Portland/Metro Fishing Report – Catches of Willamette River spring Chinook picked up last week, but so did the effort, both significantly. The lower reach of the Multnomah Channel remains the best bet and will likely stay that way until the region gets rain, whenever that happens. Oregon City is yielding some catches, certainly better than the middle river, but as we enter the first of the peak season here, catches should improve.
The Columbia remains open upstream of Bonneville Dam for spring Chinook. Over 500 have bypassed Bonneville and half that over The Dalles Dam so the run is underway and will continue to build. The season upstream of Bonneville is expected to last over two more weeks.
The Sandy and Clackamas are both producing fair numbers of mostly wild, late-run winter steelhead. An occasional summer-run is caught, but no signs of early spring Chinook on either system Both are low and clear, as one might expect.
Trout fishing is a thing this month and ODF&W has its trout stocking schedule up and ready for study. Go HERE to see how many of Oregon’s favorite sportfish are available where.
North Coast Fishing Report – With steelhead on the wane, coastal anglers are looking west for a bottomfish bonanza and the ensuing salmon season, likely to be quite productive. Offshore weather looks quite favorable for a foray this week and weekend so use caution, but sea bass, lingcod and good crabbing all await.
There’s still a few steelhead being caught in the lower reaches of the Wilson and Nestucca systems. Go early, fish light gear and maybe you’ll get lucky. Summer steelhead have yet to show and it’s still a month early for spring Chinook too, although there are rumors of some around the Trask River.
Catch and keep sturgeon season downstream of Wauna won’t happen for another month but it’s never too soon to explore. The reach from the mouth of the Cowlitz to Wauna Powerlines (near Westport, OR) should be a good option for you to look at.
It’s transition time on the Oregon Coast, but when summer kicks in, there will be plenty to fish for. Halibut, coho and more bottomfishing is the summer mainstay, anglers will just have to be patient a little while longer.
Central Oregon Fishing Reports – Glenn Zinkus
Weather Outlook Across Eastern Oregon: A weekend warmup is coming! Saturday and Sunday will see temperatures in the 70s and going into the 80s in places through the high desert this weekend. Forecasted winds through much of the weekend will be light, which is a welcome break from the screeching winds earlier this week.
Reservoir: This past week ODFW
removed the trout bag limit on Chickahominy because of low water levels, specifically the reservoir is less than 10% full and there is approximately 6 feet of water in the deepest locations. See the press release HERE.
I asked the ODFW fisheries biologist about Chickahominy Reservoir this week and have the following report:
The lake is accessible. The bottom of the boat ramp was about a foot or two above the water in March. ODFW does not recommend launching a large propeller driven boat out there. It is very turbid and there are some boulders in shallow water near the dam. A drift boat would be fine, and so are pontoon boats.
Krumbo Reservoir: Krumbo has been stocked with 13,000 rainbow trout during the week of April 5.
Owyhee River: Reports are that nymphing is good with flows around 100 CFS.
NORTHEAST OREGON WATERS
Wallowa River: As of April 15th, the Wallowa has some color, but anglers are catching some steelhead, and Rob at the Joseph Fly Shoppe is reporting catches of some smolts.
The Fly Shoppe in Joseph is closed for the season, but you may reach Rob at the shop around midday on a hit or miss basis.
Remember that trout fishing on the Wallowa is now open year-round, so trout opportunities exists.
Grande Ronde River: There are no reports for the Grande Ronde. I recommend checking in with The Joseph Fly Shoppe at (541) 432-4343 around midday before setting off for the Grande Ronde. Note that the shop is now closed for the season.
Imnaha River: Rob at The Joseph Fly Shoppe is reporting fishable river levels, and some steelhead catches this week. ODFW reports that steelhead are moving through the system, but their own creel surveys show that catches are variable.
EASTERN/SOUTHEASTERN OREGON WATERS
Lower Deschutes River: The open section of the Lower Deschutes, near Maupin continues to fish well, particularly on nymphs.
Middle Deschutes River: The Middle Deschutes is now at a great level for fishing.
Spinners and spoons are working well according to those at Sportsman’s Warehouse in Bend.
Haystack Reservoir has been red hot with reports of catches of rainbows. If fly fishing, start with Balanced Leeches under an indicator.
Lake Billy Chinook fishing is fantastic. The Metolius Arm is open (tribal pass required) and bull trout fishing in that area is picking up. Leech patterns for fly fishers are the ticket. Some boats with downriggers are having a lot of success. Jigging is also effective.
Crooked River: Crooked River flows have been steady. Reports from the Crooked River only seem to be getting better and better. Anglers are catching rainbows and whitefish, and there are numerous reports of larger rainbows between 15 to 20 inches. The reservoir is slowly filling, and at 61 percent full as of today.
Fall River: Fall River is producing good fishing opportunities, and the popularity continues. ODFW released 1000 trophy size hatchery rainbows into Fall River last week. Reports are that there are fishing from the Hatchery up to the headwaters is good. The usual BWO cripple, sparkle duns, and emerger patterns are good bets on the Fall during this time of year.
