FISHING INFORMATION ROUNDUP
Before any fishing trips, always be sure to consult the regulations to see if there are any changes. You can check them here 2020 Sport Fishing Regulations.
Steelhead fishing has been hot on the Chetco. Current conditions have been favoring anglers plunking from the bank.
Anglers have been catching steelhead on the lower Rogue using a variety of techniques, but plunking is the current favorite..
Anglers have been landing winter steelhead in the Galice area of the middle Rogue. With rain in the forecast, except steelhead numbers to increase
With several water bodies beginning to ice over, anglers need to be cautious during first-ice conditions. Take the following precautions: use the “buddy system,” wear a PFD in case of thin ice, carry a throw-rope, and use a heavy metal staff to check for thin-ice. The Minnesota DNR has developed guidelines for ice thickness and other safety tips.
Anglers who harvest a hatchery winter steelhead in the Umpqua Basin are asked to turn in the snouts from those fish. Some of these snouts contain small tags, which are not externally visible. Anglers who turn in snouts with these tags are entered into a raffle for a $50 gift card.
Snout collection barrels are located around the basin, Sportsman’s Warehouse in Roseburg, or the Roseburg ODFW office. Tags obtained from the fish will inform ODFW on the best hatchery release timing strategy to provide the most fish back to anglers in the future.
Beginning with the opening of upcoming spring Chinook season, the mainstem Umpqua River will be closed to retention of all wild spring Chinook in 2020. Harvest of hatchery Chinook remains open. The North Umpqua also remains open to Chinook under permanent rule. In the North Umpqua, anglers may harvest two wild Chinook per day and ten per year from Feb. 1 through June 30.
CONDITIONS LAST UPDATED 1 / 24 / 2020
LAKE REPORTS - PRESENTED BY:
AGATE LAKE: trout, largemouth and smallmouth bass, black crappie, bluegills, perch, bullhead catfish
The lake is 27 percent full and rising. The water is cold and turbid and not very condusive to targeting species like crappie, largemouth bass or perch. The boat ramp is usable, but only electric trolling motors are allowed. Anglers can fish from the shore or from inflatables and kayaks, but bring boots because the shore can be muddy.
APPLEGATE RESERVOIR: trout, spring chinook, largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, bluegill, crappie
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The reservoir is 10 percent full and has been rising. French Gulch is the only useable boat ramp. Bank anglers will encounter muddy banks, but should focus on points. Boat anglers should try trolling a flasher trailed by a wedding ring/night crawler combo, or flasher and a nightcrawler.
Bass may still be biting for a few more weeks and bass anglers should try casting lures along a rocky shoreline.
DIAMOND LAKE: rainbow trout, tiger trout, brown trout
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DO NOT EVER USE LIVE BAIT IN DIAMOND LAKE!! IT IS AGAINST THE LAW AND IT DOES NOT WORK ANY WAY. IF YOU SEE PEOPLE USING LIVE BAIT IN DIAMOND LAKE, REPORT THEM IMMEDIATELY.
With variable winter conditions, fishing at Diamond is tough to predict. A recent report said the ice is too thin to walk on.
Make sure to contact Diamond Lake Lodge for up-to-date conditions. Anglers can check fishing and water conditions at Diamond Lake on the Diamond Lake Resort Facebook page, or call 541-793-3333 for updates. Diamond Lake is open year-round.
EMIGRANT RESERVOIR: rainbow trout, largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, black crappie, perch, catfish
Rocky points may produce some largemouth with the slight warm front coming to the region this week. There won’t be much sun associated with it though. Smallmouth bass should be on the gravel flats. Rainbow trout fishing should be very slow. The boat ramp accessibility is getting better with the reservoir slowly beginning to fill. It’s currently at 38 percent full but turbid. The Point RV Park is open year-round.
EXPO PONDS: rainbow trout, largemouth bass, crappie, bluegill, bullhead catfish, carp
JACKSON COUNTY IS CHARGING AN ACCESS FEE TO THE ISOLA POND PARKING AREA. THE FEE IS $4 PER DAY. YOU CAN USE JACKSON COUNTY PARKS PARKING PASS AS WELL. THE PASS IS $30 FOR THE YEAR. GET PASSES AT MOST MAJOR SPORTING GOODS RETAILERS IN JACKSON COUNTY.
