Southwest Oregon Fishing Reports
From Pete Heley at PeteHeley.com
No update from Pete this week.
Bottomfishing is now open to fish at all depths. Fishing for lingcod and rockfish has been good when the ocean is calm enough to fish. 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. The longleader fishery has a daily bag limit of 10 fish made of yellowtail, widow, canary, blue, deacon, redstripe, greenstripe, silvergray, and bocaccio rockfish. No other groundfish are allowed and offshore longleader fishing trips cannot be combined with traditional bottomfish, flatfish or halibut trips. Find information about a longleader setup here.
Ocean salmon fishing for Chinook salmon from Cape Falcon to Humbug Mt is open 7 days a week. The non-selective coho season is now open every day from Sept. 23 through Sept. 29 or until attaining the quota of 15,640 wild coho. Chinook must be a minimum of 24-inches long and coho must be at least 16-inches.
Tuna are still being caught 20-35 miles offshore when conditions allow anglers to get on the ocean.
Halibut anglers may now keep two halibut per day as of Aug. 23. The Nearshore Halibut season is open Monday through Thursday each week in the Central Coast Subarea. As of Sept. 15, there is 69 percent of the Nearshore quota remaining. The summer All-Depth season for the Central Coast Subarea is open every Friday through Sunday through October 26 or attaining the quota of 67,898 lbs. As of Sept. 15 there is 57 percent of the All-Depth quota remaining.
The Southern Oregon Subarea is open seven days a week for halibut. There is still 71 percent of the quota remaining for the Southern Oregon Coast halibut season.
Within the Coos River Basin – Fishing for rockfish inside the bay has been good near the submerged rock piles. Fishing is typically best near slack tide. Boat anglers are no longer able to harvest copper, quillback, or China rockfish for the remainder of the year because we reached our catch limit on these species. A jig with a twister tail can be a great bait for catching rockfish.
Salmon have spread out in tidewater after last week’s rain. Anglers are catching Chinook salmon from the Chip Pile upstream into the Millicoma and South Fork Coos rivers. Most anglers have concentrated around California Street Boat Ramp or the Marshfield Channel/SOMAR area.
Anglers have been catching wild coho downstream of California Street Boat Ramp. There is no harvest of wild coho this year in Coos Bay.
Temporary wild fall Chinook salmon regulations started on Aug. 1. Salmon anglers in Coos Bay will only be able to harvest 1 wild Chinook per day and 5 wild Chinook for the season in aggregate from all waters from Coos Basin, Coquille Basin, Sixes River, and Elk River, but no more than 2 adult Chinook salmon may be harvested from the Coquille Basin.
The South Fork Coos River will be closed to salmon fishing upstream of Myrtle Tree Boat Ramp, and the Millicoma River will be closed to salmon fishing upstream of Rooke Higgins Boat Ramp.
Trout fishing in streams and rivers remain open through Oct. 31. Anglers may now use bait through the end of the trout season. Some anglers have had success catching sea-run cutthroat trout in the upper reaches of tidewater.
Water temperatures in many lakes and reservoirs are still warm enough for some good bass and other warmwater fishing.
With temperatures cooling and mosquitoes gone, the fall is a good time to plan a trip to one of the high cascades hike-in lakes — brook trout are hungry and active this time of year.
A few striped bass have been caught on the lower Coquille River by anglers trolling for salmon.
The smallmouth bass bite is also good at this time in the mainstem and South Fork Coquille rivers. Smallmouth bass will bite on worms, jigs with a twister tail, crankbaits, and small spinners.
Salmon anglers had decent catches of Chinook salmon trolling around Bullards Beach and Riverton Boat Ramp this past week. Overall, salmon fishing has been slow.
Temporary wild fall Chinook salmon regulations started on Aug. 1. Salmon anglers in the Coquille Basin will only be able to harvest 1 wild Chinook per day. There is a season aggregate of 5 wild Chinook from all waters from Coos Basin, Coquille Basin, Sixes River, and Elk River, but no more than 2 adult Chinook salmon may be harvested from the Coquille Basin. The Coquille River will be closed to salmon fishing upstream of Sturdivant Park Bridge (Highway 42S Bridge).
Trout fishing in streams and rivers remain open through Oct. 31. Anglers may now use bait through the end of the trout season.
Diamond Lake has been decent. 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.
On the lower Rogue River, with recent rainfall, the water temperature has dropped a couple of degrees and the water has colored up a bit, which has encouraged some fish to move upriver. Bay fishing has slowed but should pick up again when the weather clears up.
Anglers reported catching a lot of jacks along with many adults downstream of Hwy 101. Most boating anglers are trolling some type of inline flasher with an anchovy. With rising water levels, some people have considered switching tactics to anchoring up and back-bouncing eggs. Anglers can expect fishing to only get better through the month of September. Coho have just started showing up.
Steelhead fishing picked up in the lower river as good numbers of adult and half-pounder steelhead have pushed into the river. Anglers swinging flies or tossing spinners are having the best luck.
Half-pounder fishing has been good in the Rogue Canyon, especially below Blossom Bar. Keep in mind it is now artificial fly and lures only from Foster Creek to Whisky Creek until Oct. 31.
Adult steelhead fishing continues to be good throughout the river. The recent rain and cooler temperatures have pushed some fresh fall chinook upriver.
Boaters floating from Hog Creek to Graves Creek should be familiar with the rapids in this section of the 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 Fishers Ferry, Chinook fishing is now closed, as well as it being artificial fly only. Summer steelhead and trout remain open in the upper Rogue, and summer steelhead fishing has been good.
A good number of hatchery trout have also been reported in the upper river and these can make for fun bank fishing, especially on a fly. A reminder that anglers can keep 5 hatchery trout a day on the Rogue River.
As of Sept. 24, 122 new summer steelhead had entered the trap at Cole Rivers, for a total of 2,758 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.
The Rogue above Lost Creek Reservoir was stocked for the final time of the summer a few weeks ago. Some stocked fish will still be present, and naturally-produced trout will still be biting.
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.
Bass fishing has been good on Tenmile Lakes. Anglers are catching most of the bass along the deeper weedlines and submerged trees. Topwater lures have been catching bass in the low light periods or even in the shade during the middle of the day.
Yellow perch will start transitioning from the weedlines to the deep water mud flats in the next few weeks. Most of the fish are under 10-inches long but there are a few 12-inch plus fish being caught.
Trout anglers continue to troll for trout. A few trout have been caught on bait by anglers targeting yellow perch.
From the main stem of the Umpqua River, some fall Chinook have been caught in the bay, and there seems to be a fair amount of coho. Please note there is no retention of unclipped coho salmon in the river, but fin-clipped coho is open in the river as part of your two adult salmon daily limit. The river regulations start at the tips of the jetties.
Bass fishing has still been good in most of the main.
Trout fishing reopened on May 22, 2019, but tributaries close to all fishing Sept. 16. The mainstem is catch-and-release only.
The North closed to all fishing for Chinook on July 1. There have been some reports of anglers catching summer steelhead, but it has been slow.
The mainstem South and all tributaries close to all fishing on Sept. 16 as part of the annual closure to protect salmon.