In SW Washington this week rivers are finally recovering from recent rains and chum are showing up in a multitude of rivers, great news surrounding a Columbia River sturgeon opener, and Merwin pressure picking up some with rivers being very high. With less precipitation in the weather for the next week we should see more stable conditions in the SW rivers this week. Look for winter steelhead reports and forecasts starting around thanksgiving or as reports start coming in.
REMINDER, please verify the regulations before fishing any body of water. AND wear a life jacket.
The river has FINALLY started to recover flow wise, as color has been good since after being 8,000 to 9,000 cfs for the last 10 days. The flows could be up and down and I can’t tell you where they will sit, as I am writing the flows are actively changing but on paper it should be below 8,000 cfs and dropping to 4,200 cfs over this next week. WDFW is doing their yearly salmonid carcass studies studying the number of carcasses in the river for wild and hatchery chinook and coho, so the river will be down to 1,200 cfs for the next three Wednesdays starting 11/15/23.
Fishing has been slow to say the least. I haven’t talked to any boats but I talked to a few anglers at Cedar Creek on Monday 11/13/23 and none had seen a fish for a few days. Creel reports don’t look promising, 19 bank rods kept five coho. 2 boats/2 rods kept one chinook and two coho.
Not much to be reported here, water level is finally high enough to put drift boats back in the water but there aren’t many fish around. I drove up the river last weekend and the water color looked alright but flowing fast and high, I didn’t see a soul around. Creel reports show no report, probably due to lack of people on the river to report.
Last week, Tacoma Power employees recovered 2,240 coho adults, 870 coho jacks, six fall chinook adults, one fall chinook jack, 116 summer-run steelhead adults, and 684 cutthroat trout over seven days of operations at the Cowlitz Salmon Hatchery separator.
During the past week, Tacoma Power employees released 404 coho adults and 520 coho jacks at Franklin Bridge in Packwood and they released 843 coho adults, 135 coho jacks, and four cutthroat trout into Lake Scanewa at Scanewa Day Use Park.
River flow below Mayfield Dam is 4,870 cubic feet per second on Monday, November 13, 2023. Water visibility is 11 feet and water temperature is 51.8 F. River flows could change at any time so boaters and anglers should remain alert for this possibility.
I didn’t hear anything this week, my coworkers who had been fishing here a bunch didn’t want to go due to higher water conditions. I heard that the color has improved a ton since last week, but it is still running high and fast so please be cautious on the water.
Cowlitz River I-5 Br downstream – Seven bank rods kept one coho, two coho jacks and released one chum.
Cowlitz River Above the I-5 Br – 26 bank rods kept one coho, one coho jack, two steelhead and released one coho and nine coho jacks. 2 boats/6 rods released one coho.
Good reports out of the Washougal this week as Griffin Soule and Beckham Schill have been doing decent catching coho up and down the river, as well as tons of chum salmon there seems to be a massive amount of them this year. The river is still flowing fairly fast and high so targeting slower water like the sandy swimming hole will be a great choice.
River is running high and fast, a coworker has said there are still fish around but it has not been good at all. He hasn’t touched a fish here in a week or so.
Not many people, if any are out on the Columbia trolling for coho or chinook anymore and it isn’t worth the trying with the miniscule amount of fish headed over Bonneville. In good news there is a planned sturgeon opener in January through February Ian posted about it last week.
If it is anything like last year a vast majority will be caught within the first few opening days, so plan accordingly.
No creel reports for this week.
Creel reports will return in spring 2024.
No worthy fishing left here, fish are still stopping in and resting though I doubt it’s worth the gas money to fish it.
Warm Water Lakes and Ponds
Starting to get to the time of year that some local lakes will get a November through December trout plant. I will be watching weekly to update when they do. I know Lacamas, Klineline, and Battleground Lake all have November trout opportunities but some years they don’t plant until after thanksgiving.
With a lot of the rivers running high and fast with poor fishing anglers have turned their attention to winter kokanee. Anglers are finding most of their fish within the top 15-foot water column on all sorts of gear, it has been slow but anglers are still finding success.
Ilwaco and Long Beach
We are mid Razor clam dig opening and I have heard nothing but good things and with some good morning tides for the next few days it should provide some amazing clamming. Don’t forget to bring your surf perch rod, I have heard some great things about surf perch fishing as of late.
Nov. 12, Sunday, 5:53 p.m.; -0.3 feet; Mocrocks
Nov. 13, Monday, 6:30 p.m.; -0.7 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Copalis
Nov. 14, Tuesday, 7:09 p.m.; -0.9 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Mocrocks
Nov. 15, Wednesday, 7:51 p.m.; -0.9 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Copalis
Nov. 16, Thursday, 8:37 p.m.; -0.8 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Mocrocks
Nov. 17, Friday, 9:27 p.m.; -0.5 feet; Copalis
Nov. 18, Saturday, 10:22 p.m.; -0.1 feet; Mocrocks
Read this week’s Oregon fishing report.