The Isola Pond was last stocked mid-October. Any trout that are left may bite at some bait fished from the bottom. The pond will next be stocked at the end of February after the Sportsman Show. Fishing for bass and panfish is very slow with the cooler water temperatures.
The Southern Oregon RV Park developed by Jackson County offers parking in the lot to the right as you drive in Gate 5. A day use fee to park here is $4. An annual parking permit can be purchased from Jackson County Parks Department for $30. That parking permit is good for all Jackson County Parks. The Expo Ponds have plenty of good bank access, and anglers can catch many of the species present by fishing night crawlers below a bobber. This makes the ponds a great place to take kids fishing.
FISH LAKE: rainbow trout, brook trout, tiger trout, spring chinook
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SNOW PARK PERMITS REQUIRED TO PARK IN THE BOAT RAMP PARKING LOT NOW THROUGH APRIL 30TH. THIS IS THE ONLY LAKE IN OREGON THAT REQUIRES THEM. But, this is also the only lake in Oregon where the boat ramp parking area doubles as a snow park area due to snowmobiling. Expect snow at Fish Lake. The resort road is plowed on the weekends, but use caution when driving up to the pass. With the slightly warm front expected this week, it’s best to keep off the ice. Both boat ramps are accessible, but bank angling may be a better option with the snow. Try still fishing some bait such as night crawlers, or small lures such as spoons or rooster-tails. Fish Lake is now 44 percent full and should continue to fill. The resort is now on winter hours and is only open Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
Tiger trout, Chinook salmon, brook trout, and larger rainbow trout are available. Remember that tiger trout must be immediately released unharmed. Anglers are encouraged to report their catch of tiger trout to fish district staff at 541-826-8774.
FOURMILE LAKE: rainbow trout, lake trout, kokanee, brook trout
NO ACCESS DUE TO HEAVY SNOW AND THE LAKE IS ICED OVER NOW.
GALESVILLE RESERVOIR: rainbow trout, bass, coho smolts
Galesville has been stocked with a lot of “trophy-size” trout this year and fishing has been good. In addition to trout, the reservoir was stocked with coho smolts until 2015. Fishing should be okay with the fish being concentrated. In Galesville Reservoir, all landlocked salmon are considered trout and are part of the five-per-day trout limit, with only one trout over 20 inches long allowed for harvest. Fishing for bass and other panfish has been very slow with cold water temps. Plastics worked slowly around structure have produced some bass. BVut, those are coming mostly to serious bass anglers with a lot of experience working sluggish fish. Soaking plastics in scents is an eseential must do for success. Call 541-837-3302 for information on camping and boat launching conditions.
GARRISON LAKE - Curry County: rainbow, cutthroat trout
Anglers slow trolling spinners, flies, or wedding ring spinners tipped with a worm all typically do well hooking up with some feisty rainbow trout. Five trout per day/3 daily limits in possession; 8-inch minimum; only one trout over 20 inches long may be taken per day. Bank anglers can find access at the 12th street or Pinehurst boat ramps and off Paradise Point Road. The lake can be very windy so anglers will want to check the weather before heading out.
HOWARD PRAIRIE RESERVOIR: trout, bass, pumpkinseed sunfish, bluegills
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Expect snow at Howard Prairie. Expect a mix of snow and rain at Howard Prairie this week, use caution when driving. The reservoir is 28 percent full and has good water clarity. There are patches of ice on the lake, but not enough for ice fishing. All boat ramps are closed at this time due to low reservoir levels. Inflatables and kayaks can launch from shore, but bank angling may be a better option with the expected snow. Try bank fishing in the deeper areas, off the Keno Access Road or the point south of the dam. Still fishing night crawlers or PowerBait is often a good choice at Howard Prairie. Howard Prairie has been stocked with our annual “fall fingerlings.” These trout are not of legal size, but should be by the spring, please be cognizant of the size of fish you are catching and gently release these smaller fish to grow until next year. The marina and restaurant, and the campground are now closed for the season.
HYATT LAKE: trout, largemouth bass
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Expect snow at Hyatt Lake. Expect snow and rain at Hyatt Lake throughout the week, so use caution while driving. Hyatt Lake has some patches of ice on it, but is likely not thick enough for ice fishing; it is 41 percent full. The boat ramps are not accessible at this time as the campground is closed for the season. It is deep enough around the dam to fish from the shore, and this can be a good option for still-fishing bait if ice conditions allows. There are some large, fat and healthy trout in Hyatt that are likely to bite on bait fished from the bottom. Hyatt Lake has been stocked with our annual “fall fingerlings.” These trout are not of legal size, but should be by the spring, please be cognizant of the size of fish you are catching and gently release these smaller fish to grow until next year.
