SW Oregon Fishing Report for November 2nd, 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.

Check the 2018 stocking schedule Hemlock Lake  and the 2018 stocking schedule Lake in the Woods

Water levels are slowly rising at Fish Lake. The resort ramp may now be usable for small boats, but anglers must call ahead to check on conditions and open hours at the resort. The USFS ramp offers an easy launching point for individual watercraft and inflatables.

Anglers have reported good success near the resort casting Kastmasters toward shore. Good-size rainbow have been caught in recent weeks.

Tiger trout, Chinook salmon, brook trout, and larger rainbow trout are available. Larger tiger trout can be targeted by casting lures or streamer flies around structure, but 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.

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.

Trout fishing should be very good, and bass anglers should continue to have good success through fall. Trolling a wedding ring spiked with a piece of worm or Gulp worm behind an oval egg sinker can produce very well at Lost Creek.

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.

At Expo Pond Rainbow trout were stocked the week of Oct. 15 and trout fishing should improve with the cooling temperatures this week. Fishing for bass and panfish should be good. The Southern Oregon RV Park developed by Jackson County offers parking in the lot to the right as you drive in Gate 5. A $4 day use fee to park applies here, or an annual parking permit can be purchased from Jackson County Parks Department.

On the Lower Rogue River water levels are low and with cooler than average water temperatures, fish are moving up river. With some rain in the forecast, there might be a push of fish in the near future. The bay fishery has slowed way down and anglers have begun to shift tactics. It’s worthwhile to start thinking about side drifting with eggs farther up river.

Coho salmon have started pushing through as well. Anglers have reported catch in the lower sections of the Rogue. Only hatchery coho may be kept as part of an angler’s adult and jack salmon daily bag limit.

Anglers who are traveling up river should contact the Forest Service for updates on road closures during fire season.

The Huntley seining project will continue through Oct 31. Find updates on Huntley counts here.

On the middle Rogue River Rishing for summer steelhead should be good. The river remains open for hatchery summer steelhead, and the 2018 runs appears to be very strong. Anglers are catching summer steelhead on plugs fished from a drift boat or drifting night crawlers/roe or yarn balls with scent. Wild steelhead must be released unharmed.

There are reports that Coho are starting to show in the Grants Pass Area, and definitely within the Rogue Canyon. You have to target Coho if you want to catch them. Use black or pink, black and orange jigs or panther martin or blue fox spinners with a pink body. Coho typically bite on the fall, so don’t retrieve gear quickly. The Majority of Coho are wild and must be released unharmed. Please do not remove them from the water.

The Rogue River is also open for trout fishing. Only hatchery rainbow trout may be retained. All wild rainbow and cutthroat trout must be released. There are half-pounder steelhead present from near Robertson bridge downstream throughout the Rogue Canyon. There are many BLM public access points to fish for these from Hog Creek to Graves Creek.

And on the upper Rogue River beginning Nov. 1 the fishing regulations change on the upper Rogue. Fishing is restricted to artificial flies and lures between Fishers Ferry boat ramp and the Shady Cove boat ramp. Bait is allowed between Shady Cove and Cole Rivers Hatchery.

Fly anglers fishing from drift boats have been doing quite well from Rogue Elk to Fishers Ferry Reach of the Rogue. The upper Rogue above Rogue Elk is pretty cold so knowing where the fish are and swinging right on top of them is good bet if you’re going to target that reach. Please be aware of Chinook redds (salmon nests) and do not disturb actively spawning fish.

As of Oct. 24, 1,825 summer steelhead had entered Cole Rivers Hatchery, with 46 new for the week. No Coho have shown at the hatchery yet, but anglers should be aware of their identification. Excess hatchery summer steelhead were recycled back into the fishery at Touvelle Park and Modoc in recent weeks. Only hatchery coho may be retained, so when in doubt, release the fish. Find updated fish counts at Cole Rivers Hatchery here.

