In 2 hrs we reached our limit thanks to the knowledge and expertise of Justin. First time and it was awesome.
SABRINA  L.
SABRINA L. Little Rock, AR
Wind Knot Salmon Guides
Wind Knot Salmon Guides
Fishing charter in Seattle
5.0 Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent 69 reviews
David was great, we asked to catch fish and he made it happen. We all landed our Salmon limit in just a few hours. David was a patient mentor and a generally fun guy. We couldn't have asked for a better day.
Jack  R.
Jack R. Bellingham, Washington
Messin' Around Fishing Charter
Messin' Around Fishing Charter
Fishing charter in Bremerton
4.7 Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent 50 reviews
From beginning to end, our guide Matt treated us like good friends who have known each other for a long time! Each of us walked away with joy of a day on the water with a new found friend.
Kevin  F.
Kevin F. Tacoma, WA
Cut Plug Charters
Cut Plug Charters
Fishing charter in Seattle
5.0 Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent 76 reviews
Captain Kyle was able to find fish in every spot we tried. He’s was a very good instructor and we were able to catch a variety of fish during our short outing. It was a blast and I would recommend them to anyone.
Michael  W.
Michael W. Saginaw, TX

FAQs about Fishing Charters in Washington

To give you an idea of how much a fishing trip in Washington costs, the average price for a 4 hour private trip is $902, while an 8 hour private trip will cost you $792. These prices are based on trips booked on our site recently.

Prices will vary depending on trip length, fishing technique, as well as the type and size of the boat you booked. However, to give you an indication, the average boat size in Washington is 24 ft and the most common vessel type is a Aluminum fishing.

According to customer reviews, 360 Fishing – Olympic Peninsula, Miller’s Sportfishing, and 360 Fishing Trips – Vancouver are some of the most popular fishing charters in Washington. Full list of top fishing charters in Washington.

360 Fishing – Olympic Peninsula, Miller’s Sportfishing, and 360 Fishing Trips – Vancouver all received great reviews from families who booked fishing trips in Washington.

The best way to experience fishing in Washington is to book a private charter with a licensed fishing guide. See the full list of charters available for online booking here: List of fishing charters in Washington.

The most popular fish species you can target are Salmon (Chinook), Rainbow Trout (Steelhead), and Salmon (Coho). Top fishing techniques include light tackle, drift fishing, and spinning. River fishing, lake fishing, and inshore fishing are commonly offered by local guides.

Sturgeon and Steelhead rule the river waters in December. Not that anybody’s complaining. There’s nothing quite like fishing to keep you warm during the cold days. Check availability for local fishing charters in Washington.