Portland/Metro Oregon Fishing Report – Bonneville salmon counts are on the bump again. We’re still weeks away from the summer Chinook run, and things are already looking up. Over 2,000 adults/day are passing Bonneville and anglers versed in high water strategies are faring quite well, especially bank anglers in the Columbia River Gorge.
The Willamette is slowing for springers, but will likely pick right back up again, as upper Columbia bound Chinook stray into the Willamette as mainstem spill and flow has the lower river backed up into the Portland Harbor. Shad are thick in the Oregon City area.
Avid angler Jeff Stoeger reports, “This week we saw the river blow out on Friday due to rain and snow melting over the weekend. The river came back into shape by Sunday and has stayed ideal color and height. The river shows another day of going up to 11ft and should clear quickly and drop back down to 10ft and should be very productive.
The Clackamas has yet to yield a spring Chinook, but there are fair numbers of summer steelhead around, bank anglers have been doing good. Both the Sandy and Clackamas are scheduled to take a significant bump over the weekend as rainfall is slated to be strong in the coming days.
Check out the upcoming stocking schedule HERE.
Find the full report and forecast for Members on the Sandy and the Clackamas from this page here.
North Coast Fishing Report – Saltwater anglers are really liking what they are seeing offshore, ample Chinook catches with halibut and bottomfishing action good as well. Ocean crabbing has even picked up as well, it’s a veritable bounty out there.
Spring Chinook in the Tillamook district is going well too. A better than average (at least when compared to the last few years) is looking good. The soft tides this weekend and into next week should produce the best catches in the lower reaches of Tillamook and Nestucca Bays.
A bump in the district’s rivers should also put driftboats within reach of good spring Chinook action on the Nestucca and Trask Rivers. The hatchery hole remains a popular destination for early and motivated risers.
Summer steelhead are starting to show in better numbers on the Nestucca, Wilson and Siletz Rivers. It appears to be a better return than the previous few, but you’ll still have to work for them.
Saturday is the last day for estuary sturgeon anglers to catch and keep one for the season. The action has been picking up, but overall, the fishery has dramatically under-performed manager’s expectations.
See the full report and forecast for Members right here.
Central Oregon Fishing Report – Contributor Glenn Zinkus reports:
Paulina and East Lakes. Metolius Hatch Mixed Bag.
ODFW News – Angling Restrictions
Deschutes River: ODFW announced, “With another low run of summer steelhead forecast, angling closures for steelhead, bass and salmon will be in effect for parts of the Deschutes River this summer starting as early as June 1.
The closures are in keeping with the Deschutes River steelhead fishery framework that fishery managers presented earlier this year due to continued low forecasts for Threatened summer steelhead runs to areas upriver of Bonneville Dam in the Columbia and Snake River Basins.
Last year’s upriver steelhead run to Bonneville Dam on the Columbia River was the lowest since records began in 1938, resulting in the first steelhead fishing closure on the Deschutes since 1978. Encounter rates from sport anglers that catch and release wild summer steelhead are typically high in mid-Columbia tributaries like the Deschutes, where fish stage before migrating to spawning areas throughout the Deschutes and Columbia Basin.
Pre-season forecasts for 2022 are similar to last year’s returns, so closures are necessary in these mixed stock fisheries even though anglers may be targeting hatchery steelhead.”
The good news amongst the bad is that the trout fishery will remain open.
Lower Deschutes River:
The Lower Deschutes is steady at 4020 CFS in Madras and 5410 CFS at Moody. Water access is good, with summer-like flows along the Warm Springs stretch.
Temperatures on the lower portions of the river are in the 53 to 55 range at Madras and 59 to 63 degree range near Moody.
Haystack Reservoir: No recent reports. Was stocked earlier in the year and dropping now.
Lake Billy Chinook:
Kokes, from all the reports, are being caught. Effective colors include purple, pink, orange and brass.
There has been some exceptional bull trout fishing in LBC in recent days, look to the Metolius Arm.
Crooked River: The Crooked River is fishing well. It is kind of low, with flows in and around 140 CFS.
