Oregon Fisheries Update June 5th – June 11th, 2015

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Willamette Valley Fishing Report – Columbia River salmon anglers continue to be the beneficiaries of a larger than predicted spring salmon run. Department officials ok’d an additional fin-clipped Chinook in the daily bag limit so anglers are now allowed to retain 2 hatchery Chinook instead of the traditional one. This regulation remains in place until the summer Chinook opener mid-month. Catches have been good in the gorge although success rates change daily. Shad fishing is picking up at Bonneville Dam as well with the bulk of the run about to hit.

Be prepared for crowds wherever you fish as this Friday and Saturday, June 6th and 7th, are Oregon’s Free Fishing Weekend, during which no licenses or harvest cards are required to fish, crab or clam dig.

There are still some springers being caught on the lower Willamette. It’s pretty much a hardware show now. Catch and release sturgeon fishing has slowed although shad fishing is pretty good in Oregon City although low flows make it challenging to fish.

McKenzie River levels and flows remain fishable although steelhead is very slow here. A better bet might be trout fishing.

The Santiam system is low and clear. With the poor showing of steelhead this year, fishing has been slow.

Clackamas anglers are facing the result of little rain and a poor snowpack: low, clear conditions continue to challenge anglers here. There are a few summer steelhead in the system as well as springers although fishing is slow overall.

Sandy River levels are also quite low although anglers have a proverbial light at the end of the tunnel here: the spring Chinook run has yet to reach its peak here.

North Coast Fishing Report – Spring Chinook is still on the minds of many Tillamook area anglers. The lower bay has produced poorly in recent days but there are fair numbers of fishers working the upper bay with spinners and herring with some degree of success. Given the extreme low water conditions for district rivers however, it’s a wonder that catch rates aren’t better than they are.

The lower reaches of the Trask and Nestucca and to a smaller degree the Wilson, are holding fish. There are few tidewater anglers but those that know these waters are taking a few fish on the current tide series. Upriver, anglers are having to target the extreme deep holes during early morning hours to find success. There are fair numbers of springers present at the hatchery hole on the Trask but they are lock-jawed. It’s much the same on Three Rivers.

The halibut quota is yet to be updated but anglers, especially out of Newport have been doing well enough to be worried about a pre-mature closure. More will be revealed in the coming week. Bottomfishing remains excellent out of Garibaldi but the charter fleet is concentrating their effort near Arch Cape right now.

Sturgeon fishing out of Astoria remains excellent with few folks participating.

Bottomfishing out of Astoria, on the south jetty is epic but lingcod are hard to come by.

Central & South Coast Reports – The next chance to fish all-depth halibut will be June 11-13 and June 25-27 providing the quota didn’t fill during the previous opener in the last week of May. It has filled in one or two openings in years past.

Fishing for rockfish has been good off the central Oregon coast while lingcod fishing has been only fair this week. It should be a good weekend to try with mild offshore conditions forecast although an afternoon wind is very likely.

Coastal streams and estuaries have been producing sea-run cutthroat trout early this year. Spinning or fly tackle will take them.

The ocean season or hatchery coho will open June 27th for a quota of 55,000 fish or August 6th, whichever comes first.

The pinkfin perch fishery has continued to produce limits at Winchester Bay for those who can find concentrations of fish. Crabbing has been good in the ocean outside the bay. Shad and smallmouth fishing is good in the Umpqua River.

The Oregon Health Authority issued an advisory for dangerous levels of bacteria at a beach in Coos County. Water samples showed higher-than-normal levels of fecal bacteria at Sunset Bay State Park beach.

Springers are still being caught on the lower Rogue although action has slowed in low water conditions. The middle Rogue is slow while fishing on the upper river has been good.

Boats launching out of the Port of Brookings are taking Chinook occasionally as they wait for the salmon to make their way near shore. Bottomfishing has been good.

Central & Eastern – Fishing has been fair to good on the challenging Metolius River.

Odell Lake is producing fair to good catches of kokanee.

The Imnaha River opens to spring Chinook fishing on Saturday, June 6th. Grande Ronde anglers may start fishing for Chinook on June 13th.

SW Washington – The Cowlitz is slowing for spring Chinook and has yet to light up for summer steelhead. Summer steelhead should start to make up a larger percentage of the fish but the peak is still weeks away.

Most anglers are focusing their efforts on the mainstem Columbia and action in the Longview to estuary reach is pretty good. Bank anglers should see some fair opportunity on the current minus tide series and steelhead numbers should be building. Summer Chinook should start to make a stronger showing too.