Willamette Falls coho, Tillamook Bay Crabbing, trout stocking, all high points in this week’s Oregon fishing report.
Portland/Metro Fishing Report – With mainstem Columbia Chinook fading into the season, anglers will be looking toward other opportunities in the Portland area. Coho certainly remains one of those options, but don’t overlook fall trout as well.
The Bonneville reach will remain the best option for late-season Chinook although the quality of salmon starts to fade by mid-October. Pro Trollers will continue to intercept fish for the next few weeks.
Willamette Falls is flush with coho, with the bulk of the run upstream now. Catchable numbers will continue through the month however, plugs are a good bet for anglers targeting them at the mouths of the Tualatin and Molalla Rivers.
And speaking of trout, this just in from Hagg Lake specialist Heather L: “Hagg Lake was not very productive on Thursday. We only had five trout for the day. The largest was however 15 inches which was very nice. We anchored fished for the first two hours since we did spot several fish on the bottom at 40 feet of water but they were totally lock-jawed. Not one single bite for the four of us. We used all of the usual suspects for bait including worms, orange, chartreuse, and white Berkeley power bait eggs, and orange trout nuggets.”
Clackamas River Fishing Report – Coho are concentrating in the upper reaches of the Clackamas River, particularly around the mouth of Eagle Creek. Fresh fish should continue into November, but as time passes, so does the opportunity for catching hatchery fish. Wild fish will soon make up the bulk of the returning adults.
There’s been a lot of coho returning to the river, they remain notoriously lock-jawed in freshwater. The mornings will always be the best for river anglers.
Sandy River Fishing Report – Avid angler Jeff Stoeger reports, “I hope that everyone has had some time to get out and fish. There is fish all thru out the entire river systems.
There was some rafts and a few drift boats floating the river from Oxbow to Dabney and Dabney to Lewis and Clark. There have been a few late hatchery springers caught that haven’t turned to dark that are still good for the taking.
Fishing should continue to be good for the rest of the month and the first week in November. The rain events are short lived, and fish are moving up stream at fair clip.
Find the full report and forecast for Chinook and Steelhead members for the Sandy and the Clackamas from this page here.
Willamette Valley Fishing by Glenn Zinkus
Alton Baker Canal: Was stocked in September 3500 legal trout, as well as 1400 legal trout and 200 trophy trout this past week. Alton Baker Canal is scheduled to receive more than 1400 trout again next week. This is a good option for bait fishing with the kids.
Detroit Lake received 4000 trophy trout this September and 3700 trophy trout earlier this month. Trout fishing is great trolling lures, and with crankbaits, spinners, and spoons.
Green Peter Reservoir: Green Peter Reservoir is getting low and fishing reports are becoming fewer. The Thistle Creek boat ramp is accessible in the near term, and soon the reservoir will be less accessible.
From Harrisburg, to Corvallis, to Albany:
Trout fishing is improving. Floats near the confluence of the McKenzie and Willamette Rivers will place anglers in “fishy” areas all the way down to Harrisburg. The usual impressionistic nymphs, like PTs will take trout.
Still good warmwater fishing opportunities. This, along with some private farm ponds, remains one of the viable fishing alternatives in the upper portions of the Willamette system. Evening fishing for smallmouths, especially in the slow water sloughs.
Steelhead returns into the Willamette remain low. Last year was a fair to poor year, and the returns are 30% of last year’s numbers at this same time. We can hope for better years to come.
McKenzie River: The mainstem McKenzie water levels are steady at about 2200 CFS at Vida. Fishing is good all day long.
Glenn provides updates bi-weekly. Members can find last week’s report and more from this page here.
North Coast Fishing Report – Buoy 10 anglers are still finding fair numbers of coho downstream of the Astoria/Megler Bridge. Only a rare Chinook is being caught and seal interceptions are becoming more common. Sea lions are oddly absent, however. The morning incoming tide is producing the best, on the Washington side of the river.
Tillamook and Nehalem Bay anglers are wondering why wild coho are listed, and not the Chinook salmon of the north coast. Wild coho catches have been crazy good, but retention of all wild coho is now closed on the north coast. Chinook catches are poor as soft tides put most of the effort near the bay entrances this week. As tides increase, seaweed will once again become a problem for Tillamook Bay anglers.
The Salmon River is largely done for the year although high concentrations of anglers remain focused on water adjacent to the hatchery.
