Portland/Metro Fishing Report – With the closure of the mainstem Columbia for Chinook, and the reluctance of what may or may not be a fair return of coho, anglers will be looking elsewhere in the Willamette Valley to satiate their salmon desires. The fact of the matter is, for the “harvest season,” there doesn’t seem to be much harvesting going on. Metro anglers have through tomorrow (Friday, October 7th) to harvest a Columbia River Chinook before the season closes… again.
Read the press release on the Columbia River Chinook closure HERE, the mainstem remains open to hatchery coho however.
Coho passage at Willamette Falls isn’t all that bad. Four hundred to 700+ coho per day are passing the falls, but they too seem to have lock-jaw. We’ve had other dry Octobers like this, but these fish seem to be particularly ignorant of our gear this year. The fishery upstream of Willamette Falls is likely the best bet and fish are being caught up there, but with a great deal of inconsistency.
Clackamas River Fishing Report – Coho are in the Clackamas River, but as we’ve seen in conditions like this, are quite reluctant to bite. Fishable numbers are present, and so is effort, but fish are simply not falling for all the effort anglers are putting in.
Early morning casters are taking fish at Eagle Creek, mostly on drifted bait under bobbers or casting spinners following first light. Of course, the highest concentrations of anglers will also be where the highest concentration of fish are.
Sandy River fishing report – Avid angler Jeff Stoeger reports – Hello All. I hope that you have had the opportunity to get out and try your luck on some coho. There are fish spread throughout the entire river from the mouth all the way to the hatchery. With the river being so low, the fish have become lock-jawed and less likely to bite. The most effective technique has been spinners with a little color on a sliver blade.
Find the full report and forecast for Members on the Sandy and the Clackamas from this page here.
North Coast Fishing Report – As has been the case for much of the season, the north coast salmon returns are somewhat challenged, at least for Chinook. Wild coho remains the focus, but remains open only on Wednesdays and Saturdays for the most popular North Coast estuaries. Tillamook Bay anglers had great success on a first light bite on Wednesday, with several lucky anglers taking home a quality wild coho from the morning bite.
The Trask and Tillamook tidewater reaches are holding mostly wild Chinook. It makes for good catch and release fishing, with little competition around.
The Nehalem is yielding few Chinook but is plugged with wild coho. That pleases anglers fishing on Wednesdays and Saturdays.
The Nestucca remains consistently mediocre, mostly for tidewater trollers. Better tides this week should infuse more fresh fish into the tidewater reach from Pacific City to Woods however.
The Salmon River has been a bit of a disappointment lately but there are catchable numbers of darkening Chinook in the tidewater reach above the Highway 101 Bridge.
The Siletz and Alsea are performing well during this peak time of year. Better tides will mean better fishing this weekend.
Yaquina Bay is putting out fair numbers of Chinook and coho right now, it should be a good weekend there.
Crabbing is improving coast-wide, which isn’t a surprise given the time of year it is.
The tuna fleet is about hanging it up for the season. Commercial boats are having to work harder for fish, the schools are moving on.
Don’t overlook fall trout opportunities on the coast, the north coast stocking schedule can be found HERE.
See the full North Coast Report and Forecast for Members right here.
Willamette River System Report – Contributor Glenn Zinkus reports
This is the time of year that Glenn reports bi-weekly. You can find a copy of the fishing report from last week here and Members can always see the latest reports for this section starting on this page here.
Central Oregon Fishing Report – Contributor Glenn Zinkus
This is the time of year that Glenn reports bi-weekly. You can find a copy of the fishing report from last week here and Members can always see the latest reports for this section starting right here.
SW Oregon Fishing Report – Contributor Jeff Rome reports:
The Chetco estuary fishing is the main angler attraction as of late. Both Chinook and coho are being taken every day as the pressure heats up for what looks to be a great season.
Halibut season has been extended by ODFW till October 31st to the southern sub area (that got most of its quota) sharing the northern quota that has considerable amount left. Brookings saw limits of nice sized halibut this week and is good news if weather cooperates.
