COASTWIDE - Hazardous seas, gale warnings and small-craft advisories are in effect through Saturday, marring what was looking like a very productive Free Fishing Weekend for ocean anglers going after chinook salmon. Forecasts call for 25-knot winds and 9-foot seas into Sunday.
Near-shore jigging should be very good for lingcod and black rockfish when conditions allow. Black, white or red jigs are always good bets. Bottomfishers must stay within the 30-fathom line to protect yelloweye rockfish from getting caught and released too often during bottomfishing excursions.
The marine aggregate limit in Oregon is seven rockfish a day. The lingcod limit is two a day with a 22-inch minimum, and that is separate from the marine aggregate. No cabezon can be kept until July 1.
Chinook salmon fishing was showing signs of heating up along the Southern Oregon coast before the weather forecast put a damper on things.
Clammers will have good morning minus tides today and Saturday, with a minor minus on Sunday. All shellfish harvest is open along the entire Oregon Coast.
COOS BAY - Bottomfish catches have tapered off this week amid poor ocean conditions. When conditions have been good, the vast majority of anglers on charterboats have been catching limits. The chinook salmon bite has been slow, and the chinook remain scattered. When they can get out, anglers likely will stay somewhat close to shore and ply the water anywhere from 50 to 130 feet down.
Crabbing has been poor.
BROOKINGS - The port has regained its title as the top chinook salmon port, with last week's catches excellent. Creel counts last week had 4 out of 5 anglers getting a chinook, with most of the action found trolling just north of the California border. The best success has come with trollers working about 100 feet down. Poor ocean conditions this week likely will blow anglers off the water and it might curb salmon migration. Anchovies have worked best. Excellent fishing for bottomfish has been the norm when anglers have been able to get out of port, with big lingcod still a regular part of the catches.
GOLD BEACH - Surfperch fishing has slowed amid rough surf and winds, but look for it to pick up again as soon as conditions improve. It usually takes one or two days after rough surf for the surfperch to return to the breakers. Bottomfishing has been good when anglers can get out.
AGATE - The lake is down a bit to under 90 percent full, and the warmwater fishery is really taking over now. Crappie, bass and bluegill are becoming active around submerged willows and along the dam. Fish worms or small spinners or crankbaits, but fish them slowly. Focus on the shallows, particularly in the morning. For trout, wind-drift for holdover trout with worms. No gas motors are allowed. Small electric motors are legal.
APPLEGATE - The lake is fishing well for holdover rainbow trout 10 to 14 inches long, and the lake received another complement of 12,000 legal-sized fish last week. No new trout this week Trolling has been good off points and in the lower section of the reservoir. All the boat ramps are open. The lake is starting to get drawn down and it was down another 1.5 feet over the past week.
DIAMOND - Fishing is slower than Diamond Lake anglers are used to in early June, where holdover trout are running either 12 to 13 inches or 19 inches long. The fish are gorged on insects, so they are tough to entice with baits. PowerBait is working best, with worms under bobbers second. Vary your depth and get mobile if you're not catching fish every half-hour. Trolling is slow and won't pick up until the water warms some. The limit is eight trout per day longer than 8 inches, but only one can be longer than 20 inches.
EMIGRANT - No new rainbow trout were planted this week, and that has slowed interest in trout fishing. The trout previously planted have moved around in the lower third of the lake. Try small spinners, worms and streamer flies for holdover trout. Bass and bluegill fishing should improve as the water warms. Focus around the submerged willows. The lake has been dropping and it was listed Thursday at 71 percent full.
A standing public-health advisory continues about eating all but trout from the lake because of elevated mercury levels.
EXPO - The pond was scheduled to be stocked again with rainbow trout this past week, and that will gain angler interest during Free Fishing Weekend, though no event is planned there. Small Panther Martin spinners, worms and PowerBait have worked well for rainbows.