Fall River: Fishing well from the hatchery to the headwaters.
Caddis have been active, as well as some PMD and midge activity. In addition, terrestrials like ants and beetles are taking trout.
Fall River was stocked during the week of May 9 with 1000 trophy trout, and will be stocked again during the week of June 13th.
The entire stretch up the Metolius, including the section above Allingham Bridge is open and this is prime time on the Metolius.
Prineville Reservoir: Josh Pardee report that Prineville reservoir is fishing well for rainbows, and the bass are starting to get active during late April. It is not possible to launch a large boat, but a kayak or pontoon will work well. Josh also says the fish are aggressive – hard hitting.
Crane Prairie Reservoir: Reports continue that fish are spread out on Crane, with reports of both hot and cold fishing through now, and there are signs the fishing is picking up.
Wickiup Reservoir: Josh Pardee reports the ramp is in at Gold Point.
Some anglers have been catching big browns again on Wickiup.
Paulina Lake: Paulina Lake has been fishing well. Fly fishers using chironomids are into fish.
East Lake: East is ice-free. Ramps are in at the resort and at Hot Springs. East Lake CG has some access, with some usable sites.
North Central Oregon/Mid-Columbia Waters:
This week’s report from Gorge Outfitters Supply (541-739-2222) in Rufus, between the John Day and Deschutes Rivers are that the walleye fishing is good above the John Day dam. Because of on and off snowmelt, the water temperatures are variable.
Bass fishing has slowed down.
And yet there is a lot more for Members. Check out Glenn’s detailed reports and forecasts right here for Chinook and Steelhead Members both!
SW Oregon Fishing Report – Contributor Jeff Rome reports:
There’s plenty of fishin action to be had right now….. the ocean (when calm) is producing nice limits of rock fish along with some halibut (which is now open), and surf perch. Cutthroat trout and stocked trout are still in abundance in the coastal lakes. The Rogue is maintaining Spring Chinook action above Shady Cove as well as on the Lower Rogue from Agness on down. Most all Southern Oregon lakes and streams are getting the attention of trout, salmon, steelhead and bass anglers alike…. there’s a good variety to fish for right now!
The Rogue valley action is primarily for Springers that are being caught mostly up river from Dodge Bridge to McGregor Park. Some Summer run steelhead are in and with trout season open, more will be caught. The flow has increased to over 4000 cfs at Grants Pass so trying to anchor and or back troll for salmon or steelhead is a bit of a chore for drift boats. Warm/ hot weather has gotten the bass and panfish bite back on at Lake Selmac and other Rogue valley ponds. Trout fishing continues to be good at Lost Creek and Applegate lake where there’s lots of hold over and recently stocked fish to be caught and both lakes are at peak high water.
The lower Rogue springer fishing had a good bite on late Saturday as the recent rain deluge got the river flow and turbidity higher. It’s now waned as of Wednesday, but hopes are for a last “hurrah bite” before the Fall run start in July.
The ocean looks to be conducive for weekend (finally) for bottom fish and halibut. Anglers earlier this week have been scoring excellent catches of rock fish and halibut. The coastal lakes have been stocked with lots of trout and will fish well until the water gets too warm and sprouts up the weeds. Surf perch fishing and crabbing is still going good especially around Charleston and Winchester Bays. Jetty fishing is also a good option although maybe not this weekend depending on weather.
Good flow and cool water on the North Umpqua, catches of Spring Chinook has been “surprisingly good”. Shad are in the main Umpqua now in good numbers and Chinook catches are fair.
I will be up in Canada at Winter Harbour next week for a rescheduled male bonding fishing trip, so I’ll be too busy catching Chinook, halibut and bottom fish to get out next week’s report. Wish me luck
COQUILLE RIVER-Small mouth and striped bass fishing has picked up in the upper main stem. When the weather stays warmer after this weekend’s storm front and flows decrease, the bite should be good. A temporary regulation allowing anglers in Coquille River system to use spears and spear guns to harvest small mouth bass. Traditional rod and reel anglers can also use bait throughout the river system.