The Siletz and Alsea are producing fair catches of fall Chinook in what most would call peak season right now. The Siletz has been the bright spot in recent years, it appears to be more mediocre this season.
Ocean opportunity continues to look challenging in the near future. Halibut, tuna, coho and ocean crab are now out of reach for the year, but bottomfish will become a fall focus if the weather cooperates. Bay crabbing, particularly in Tillamook, remains good.
See the full report and forecast for Members right here.
Columbia River Fishing Report
If you’ve heard me once, you’ve heard me a million times, we’re NOT getting 1.6 million coho back to the Columbia River. Otherwise, I’d be home for breakfast every day, even in October! Yes, it’s happening, salmon on the mainstem Columbia is starting to fade, at least downstream of Bonneville Dam.
Starting with Buoy 10, it’s been a bit of a see-saw event as of late. It seems the bite is often dictated by the weather, imagine that. Sporadic winds (GROSSLY MIS-PREDICTED by FishWeather and NOAA by-the-way) have hampered success rates in the estuary as of late. Thankfully, we had a reprieve on Wednesday, the weather was fantastic!
The week (Monday) started out good, with 12 adult coho and a single jack harvested, then just 2 adults and 2 jacks on Tuesday (the strike to hook ratio was horrific in the howling east/SE winds all day), and just 6 adults on Wednesday for me. The coho were in all their predictable locations: Above the bridge on the humps for the last part of incoming tide, along Desdemona Sands (WA side), from the bridge to the church in 24 to 30 foot of water on the first part of incoming tide, and to my surprise, only mediocre action at the last part of outgoing tide in the mid-afternoon between Buoys 14 and 11 (It was restricted to vessels less than 30 foot west of Buoy 11 on Wednesday). I didn’t stay for the beginning incoming push after 3:00 p.m. on Wednesday, which has in recent history, been quite productive at Buoy 10.
There has been a rare Chinook for Buoy 10 anglers. Pro guide Chris Vertopoulos (503-349-1377) landed one about 14 pounds on Tuesday and we lost one to a harbor seal on Wednesday. Well, we got the jaw back, black gums and all… They remain a RARE catch however, that’s my first Chinook in at least 10 days.
The Oregon side of the river has been rather unproductive for most of the month of October.
The Buoy 14 to Buoy 11/10 troll has been pretty telling in recent days, the schools of fish crossing the bar on a daily basis has been considerably more sparse in recent days, we’re winding down the season in the estuary about now. It’s not time to give up, be sure to read the forecast section below!
Thursday’s catch again totaled just 6 fish. Quality fish, but just 6 and one lost to a harbor seal. The best bite was for the first few hours of daybreak with the best bite taking place from the red roof to the trailer park (WA side) in about 25 foot of water. There were a few fish just upstream of the bridge close to high tide, but that bite didn’t last long. From there, we came across occasional schools of coho on the downstream troll (WA side) in 25 to 35 foot of water with the best action taking place downstream of the church on the second half of outgoing tide. We were only getting a few bites for some long passes in the afternoon.
Upriver, Chinook catches are beginning to slow. That’s expected, as the bulk of the run is long-gone. Passage at Bonneville is still good, but dwindling by the day. Bonneville catches have slowed in recent days, one guide reported just 2 fish to the boat on Monday, landing none of them. The middle reach of the river from Kalama to Washougal is also quickly tapering.
It’s still good in the reaches above The Dalles Dam, but bright fish are becoming harder to come by. That said, bucks are still cutting fairly orange, but that too will change by the week.
Here are the catch statistics from ODF&W for the mainstem Columbia from last week:
SALMON, STEELHEAD AND SHAD
Weekly checking showed 6 Chinook and 338 coho kept, and three Chinook and 218 coho released for 171 boats (460 anglers); and 0.84 coho kept, and 0.61 coho released per angler for 189 bank anglers.
Tongue Point/Rocky Point to Longview:
Weekly checking showed no catch for one bank angler.
Rainier to St. Helens:
Weekly checking showed 25 adult Chinook, two jack Chinook, 53 adult coho and two jack coho kept, and one adult Chinook and 11 adult coho released for 71 boats (158 anglers); and no catch for four bank anglers.
Sauvie Island to Portland:
Weekly checking showed 6 adult Chinook and 14 adult coho kept, and one jack coho released for 50 boats (106 anglers); and no catch for three bank anglers.