FISH - The lake received another 3,500 legal-sized rainbows this past week, in time for Free Fishing Weekend. Fishing is good for a mix of trout and chinook salmon, mainly around the resort and the Forest Service boat ramp or in the center of the lake. Tiger trout must be released unharmed. Chinook are legally considered trout and can be kept as part of the five-trout daily limit. The chinook are in the 12- to 14-inch range. The lake was under three-fourths full Thursday.
HOWARD PRAIRIE - The lake is fishing fairly well for trout, with PowerBait working well, and trollers using flashers and Triple Teasers. Use lures spiced with a piece of worm. Most of the trout are 10 to 14 inches, with another group at 18-plus inches. The lake is listed at 53 percent full and dropping. Most of the still-fishing is in 20-feet of water heading into June. Low water is making fishing from the resort's jetty difficult. Bank fishing around Klum Landing and Grizzly is fair to good, but only the resort ramp and the Klum Landing ramp reach the water. The limit is five trout a day but only one can be longer than 20 inches.
HYATT - The lake is down to 40 percent full, and that's left the BLM boat ramp unusable for larger boats but OK for cartoppers or other small boats. Anglers are not catching lots of fish, but the stringers contain some nice, fat rainbows. Several 16- to 18-inch fish have been caught by trollers slowly working around submerged trees or the old creek channel. The limit is five trout a day but only one can be longer than 20 inches.
LEMOLO - The lake is open to angling and was recently stocked with rainbow trout. Expect good fishing for rainbows and brown trout in exposed waters along the shoreline. Brown trout can be kept as part of the bag limit, and decent kokanee catches have been reported.
LOST CREEK - Another batch of legal-sized rainbow trout were stocked last week in preparation for Free Fishing Weekend on June 7-8, but a blue-green algae bloom that triggered a voluntary advisory against water contact led to the event's cancellation. The lake is open to fishing and boating, but anglers are recommended to practice catch-and-release fishing and avoid water contact.
LAKE of the WOODS - The lake is fishing well for trout from boats and from the bank. Rainbow or chartreuse PowerBait are the most popular offerings for brown trout and rainbow trout, especially near the resort.
WILLOW - The reservoir was listed Thursday as 99 percent full, and it received another 3,500 rainbow trout last month. Fishing from the bank with PowerBait or worms has been good around the resort and directly across from the county boat ramp. Trollers could try Tasmanian Devils or Triple Teasers, or wind-drift worms in the afternoon.
SELMAC - Fishing for trout has improved now that another 2,000 legal-sized rainbows were planted this week for Saturday's Free Fishing Weekend event. Bass fishing has been picking up.
ROGUE - The spring chinook salmon bite in the upper Rogue remains decent to good, and the river will get awfully crowded thanks to Free Fishing Weekend and a salmon derby run out of Shady Cove. The middle Rogue is dead for springers, and the lower Rogue has so much wind that it's blown virtually everybody off the water.
That puts the best bet as the upper Rogue, and chance are it will stay that way through the remainder of the spring chinook season, the river's most popular fishery.
In the upper Rogue, water flows out of Lost Creek Lake were holding steady at 2,500 cubic feet per second Thursday, with that level expected to remain through the weekend. That will keep chinook moving in the mornings. Back-bouncing roe with sandshrimp has been best, with straight roe and Kwikfish plugs equally in second place. Flows at Dodge Bridge were down to about 2,600 cfs Thursday and just 2,700 Thursday at the old Gold Ray Dam site. That means very little tributary flow from Little Butte or Bear creeks.
Another 1,236 springers reached the hatchery collection pond this week, bumping the total to more than 4,200.
All wild chinook must be released unharmed downstream of the Fishers Ferry boat ramp.
Winter steelhead are sprinkled throughout the upper Rogue, along with the first summer steelhead of the season. In the past week, 21 summer steelhead reached the hatchery. They include some chrome-bright 5-pounders. The total so far is 39 fish.
The middle Rogue is a dud for spring chinook, with effort nearly non-existant at Rainie Falls this past weekend.
APPLEGATE - The river is open to trout fishing, but all wild trout must be released unharmed. Fin-clipped trout can be kept legally, but they are not stocked there.