Oregon Fisheries Update July 15th, 2016

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Willamette Valley – Salmon anglers working the mainstem Columbia are  not that impressed with results above Longview. Catchable numbers remain present but it’s clear the run is not living up to expectations. Some anglers are reporting good success however, especially for summer steelhead fishing, which is peaking right now. Shad and sockeye action is also quickly fading.

This week, the ODFW contacted TGF to ensure us that spring Chinook were indeed being caught in the lower Willamette and report over 20 in a day.

McKenzie fly fishers should do fine over the coming weekend despite a few showers.

The Santiams will remain in good condition through the weekend with summer steelhead and spring Chinook available.

Steelheading on the Clackamas may get a little boost from precipitation this weekend even though flows won’t change much.

According to Pro Guide Jeff Stoeger of O2BFISHN Guide Service (503-704-7920), the water on the Sandy River will be clear until the weather turns hot again.

Northwest Oregon – With most anglers focused on ocean opportunity, it hasn’t been a great week for those that prefer nicer weather. Furthermore, action has slowed for offshore coho and Chinook seem to be scarce out of the mouth of the Columbia. Bottomfish remain an option on the sunken jetty during soft tide exchanges and calm seas, which hasn’t been recently.

Furthermore, the catch and release sturgeon fishing has become a bit more sporadic recently. Action remains best above the Astoria/Megler Bridge, using fresh anchovies for bait but 50 fish days are a bit more challenging to come by, especially with the recent winds the area has been experiencing.

The river fishery for salmon near Astoria is far from impressive. Although a rare Chinook is coming from the above Astoria/Megler Bridge, it is a rare occurrence and won’t change anytime soon.

Estuary crabbing in the lower Columbia is also fair at best.

South of Cape Falcon, again, calm seas have been all too rare lately. Most boats are sticking to estuary opportunity and the Nehalem fishery should be improving in the coming weeks. Effort has yet to ramp up however.

Tillamook County rivers remain low and clear and spring Chinook are deteriorating. Summer steelhead are in the Wilson and Nestucca/Three Rivers systems but you have to be sneaky to target them.

Crabbing has been good in Netarts Bay, especially if you have quality bait. Tillamook and Nehalem are a distant second.

Central & South Coast Reports – Tuna have been caught out of most Oregon ports but fishing has been better generally for those launching further south.

Bottom fishing has been good out of central coast ports. Crabbing is producing good numbers, but they still show signs of summer molting.

Trolling herring and spinners cast from the bank have taken Chinook at Winchester Bay over the past week. The pinkfin surf perch fishery is still producing here.

While the lower Rogue River is slow, trolling in the bay has been effective for a few Chinook. Middle river anglers are catching summer steelhead occasionally while winter steelhead are being caught on the upper Rogue along with some springers.

Boats launching out of Brookings can catch halibut seven days a week. Some salmon have been landed this week.

Trout fishing remains good at Diamond Lake where large trout are taken on occasion.

Central & Eastern – Metolius trout fishing has been good for those familiar with this tricky river.

East Lake has been productive for fly anglers targeting trout with Caddis imitations and large streamers.

Wickiup has been fishing well for kokanee and has delivered some large ones to anglers over the past week.

“Kokanee have been small, but numerous at Green Peter to the point of a running gag. This week it has been slow.

SW Washington – The Cowlitz remains the best option for summer steelhead but effort is slowing. The Kalama and Lewis are poor.

The mainstem Columbia remains the main focus for most anglers. Catches remain good for both boaters and bank anglers, even during this time when tides are not strong.

The Drano Lake steelhead fishery is improving and should produce good catches for the next 4 weeks, especially if water temperatures remain subdued.