Middle Rogue – Trout season is open for hatchery fish ONLY. Spring Chinook catches have increased slightly as flow and decreased water temp has increased angler pressure. A few fish are being caught mostly by boaters working the deeper holes and seams with Kwikfish wrapped with anchovy and back bouncing roe. These fish don’t usually bite well in the mid section until further up as they have more pressing things on their mind.
Upper Rogue- Spring Chinook fishing has picked up well for both bank and boat anglers. Angling pressure has increased along with catches of Chinook ranging 15-25 pounds. The condition of these fish has been very good too as the river flow has been good enough to allow the fish to swim hard and fast up to their spawning grounds.
SMITH RIVER, Umpqua system- Fishing for salmon, trout and steelhead is closed but is open for stripped bass. Trout season is open and should be good. Shad are coming in as well.
Jeff’s detailed report, multiple lake updates, and forecast in this week’s version for Members!
SW Washington by Ian Carter
It’s that time of year when many options are rapidly becoming available. Fishing is about as good as it gets during this late spring for Chinook and early Steelhead. Hopefully this trend continues throughout the summer and into the Fall. It’s Free fishing weekend and a perfect opportunity to introduce someone to our sport.
REMINDER, please verify the regulations before fishing any body of water
Water flow is still fluctuating this past seven days. With an increase from 5,000 on Sunday to 8,550 today and a gauge level at Ariel of 5.5ft. The WDFW angler checks showed 17 bank rods with no catch and one boat with two rods that kept two Chinook. The water color is good but there’s a bunch of it coming down.
The stream flow data can be found here: USGS-North Fork Lewis.
Angler success as reported by WDFW shows that Kalama River had 33 bank rods with two Chinook and two steelhead in the box. One jack and one steelhead were also released. The 4 boats with 11 rods kept three steelhead and released one steelhead. Fishing pressure is lighter than it has been.
WDFW just released the following rule change regarding the Kalama. Kalama River fisheries return to permanent rule: The salmon daily limit is 6; up to 2 adults may be retained. Release all salmon other than hatchery Chinook and hatchery coho. (Through July 31, 2022)
The scoreboard from angler checks disclosed the following: Cowlitz River I-5 Br downstream – 22 bank rods had no catch. 1 boat/4 rods had no catch. Cowlitz River Above the I-5 Br – 15 bank rods had no catch. Fishing success seems a little bleak currently.
Chinook counts are rapidly increasing, and steelhead are temporarily diminishing. Tacoma Power employees recovered 625 spring Chinook adults, 61 spring Chinook jacks, one spring Chinook mini-jack, 24 summer-run steelhead adults, and two winter-run steelhead adults over four days of operations at the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery separator. The Cowlitz is still open for Hatchery Chinook retention since May 28th.
Columbia Gorge and Tributaries
Fishing pressure is getting lighter as better opportunities exist elsewhere. I haven’t heard anything since the fishing boundary extension. Jim Milanowski with Looney Coonies tells me he fished the Bonneville area with spotty success on Chinook. He stated the river is way off color, but the shad fishing was epic.
A WDFW fishing rule change dated June 3rd expands the boat angling deadline to the permanent boat angling boundary below Bonneville Dam. The limits on Chinook have also been adjusted in our favor until the end of current season in late June. You can double check Emergency Rules for the area and dates you will be fishing before heading out. Right now, you can keep two adult Chinook.
Wind River – Six bank rods had no catch. 3 boats/5 rods released two Chinook.
Drano Lake – 11 boats/32 rods kept one Chinook and released one Chinook.
Klickitat River below Fisher Hill Bridge – Nine bank rods kept one Chinook and one jack.
Klickitat River above #5 Fishway – No report.
Other Rivers and Streams Report
In addition to the original 2,100 planted, 3,000 more trout were released in Canyon Creek. I haven’t heard any reports, but it would be fun if you like light gear stream fishing.
John Thompson of Sportsman’s Warehouse said that fishing is getting pretty good on Yale. Merwin water level is steady at 238.00. The fishing is excellent at Merwin. The usual suspect methods are working. Be sure to mix it up though if the fish are there and you’re not getting hooked up.
