Oregon and SW Washington Fisheries Update August 23rd, 2019

Willamette Valley/Metro – The mainstem Columbia is not a fair option for fall Chinook. Trollers working Davis Bar and downstream areas are taking a few fall Chinook using Pro Trolls and spinners or bait. Anchor fishers are finding a few fish as well.

Coho are starting to show at the mouth of the Sandy River, but numbers will improve in the coming weeks. Spinner casters will be out in force. And speaking of the Sandy River:

Pro guide Jeff Stoeger (503-704-7920) of O2BFISHN reports, ” This week, the Sandy still has a few Chinook in the river being caught in the upper river and they still look great. Spinners will most likely be the trick to get them to bite. The lower and the mouth will have some coho showing up. Twitching jigs and eggs under a bobber will help entice these fish to bite. The lower river with deep holes will be the most likely place to find these fish and you find them as they roll showing where they are laying.”

See the full version of Jeff’s report by becoming a paid subscriber here.

It’s still early for Willamette River coho seekers to expect any measurable results for salmon destined for the Clackamas. They should start to come in the next few weeks, a robust return is expected.

Clackamas River anglers are still largely focused on a sparse summer steelhead return, coho will show soon and spark greater interest.

We’re in a peak period for warmwater species so check the ODF&W web site for options nearby.

Northwest Oregon – Ocean salmon fishing in the South of Falcon fishery remains slow for coho seekers. The fishery closes on August 25th, with over half of the quota likely remaining in the bucket. Ocean fishing for coho will only be closed for a few days however, it re-opens to ANY TWO salmon starting August 31st – September 1st, and each Fri-Sun through the earlier of September 30 or the quota of 9,000 coho. Chinook fishing is inconsistent.

Although the Buoy 10 fishery is now closed to retention of Chinook, coho fishing remains excellent for what biologists believe is going to be a very robust run. The ocean remains open to the retention of both coho and Chinook and coho action remains great. Thresher sharks are numerous off of the Long Beach Peninsula, making it challenging to target salmon in that area.

Freshwater fishing leaves lots to be desired. The summer steelhead fishing on the Wilson, Nestucca and Siletz Rivers is slow and fall Chinook have yet to take off. The Alsea and Siletz Rivers are fair early season options as Chinook have been caught in both systems.

Hatchery coho should also start showing in the Tillamook and Nehalem River systems as well. Trollers working spinners or bait should start to see some results. Chinook have yet to show in good numbers here, but a depressed return is expected.

Ocean crabbing is good, but fair numbers of soft-shelled males remain in the mix. Bay crabbing is fair, and lots of people are trying.

Tuna chasers are in full bloom right now, when the ocean is calm enough to make a 30 or 35 mile run that is.

ODF&W expanded the halibut daily bag limit to 2 halibut/person. With rough seas about every opener, expanded opportunity was warranted. When we get calm seas again, fishing should be good.

More restrictions for bottomfishers. Anglers must release copper, quillback, and China rockfish when fishing from a boat, beginning 12:01 a.m. on Friday, Aug. 23 as the harvest guideline for these species has been met. For the full press release, go HERE.

See the full version by being a paid subscriber or last week’s edition here.

Central and Eastern Oregon Fishing Reports

From ODF&W

Fishing the higher elevation hike-in lakes can offer solitude, good fishing, and a chance to combine a couple of your favorite outdoor activities. Find more information on planning your hike-in fishing trip.

The Crooked River offers anglers a good chance at 10- to 16-inch trout and whitefish.

Trout fishing on the Wallowa River is currently good with fish to 20-inches being reported.

The upper Imnaha fishes well for trout and whitefish during the summer months.

This is a good time for some huckleberry picking and fishing at Jubilee Lake — fish early and late to avoid the swimmers and boaters.

Yellow perch fishing should be good in Pelican Bay area of Upper Klamath Lake and in Crystal and Fourmile lakes.

Trout fishing continues to be good in Long Creek and the North Fork Sprague River.

Fly-anglers have reported catching dozens of redband trout between 6- and 13-inches in Deep Creek recently.

This is a good time of year to throw hopper patterns for redband trout on the Chewaucan and Wood rivers.

Southwest Oregon from Pete Heley at PeteHeley.com

Anglers may keep two Pacific halibut per day in the sport halibut fisheries in the Central Oregon Coast and Southern Oregon Subareas (subareas south of Cape Falcon to the OR/CA Border), beginning Friday, August 23, 2019.

