This week’s Oregon fishing report covering Oregon and SW Washington – Trollers still interested in fall Chinook are looking to the Columbia River Gorge as a strong option.
Photo above, from Darryl Huff with a 16-pound hatchery steelhead
Portland/Metro Fishing Report
Trollers still interested in fall Chinook are looking to the Columbia River Gorge as a strong option, even as Bonneville counts begin to slide. Action remains good for trollers with a few coho in the mix as well.
A surprise fishery is blossoming just downstream of the mouth of the Clackamas River. With “wild” coho stacking up before ascending Willamette Falls, and a batch of hatchery fish headed up the Clackamas River, trollers working flashers and spinners or spinfish are taking a surprising number of fish out of the mainstem Willamette around Meldrum Bar to the mouth of the Clackamas. Anglers are still legal to retain hatchery fish in this reach, but wild ones must be released until they get upstream of Willamette Falls. That fishery is about to tip off, but we’re still a few weeks away from peak season for this any coho opportunity for metro area anglers.
Clackamas River Fishing Report
Low, clear water conditions on the Clackamas are leaving coho anglers frustrated. The fish are starting to pour into the system, but more fish are being hooked illegally than legally here. The Bowling Alley hole is productive most mornings.
Sandy River Fishing Report
Avid angler Jeff Stoeger reports – “I know that there have been some fish caught throughout the entire river, both coho and fall chinook. The fall chinook are bright and all will be native fish. So please, if you do hook one of these fish, leave it in the river and remove the hook as gently as possible.
There have been coho caught all the way up to Cedar Creek, but the numbers are still on the low side and will be until we get that first good rain event. There are still some late summer fish that are down river spawners and should be handled with care.
Find the full report and forecast for Members on the Sandy and the Clackamas from this page here.
North Oregon Coast Fishing Report
Anglers didn’t have much to write home about, with the ocean largely off-limits due to rough weather most of the week. There remains a fair bit of the any coho quota for south of Cape Falcon fishers, we just need good weather to access these seemingly abundant stocks of fish.
Chinook anglers in Tillamook are not catching many fish and most of the ones they catch in the bay must go back un-harmed. The wild coho fishery is open on Wednesdays and Saturdays and fishing is productive, only to get better.
Sea bass fishing offshore remains excellent, lings are a bit harder to find.
Nehalem Bay has slowed for Chinook but coho remain abundant in the tidewater reaches. It should be a productive Saturday for those seeking the any coho option in tidewater this weekend.
The Nestucca and Salmon Rivers are entering peak season. Both are producing Chinook and should remain productive for another few weeks.
The Siletz is holding up and entering peak season. Trollers working tidewater are scoring some nice Chinook. This system continues to be the bright spot for north coast Chinook (although we’re entering more “Central coast” than northern at this point.
The Alsea and Yaquina Bay are also good options this time of year and anglers are putting in the effort. Catches have been a bit on the light side but should pick up this weekend.
Bottomfishing remains excellent with most effort remaining in the nearshore. Be cognizant of new bag limits and restrictions. Find them HERE.
See the full North Coast Report and Forecast for Members right here.
Willamette River System Fishing Report
Contributor Glenn Zinkus reports:
More Middle Fork Willamette Steelhead. Prime Time McKenzie River Trout
Alton Baker Canal: Alton Baker Canal was stocked with 900 legal size trout. As always, a great put and take option for anglers and families in the Eugene area. Alton Baker will be stocked weekly through the summer.
Detroit Reservoir: Kokanee reports this week indicate a slowdown in the fishing. Fish are down deeper, but anglers are not reporting much catch.
At this point, there are more reports of the kokanee turning – losing scales and color in the meat.
Water is dropping, but Mongold boat ramp is currently usable.
Detroit was stocked up through the end of June with trophy trout each week. The deeper, cooler waters of Detroit make this a good trout fishing option.
Green Peter Reservoir: Kokanee reports this week indicate a slowdown in the fishing. Fish are down deeper, but anglers are not reporting much catch.
South Santiam Trout: Flows are dropping and getting a bit low for trout in the upper South Santiam River above Foster Reservoir.