LAKE OF THE WOODS: rainbow trout, kokanee, brown trout, yellow perch, brown bullhead, smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, crappie
The lake is frozen. Ice thickness is unknown. Call Lake of the Woods Resort for a report on ice conditions. This is one of the best ice fishing lakes in the Klamath District. Yellow perch are typically the target with a rare brown trout in the catch as well. Use small live baits. Call Lake of the Woods Resort at 866-201-4194 for recent reports and hours of Lodge operations. You can also visit their website to observe current conditions at the lake. There is a day use fee for this lake.
LAKE SELMAC: trout, largemouth bass, bluegill, crappie, bullheads
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Lake Selmac was stocked the week of Oct. 14 with legal and larger-size trout. Bass and panfish are available here year-round but may be slow to bite now that the weather has cooled. Although there have been no recent reports, trout fishing can be good out here at this time of the year. Anglers will catch trout from the bank using nightcrawlers and power bait.
LEMOLO RESERVOIR: rainbow trout, brown trout, kokanee
No recent reports, but, believe the lake is iced over. That ice will be too thin to be out on. The lake was last stocked before Labor Day. Kokanee in Lemolo are considered trout and therefore fall under the daily limit for trout of 5 per day with only one of those measuring over 20-inches. Contact Lemolo Lake Resort at 541-957-8354 for weather/road conditions and additional information.
LOST CREEK RESERVOIR: rainbow trout, brown trout, spring chinook, bass, bullheads
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Lost Creek Reservoir was stocked the week of Oct. 2 with legal-size and larger trout. The Tekelma ramp is the only boat ramp accessible right now. This is probably the best lake for launching larger trailered boats at this time and the trout fishing will continue to be good throughout the winter. Trout should be biting well with the cool temperatures. Bass and panfish are available here year-round but will be slow to bite now that the weather has cooled. Trolling a wedding ring and worm combination behind an oval egg sinker is always a good bet.
Lost Creek Reservoir is 41 percent full.
MEDCO POND: rainbow trout, largemouth bass, bluegill
No reports of any angling activity since the weather turned at the end of November. Trout may bite on sunny days in the middle of the day. Nightcrawlers are always the best bait to use up here in the winter. Anglers are reminded that Medco Pond is privately owned. Gas engines are not allowed on the pond, and bank access is restricted to the west shore.
Medco Pond is not Forest Service or BLM land. The owner has said it will remain open to public access as long as people treat it respectfully and not trash it. And as long as there is public access, ODF&W will keep stocking it. There is a caretaker on site. They are putting out garbage bags for you to put your trash in, and even providing some chairs for sitting in while fishing. Some really nice touches. Let's do our part visiting there and throw all our trash away and leave only memories of our time there. By the way, when at Medco Pond, keep your eyes open when looking at the trees around the pond, especially the east side of it. Wolf sightings have happened up here. Keep your ears open too. Might hear them howling in the hills near the pond. I have had several people report they heard them, and I have heard a wolf howl up here. Best times for howling to happen are in the evening right after dusk turns to true nightfall, and again in the early morning hours just ahead of and after dawn's arrival. I saw a wolf on the Butte Falls - Prospect Highway just north of the pond. They are in the area.
REINHART POND: rainbow trout, warm water fish
Reinhardt Park Pond was last stocked with rainbow trout in mid-October. Bass and panfish are available here year-round, but may be slow to bite now . The pond will be getting its first stocked trout of the year the week of Feb. 10.This is a great place for a family to explore with very easy access for everyone. A relative simple set up that includes either a nightcrawler fished below a bobber.
WILLOW LAKE: rainbow trout, largemouth bass, black crappie, bluegills, brown bullhead, perch
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The water temperatures at Willow Lake have cooled significantly. Trout should be biting again. Warmwater fishing has really slowed down. At 62 percent full, Willow Lake remains higher than other reservoirs in the area, but the boat ramp is now closed. Inflatables or kayaks can be launched from the shore. The facilities at Willow Lake are open from dawn to dusk in the winter. You will need a Jackson County Parks parking permit.