Updates to the sport bottomfish fishery will be posted here: myodfw.com/pacific-halibut-sport-regulations

And to the Marine Recreational Report here: myodfw.com/recreation-report/fishing-report/marine-zone

A reminder that on days when the all-depth fishery is also open, such as Aug. 23-24 & Aug. 30-31, the all-depth fishery regulations apply, regardless of what depth is fished. This means that most bottomfish species may not be retained when halibut are onboard the vessel.

South of Humbug Mountain subarea:

Open seven days per week until quota is met or Oct. 31. Quota remaining = 9,000 lbs. 2 fish bag limit effective Friday, Aug. 23.

Data regarding the current ocean selective (finclipped) coho season has been updated through August 11thth and 39.8 percent of the quota has been caught and kept with fishing success running at .74 retained salmon per angler/trip for the season.. The most successful port so far continues to be Depoe Bay with 1.01 kept salmon per angler trip.

Ocean salmon-fishing continued its gradual several week decline.

As for chinook salmon catches, Newport leads with 1,196 followed by Winchester Bay Bay with 719 and Depoe Bay with 663.

With two weeks left in the season, 39.8 percent of the quota has been caught and kept and there is no chance that season quota will be met or even approached.

As of August 16th, jetty anglers can once again keep one cabezon measuring at least 16-inches per day. But as for boat anglers – it’s still catch and release.

Studies quoted in “The Columbia Basin Bulletin. have concluded that a major cause of hatchery salmonids straying in coastal streams is due to certain streams lacking distinctive odors. The gradual accidification of the ocean also appears to be an important factor regarding the straying of spawning salmonids.

A reminder that things could always get worse was the recent closing of every Mississippi beach due to toxic algae.

Striper fishing on the Smith River improved last week for bait anglers.

Several Florence-area lakes are providing good early morning fishing for largemouth bass and yellow perch.

An inexpensive and easier way to move fish over dams and other obstructions have been developed by WHOOSHH. It’s definitely worth an internet search. – make sure you spell it right.

Southwest – From ODF&W

Bass fishing has been good on Tenmile Lakes with fish hitting topwater lures during low light periods.

Trout anglers should check out the upper Elk and Chetco rivers for cutthroat. Look for them at the mouths of tributaries or in deeper pools where the water is cooler.

Bass fishing on the Main and South Umpqua is always a good bet this time of year.

Summer steelhead numbers continue to increase in the middle and upper Rogue.

Trout fishing has been good recently at Fish Lake, where the water remains cooler throughout the summer than some other reservoirs in the area.

Where water temperatures are getting warm enough to put trout off the bite, bass and warmwater fish may be the better bet. This includes places like Applegate Reservoir, Expo Pond, Howard Prairie Reservoir, Hyatt Lake and Emigrant Reservoir.

Trout fishing continues to be good in the Rogue River above Lost Creek Reservoir. This section of the river is stocked weekly, and the waters remain at cooler, trout-friendly temperatures.

The Rogue Pikeminnow Roundup harvest contest will continue until Sept. 2, contact Ryan Battleson at 541-826-8774 x 226 for details.

2019 Stocking schedule and Stocking Maps

SW Washington –  From the WDF&W web site, August 20th:


Columbia River Tributaries

• Lewis River: Effective August 1, 2019 until further notice, from Johnson Creek to the power lines below Merwin Dam: release all salmon other than hatchery coho.

• North Fork Toutle River: Effective August 1, 2019 until further notice: Daily salmon limit 6, up to 4 adults may be retained. Release all salmon other than hatchery coho. Sturgeon:

• Buoy 10 upstream to McNary Dam including adjacent tributaries: Closed to retention of white sturgeon but remains open for catch and release fishing only.

Fishery Reports: Salmon/Steelhead: Columbia River Tributaries

Cowlitz River – I-5 Br downstream – 6 bank anglers had no catch. 2 boats/3 rods released 1 Chinook. Above the I-5 Br – 14 bank rods kept 1 steelhead and released 1 Chinook jack. 19 boats/39 rods kept 42 steelhead.

Kalama River – 3 bank anglers had no catch.

Lewis River – 3 bank anglers kept 1 steelhead. 1 boat/2 rods released 2 Chinook.

Wind River – 2 bank rods had no catch. 1 boat/2 rods had no catch.

Drano Lake –7 boats/18 rods kept 7 Chinook, 1 jack and released 1 steelhead.

Klickitat below Fisher Hill Bridge – No anglers sampled.

Klickitat above #5 Fishway – No anglers sampled.