Metolius River: I’ve been over to the Met several times during the past week, fished it once and observed other anglers all of the time. I’ve been catching fish with Euro nymphing techniques and flies, and I’ve watched others do the same from Lower Bridge up to Allingham.
South Twin Lake: South Twin Lake is accessible. Jeff Perin at The Flyfisher’s Place in Sisters reports on an angler having fair success with a quick sinking (Type V) line stripping beadhead leech patterns.
Suttle Lake: The ice is off, and there has been a boat on the lake on two different occasions, so early season fishing may be starting. This weekend has perfect spring weather well suited to fishing on Suttle Lake.
Crescent Lake: Crescent lake is accessible, but very low showing at 25 % full as of April 15. Hope to have some reports from the water soon from an expert angling buddy. The lake is accessible from the boat ramp at the resort, for a $10 fee paid to the resort.
Bend Area Ponds, Shevlin Pond: ODFW stocked Shevlin Pond again this week. Great opportunities to bring the younger anglers out. The usual bait, Powerbait, spinners and spoons all catch fish.
North Central Oregon/Mid-Columbia Waters:
We have some great reports from Wendy at Gorge Outfitters Supply (541-739-2222) in Rufus, between the John Day and Deschutes Rivers. Anglers will want to consider the opportunities in this area based on her report; stop in if you are in the area. Not much has been happening with salmon and steelhead, but other species are going strong!
SW Oregon Fishing Report – Contributor Jeff Rome reports
SW Oregon Guides Forecast
Fly fishing forecast:
Josh from Rogue Fly Shop in Grants Pass 541-476-0552
Josh reports that steelhead fishing is still hit and miss, but there are decent quality and numbers of fish in the Grants Pass area. The “holy water” (which is the short section between the Dam and the hatchery) has been productive this week with a good March Brown and Olive hatch. Other areas to try is Griffen Park, Ennis Riffle, and Carpenters Island all down below Grants Pass.
Trout fishing on the Rogue closed March 31 and reopens on May 22. This includes catch-and-release fishing. Any angler on the Rogue at this time will need to have in possession a valid combined angling tag, in addition to their fishing license.
Andy Martin- Brookings Fishing Charters 541-813-1082
Bottom Fishing-Andy reports bottom fishing for lingcod and rockfish has still been great when one can get out on the ocean. “The better the ocean conditions, the better the catches”. Limits of lingcod and various rockfish are to be had!
Most of the lingcod are being caught in shallow water, from 30 to 60 feet.
Surf Perch – for those who want some other great fun to catch dinner fare, surf perch fishing is great now! Andy said that areas along Harris Beach, Lone Ranch and the boarder visitor center beach areas are all great access to fish. Raw shrimp, and Gulp 2” camo sand worms are baits of choice for surf perch.
Halibut– all depth halibut season opens May 1st.
Salmon– Season opener is yet to be determined and will probably be around mid-May
Lakes and ponds to fish this week:
Fishing in local lakes and ponds a good choice for trout and bass
Since rivers and streams are closed for trout, local ponds and lakes are a great choice to take advantage of Spring weather and recent trout stockings. Check out the local spots and enjoy some family fishing time😎🎣
TROUT STOCKING MAPS: Find your place to fish Check out the ODFW fishing and trout stocking maps to find nearby fishing locations, driving directions and descriptions of amenities.
- Lake Selmac (Selma) received its third rainbow trout stocking (5,000 fish) of the year this week. The fishing should be particularly good out here for trout and picking up for bass, and the weather great. Try Power bait and/ or worms. The bass bite is picking up with the warming weather. Various bass hardware and plastics
- Reinhardt Pond in Grants and Expo Pond (day use permits are required) in Central Point have both recently received trout stockings, and Expo is receiving another 1500 legal trout this week.
- Lost Creek is 68% full and surface temp is 47 degrees is a good bet for trout fishing. More news on the marina and park will be available soon as the Jackson County Parks is going to take over April 1st– stay tuned!
- Galesville Reservoir would be a good bet as there should be lots of bass and trout ready to bite.
- Applegate reservoir– it’s about 37% full and surface temps are in the mid 40’s now. There’s some hold over trout but no stocking is planned until mid-April.
- Trout fishing on most rivers and streams remains closed until May 22.
Rivers and streams to fish this week:
Lower Rogue- Despite low water conditions, boat and bank anglers have been regularly picking up spring Chinook. Fishing pressure has been light however so obviously it’s not great yet😉
Middle Rogue- Fish are scattered throughout with a mixed bag of adult, “1/2 pounders” and down runner steelhead.
Wild steelhead can now be retained in the whole Rogue basin, as long as the fish is a minimum of 24 inches long. Only 1 wild fish per day, and 3 per year zone wide in aggregate may be kept. However, retention of wild steelhead closes April 30th.
Upper Rogue- As of March 31, 149 new winter steelhead entered the ladder at Cole Rivers Hatchery, bringing this year’s total to 351 fish. ODFW estimates around 1,100 winter steelhead are destined for the hatchery, so the upper river will be the place to fish in the coming weeks as this year’s run has been later than average.
