Spring Chinook return to the Upper Columbia between April and June 15th of each year. After that date, Chinook returning to the region are considered summer Chinook. The 2021 spring Chinook returns may be better than expected. Returns to the region (as indicated by returns to Priest Rapids Dam) were higher than they have been since 2016 with a total of 13,105 adults passing the dam between April and mid-June. For comparison, only 5,525 ran past the dam in 2020, meaning returns in 2021 were 232% of 2020 returns. This trend continued to some extent at upstream dams with larger returns at Rock Island (162% of 2020 returns), Rocky Reach (117% of 2020 returns), and Wells (104% of 2020 returns). Although this year was far better than the last few years, returns of spring Chinook are still below the 10-year average.
Last modified: July 14, 2021