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MailTribune.com
  • Fishing Report: Aug. 9, 2013

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  • COASTWIDE - Decent seas with relatively light winds are forecast through the weekend, which should bode well for inland anglers hitting the coast to catch fish and avoid the smoke from wildfires. Four-foot seas and winds up to 10 knots should greet those who make the trip.
    Shellfishers will find a decent morning minus tide today, but nothing better for at least another week. Beaches statewide — except for Clatsop County — are open to clamming.
    There is a public-health advisory against wading at Harris Beach near Brookings.
    Salmon fishing has been very good out of south coast ports when anglers have been able to get out. Lingcod and bottomfish catches have been very good coastwide. Anglers must stay within the 30-fathom line.
    The all-depth halibut fishery off the central Oregon coast is closed until Aug. 16-17.
    The marine aggregate limit in Oregon is seven rockfish a day. Cabezon may now be kept, with a limit of one per day at least 15 inches long as part of that seven-fish aggregate. The lingcod limit is two a day with a 22-inch minimum, and that is separate from the marine aggregate.
    It should be another decent weekend for bay crabbing, and crabs are starting to fill out.
    Eating whole, recreationally harvested scallops is not recommended unless only the adductor muscle is eaten. If you don't know what an adductor muscle is, don't eat scallops.
    BROOKINGS - Ocean salmon fishing was excellent this past week when anglers were able to beat the winds and hit the water. Catches have been best for anglers trolling anchovies with hoochies about 30 to 40 feet down in 150 feet or so of water within a few miles of the whistle buoy. Most of the chinook are in the 15- to 17-pound range, but there have been plenty of 30-plus pound salmon in the mix.
    Jigging for black and blue rockfish as well as lingcod has been very good. Anglers should release large female lingcod to help recruitment.
    Surfperch fishing has been on-again, off-again at Winchuck Beach depending on the winds. Catch them on bright streamer flies, clam necks, mussels or plastic, imitation crayfish.
    GOLD BEACH - Surfperch fishing has been excellent from the sand spit off the bay's south jetty. Catch them on mussels, bright flies, sand shrimp or fake scented sandshrimp. Chinook salmon fishing was not viable outside of the bay Thursday but catches have been very good at times in the bay, despite it being early for fall chinook.
    AGATE - Fishing for bass and crappie has been fair. Pink or white crappie jigs have worked well, as have small black flies cast and stripped near submerged willows. Bass are biting plastic worms and grubs. The lake is down to 45 percent full and dropping rapidly. No gas motors are allowed. Small electric motors are legal.
    APPLEGATE - The lake got no new fresh fish this month, but anglers are still doing well for stocked trout higher in the lake and near the Copper ramp. Catch them by trolling Wedding Rings with worms or using PowerBait off the bank. Evenings are best. Trout fishing in the Seattle Bar area is a no-go now that the lake is down to 25 feet from full and dropping. Bass fishing has been very good off points and in coves.
    DIAMOND - Trout are an on-again, off-again proposition as good insect hatches are back and distracting the rainbows away from PowerBait or worms. Anglers are still doing well in the deeper holes and along the southwestern shore where the water tends to be cooler. Most of the action remains on PowerBait in water 35 to 40 feet deep. Trolling has slowed with the mid-summer heat. Fly-fishing has been fair on chironomids and woolly buggers. Most of the rainbows are 12 to 16 inches long, and last year's fingerlings are 9 to 10 inches. The limit is eight trout per day over 8 inches, but only one can be more than 20 inches.
    EMIGRANT - Bass fishing has been very good in the evenings off rocky points and near submerged willows. Trout fishing is slow. Try small spinners, worms and streamer flies. The lake is half full.
    A standing public-health advisory continues about eating all but trout from the lake because of elevated mercury levels.
    EXPO - Fishing for stocked trout is poor and will remain poor through summer. No new stocking is scheduled for the rest of the summer.