RIVER REPORTS AS OF 1 / 24 / 2020
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To find out more about conservation, management and outreach efforts on the Rogue River, check out the Rogue River page on the ODFW Web site.
ALWAYS consult the fishing regulations before fishing rivers and streams in Southern Oregon. You can get to the regulations by clicking here.
Rogue River, lower: salmon, steelhead, trout
The flows are at 10,200 cfs this morning at Agness. With heavy rain in the forecast, these flows will go up and the Lower Rogue is expected to become unfishable
Winter steelhead has picked up in the Lower Rogue. Anglers have had luck using many techniques; currently the most common being plunking. Bank anglers will want to look for fish on inside of bends in the river and slots along willow banks.
The river is open year-round for hatchery steelhead harvest. Beginning Jan. 1, 2020, wild steelhead may be harvested 1/day and 3/year as part of a daily or annual salmon steelhead bag limit from the mouth of the Rogue up to Hog Creek. The wild steelhead bag limit is accumulative zone-wide.
Current river flows are reported by the gage in Agness on the USGS website. Note that this gage is above the Illinois River mouth and does not account for that additional water flow.
For a current view of the Rogue from the Isaac Lee Patterson Bridge in Gold Beach, check out the ODOT’s camera.
Five hatchery trout may be retained daily. Wild rainbow and cutthroat trout must be released. Rainbow trout over 16-inches are considered steelhead.
Rogue River, middle: steelhead, chinook salmon, trout
At Grants Pass we have a flow of 3,880 cfs. The temp is 45 degrees.
Half-pounders are still present in the Rogue Canyon and up to about Robertson Bridge, but anglers are reminded only hatchery trout can be retained. Remember, Steelhead over 24 inches cannot be retained above Hog Creek until Feb. 1. Zone aggregate bag limits apply.
Summer steelhead may be looking skinny as it nears their time to spawn, and some anglers may begin to encounter kelt or “down-runners,” fish that have already spawned and headed back to the ocean. Please treat these wild steelhead with care and release them unharmed.
There have been a few reports of some bright winter steelhead making their way up the river, mostly down in the Galice area. Their numbers will be increasing, especially with the rain forecast. Steelhead will bite on bait, yarn balls, spinners, spoons or a well-placed fly. Wild steelhead must be released unharmed unless you are below Hog Creek Boat Ramp, there anglers may keep 1 wild steelhead per day and 3 per year.
Boaters floating from Hog Creek to Graves Creek should be familiar with the rapids in this section of river, and know their takeouts. Experienced oarsmen/woman are recommended here. There are many BLM public access points to bank fish from Hog Creek to Graves Creek. This is often referred to the “Galice area.” There is excellent bank access in this section of the river, and recent reports indicate that some plunking/side planner techniques are starting to pick up fish. Plugs from a drift boat, or a Spin-n-Glow on the inside bend of a sweeping gravel bar fished in 2-4 feet of water are both effective methods.
Five hatchery trout may be retained daily. Wild rainbow and cutthroat trout must be released. Rainbow trout over 16-inches are considered steelhead.
Rogue River, upper: steelhead, trout
The flow from the Lost Creek Dam is at 1,047 cfs. The flow at Dodge Bridge is at 4,3200 cfs.
4,180 summer run steelhead and 3 winter steelhead have returned to the Cole Rivers Hatchery through January 22nd.
Steelhead and trout remain open in the upper Rogue, and summer steelhead fishing has been great still but is starting to wind down as most of the fish are entering their tributaries with the increase in flows.
Bait is again allowed throughout the entire Rogue basin. A simple setup of bouncing or side-drifting bait, or using lures such a spoon, corkie or yarn ball can be very effective in steelhead fishing. Fishing a soft bead or a jig under a bobber or bobber dogging is a very effective technique in the upper river. Often this reach of the river can be much cleaner when the rest of the river is blown out. Last week 98 new summer steelhead entered the trap at Cole Rivers. Excess hatchery adult summer steelhead from Cole River Hatchery were recycled back into the system for the final time before Jan. 1. Anglers are reporting success in catching these fish. Some summer steelhead have red, blue or green tags extending from the top of the fish near the dorsal fin. ODFW encourages anglers that catch these fish to call the upper Rogue office at 541-826-8774 ext 226.
