Willamette Valley Fishing Report – Effort is starting to drop off for Chinook in the Portland area. Passage is still going fairly strong with an average of nearly 4,000 a day still passing the facility. It just may be that people have caught enough fish! An east wind hampered effort on Thursday and will likely become more prevalent in the weeks ahead. Fresh fish are still being caught however and given the magnitude of the run, the action should keep up for at least another week. Anglers will start to see some dark fish however.
Rain forecast Saturday is likely to have little effect on the Willamette River.. Smallmouth bass fishing is good in the lower river where some are catching and releasing sturgeon.
Water level and flows are good enough to provide decent fishing at the McKenzie River, particularly for fly anglers.
The South Santiam is low, clear and mostly devoid of fish. With the exception of a few trout, the same situation may be said about the North Santiam.
Muddy over the past weekend, the waters of the Sandy River have dropped and cleared although fishing here is poor to slow.
Following rainfall on Sunday, October 11th, the Clackamas River quickly rose, then fell. It remains very low and coho fishing is slow without the usual number of fish available.
Hagg Lake has been producing trout but they’re mostly small. Shore-bound anglers should be careful of slippery banks with low water here.
Poor water conditions caused a cancellation of the ODFW family fishing day scheduled for this weekend at Mt. Hood Pond.
North Coast Fishing Report – The Tillamook fishery remains the bright spot on the North Coast but the Nestucca and Siletz are still holding strong as well. Tillamook Bay anglers had a good week with little exception, trolling spinners and herring at the Ray’s Place Piling hole (aka the “Corral”). Fish were taken on both outgoing and incoming tide on Thursday but the best bite clearly took place on the incoming. The ocean will be fishable on Friday but is supposed to blow back up again by the weekend. Ocean crabbing is now closed. The West Channel remains slow. Coho numbers also remain depressed.
Upper bay and tidewater anglers have had a hard go of it lately. Most of the effort has taken place in the Trask River but fish have been taken in the Wilson as of late. Wilson and Kilchis fish show in greater numbers by mid-October.
The Nestucca is still holding strong with some dark fish coming in the catch but adults are holding in good numbers in tidewater, especially around Woods. Softer tides should produce good results around the Boat Ramp Hole and down-bay to the mouth. Driftboaters are anxiously awaiting the first rain event of the season.
The Siletz River is the other bright spot with good tidewater fishing for bobber tossers and trollers. On the current weaker tide series, fresher fish will fall closer to the mouth. The Alsea also remains a good option with the bobber bite picking up lately. Trollers working the lower reaches should also do well this week.
The lower Columbia has become a barren wasteland. Some biologists are reluctant to call it a bust but it’s a bust. Crabbing will be worthwhile this weekend so you may as well bring your frozen green label herring and troll for a few hours on incoming tide and hope for a rare hatchery coho. Who knows, you may even get a late Chinook.
Estuary crabbing in other coastal bays remains fair but could improve with the tides this weekend.
Central & South Coast Reports – While ocean crabbing has provided excellent results, the season closed beginning on Friday, October 16th. Crab in the bays after that date.
Weather conditions have hampered offshore fishing at times but will allow for all-depth halibut to open again on Friday and Saturday, October 16th and 17th. The offshore forecast doesn’t look optimum for the 17th but the swell if far enough apart that it might be safe.
For those who can’t get to decent salmon or steelhead fishing or are not equipped to fish for them, surf perch is an alternative and catches have been good.
Wild coho may no longer be taken after today from the Umpqua, Siuslaw, and Alsea rivers. The wild coho troll fishery at Siltcoos, Tahkenitch and Tenmile lakes will continue through the end of the year.
Bottom fishing has been good for lingcod and rockfish out of Winchester Bay. Crabbing in the bay has been fair. Fishing for Chinook and coho has been good at times on the lower Umpqua River.
While trolling for Chinook slowed somewhat this week for those fishing in Coos Bay Bay, it picked up on the lower Coquille River.
Boats launching out of Gold Beach for bottom fish have been doing well. There are still Chinook and coho being caught by trollers in Rogue Bay. The lower Rogue is producing some steelhead with fishing somewhat slow on the middle river due to low flows. Upper Rogue steelheading has slowed in the flies-only stretch due to low water.
Halibut fishing, while slow, remains open seven days a week out of the Port of Brookings. The ocean out of this port is now closed for Chinook.
Central & Eastern – On a drive-by the Deschutes River early this week, the water was higher and muddy. It has since dropped and cleared, allowing steelhead and trout fishing to resume.
Trout fishing is reported as good by our eye on the high lakes (and elsewhere), Robert Campbell of Fisherman’s Marine in Oregon City (503-557-3313).
Trollers at Odell Lake have continued to catch decent numbers of kokanee using brightly-colored lures behind dodgers,
Reported earlier in The Guide’s Forecast newsletter, there are no boat ramps available at Green Peter. We learned this week that the situation is unlikely to be corrected before February of next year.
SW Washington- As usual, the Cowlitz River remains the bright spot for fall chinook with bank anglers taking fair numbers of fish at the Barrier Dam while boaters do best from Castle Rock to the mouth.
The Kalama has some fall Chinook and a rare coho. Coho runs are officially depressed on district streams and from the jack counts, we shouldn’t count on much better results next year.
Drano Lake is still producing some fall chinook but the better action is taking place at the mouth of the Klickitat and especially in the Hanford Reach. It’s been a record year here.