The lower river seems to be producing better for Chinook and Steelhead from the Lewis River downstream to Cathlamet. The water is quite dirty and visibility low.
With dirty water conditions using Hyper Vis Tape or an equivalent on your lures would be beneficial. In addition, keeping your scents frequently refreshed is always a good idea. Everyone I talk to say the Shad are thick and catching is good. The latest YTD Chinook tally at Bonneville is 160,000+.
The folks at WDFW were busy counting shad. The following catches occurred over the past week:
Sec 1 (Bonneville) – 54 bank anglers kept 345 shad and released two shad.
Sec 2 (Camas/Washougal) – 2 boats/4 rods kept 55 shad.
Sec 3 (I-5 area) – No report.
Sec 4 (Vancouver) – Two bank anglers kept two shad. 3 boats/5 rods kept 19 shad.
Sec 5 (Woodland) – 3 boats/7 rods kept 84 shad.
Sec 6 (Kalama) – 3 boats/7 rods kept 58 shad.
Sec 7 (Cowlitz) – No report.
Sec 8 (Longview) – 3 boats/9 rods kept 13 shad.
Sec 9 (Cathlamet) – No report.
Sec 10 (Chinook/Deep River/Cathlamet) – No report.
The numbers are building every day.
Vancouver Metro Area Lakes
Horseshoe Lake –The guys at Sportsman’s Warehouse say that Kastmasters and small spinners work well. The bass should be migrating into their summer hangouts.
Kress Lake – Stacie Kelsey with WDFW released the following statement: The lake will be CLOSED June 7th for milfoil treatment. This means no access for fishing, boating, or walking around the lake. It will reopen on the 8th.
Stacie went on to say, “many of you know I’ve been trying for 10 years to get this treatment so I’m super excited it’s finally happening. This will not only improve fishing and boating but also repopulating the native plants. This project was funded through the Warmwater Program. Let me know if you have any questions and I really really really appreciate your patience through this process.” Stacie can be reached at the Region 5 offices in Ridgefield. Tel: 360-696-6211 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Battle Ground Lake – When powerbait or worms aren’t working some anglers have been using a fly under a water bobber. I’ve personally always done well trolling a wooly bugger with a 5.5-inch teardrop flasher. Rigged with a 4lb 16” leader. Troll slow and fish way back.
Klineline Pond – Hasn’t received any additional stocking since May 9th.
Lacamas Lake – Stocker trout still available. WDFW says there are all these species you might catch: Black crappie, Bluegill, Brown bullhead, Brown trout, Channel catfish, Common carp, Largemouth bass, Northern pikeminnow, Pumpkinseed Sunfish, Rainbow trout, Warmouth, White sturgeon and Yellow perch. Over the years I have personally caught six of those in Lacamas.
Vancouver Lake and Lake River System– NO REPORT
This Week’s Feature
Free Fishing Weekend
(From WDFW website) Anglers interested in fishing can join the fun during Free Fishing Weekend on June 11-12. During those two days, no license is required to fish or gather shellfish in any waters open to fishing in Washington. A valid Catch Record Card is still required for salmon, steelhead, halibut, and sturgeon. In addition, people do not need a Vehicle Access Pass or Discover Pass to park their vehicle at any public lands or water access areas managed by WDFW, DNR, or Washington State Parks in recognition of National Get Outdoors Day (June 11) and Free Fishing Day (June 12). Learn more about the Free Fishing Weekend.
Weather and Tides Outlook
The SW Washington Columbia tides are trending for overnight high tides flowing out until late morning for the St. Helens reporting station and vicinity. These are the highest tides of the month coming up with a full moon on Tuesday June 14th.
As of Wednesday evening, the weather is shaping up to be damp. Temperatures will continue to be mild with overnight lows in the 50’s and highs to barely 70 degrees. If you are looking for an excellent “eve of fishing” wind report, I highly recommend Wind Alert. The other reporting functions of the app are pretty accurate also.