Trout have been biting well in the Holy Water, the stretch of water between the hatchery and the Lost Creek Lake spillway. One angler reported leeches and wooly-buggers were enticing some healthy, large trout. Anglers are reminded this area is fly-only and catch-and-release, and are encouraged to fill out voluntary angler creel cards (even if they didn’t catch anything) at 8 acces sites along this stretch of water. Also, please especially fill out a card if a tagged fish was caught.
ROGUE RIVER ABOVE LOST CREEK RESERVOIR: rainbow trout, brook trout, cutthroat trout
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Currently fishing is very slow and deep snow is hampering access to the river.
The Rogue River and feeder creeks like Mill Creek, National Creek, and Union Creek are stocked weekly from Memorial Day through Labor Day with 2500 legal sized rainbows of 8 - 10 inches in size. Stocking points are at campgrounds, and access points along Highway 62, Highway 230, and Forest Service roads in the area. You will also encounter larger sized hold overs going to 20 inches in the creeks. The deep pools of the Upper Rogue holds rainbows that can get up to 5 pounds. We see a couple of those caught every year up here. In 2017 a brown trout that was nearly 24 inches long and weighing about 4 pounds was caught at the mouth of Union Creek where it enters the Rogue. That fish was released after the angler that caught it posed for pictures with it. That is the largest brown to be caught in the upper Rogue in years. But, it is proof they are in there.
In addition to the stocked trout, the river and its tributaries also support naturally produced rainbow, cutthroat, brook, and brown trout ALL trout caught with adipose fins must be released unharmed. The best thing to use up here is without question nightcrawlers. Next would be using a single salmon egg like a Pautzke egg on a treble hook. Fly fishing can be done along Highway 230 where there is enough separation of the foliage and trees to allow for fly casting. With cold water, you’ll want to swing your lure right in front of fish, so work through a hole a bit more slowly. Anglers can cast flies or smaller lures like a Panther Martin or rooster tail. Often tipping the lure with bait helps to produce. In slower holes, fishing straight bait such as night crawler or Pautzke eggs, even Power Bait will produce.
UMPQUA RIVER, MAINSTEM: steelhead, sturgeon, chinook, bass, striped bass, shad, trout
As of this morning the height of the river is at 10.34 feet and the flow is 16,500 cfs at Elkton. The river is high and blown out. With the forecasts we see this morning, expect conditions to only get worse. It will likely be February before the mainstem is fishable again.
Chinook fishing will reopen on the mainstem Feb. 1. Wild harvest of Chinook is closed in 2020. Hatchery harvest is still allowed.
Steelhead fishing has been decent throughout the main. With rain in the forecast, the river may be a little high this weekend. A lot of anglers fish the main by “plunking.” This is usually a good strategy for water with more color and when the water is high.
Make sure to turn in snouts from hatchery fish for a chance to win a gift card. Snout collection barrels are found at Scott Cr, Sawyers Rapids, Elkton, Yellow Creek, Osprey, James Woods, Umpqua, Cleveland, and River Forks boat ramps.
Trout fishing is currently closed on the Main and its tributaries, but will reopen next Memorial Day.
Open for Chinook salmon Feb 1 – Jun 30 (Umpqua Wild Chinook Aggregate Bag Limit applies). From July 1– Dec. 31, anglers can harvest two wild Chinook per day, and in combination with the other salmon/ steelhead recorded on your salmon tag, up to 20 fish total. Fin-clipped hatchery fish can be recorded on a separate hatchery harvest tag that is available. There is no limit on the number of hatchery tags that can be purchased. Daily limits still apply.
UMPQUA RIVER, SOUTH: steelhead, trout, smallmouth bass
As of this morning the height of the river is at 9.30 feet and the flow is 7,600 cfs at Brockway. These numbers are higher than you want to see. And with the rains we are going to see this weekend, the S U will get blown out.
The mainstem South reopened to steelhead fishing Dec. 1. Fishing usually picks up in January and anglers have been picking up some fish. Make sure to turn in snouts from hatchery fish for a chance to win a gift card. Snout collection barrels can be found at Douglas County Fairgrounds, Happy Valley, Lookingglass, Myrtle Creek, Lawson Bar, Stanton boat ramps and Seven Feathers access area.
UMPQUA RIVER, NORTH: steelhead, spring chinook, trout
As of this morning the height of the river is at 6.69 feet and the flow is 9,260 cfs at Winchester. The river is already blown out. It is going to get worse with the rains coming this weekend.