UMPQUA RIVER System- Remember that the mainstem is temporarily closed to the harvest of all wild Chinook (including jack Chinook) through June. There’s not much to report except from the ODFW report that said that river conditions are and catching steelhead is slow throughout the Umpqua system.
Spring Chinook anglers have started fishing in the lower rivers and still no reports of fish caught as of yet.
Note that as of Oct 1, fishing in the fly water area is restricted to the use of a single, barbless, artificial fly.
NorCal Guides Forecast
Mario Gomez- Ironhead Guide Service -530-598-0530
Mario Gomez has a guiding fleet servicing the Klamath, Smith, Chetco, Rogue and Umpqua rivers. I spoke with him last night to get some “low down” of fishing prospects for the next few days.
The Klamath river near Happy Camp has been producing some consistent steelhead fishing the past month. Last weekend produced 4-5 fish daily and even a 7+ fish day! 😊 It will be good through May usually he said.
SW Washington – Terry Otto
Springers beginning to show in tributaries, while winter steelheading is pretty much over. Trout are still biting in lowland lakes, while bass, panfish, and walleye are biting in local waters.
Vancouver Metro Area
Spring chinook have begun trickling into local tributaries, a trend that should pick up significantly in the next two weeks. The best bets will be the Lewis and Kalama Rivers, since the Cowlitz is closed to springers this year. One or two springers have been caught in Drano lake, which is surprising since less than 500 adults had passed over Bonneville Dam through Tuesday.
The fact is that the best spring chinook action is coming from across the Columbia in Oregon in the Willamette, and there has been a good bite in the Multnomah Channel as well.
Walleye are doing very well in the John Day Pool, where recent catches were nearly 5 walleye per rod. Bass are biting pretty much everywhere in the Columbia, and trout continue to shine in lowland lakes.
Lewis and Washougal Rivers Fishing Report—There have been a few spring Chinook taken in the Lewis this past week, the first time in two years that anglers could actually keep the prized fish. Bank anglers have also been able to land a few Chinook. According to the latest creel survey, 41 bank rods kept one chinook and released two Chinook jacks, while 10 boats/19 rods released one steelhead. Boat anglers are trolling bait at the mouth, and a few are fishing the Meat Hole at the hatchery, while most bank anglers are centered at the hatchery. A few anglers have been plunking in the lower river.
The Washougal is super low and clear, and there are very few fish in it. The river is between runs, and there are not many anglers fishing it. There have been no reports of summer steelhead being caught yet, either.
Merwin and Yale Lakes Fishing Report—WDFW sources report that kokanee fishing in both lakes picked up again this week, possibly because the weather has been warming. The fish are still holding fairly high in the water column, but anglers are having to work to find that magic depth. Most of the time the schools are still in the upper 20 feet of the water column, so most anglers are still flat-line trolling for their fish.
Cowlitz and Kalama Rivers Fishing Report–Last week, Tacoma Power employees recovered 518 winter-run steelhead adults and three spring Chinook adults during five days of operations at the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery separator. However, guide Dave Mallahan of Dave’s Guide Service (360-201-9313), reports that he thinks the winter steelhead run is over. He had heard of only three fish on Monday, and he caught one of those. Also, most of the fish caught recently were dark.
A few winter steelhead are still being caught in the Kalama, and a number of spring chinook have been taken this last week, too, according to John Thompson of Sportsman’s Warehouse in Vancouver, (360) 604-8000). His reports had several people catching springers in the middle sections of the river, with a few steelhead still showing up in the catch, too. Bobber and eggs is the go-to for springers in the river.
Local Lakes Fishing Report—
Brown trout in Kress Lake are very active, and the lake has received more steelhead stockings. Rainbows are biting well in Swofford Pond, and Sacajawea Lake was stocked with 3,500 catchable rainbows on April 8. Horseshoe Lake was stocked last week, too. Steelhead planted in the Fort Borst Park Pond are biting well. Largemouth, crappie, and yellow perch are all biting in Silver Lake, while anglers in Riffe Lake have been doing well for coho and smallmouth bass.
Local Lakes Fishing Report—Brown trout in Kress Lake are very active, and the lake has received more steelhead stockings. Rainbows are biting well in Swofford Pond, and Sacajawea Lake was stocked with 3,500 catchable rainbows on April 8. Horseshoe Lake was stocked last week, too. Largemouth, crappie, and yellow perch are all biting in Silver Lake, while anglers in Riffe Lake have been doing well for coho and smallmouth bass.
Columbia River Gorge
Drano Lake and Klickitat River Fishing Report–A few spring Chinook have been taken by anglers at Drano Lake already, but the latest WDFW creel survey had only one kept for seven bank anglers, and 25 boats/48 rods. A few more springers will probably be caught this weekend, but the action will still be slow until a few more chinook cross over Bonneville. Keep your eyes on the fish counts, which you can do HERE.
You can get all this information in your email box on Thursday night! Sign up here