Weekly checking showed 10 adult Chinook, one jack Chinook, 11 adult coho, and one jack coho kept, and one adult Chinook, one jack Chinook, and 10 adult coho released for 92 boats (164 anglers).
Weekly checking showed 82 adult Chinook, 11 jack Chinook, 33 adult coho, and two jack coho kept, and four adult Chinook, one jack Chinook, and two adult coho released for 74 boats (228 anglers).
Bonneville Pool (Bonneville Dam upstream to The Dalles Dam):
Weekly checking showed 58 adult Chinook, 10 jack Chinook, 43 adult coho, and 9 jack coho kept, and two adult Chinook released for 60 boats (163 anglers).
The Dalles Pool (The Dalles Dam upstream to John Day Dam):
Weekly checking showed 24 adult Chinook, 7 jack Chinook, and 24 adult coho kept, and one steelhead released for 32 boats (80 anglers).
John Day Pool (Columbia River above John Day Dam and John Day Arm):
Weekly checking showed two adult Chinook and one jack Chinook kept, and one steelhead released for 11 boats (21 anglers).
Crabbing has been fantastic in the estuary. The soft tide series this week scored easy limits for crabbers sticking out the foul weather. The fresher the bait, the quicker the limit. Most effort remains off of Social Security Beach, around Buoys 20 and 22, but Desdemona Sands has also been productive.
Central Oregon Fishing Reports – Contributor Glenn Zinkus reports:
There is a Central Oregon warmup that will last through Friday and Saturday, with some temperatures in the region reaching into the 60s on Friday and 70s on Saturday. Next week starts of cooler with highs in the 50s as another cold front comes through.
Lower Deschutes River: No unusual water temperatures. Late week and early weekend warmup might make some caddis fly. Don’t hesitate to fish caddis pupa imitations, such as Silvey’s Edible Emerger and others.
Middle Deschutes River: The Middle Deschutes is fishing well; euronymphing in the morning and caddis in the afternoon and evenings this weekend through approximately Saturday. Perdigons are taking fish.
Water levels remain at good levels, and Jeff Perin of The Flyfisher’s Place opines that he thinks the Middle Deschutes should be fishing well over this month of October.
Crooked River: Crooked River flows are down, and currently at 160 CFS at the dam, although there is some variability.
Fishing remains great with afternoon dry fly fishing with PMD, BWO, and mahogany dun hatches. Nymphing is also great when the dry fly action is off.
Fall River: Fall River was stocked several times in September with trophy trout, and last week again with 500 trophy trout. There have been some BWO and caddis hatches, midges, as well as some action on terrestrials (ants, beetles, hoppers). Mahogany duns are hatching.
Metolius River: Expect mahogany dun and BWO activity. Jeff Perin reminds us that we should start expecting to see yellow mayflies, the Cinygmula.
Hosmer: October being a prime month on Hosmer, although it has been snowing there over the last week. The kayak and SUP crowds are slowing down, although a warm Saturday might bring them out.
Crescent Lake: Crescent Lake too low. Latest report from Cody Herman, at Day One Outdoors (Day One Outdoors), is that Crescent gets lower and the fishing is downright slow. Lake level is 6 %.
Lava Lake/Little Lava Lake: Most reports are that Lava Lake is slow for trout.
North Central Oregon/Mid-Columbia Waters: No new report from Gorge Outfitters Supply (541-739-2222) in Rufus, between the John Day and Deschutes Rivers. Fishing did slow down.
Check out Glenn’s detailed report with much more information and forecast in this week’s Member’s version.
Eastern Oregon Fishing Report – Contributor Glenn Zinkus reports bi-weekly, here is last week’s report.
EASTERN/SOUTHEASTERN OREGON WATERS
In Baker County, the bag and size limits will be lifted for the following bodies of water July 15 through Oct. 10:
- Phillips Reservoir between Mason Dam and Hudspeth Road
- Thief Valley Reservoir, and;
- Powder River between Thief Valley Reservoir and Phillips Reservoir
EXCEPTIONS: Bull Trout and Tiger Muskie must be released unharmed in the water body they are encountered.
Ana Reservoir: There are reports of good fishing on Ana Reservoir for legal and trophy size trout. Trout are going for callibaetis and caddis.
Upper Klamath Lake: Starting to fish well with cooler temperatures. This is now a great October option.
Wallowa Lake is fishing well for trout. Wallowa Lake was stocked in August with 5400 legal size trout and 180 trophy trout. Rob at the The Joseph Fly Shoppe thinks Wallowa Lake is one of the best in Oregon right now for stocked trout.