    WILLOW - Trolling for trout has been good during early mornings and evenings. Crappie and other panfish are being caught consistently with worms under bobbers or jigs.
    FISH - Fishing for rainbow trout is fair to good, with mornings and evenings best in the deeper recesses of the lake. Some of last year's tiger trout are as long as 12 inches now, but they must be released unharmed.
    HOWARD PRAIRIE - Early-morning fishing has been very good, but the action dies off dramatically during the day and kicks back in around dusk. No new trout have been stocked recently. Anchoring in deep water and fishing PowerBait has been best, while trollers have worked the middle of the lake with some success. Bass fishing has been very good regardless of what bassers throw at them, but white plastic worms and topwater baits have been better choices. Largemouth are hitting a variety of crankbaits and plastic worms.
    HYATT - The BLM boat ramps are open, and fishing is fair with PowerBait near the dam, around the Orchard and in the upper stretches of the lake. Trolling the old creek channel near the lake's western edge can be good, especially in the evenings. Catches have been light, but the percentage of trout 16 to 20 inches long is high.
    LOST CREEK - The lake's water-quality issues are gone for now, and that has trout and bass anglers returning to the lake. There have been no new trout stockings. Trout fishing is better above Peyton Bridge, where the water temperatures are cooler. Smallmouth bass are hitting plastic worms and crankbaits off rocky points, primarily in the mornings and evenings off points. The lake is down to 36 feet from full and the surface temperature is 73 degrees.
    ROGUE - Fall chinook salmon fishing has slowed in the lower Rogue bay as cooler water has shut down the bite despite good numbers of fish in the bay. The upper Rogue is a mix of early-run summer steelhead for evening anglers and morning anglers are focusing their spring chinook salmon action from Dodge Bridge on down because anglers there may keep wild chinook. Catches have been very good this week for those fishing roe or roe and sandshrimp combinations. And the middle Rogue is a smoky wasteland where anglers aren't even bothering to cast for salmon or steelhead most days.
    That makes the upper Rogue the best bet for a combination of spring chinook and summer steelhead.
    The springers still aren't moving much, but they are biting decently throughout the upper Rogue during morning floats. When salmon aren't moving, it's harder to catch hatchery fish because wild fish dominate traditional holding holes from Shady Cove on upstream.
    Lost Creek Lake outflows are holding steady1,500 cubic feet per second. Flows at Dodge Bridge were 1,590 cfs, and 1,629 cfs at the old Gold Ray Dam site. Grants Pass flows were a very paltry 1,472 cfs.
    For boat anglers, back-bouncing roe has out-produced plugs.
    Most driftboat action has been from Dodge Bridge on down, where anglers are finding good pods of wild chinook to catch and keep.
    With 529 summer steelhead seen at the hatchery, anglers are starting to target summer steelhead on late-evening floats from Gold Hill up to the hatchery. The fish are biting worms, lures, plugs and flies, but the action has not been really intense yet. They're mostly congregated in riffles 4 feet deep and deeper, so focus on good-churning water. Early steelhead are either first-time spawners 18 to 19 inches long or fatties 8 pounds or up. Few early-run fish are between those sizes. All wild steelhead must be released unharmed.
    The lower Rogue bay was red-hot last week but slowed as the water temperatures plummeted to the low 60s this week, likely because of wildfire smoke filtering the sun. It's strictly a trolling show with anchovies, but a few anglers will drag copper-bladed or gold-bladed spinners. The first good batches of halfpounders showed up Monday in the Huntley Park netting surveys, but they haven't really started contributing to the fishery yet.
    In the far upper Rogue upstream of Lost Creek Lake, the regular stocking schedule for the summer is in place and anglers are catching legal-sized trout daily.
    APPLEGATE - The river is open for trout fishing. All wild rainbow and cutthroat trout released unharmed. It is illegal to target steelhead when they reach the river during trout season.
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