Southwest Oregon Fishing Reports
Bottomfishing is now open to fish at all depths. Fishing for lingcod and rockfish was very good this past weekend. Many anglers caught big lingcod while fishing out past 40 fathoms. The daily bag limit for marine fish is 5 plus 2 lingcod.
The harvest of cabezon along with copper, quillback, and China rockfish are now all closed to boat anglers. Shore anglers will still be able to harvest these rockfish species (but are encouraged to release them) and 1 cabezon a day.
Anglers may also choose to fish the offshore longleader fishery outside of the 40-fathom regulatory line, which is open year round.
Alerts from ODF&W on 11/14 includes – The recreational harvest of razor clams is CLOSED from the south jetty of the Siuslaw River to the California border for elevated domoic acid levels.
As part of the 2016 regulation simplification process, Diamond Lake is now back to the Southwest Zone regulation of 5 rainbow trout per day. Some anglers are reporting fantastic catches, while others are just getting a few. Recent reports indicate most successful anglers are using flies with a quick retrieve or trolling. Others are having good success with floating bait off the bottom. If one technique isn’t working switch to something else.
Fish Lake is quickly filling back up. It is now 22 percent full and should continue to fill. The resort ramp is usable for smaller trailered boats, but the resort is now on winter hours and is only open Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
Trout fishing has been good lately, some large trout are being caught both from boat and the shore. Try trolling a green wedding ring/worm, or small lures such as spoons or rooster-tails. Fly-fishing can also be fun here with brightly colored, flashy streamers.
The water clarity is good by the resort, but decreases elsewhere. The water is cold, about 41 degrees by the resort, so fishing in the late afternoon or evening when fish are more active may be a good bet.
Tiger trout, Chinook salmon, brook trout, and larger rainbow trout are available. Remember that tiger trout must be immediately released unharmed. Anglers are encouraged to report their catch of tiger trout to fish district staff at 541-826-8774.
Howard Prairie has been stocked with our annual “fall fingerlings.” These trout are not of legal size, but should be by the spring, please be cognizant of the size of fish you are catching and gently release these smaller fish to grow until next year.
The reservoir is 33 percent full and has good water clarity. All boat ramps are closed at this time due to low reservoir levels. Inflatables and kayaks can probably still launch from some areas.
If you can get a small inflatable or kayak in, try trolling worms or lures. Some big fish have been reported to be caught at Howard Prairie, with cool water temperatures the larger trout are active and biting at lures with red and black colors. Bank fishing can still be a good option here if you can get to some deeper areas.
Steelhead fishing has slowed some in the lower Rogue River. Anglers swinging flies or tossing spinners are having the best luck.
As we ease into fall/winter weather, the water temperature will continue to drop, which should encourage some fish to move up river. Bay fishing has slowed some, but anglers are still fishing and catching chinook and steelhead below the Hwy 101 bridge.
Most boating anglers are trolling some type of in line flasher with an anchovy. Keep an eye on the weather forecast. When expecting rain and rising river levels, some people may want to consider switching tactics to anchoring up and back-bouncing eggs.
Half-pounder fishing has been good in the Rogue Canyon, especially below Blossom Bar.
Adult steelhead fishing continues to be good throughout the river, spinners and flies are bringing in some nice large fish and they will continue to move upstream. Wild steelhead must be released unharmed. The water is low and cold so fish are not moving around until we get a rain.
Some good fall chinook fishing has also been reported lower in the river, but keep in mind Chinook is now closed above Hog Creek to protect spawning fish.
Some coho have been reported around Grants Pass. However, most coho on the Rogue are wild and must be released. Only hatchery coho can be retained. Please be mindful to release wild coho back into the river unharmed with minimal handling. Coho are aggressive and bite on flashy spinners with black, pink or purple colors.
Boaters floating from Hog Creek to Graves Creek should be familiar with the rapids in this section of river, and know their takeouts. Experienced oarsmen/woman are recommended here. There are many BLM public access points to bank fish from Hog Creek to Graves Creek. This is often referred to the “Galice area.”
Above Hog Creek, Chinook fishing is now closed.
Summer steelhead and trout remain open in the upper Rogue, and summer steelhead fly-fishing has been good. The artificial fly-only season is now over on the upper Rogue, but bait restrictions are still in effect in some areas so be aware of the regulations where you are fishing. From Fishers Ferry to Shady Cove anglers cannot use bait. A simple setup of bouncing bait, or using lures such a spinner, a plug or a bead can be very effective in steelhead fishing.
This has been a great run of summer steelhead with not only many fish available, but larger fish as well. Cold, low water has been keeping steelhead from moving around much right now, so if you can figure out where they are holding it can still be good fishing.
One new summer steelhead entered the trap at Cole Rivers last week, for a total of 2,900 steelhead to date. Excess hatchery adult summer steelhead from Cole River Hatchery are being recycled back into the fishery and anglers are reporting success in catching these fish.
Plenty of naturally produced trout are always present in the upper Rogue, however water has cooled significantly and these fish will be very slow to bite.
Anglers can cast flies or smaller lures like a Panther Martin or rooster tail. Often tipping the lure with bait helps to produce. In slower holes, fishing straight bait such as nightcrawler, Pautzke eggs or even PowerBait will produce.
Subscriber Tom S let us know about the Lost Creek Reservoir – The lake is very low about 12ft off the dock at the marina. Stay close to dock when launching.
He took a crew from work out today Sunday the 10th. Wedding rings nightcrawlers with 1oz weight put limits for four on the boat in 3 hrs. Most fish were caught past the Hwy 62 bridge.
Thanks a bunch Tom! If you have a report you want to share send us a note using our contact form HERE.
Several rivers and streams closed to trout fishing after Oct. 31 – be sure to check the regulations before heading out this weekend.