Wallowa River: The Joseph Fly Shoppe reports Wallowa trout fishing is still very good for large trout and fish numbers.
Imnaha River: Rob at The Joseph Fly Shoppe reports he heard of one steelhead caught on the Imnaha.Check out Glenn’s detailed report and forecast in this week’s paid version for Chinook and Steelhead Members both!
SW Oregon Fishing Report – Contributor Jeff Rome reports
Mid-Rogue producing summer steelhead; Chetco was hot, now it’s not
The Rogue Bay which had a pretty good year is done now. The Chetco Estuary has seen a nice bite last week with a 46 pounder caught. Summer steelhead are scattered throughout the Rogue River although the half pounders have not been abundant yet….I’m still waiting! Hopefully them along with Coho should be coming anytime and any rain should only improve the action. The marine forecast is looking to be decent for those boaters wanting to target some bottom fish and halibut. Nice Fall weather is also a good time to take the kids out to target bass and panfish at the local small lakes and ponds too. Crabbing in the bays has also been good along with clamming on minus tides.
I finally got out last Sunday with my wife Dawn and fishing partner Tess to “wet a line” on a beautiful Fall day at my favorite (slightly secret) hole on the Rogue. The company was great, the fishing fair, the catching poor, and the beer was cold and tasty!
Another decent upcoming weekend is forecast for getting out on the ocean to catch halibut and rockfish. The ocean has been quite rocky with large swells and some wind chop the past few days, but earlier limits of some nice bottom fish and large Ling cod were had. Also, there’s still plenty of quota for halibut left- 30 to 40% depending on sub area. Bottom fishing is now open to all depths and surf perch anglers are getting action new Nesika beach in Gold Beach.
Andy Martin- Brookings Fishing Charters 541-813-1082
Andy reports that the past few days have been rough with large ocean swells and wind chop has kept his fleet in. A more favorable outlook is in store for this weekend however and he expects to get out and catch some nice big Ling cod as well as lots of bottom fish and maybe a halibut or two.
COOS RIVER BASIN:
Chinook fishing continues to be slow one day and another day several fish caught…mostly the former. Most of the anglers are fishing Marshfield Channel and in the Coos River. Coho catches which had been good earlier this month tapered down and will close Friday the 15th. Salmon anglers will still be able to harvest hatchery and wild Chinook after October 15th.Diamond Lake-It’s cold and some snow flurries have already touched the lake. However, anglers are getting some nice sized fish 16″-20″ among their limits. Pressure is low and the fish are hungry…take a heater with you!
Expo Pond (day use permits are required) Fishing has been picking up with the recent cooling temperatures where the most northern pond is the best bet for largemouth bass.
LEMOLO RESERVOIR: the lake is dropping to it’s fall low, the fish are more concentrated and fat.. Anglers seem to be doing well. A few anglers have reported catching tiger trout in Lemolo.
CHETCO RIVER: The estuary is the place to be right now for those targeting nice Chinook. Be forewarned that there are a lot of boats and bank anglers so please be patient and use “common sense” in this area. A nice bite last weekend and into early this week saw some fish caught with one 46 pounder weighed in!
COQUILLE RIVER BASIN- Striper fishing is good again in the lower Coquille River casting swimbaits and crankbaits. Striped bass can be found in the river from near Johnson Mill Pond to Rocky Point in the lower estuary. There is no size limit or daily bag limit and are caught in low light conditions or in the dark.
Jim at Rogue Outdoor Store – Gold Beach, Oregon (541-247-7142) said that the Rogue Bay despite an earlier this week bit of action of a coho bite is pretty much over. A few “non local” boats are still working the bay with little to no success, but he’s still optimistic that the Indian Creek Chinook are still out there and waiting to come in…who knows!
Middle Rogue– Steelhead fishing is underway throughout the river now as the water temp is hovering just above 50 degrees and flow around 1240. Falling leaves and summer grown river weeds make fishing some favorite holes an issue and a sanctuary for squawfish. Bank anglers targeting the pocket water by large boulders and seams with black body/ gold blade Panther Martin spinners and corky with worm have gotten some nice “summers”.
Upper Rogue- Anglers can only retain hatchery trout (5 per day) and hatchery steelhead. Summer steelhead have been sporadic with both bank and boat anglers catching some nice fish. Anglers are encouraged to be mindful of spawning spring Chinook salmon and avoid disturbing these fish as they spawn over the next month.
