The Willamette River is a popular destination for anglers looking to catch Chinook Salmon, also known as King Salmon. This majestic fish is one of the largest species of Pacific salmon, and can reach weights of up to 50 pounds in the upper reaches of the river. With its feisty fight and delicious flavor, catching a Chinook Salmon is an experience that any angler won’t soon forget. When fishing the Willamette River for Chinook Salmon, one of the most important tips to keep in mind is to plan your trip around the right time of year. Different runs of Chinook will enter the river at different times throughout the season, so it pays off to know exactly when the best runs are. The spring run usually starts around April and continues through June, while the fall run usually begins in September and lasts through November. Another key tip is to understand the local fishing regulations. Make sure you have the correct licenses and permits, and know the size and bag limits. It’s also important to release any undersized fish, as this helps ensure that the salmon population remains healthy for future anglers. Once you’ve got your timing and permits sorted out, it’s time to choose your tackle. Typically, light spinning gear will work well for these fish, paired with 10-15 pound test line. As far as lures go, sliding sinkers, peeled shrimp and spinners are often effective at catching Chinook Salmon on the Willamette River. When casting your line, be mindful of the areas you are targeting. Salmon tend to travel in schools, so cast in areas where a group can be seen, such as deep pools, eddies and slack water. You should also watch out for diving birds, as they may be a sign that there are salmon nearby. When fighting a Chinook Salmon, it is important to remember that they possess incredible strength. Be sure to use a steady, but not too forceful, tension on the line. This will help tire the fish out, and will make it easier to land them. Fishing the Willamette River for Chinook Salmon can be an incredible experience for anglers of all levels. With the right knowledge and preparation, you’ll be sure to have a successful and enjoyable outing!