Willamette River – Middle Fork: Various parts of the Middle Fork has been good. The Middle Fork is steady currently at 2450 CFS. These are fishable flow rates. Water temperatures is 60 degrees.
Willamette River – From Harrisburg, to Corvallis, to Albany: The Willamette River is currently at 5670 CFS at Harrisburg. Nice fishable flows right now and wading the gravel bars is good. Waters are cooling and autumn patterns are starting up.
Willamette River – Steelhead
With increased numbers of steelhead, anglers are back on the water looking for steelhead. Note that not a lot of anglers are doing this yet. Steelhead runs in the Springfield area starting to produce. Latest guide reports are that there is typically 1 to 2 per day caught per boat.
McKenzie River – Trout: The mainstem McKenzie water levels are slowly receding. The river is currently at a 2,320 CFS flowrate at Vida. A nice fishing level – lots of good fly water.
Can you believe there is MORE? Find the full report and forecast for Members on the Willamette Valley/Metro from this page here.
Central Oregon Fishing Report
Contributor Glenn Zinkus reports:
Deschutes Steelhead Rolling Along. Metolius River – Some Days Are Epic and Some Are Not.
Crooked River Flows Dropped To 10 CFS– Give The River A Break
ODFW News – Angling Restrictions
The ODFW metric of a minimum of 9,900 wild (unclipped) steelhead through Bonneville was achieved back on July 23. That means the Lower Deschutes will open to steelhead angling August 15 to September 15.
The ODFW metric of a minimum of 23,100 wild steelhead through Bonneville was achieved on August 18th. That means the Lower Deschutes will remain open for the remainder of this year for steelhead angling.
John Day River: Angling for, and retention of steelhead will be closed in the mainstem John Day above Tumwater Falls (and tributaries above this boundary) from Sept. 15-Dec. 31, 2022 due to low projected returns.
Haystack Reservoir: A temporary rule to lift limits in Haystack Reservoir will be in effect Sept. 16 through Nov. 30 as the pool will be drawn down to facilitate emergency gate maintenance.
Lower Deschutes River: The Lower Deschutes is steady near the dam, with flows of 3670 CFS in Madras and 4120 CFS at Moody. Water access is good. These flows have been steady.
Temperatures on the lower portions of the river are in the 53 to 55 range at Madras, and 57 to 61 degree range near Moody. Temperatures have been trending downward with the late summer/early autumn cooling.
Reports of slowing trout fishing over the past week, but on the other hand, euronymphing remains hot, and swinging trout spey has resulted in massive grabs for some angler. The Deschutes Angler shop reports a lot of BWO activity. We continue to expect more dry fly action to improve as we move into September, and we can expect upcoming October caddis action, and mahogany duns . More on this as it starts to happen. Euronymphing for trout is still the hot ticket.
Guides are having success in their runs and buckets, with most fish from the mouth up to Macks Canyon. Temperatures are getting better, and the filtered sunlight have the fish on the move.
Middle Deschutes River: There is a mix of PEDs, PMDs, and some caddis on the river from Bend to Steelhead Falls. There is evening dry fly fishing with success on a purple haze and X Caddis patterns. Look for some mahogany duns as we are well into September.
Upper Deschutes River: Much of this area is impacted now by the Cedar Creek fire. Best to stay away. The area below Little Lava is under a Level 2 evacuation status.
Lake Billy Chinook: Smallmouth are going strong – but no new reports since the heatwave began.
Metolius River: September on the Met is the best. That said, some days for some of the best anglers were slow, but other days, even the following day, some days are stellar.
And so much more for Members. Check out Glenn’s detailed reports and forecasts right here for both Chinook and Steelhead Members!
SW Oregon Fishing Report
Contributor Jeff Rome reports:
The Chetco estuary is starting to take some attention and angling pressure off the Rogue bay as some nice quality Chinook have been caught including a 42 pounder as of this week. The little bit of rain didn’t hurt either as it’s only estuary retention until big rain gets the river up to level and opens up.