Some anglers are giving it a try in the lower North Umpqua. But, fishing success was slow, and then the high water hit. The North reopens to Chinook Feb. 1 under permanent rule. Anglers may harvest up to 10 wild Chinook per year and two per day. Some of the North Umpqua and tributaries are open for trout (those above Slide Creek Dam): check the fishing regulations to see which areas are closed.
Note that as of Oct. 1, fishing in the fly water area is restricted to the use of a single, barbless, artificial fly.
CHETCO RIVER: Sea run cuttthroat trout, rainbow trout, chinook salmon, steelhead
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Steelhead are here! Fishing has been pretty hot on the Chetco. Conditions lately have been most favorable for bank anglers with a plunking set-up. Expect the incoming heavy rains to blow the river out.
Steelhead may be harvested through March 31. Wild steelhead bag limits are 1/day and 3/year (accumulative zone-wide) as part of a daily or annual salmon/steelhead bag limit.
ODFW runs a volunteer-angler broodstock collection program for steelhead. Anglers interested in participating can sign up for the program by contacting ODFW at 541-247-7605
Additionally, from Jan 9 –22, ODFW is partnering with the Oregon South Coast Fishermen in an effort to collect steelhead broodstock for the hatchery program. Please see the club’s Chrome Challenge flier for details. Contact club president Dave Kuehn at 805-350-0542 with additional questions.
ELK / SIXES RIVERS: Sea run cutthroat trout, rainbow trout, steelhead
Plan on the incoming heavy rains to blow both rivers out.
New Chinook regulations for 2020. Jan. 1 – March 31 open for hatchery Chinook retention only. Wild Chinook harvest is permitted May 22– Dec. 31. Please see the 2020 fishing regulation book for more details.
Steelhead Fishing is open through March 31; then May 22 – Dec. 31. The wild steelhead bag limits are 1/day and 3/year as part of a zone-wide accumulative daily or annual salmon/steelhead bag limit.
To check current river conditions, call 541-332-0405.
APPLEGATE RIVER: rainbow and cutthroat trout, steelhead
The Applegate River is now open for trout and steelhead. Only fin-clipped rainbow trout or steelhead may be retained on the Applegate River. All wild steelhead, cutthroat and rainbow trout must be released unharmed. ONLY fin clipped rainbows may be retained. And there are precious few of those in the river at all. Almost all of them will be in the lowest section of the river near the mouth where they come in from the Rogue River.
Keep in mind that winter steelhead in the Applegate are late arriving, they probably will not show up in any large numbers until February or March. Rain events will encourage fish to move into the Applegate, so keep your eye on the weather and plan to be on the river during or after some wet weather.
ILLINOIS RIVER: trout, steelhead
The Illinois River is getting some high water with the current storms, check conditions before heading out to do any fishing. The heavy rains we will see this weekend will blow this river out. Not like it gets any real kind of fishing pressure anyway.
The Illinois is open for both trout and steelhead fishing beginning through March 31. There are not a lot of hatchery trout in the Illinois, so fishing is primarily catch-and-release for wild fish. Wild rainbow trout and cutthroat trout may not be retained at any point during the year.
However, there is a small opportunity for wild steelhead retention during the open season, between Klondike Creek (River mile 25) and Fall Creek (River mile 39.5, just downstream of Illinois River Falls). Go west on Illinois River Road from Selma. Much of this section is remote (hike in only access), with the only road access is between river mile 34 near Oak Flat, upstream to the deadline.
The wild steelhead bag limit is 1/day and 3/year as part of a daily or annual salmon steelhead bag limit in aggregate for all open waters of the southwest zone.
WINCHUCK RIVER: Sea run Cutthroat trout, rainbow trout, steelhead
Fishing for winter steelhead has been very good here this last week. But, the incoming heavy rains are going to blow this river out.
Steelhead may be harvested through March 31 from the mouth to Wheeler Creek. Accumulative zone-wide, wild steelhead may be harvested 1/day and 3/year as part of a daily and annual bag limit.
SOUTHERN OREGON COASTAL REPORTS -
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Ocean surfaces are now going to be in winter conditions. Small boats under 30 feet are not advised to be out of port owing to small craft advisory conditions, gale conditions, and hazardous seas......unless there is certain window of opportunity that will develop. ALWAYS be checking forecasts frequently, and keep an eye on the ocean if you can get out.
