COASTWIDE - Hazardous sea warnings are in effect through Monday evening, and that's more than putting a damper on ocean fishing this week. High winds have plagued coast anglers all week, keeping salmon and bottomfishers largely at home.
When the surf and winds subside, look for fewer lingcod in the mix and larger catches of black and blue rockfish for bottomfishers. Chinook salmon fishing has been relatively slow on the South Coast, and anglers will have to look for the cooler riptides again.
Clammers are done with their latest set of minus tides today, but some bay digging could be OK for Free Fishing Weekend for those who want to try clamming.
The marine aggregate limit in Oregon is seven rockfish a day. No cabezon may be kept until July. 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, although lots of smaller crabs have been in the catch of late, and South Coast crabs have started molting earlier than normal, so meat densities are light. Expect to see lots of shed shells washing up on beaches in the next few weeks.
All shellfish harvesting, including mussels, is open along the Oregon Coast. 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 - The ocean salmon season moves into its second month this weekend, but it's a blowout amid harsh seas and stiff winds. Look for salmon fishing to improve as anglers move into summer. The limit is two chinook a day. Most ocean anglers have focused their effort toward jigging for lingcod and black rockfish because both of them were doing very well before the latest high seas. A few early-season halibut have been caught, as well.
Surfperch fishing has slowed dramatically at places such as Winchuck Beach amid rough surf and heavy winds. Incoming to high tides had been best.
GOLD BEACH - Surfperch fishing has slowed amid heavy winds. The bar has been closed all week, so that has definitely put the kibosh on bottomfishing and chinook salmon fishing.
AGATE - Fishing for bass and crappie has picked up and should be good through the weekend amid warming temperatures. Wind-drifting worms or casting grubs will be best. Some of the trout from the March stocking still are around, but they won't last long in the warm water. The lake was listed Thursday at 91 percent full, which is a slight drop from last week. No gas motors are allowed. Small electric motors are legal.
APPLEGATE - The lake got 9,000 legal-sized trout and 500 larger trout last week. They were all released at the Copper ramp, where they are still hanging out. Catch them there by trolling Wedding Rings with worms or PowerBait off the bank. Trout fishing in the Seattle Bar area has been good on PowerBait, worms and streamer flies. Early morning has been best. Bass fishing slowed a bit during this week's storms, but look for it to pick up as warm weather is forecasted for the near future. The lake has stayed steady at about 2 feet shy of full.
DIAMOND - The best trout fishing now is in water 35 to 40 feet deep with PowerBait floated 3 to 4 feet off the bottom. Solid insect hatches have caused most trout to be engorged with nymphs. Still, anglers working the early mornings are doing fairly well with PowerBait or worms until the insects get rolling for the day. Trolling has slowed a bit and will wane some amid the first really warm spells of the season beginning this weekend Trollers could try Triple Teaasers, No. 4 Flatfish and other lures slowly just above the weed lines. Fly-fishing has been fair to good 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 should pick up amid very warm temperatures. Focus on rockpiles and submerged willows along the lower stretches where the water is warmer. The lake was infused in mid-April with 3,500 legal-sized rainbows and 351 adult summer steelhead from Cole Rivers Hatchery in March. Try small spinners, worms and streamer flies. The lake is 93 percent full.
A standing public-health advisory continues about eating all but trout from the lake because of elevated mercury levels.
EXPO - The pond received 1,300 legal-sized rainbow trout two weeks ago, and they're actively biting worms, PowerBait and small Panther Martin lures. Some holdovers from last month's trout plant also are available.
FISH - The lake got a dose of 3,500 legal-sized trout earlier this week and they were released around the resort and the Forest Service boat ramp. Still-fishing with PowerBait is best in deeper waters. Some of last year's tiger trout could be in the 10-inch range this year, but they still must be released unharmed. Catches of rainbow trout should be good off the Forest Service boat ramp. Fish worms or PowerBait.
HOWARD PRAIRIE - Another 2,525 legal-sized rainbow trout were released this week at the resort, and fishing for them has been good off the jetty with PowerBait. Bass fishing is picking up as hotter weather is warming the lake rapidly. Largemouth are hitting a variety of crankbaits and plastic worms. Trout fishing is best for trollers using flashers and Wedding Ring lures with a piece of worm. The limit is five trout per day with an 8-inch minimum, and only one can be longer than 20 inches.
HYATT - The BLM boat ramps and most of the campground are open, and fishing is fair to good 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. The limit is five trout over 8 inches long, but only one can be longer than 20 inches. Bass fishing is picking up in the Orchard and on rocky points near the dam.
LOST CREEK - Another 7,650 legal-sized rainbow trout were released this week, split between the Stewart State Park and Takelma boat ramps. Add them to the 20,000 legal-sized and 500 larger-sized rainbows released there last week and Lost Creek has become a top-drawer trout fishery virtually overnight. Bank fishing is better at the Takelma ramp largely because there is more room to fan out and cast PowerBait or float worms off the bottom. Slow trolling with flashers or streamer flies from float tubes also works well. The lake's surface temperature was at 61 degrees Thursday but look for that to climb amid very warm weather this weekend. The lake is 9 feet from full.
ROGUE - The lower Rogue has finally started to pick up for spring chinook salmon as guides and other boat anglers start to run into chinook a few miles upstream of tidewater. The middle Rogue is slow for springers other than a few standard bank-fishing spots, and the upper Rogue has been slow for springers — but that should change as water conditions are changing.
That makes the upper Rogue by far the best bet for spring chinook.
More than 1,000 springers entered Cole Rivers Hatchery in the week preceding Wednesday, showing that springers are on the move. The big difference for now, however, are changes in water releases from Lost Creek Lake meant to help create cooler water in the Agness area this weekend amid very hot weather. Flows out of Lost Creek dam jumped from 1,700 cubic feet per second Wednesday afternoon to 2,300 cfs Thursday night, having risen 300 cfs each day. That will raise and cool the upper Rogue, likely triggering some improved catches this weekend and beyond. Those are welcomed words to anglers who have been dogged by low and warm water hampering their catches.
For boat anglers, back-bouncing roe has out-produced plugs, with many of the bites light of late.
Bank anglers are doing best at the Hatchery Hole and Casey State Park. Anglers have been complaining about bankies illegally keeping chinook that are hooked other than inside the mouth at these and several other upper Rogue holes upstream of Rogue Elk Park.
The riverwide ban on keeping wild spring chinook changes Saturday. Beginning Saturday, wild spring chinook caught downstream from the Fishers Ferry Boat Ramp upstream of Gold Hill can be kept as part of the daily two-fish limit. The old deadline was the Gold Ray Dam site, which allowed anglers at the old Deadline Hole and other places to keep wild fish in June. Those holes now remain closed to the keeping of wild fish until July.
Another five summer steelhead have entered Cole Rivers Hatchery, and look for early summer steelhead numbers to pick up in mid-June.
Rainie Falls and Hayes Falls have been productive for spring chinook salmon this past week for bank anglers.
The lower Rogue has been slow for springers, but that should pick up this weekend when that extra Lost Creek Lake water reaches the lower river. The higher and cooler water should help boat anglers get into springers with anchovies and blades held in migration lanes. Most of the lower Rogue action has been upstream of the Willows for boat anglers.
APPLEGATE - The river opened Saturday for trout fishing, with all wild rainbow and cutthroat trout having to be released unharmed. It is illegal to target steelhead when they reach the river during trout season.
CHETCO - Cutthroat trout are in the system, and fishing for them has been slow since the river opened to angling Saturday.