The Rogue Bay Chinook run is slowing down as more coho enter the system. Good numbers of fish in the estuary are providing ample opportunity for both boat and bank anglers.
The mid-Rogue River is now closed to Chinook above Hog Creek. Some decent fish have been taken and most anglers are now targeting summer steelhead that are throughout the river. The river is low and clear and drifting weedage can be an issue in keeping a bait presentable. Fly anglers are catching summers on egg patterns below spawning grounds.
Coos basin estuary Chinook catches on the Coos river remain fair from the Empire boat ramp on up to Chandler bridge and more coho are also being caught now.
Winchester bay is producing nice crab and anglers are getting fair catches of salmon in the main Umpqua estuary.
The north Umpqua is producing fair catches of summer steelhead
The Coquille River is producing nice catches of stripers from Rocky Point on up through Riverton.
Be safe, be nice and enjoy!
Jeff’s expanded report, multiple lake updates, and forecast in this week’s version for Members!
SW Washington by Ian Carter
REMINDER, please verify the regulations before fishing any body of water
Effective 11:59 Friday October 7th the Columbia closes again from Buoy 10 this time to the Pasco 395 Highway bridge. Wow, thanks for the 7 days of Chinook fishing. I just received the Press Release and was unable to gain any understanding of reasoning. Hopefully, a believable (it won’t be rational) explanation will be released publicly.
BEST BET – I’m Stumped……. Let’s go Clam Digging
This week I fished the Lewis from the forks up to the Woodland bridge. We didn’t have any luck, albeit the river is seriously full of fish. It was later in the morning when we fished Woodland, after a morning Columbia trip. It’s like one long train of Coho heading through the shallows just below the Woodland bridge. There is a pretty good deep slot in that area where I back trolled eggs and diver. That didn’t work so we tried back trolling plugs, casting just plugs and casting spinners didn’t work either. Our timing (high noon with full sun) was a little off for fishing this area and it was more recon than anything. I’m going to return to that spot at both sun up and sun down in the next 6-7 days and see if the bite turns on.
Angling pressure is really light. The fall Chinook returns so far for this river are phenomenal, it’s unfortunate that the weir is so low in the system. Not a lot of room to fish below it, especially at these levels. The river is very low. The Coho have yet to make themselves known.
Nathan at Sportsman’s Warehouse had some reports of Chinook being caught below the weir. Other than that fishing pressure is very light. There was no one fishing the usually crowded bankie bend during late fall across from the RV park. WDFW checks this week showed similar results: Kalama River – 12 bank rods released two Chinook. 1 boat/2 rods released one Chinook. 14 bank rods NO catch.
WDFW anglers’ checks reported the following: Cowlitz River I-5 Br downstream – 20 bank rods kept one Chinook jack and released one coho jack. 6 boats/12 rods kept two coho. Cowlitz River Above the I-5 Br – 25 bank rods kept one coho and released one Chinook, one Chinook jack and one steelhead. 5 boats/10 rods kept two Chinook, one coho, one coho jack and released one Chinook and one steelhead.
Considering the lack of Coho returns so far and the closure of Hatchery Chinook, the immediate forecast for the Cowlitz looks somewhat bleak. Some folks are finding pockets of good fishing here and there.
With Chinook off limits, Steelhead over and no Coho around at all, the Washougal is quite barren of all possibilities.
Korey at Bob’s Sporting Goods in Longview tells me that he has heard very little reports at this time, but expects a change once we get some rain. The Chinook are still waiting in the lower river. The counts of Coho at the hatchery dropped considerably this week compared to last week. The confluence of the Toutle with the Cowlitz above Castle Rock might be a good place to check out.
Merwin fishing picked up this week. My neighbor managed a 5 fish short of two limits today. He said it was scratch fishing. He’s and old school guy and got his fish on lake trolls and wedding ring spinners at about 40ft deep.
Riffe Lake –Silvers are still fishing good. They are averaging 12-14”. Some large Triploid trout are in the mix up to 20” in length.
Lacamas Lake – Bass fishing is good and worth the effort if you enjoy Bass fishing.