Check out Jeff’s detailed report, multiple lake updates, and forecast in this week’s version for Members!
SW Washington Fishing Report by Terry Otto
Columbia Salmon fishing still good for both Chinook and coho, while the tributaries are fishing slow because of low water. The action was best below Bonneville Dam, and has been good in the Vancouver area, too.
Vancouver Metro Area
The catch in the Vancouver Area has shifted from Chinook to coho, with anglers also switching from hog lines for the most part to trolling with 360 flashers and spinners. The Camas Slough is now open, and with a few coho starting to show in the Washougal, the slough should produce some good fishing over the next month.
Tributary fishing is in a bit of a lull as the early coho and the Chinook runs peter out, and the late run of coho starts to come on. Many of the early fish are turning dark, and they don’t bite as well as bright fish will.
Lewis and Washougal Rivers fishing Report—The Lewis River is still giving up early run coho, although the bite has slowed and the fish are turning. The river is still low, although it did come up a bit. Anglers are still twitching jigs and hover fishing from boats, but the fishing pressure has dropped off a bit lately. Bank angling has also dropped off some, but anglers continue to take the fish by twitching jigs or fishing bobber and eggs, with a few anglers drifting for their fish. The bite is best early morning and it drops off mid-day. The action has centered around the hatchery, although there are signs that the schools have started moving upstream. The best action has been from Colvin Creek down to Johnson Creek.
John Thompson of Sportsman’s Warehouse in Vancouver, (360) 604-8000), reports that anglers have taken a few of the first coho to be caught in the Washougal River this past week, with anglers throwing spinners for their fish. The run is just getting going, and it should produce good bites well into November. The anglers are getting most of their fish by casting in the lower holes of the river, and trolling in the Camas Slough. There is very little public access in the river above the three river-mile mark, with the best access through the Washougal River Greenway.
Merwin and Yale Lakes Fishing Report—After a very busy year both lakes, especially Yale, are dropping way off for angler effort. Reports are the schools have begun gathering near the mouths of the creeks, and are beginning to sport spawning colors. Spinners will take the fish when this happens, but the eating quality of the fish really drops off quickly. There are still fish being caught in the main lake with the younger year class, but they are smaller than the spawning-age fish. Trolling or jigging has been effective.
Local Lakes Fishing Report—holdover trout are biting in Klineline Pond and Battle Ground Lake.
Cowlitz and Kalama Rivers Fishing Report—The fishing is improving in the upper Cowlitz, but has slowed a bit in the lower river. The late run of coho has begun, as witnessed by the large numbers of coho returning to the hatchery. Last week, Tacoma Power employees recovered 6,699 coho adults, 1,977 coho jacks, 608 fall Chinook adults, five fall Chinook jacks, 37 summer-run steelhead adults, and 46 cutthroat trout during six days of operations at the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery separator.
The action is best below the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery Barrier Dam down to Blue Creek. Anglers are warned that the hatchery mark rate has been low, according to Dave Mallahan of Daves Guide Service (360) 201-9313.
Thompson reports that the lower Kalama is still full of fish trapped below the fish collection weir located just below the Modrow Bridge. The early run coho are beginning to turn, and they get lockjaw when that happens, but anglers are still getting some bright fish with spinners, bobber and eggs, or twitching jigs. In the latest creel survey, 25 bank rods kept three coho and released six Chinook and four coho. 1 boat/3 rods kept one coho jack.
Columbia River Gorge
Anglers are beginning to catch more coho, but they are also still getting good numbers of Chinook at both the mouth of the Klickitat and the White Salmon Rivers. Trolling spinners is the best bet at the mouth of the Klickitat, while jigging wobblers are still working at the Whie Salmon.
Klickitat River Fishing Report—The upper river is still fishing slow, according to Carl Coolidge of the Klickitat Canyon Market (509-369-4400). He reports that Chinook are still not moving into the upper river, and anglers are finding only a few steelhead, even though river conditions are good. Lower river anglers below the Fisher Hill Bridge are getting a few Chinook, mostly by fishing bobber and eggs.
Coolidge runs a shuttle service, and anglers are reminded to give Coolidge a call at the market for the latest in river conditions and fishing.
Check out Terry’s detailed report (he crushes it every single week!) and forecast in this week’s SW Washington Member’s version!
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