Last updated 12 / 12 / 2019. These reports will be updated later today 1/24/2020
Salmon fishing in the estuary and the river remains the main attraction in Brookings as low water flows have kept the fish kegged up in the lower river. Fishing in the near shore waters of Brookings has been for bottom fish off the jetties and the beaches. Crabbing remains slow in the estuary and boat basin. When ocean conditions have cooperated, the fishing for bottom fish, including some huge lings has been very good with limits being hit. Boat angling for cabezon is now closed as the quota has been hit. But, Cabbies are taken off the jetties in Brookings and you are still allowed one cabezon a day when fishing from the shore or jetties.
GOLD BEACH: The reports from Gold Beach show that hings are pretty slow. Salmon fishing has been spotty at best as groups of them come in. Crabbing is better in the bay than it had been. Seeing a few more crabs coming in. Bottom fishing is good out of Gold Beach provided you have conditions to get after them. Surf perch fishing on the sand bars has been good too with good conditions. Clam necks and Berkley Gulp baits will get you fish in the bucket with favorable conditions including tides and winds.
COOS RIVER BASIN: Dungeness crab, bay clams, steelhead, bottom fish, striped bass.
Fishing for rockfish inside the bay has been good near the submerged rock piles. Fishing is typically best near slack tide. Boat anglers are no longer able to harvest copper, quillback, or China rockfish for the remainder of the year because we reached our catch limit on these species. A jig with a twister tail can be a great bait for catching rockfish.
A few winter steelhead anglers have starting fishing the East Fork and West Fork Millicoma rivers. We have not received any reports of steelhead being caught but with the rain in the forecast some fish should move in soon. Steelhead anglers wanting to fish the South Fork Coos River above Dellwood will need a fishing permit from Weyerhaeuser to access this portion of the river.
Hatchery steelhead returns in the Coos Basin will be down this year due to low smolt releases two years ago. Because of disease issues at the hatchery then, we were only able to release less than 40 percent of our production goal.
Trout fishing in streams and rivers will reopen May 22, 2020.
WINCHESTER BAY: sturgeon, chinook, rock fish, surf perch
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Not getting much information from here now. I would suspect that bottom fishing is good with favorable conditions off the jetties and in the Triangle. Crabbing is just decent. Taking long soaks get more than a couple keepers.
MARINE OFF SHORE FISHING: bottomfish, crab, salmon, tuna, halibut
SOUTHERN OREGON COAST CLOSED TO THE HARVEST OF RAZOR CLAMS FROM COQUILLE RIVER SOUTH JETTY TO THE CALIFORNIA STATE LINE DUE TO HIGH LEVELS OF DOMOIC ACID
Prohibitions at Oregon’s marine reserves at Cascade Head, Cape Perpetua, Redfish Rocks and Otter Rock are in effect. Fishing, crabbing, clamming, hunting and gathering seaweed are all prohibited. Beach walking, surfing, bird watching, diving and other non-extractive uses continue to be allowed. See complete details and a map of the boundaries of the reserves:
Otter Rock Marine Reserve
Redfish Rocks Marine Reserve and Marine Protected Area
Cape Perpetua Marine Reserve and Marine Protected Area
Cascade Head Marine Reserve and Marine Protected Area
Seasons and regulations summary on the main sport bottomfish seasons page
CABEZON RETENTION FROM BOATS NOW CLOSED FOR THE REST OF THE YEAR. ANGLERS FISHING FROM THE SHORE MAY RETAIN ONE LEGAL CABEZON IN THEIR DAILY CATCH THROUGH DECEMBER 31ST.
As usual, autumn finds bottomfish anglers pursuing other activities, but some level of effort is common throughout the winter months when safe ocean conditions allow. When ocean conditions have allowed, anglers have been having good success with lingcod and mixed success with rockfish. Anglers should carefully check the weather forecast before venturing out to go ocean fishing.
Retention of cabezon, China rockfish, copper rockfish, and quillback rockfish is prohibited from boats. The quota for these rockfish species, along with cabezon, is estimated to have been reached. Shore-based fishing for copper, China and quillback rockfishes as well as cabezon will continue, as there is quota set aside to accommodate this.
Excited to go bottomfish fishing but find yourself wondering what you can keep and how many? Click here
Want to work on your identification skills of commonly caught bottomfish? Try the Common Bottomfish online quiz (similar to the Yelloweye or Not quiz) byclicking here.