The Rogue Bay is still producing fair numbers of Chinook- adults and jacks. Coho catches have also picked up, but it’s still a bit early for them to be in good numbers. It seems the little bit of rain wasn’t enough to move fish upriver so there’s still plenty lingering around the estuary. Half pounder and summer steelhead action up around Agness has picked up and should get better soon.
A recent slight bump in flow and cooler temps brought the mid-Rogue river anglers some tight lines of summer steelhead from Gold Hill down to Hog Creek. Salmon anglers also hooked a few back trolling plugs at the mouth of the Applegate and at Finley Bend by bank anglers.
Winchester bay- after a little rain, the main Umpqua estuary Chinook catches picked up in the lower river as did it on the Coos from the Empire boat ramp on up to Chandler bridge.
Small mouth bass action is excellent on the lower south and north Umpqua.
The Coquille River is producing nice catches of stripped bass from Rocky Point on up through Riverton.
Trout fishing on Lost Creek Lake is still good as the lake is low and the fish are concentrated now. The main marina ramp is unusable except for maybe inflatables and small portables. The Takilma ramp will be open.
SMITH RIVER, Umpqua– Stripers are still in the lower Smith, and anglers are catching decent Chinook. Pressure is relatively low and mostly locals. While under permanent regulations, this year is two Chinook per day and up to 20 wild Chinook per year. No wild coho fishery is planned for the Smith in 2022. Trout fishing can also be good in the mornings during the summer.
UMPQUA RIVER Main– Chinook catches are improving in the lower river as boater pressure is divided between the ocean for coho and the lower river estuary for Chinook. Summer steelhead are throughout the river with catches fair to good.
Jeff’s expanded report, multiple lake updates, and forecast in this week’s version for Members!
SW Washington Fishing Report
by Ian Carter
Fishing opportunities in the gorge are worth the trip. Sturgeon fishing wasn’t reported as red hot and local tributary Coho are here.
REMINDER, please verify the regulations before fishing any body of water
BEST BET – Gorge for Chinook above the dam.
The hatchery area is packed. Boat parking is nonexistent on weekends unless you get there way before light. Bank anglers were parked 200 yards on each side of the road on the Clark County side at Cedar Creek. This past Sunday the Golf Course launch had rigs parked up above. There could have been room for a couple of more below, but you know how some people park.
Harvest trout are in the lower river. It’s a great bank fishery for kids. Grab a trout rod and some night crawlers and sliding sinkers.
Today, Wednesday I took a drive to check things out based on a good report from John Thompson of Sportsman’s Warehouse. The river is extremely low, but there are coho around. There were no drift boats parked at any of the spots. The only bank anglers I observed were at the RV park by the bridge. WDFW checks this week also echoed a lack of effort: Kalama River – 17 bank rods kept three Chinook.
WDFW anglers’ checks reported the following: Cowlitz River I-5 Br downstream – 34 bank rods kept one coho and released one Chinook. 15 boats/45 rods kept five Chinook, five coho, one coho jack, one steelhead and released 26 Chinook, one Chinook jack and 12 coho. Cowlitz River Above the I-5 Br – Nine bank rod had no catch. 2 boats/8 rods kept 14 steelhead.
Columbia Gorge and Tributaries
Still don’t have any news from Carl about the Klickitat. Remember he offers a great shuttle service if you are ever in need. The water is still off-color glacier melt. There have been some success however according to the WDFW creel checks. Klickitat River below Fisher Hill Bridge – 40 bank rods kept 13 Chinook and two Chinook jacks. Klickitat River above #5 Fishway – No report. River data for the Klickitat can be found here.
Fishing is excellent in the gorge. Limits are frequent both right below the dam and to way above.
Goose Lake – Located in the Gifford Pinchot Forest north of Carson is fishing very well. Today, September 21st the lake was also stocked with 1,000 approximately 1lb Cutthroat bass fishing here is also in full swing.
Salmon Fishing is excellent out of Westport. According to Jim Milanowski with Looney Coonies the Coho fishing has really slowed down. It looks like a nice 32.05-pound chinook caught on August 11, 2022, is going to win the $10,000 Grand Prize for the largest chinook caught in the Westport Charter boat Association 2022 Derby. Although chinook fishing looks to be over for the season, the derby is not over until all salmon closes September 30th.