Willamette Valley/Metro – Rumors of wobbler fishers and Pro Troll draggers catching fish in the Portland/Metro area are likely true. Although the fishery is just getting underway, it’s due to really light up this week and peak in the next two weeks. Dam passage at Bonneville is starting to climb and will only go up from here. From the gorge to Longview, these are the weeks anglers have been waiting for, a predicted run of around 600,000 fall Chinook and we’re just on the leading edge of what is likely to be a very good season. The run is tracking behind last year, but it’s early, and given the activity in the estuary, and the accuracy of the spring and summer predictions, they’re likely to show.
Summer steelhead numbers on the mainstem remain abysmal.
It’s still too early for coho to make a good showing in the Sandy or Clackamas Rivers. Coho have yet to show in any great numbers in the estuary, it’ll likely be another 2 weeks before we see catchable numbers in any local rivers.
Bass, panfish and walleye remain an option in the Willamette River and Multnomah Channel.
Northwest – The Buoy 10 fishery witnessed great catches on the eclipse, but ever since, has produced fair at best results. The early morning tide on Thursday did show signs of an improving Chinook bite, it should be a productive weekend for Buoy 10 anglers. Opportunity should exist for both the morning and evening tide. Coho have yet to show in any great number. The Buoy 10 line bite was far from impressive for coho in recent days, despite ideal tides for the boundary fishery.
The ocean north of Cape Falcon is now closed for all salmon fishing. That should make Buoy 10 catches for coho a good option when they start to show.
Tillamook Bay is starting to produce catches of Chinook, both in the upper bay and in the adjacent ocean waters. The tide series begins to weaken by Sunday, which is likely to damper upper bay opportunity and bolster lower bay and ocean catches. Some of the largest Chinook of the season get taken this time of year. Hatchery coho should also begin to show, both inside and out. Anglers can retain bay caught coho as long as they have an adipose fin-clip. Any coho caught in the ocean must be released until the September 2nd opener.
Nehalem Bay remains super slow for most, but there are some fish being caught around Wheeler and Nehalem. Trollers are complaining about seaweed interfering with their trolling technique however. September should prove a better option for fall run Chinook, the summer run was not impressive.
The Nestucca and Salmon River estuaries should start to see Chinook nosing in, maybe as early as this weekend. The Siletz is also not far behind and should provide fair opportunity by early September.
Crabbing is picking up in north coast estuaries, and the ocean remains full of keepers. Ocean crabbers estimate about 1/2 of the catch are made up of more full-bodied crabs, but the other half remain in a soft-shell state. That should improve into September.
Razor clam diggers that hoed the sands south of Tillamook Head were rather disappointed during the recent minus tide series. Catches were sparse for most. The beaches north of Tillamook Head, often the more productive, should open around early October if the toxin levels remain acceptable.
Southwest – From TGF’s friend Pete Heley (PeteHeley.com)
Winchester Bay salmon fishing is still inconsistent, but seems to be gradually improving. A fair number of chinook salmon are being caught in the Reedsport area, but the “per boat catch rate” is not impressive. An increasing number of boats are fishing near the Umpqua River Bar but anglers doing so need to know the regulations.
Large schools of albacore tuna were reported last week moving north at about 14 miles per day. If the pattern continues, they should be arriving off Winchester Bay about the time you read this.
Fishing for redtail surfperch along pretty much all of our area beaches has been very good.
Lake Marie received 800 15-inch trout this week and with the leftover trout from previous plants, fishing should be very good. Several Coos County lakes will receive trout plants during the second week of October. The exceptionally high water this year has changed many area fisheries.
Horsefall Lake almost certainly received some warmwater fish from large shallow privately-owned lakes adjacent to its north shore such as Spirit Lake and Sandpoint Lake. Hardly any area water has undergone more changes than Siltcoos Lagoon. This relatively small section of an old channel of the Siltcoos River never seemed to have yellow perch (which exist in the river), but used to a fair population of largemouth bass and good-sized bluegills.
Eastern – The Deschutes River, despite all its woes, is producing a few steelhead. The river is oddly barren of anglers, clearly struck with the fear of poor catch results. One guide boat reported a double-digit opportunity day this week. Although rare, this fishery is nearing its peak and the run isn’t extinct. Use caution in handling fish however. The trout fishing is good early and late with caddis patterns. Bring lots of colors and sizes.
Diamond lake – Fishing has been really good! Fish floating baits a couple cranks off the bottom. fish shallow early and move out into deeper water when the sun hits the water.
Lake Billy Chinook – word is the Kokanee fishing is pretty good here. Most guys use down riggers or lead line but you can get to them with 3 ounces of lead too. They’re running 10 to 13 inches and hitting all the Koke stuff so bring lots of gear and change up until you get bit. Smallmouth fishing is another option and they’ll take 3″ soft plastics or small crankbaits near the endless rocky shoreline.
Bull trout should start staging in the Metolius arm too. troll chrome/ silver and black Yozuri’s, Rapalas and flat fish that imitate Kokanee.
A group of hardcore Kokanee fishers are camped at Odell and they report slow fishing. I’d try Wickiup and fish the channel in the Deschutes Arm. The fish at Wickiup tend to school up and are easier to find them wide open Odell this time of year.
SW Washington – From the WDF&W web site:
Cowlitz River – Below the I-5 Br.: 2 bank rods and 1 boat/2 rods had no catch.
Above the I-5 Br. – 37 bank rods kept 2 adult Chinook and 3 steelhead and released 3 adult Chinook. 10 boats/26 rods kept 2 adult Chinook, 7 steelhead, and 1 cutthroat and released 2 jack Chinook, 1 steelhead, and 10 cutthroats. Salmon are being caught at the barrier dam; steelhead around the trout hatchery.
River flows at Mayfield Dam are approximately 3,240 cubic feet per second (cfs) on Monday, Aug. 21. Water visibility is 13 feet and water temperature is 55.2 degrees F.
Mayfield Lake – Salmon season begins September 1. Daily limit 6, no more than 2 adults may be retained. Only hatchery Chinook and hatchery coho may be kept.
Drano Lake – 29 boat anglers kept 7 adult and 1 jack fall Chinook and released 1 adult Chinook and 1 steelhead. Release all steelhead through September. ~25 boats here last Saturday morning.