The bottomfish fishery is now open to all depths with a General Marine Species bag limit of 5 fish. Retention of China, copper and quillback rockfishes as well as cabezon is allowed for shore fishing only, of which no more than 1 may be a cabezon. Retention of cabezon, China rockfish, copper rockfish and quillback rockfish from a boat is prohibited. A separate bag limit allows retention of 2 lingcod. Yelloweye retention is still closed this year.
Anglers participating in the offshore longleader fishery frequently catch limits (10 fish) of large canary rockfish and yellowtail rockfish. The longleader gear fishery outside of the 40-fathom regulatory line is open all year.
Vessels fishing for or retaining bottomfish (including flatfish) species or Pacific halibut in the ocean are required (1) to have onboard a functioning rockfish descending device, and (2) use it to descend any rockfish released when fishing outside of the 30-fathom regulatory line. For more information and videos, please see the rockfish recompression webpage.
In addition to the descending device rule, ODFW continues to encourage anglers to use a descending device when releasing ANY rockfish with signs of barotrauma. Signs of barotrauma, such as bulging eyes and a gut protruding from the mouth, are reversible when fish are returned to depth with a descending device. Use a descending device to safely return fish to a depth of 60 feet or more. Even fish that are severely bloated can survive after being released at depth.
Waypoints (for fathom lines and other restricted areas)
Recreational crabbing is open in bays and estuaries, and on beaches, docks, piers, and jetties along the entire Oregon coast from the Columbia River to the California border,
For recreational crab harvesters, it is recommended that crab always be eviscerated prior to cooking, which includes removal and discard of the viscera, internal organs, and gills.
Because of Oregon’s precautionary management of biotoxins, the crab and shellfish products currently being sold in retail markets and restaurants are safe for consumers.
Before clamming or crabbing, call ODA’s shellfish safety information hotline at (800) 448-2474 or visit the ODA shellfish closures web page at: http://ODA.direct/ShellfishClosures
The consumption of crab viscera is not recommended.
Beginning Jan. 1, 2020, recreational crabbers will need to mark all floating surface buoys with the owner’s full name or business name and at least one of the following: phone number, permanent address, ODFW Angler ID number, or vessel identification number. Mark your information in a clear, legible, and permanent manner. While this rule does not apply to gear tied to docks, piers, jetties, or beaches, we recommend marking buoys on any gear that could become derelict or lost. Find more information here.
SHORE AND ESTUARY FISHING
Public piers provide opportunities to catch surfperch and baitfish and to drop crab pots (but check first for crab health safety closures).
Surfperch are available in the surf year-round along sandy beaches and rocky shore, with the best fishing (and safest fishing) occurring when swells are small. Learn about ocean surfperch fishing.
When fishing from shore or inside estuaries and bays, it is important to check the tide. Many fish that swim into estuaries and bays, including salmon, surfperch, and Pacific herring, tend to come in with the tide. Catch of these species is more likely to occur closer to slack tide. Additionally, the accessibility of some areas can be completely dependent on the tide. Do not allow the incoming tide to become a safety.
The recreational harvest of razor clams is CLOSED from the south jetty of the Siuslaw River to the California border for elevated domoic acid levels. This includes all beaches and all bays.
The recreational harvest of razor clams is OPEN from the Columbia River to the north jetty of the Siuslaw River. This includes all beaches and all bays.
The annual conservation closure for the Clatsop beaches is no longer in effect (July 15 - September 30).
Fall and winter harvesting of razor clams can be a challenging endeavor. Unlike the spring and summer, low tides are in the evenings and at night when visibility is poor or nonexistent. Typical to the Oregon coast, the fall and winter brings large storm events, which keep the razor clams from “showing” as readily and can also be a safety risk with surging water and debris on the beach. Make sure to monitor swell and surf advisories as well as predicted wind prior to harvesting. Combined seas greater than 10 feet and winds greater than 20 mph will make harvesting difficult for all, including the most experienced harvester.
Seasons now closed.
Details for the 2019 ocean salmon season, full catch and quota updates are available here.
You’ll find a guide and tips to identification of salmon and steelhead on the Ocean salmon fishing page here.
2019 PACIFIC HALIBUT
Halibut fishing season is closed.
Additional information about sport halibut management, including landing estimates, can be found on the ODFW halibut management webpage.