SW Oregon Fishing Report for November 16th, 2018

From ODF&W

Fishing for fall trout in Hemlock and Lake in the Woods can be great. Spinners or “plunking” with worms and/or PowerBait can be effective methods for fishing these lakes. Some anglers are having success with flies.

Fall Chinook fishing opened on the Smith River Aug. 1 from the mouth to the head-of-tide at Spencer Creek and in the North Fork Smith River from the mouth to the head-of-tide at Johnson Creek. There have been reports of good Chinook fishing in the Smith River tidewater. Steelhead fishing will open on Smith River above head-of-tide at Spencer Creek Dec. 1.

Fall Chinook fishing typically slows in the lower Umpqua River this time of year and anglers usually switch to coho. We have also been hearing that coho fishing has been good throughout the main, but please remember that only fin-clipped coho may be harvested. Please also follow good catch-and-release techniques of unclipped coho.

Lost Creek will be the primary draw for trout anglers in the Rogue watershed now through early spring. Large rainbow have been stocked to complement fish remaining as holdovers from earlier releases. Water levels are lower than usual right now, so trailered boats can only launch at the Takelma boat ramp currently.

Last weekend the action was sporadic but anglers were catching fish up to 16-inches long. Red wedding rings fished with a worm behind a dodger or flashers produced fish, as did PowerBait fished deep while trolling.

Some of the trout have external parasites called copepods. Fish parasites generally do not pose a threat to humans when fish are cooked, and copepods can be scraped off prior to cooking. Anglers are encourage to keep fish that have copepods while staying within the daily limit, since release simply allows the parasite to expand to other hosts.

With still no snow in the forecast, Howard Prairie, Fish Lake, and Fourmile Lake are still great destinations to fish for trout, especially from personal watercraft such as kayaks, float tubes, or the bank.

At Diamond Lake, fishing pressure is light with the fall weather and fishing has slowed a little. Trolling is an effective technique, but using bait or flies has also been showing positive results. Most successful anglers are targeting the south end of the lake.

Bottomfish anglers may now fish at all depths for the remainder of the year. The daily bag limit for marine fish is 5 plus 2 lingcod. The retention of cabezon is now closed for the remainder of the year.

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, 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.


From Pete Heley at PeteHeley.com

Last Friday, Cathey Reiss of Ringo’s Lakeside Marina sold a customer some nightcrawlers so that he could fish for yellow perch off the fishing dock in the County Park and the customer returned a short time later to show her the bright coho jack salmon that “liked” his nightcrawler. With Tenmile Lakes finally getting their salmon, all three coastal salmon lakes now have fishable numbers of salmon in them and the next good rain should greatly improve salmon fishing in all three lakes..

The legal fishing area for salmon on Tahkenitch Lake is from the road that encircles the east end of the lake on Mallard and Five Mile arms down to the Highway 101 Bridge at the lower end of the lake. Legal salmon fishing water on Tenmile Lakes is North and South Tenmile lakes excluding the canal connecting the lakes. The lower deadline is the bridge spanning the Tenmile Creek outlet on Hilltop Drive. As for Siltcoos Lake, the Siltcoos River outlet is open for salmon fishing down to the Highway 101 Bridge and the lake is open up to the Five Mile Road Crossing on Fiddle Creek Arm and the railroad trestle on Maple Creek Arm. Unless specically excluded, all tributaries on Siltcoos, Tahkenitch and Tenmile lakes are closed to salmon fishing.

On the south coast, the Elk River is producing some chinook salmon. but fishing success is confined to the lower river. The salmon on the Sixes seem to all be below the “Orchard Hole” and there doesn’t seem to be any salmon that have made it into Floras Creek yet. One really good rain will change all that.

Perch fishing at the County Park on South Tenmile Lake slowed down from last weeks hot bite, but a number of nice-sized rainbow trout to more than 20-inches picked up most of the slack.

It seems that organized bass tournaments are pretty much over until February of next year and the Emerald Bass Club out of Eugene had their last tournament of the year last week – but they held it on Shasta Lake in northern California.

Just because the bass clubs have stopped having tournaments doesn’t mean you should stop fishing for bass. Although cold water has slowed fishing success, it hasn’t completely stopped it. The Tenmile Bass Club held a very successful tournament on November 3rd on Tenmile Lake where most of the participants weighed in boat limits and last year, bass fishing on Tenmile Lakes, was at least fair for almost the entire winter.

Bay and river crabbing remains fairly good for those using boats and even the dock crabbers are making fair catches if they put the time in. At Winchester Bay, some unattended crab traps have been emptied, or even stolen outright, by thiefs. While Oregon’s rivers and bays are open to crabbing all year, the ocean is slated to reopen for crabbing on December 1st.

Crabbers willing to drag or carry small boats into the “Triangle” have been doing very well and anglers fishing the South Jetty at Winchester Bay have been catching some decent-sized rockfish as well as some greenling and striped surfperch. Retention of cabezon is still closed. Off shore bottomfishing remains pretty much a “sure thing”.

Oregon’s third “Free Fishing Weekend” of this year will fall on November 23rd and 24th according to the regulations booklet and fishing licenses, shellfish licenses and salmon tags will not be required to fish, crab or clam during those two days – subject to current regulations and bag limits, of course. The reason that I say “according to the regulations booklet” is that “Free Fishing Weekends” generally fall on Saturdays and Sundays and November 23rd and 24th fall on Friday and Saturday. Perhaps Thanksgiving has something to do with it – but pay close attention and make sure you are fishing, crabbing or clamming on the proper days if you don’t have a license.

Webinar Driftboating and bank fishing the Wilson River with Pro Guide Bob Rees January 20th