Saunders Lake was stocked with 1,300 fall trophy trout in mid-October. Fishing has been good for anglers fishing with Powerbait or casting spinners or flies.

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.

Salmon fishing from Cape Falcon to Humbug Mountain closed after Oct. 31. The Elk River Fall Chinook State Waters Terminal Season starts on Nov. 1-30.

From Humbug Mountain to the OR/CA border, salmon fishing is closed for the season.

The Nearshore halibut season closed after Oct. 31.

For the southern Oregon Subarea, halibut closed after Oct. 31.


From Pete Heley at PeteHeley.com

Ocean fishing for chinook salmon will close on October 31st (Wednesday evening) – at which time there will be no ocean salmon fishing or crabbing. Ocean crabbing is slated to reopen on December 1st – but the reopening of the commercial crab fishery on that date is not a certainty. The commercial fleet sometimes delays starting their season when the meat content of tested crabs is below an acceptable level.

The reopening of recreational ocean crabbing in parts of northern California was delayed from it’s scheduled November 3rd start because of elevated toxin levels.

Offshore bottomfishing continues to be very good and jetty anglers are having fair to good success for lingcod, rockfish and greenling. Anglers fishing above the South Jetty are still hooking a few salmon, most of which are wild cohos which they cannot keep.

It appears that very few, if any, coho salmon have yet been caught in Siltcoos, Tahkenitch or Tenmile lakes – even though the season has been open since October 1st – perhaps this is a case where fishing regulations could be unsimplified. If the coho seasons for these lakes were to begin when the salmon actually enter these lakes, anglers with second rod licenses could keep using them for trout and warmwater fish until the salmon actually enter these lakes.

The few salmon reported caught in mid-October by customers of Ada Resort on Siltcoos Lake were quite likely large resident rainbow or cutthroat trout and not coho salmon. Now that our area is getting some rainfall, these lakes could receive salmon at any time.

“The Bites On, in Empire, reported that one of their bassfishing customers caught an adult coho salmon in Tahkenitch Lake several days ago.

A few chinook salmon have been reported from the lower Elk River, but none reported yet taken from the Sixes River or Floras Creek. A good rain will get fish into all these streams.

Most streams in the state close to fishing an hour after sunset on Wednesday, October 31st. To be safe, check the fishing regulations – since there are numerous exceptions.

The Coos County lakes that were recently planted with large rainbow trout have been fishing well – with the possible exception of Butterfield Lake where fly anglers have had to deal with large numbers of pesky juvenile steelhead. It seems that the Bandon Fish Hatchery periodically stocks their juvenile steelhead that don’t grade out sizewise into Butterfield Lake – where after several months, the surviving smolts become legal angling fare. In the meantime, they are much appreciated by the lake’s bass and larger trout, as well as predatory birds and mammals.

Fishing for warmwater species in most of our local lakes has suffered a major downtown – but Cathy Reiss of Ringo’s Lakeside Marina on South Tenmile Lake reports that a number of large yellow perch measuring between 13 and 16-inches and weighing more than a pound were caught recently and one angler caught several large crappie with the largest one measuring more than 14-inches.

The crappies and bluegills in Eel Lake seemed to have quit biting, but most likely have moved to deeper water and have not yet been “rediscovered” by anglers.

Now that the ODFW has started putting the landlocked coho into Cooper Creek Reservoir that they used to plant in Galesville Reservoir, Cooper Creek’s cold weather fishing should be much more interesting as the cohos should definitely be more active in cool water than the reservoir’s other fish species.

The Umpqua and Coquille rivers are still relatively clear and producing smallmouth bass with the best fishing occurring in the afternoons. The smallmouth bass in Woahink Lake have moved to deeper water and are tough to find. There are a few decent-sized smallmouth bass in Smith River, but their numbers are small and this is pretty much an incidental fishery where most of the bass are caught by anglers fishing for salmon.