Chetco motor ban proposal has Brookings abuzz

BROOKINGS — The running feud between bank anglers and driftboaters is raising hackles again, this time along the lower Chetco River about whether outboard motors are ruining the fishing experience or simply are a effective tool in the winter steelhead fishing trade.

A group of bank anglers have petitioned the Oregon State Marine Board to ban motors on the roughly 10 miles of the Chetco outside of tidewater where motors are legal.

At issue is whether driftboaters,...

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Tiger trout primed to pounce at Diamond

Diamond Lake is getting a dose of predatory trout that quite literally will be lying in the weeds while doing their part to keep invasive tui chub and red-sided shiners from robbing the lake of its top-drawer trout fishery.

The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife next week will stock the first hybrid tiger trout intended to prey on the unwanted invasives before they take hold in this eastern Douglas County lake.

Tiger trout are infamous for their boldness, willing to stalk...

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Trout rewards offered at Lost Creek

TRAIL — Lost Creek Lake trout anglers will get a chance to be citizen biologists, and possibly make some cash, during a new survey that will help determine what trout-stocking strategy works best for angling at Jackson County's largest and most popular lake.

Biologists at Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife this week affixed spaghetti-like tags to the dorsal fins of 1,500 legal-sized trout and 162 14-inch "pounders" bound for the lake to determine which size trout is...

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Scouting the high ground

Scouting the high ground

APPLEGATE — Luke Ruediger hikes up a trail off the end of Forest Creek Road to a majestic field of spring wildflowers, and off in the distance is rugged Wellington Butte and the site of one Ruediger's new wild hairs.

In two weeks, he and hiking pal Josh Weber will pick their way through the rugged brush as they cross the untrailed Wellington Butte in hopes that one day other hikers, mountain bikers and equestrians can follow their footsteps in relative ease.

The pair....

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Spring chinook run likely late, lighter than 2015

SHADY COVE — Taking advantage of a rare mid-week day off in the construction business, Gee Romero wanted to make sure his upper Rogue River fishing trip with guide Charlie Brown would pay off.

By 7 a.m., it had. A 35-inch spring chinook salmon was in the boat. And to cap it off, it was one fin short of a full salmon.

"It was a big, bright, beautiful hatchery fish," says Romero, 26, of Medford. "When Charlie cut the fillets, they were just how you want them.

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Love of slacklining

Love of slacklining

Willie Love ratchets a 2-inch strap between two poles in The Commons park blocks in downtown Medford and prepares to re-enter a brave, new and wobbly world that has consumed him the past three months, feeding his need to be extreme and be seen.

"I like this spot because people rubberneck all the time," Love says. "Who doesn't like a little bit of attention?"

He bounces on the strap, which builds tension under his weight and launches him skyward until he bounces on one foot over...

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River-rat race

River-rat race

GOLD HILL — Pete Newport and his three rafting teammates have little trouble bombing down the Rogue River's Ti’lomikh Falls with the raft and crew remaining in the upright position.

But two teams in identical red, white and blue rafts bombing down the Class IV rapid as fast as they can? And at the same time?
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Test your upper Rogue fishing knowledge

Test your upper Rogue fishing knowledge

The upper Rogue River is too high and muddy today for anglers anxious to get their first good crack at winter steelhead and spring chinook that are now migrating through local fishing haunts.

So sitting around and talking about fishing on the upper Rogue is the logical fall-back for upper Rogue anglers who consider this 31-mile stretch of river as their home water.

But just how well do you know the upper Rogue and the angling rules that apply here? Here's a pop quiz to find...

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Siskiyou Mountain Club explores plans to repair foot bridges on the Illinois River Trail

Siskiyou Mountain Club explores plans to repair foot bridges on the Illinois River Trail

The Illinois River Trail snakes 28 miles through the spectacular backcountry of the Kalmiopsis Wilderness Area and across some of the most productive wild steelhead nurseries in North America — but the trail has some weak links.

The weakest link may very well be a 22-foot wooden bridge over Clear Creek Gorge. It's a tenuous span with rotted supports and missing guard rails, at risk of degrading to a point where it becomes the equivalent of a "No Trespassing" sign.

"You...

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Don't believe what you read on seafood menus

ASHLAND — I never imagined that a little bar food Saturday inside an Ashland dinner house would come with a floor show that broke barriers in both comedy and biology.

The house chef was buttering up the patrons next to us about his menu and just how incredible his suppliers are, especially when it comes to his salmon.
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Winter storms have dropped boating obstacles into the upper Rogue River

Winter storms have dropped boating obstacles into the upper Rogue River

A stretch of the Rogue River upstream of Dodge Bridge is known to old-timers as McGraw's after the former owner, while relative newcomers call it Duffy's after its current owner.

But upper Rogue driftboaters last week knew the reach as Impassable after this winter's high water moved the gravel around enough and plopped a few 100-year-old oak trees into it to create a new navigational hazard.

It's just one part of the upper Rogue altered by high water this winter, and it has...

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Monarch butterflies tagged last year in Southern Oregon found in California

Monarch butterflies tagged last year in Southern Oregon found in California

Robert Coffan stood next to a patch of milkweed at Coyote Trails Nature Center in Medford last September feeling a little choked up about all that had transpired to bring him and monarch butterfly No. A2045 to this point.
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Ragsdale's death puts focus on safety, communication

Brian Johnson had a break between his massage-therapy clients Monday when the trail-running jones sent him to Roxy Ann Peak to get in some mileage.

Impromptu solo runs on outlying trails are standard for distance runners who can become slaves to their training schedules, but Monday's run brought a new caveat into this equation for Johnson.

"This time, I texted my girlfriend and said, 'I'm going up Roxy for an hour, I'll text you when I get down,' " says Johnson, 39, of Central...

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Iffy ice: If you're going ice fishing, here's what you need to know

Iffy ice: If you're going ice fishing, here's what you need to know

It's a tragedy that Jackson County Sheriff's Sgt. Shawn Richards and his search-and-rescue staff train for regularly but haven't had to face in recent years — a winter angler falling through the ice.

"Knock on wood," Richards says from the Search and Rescue office in White City. "We train on ice rescues. However, it's a long way from the valley to high-mountain lakes."

Oregon's new streamlined angling regulations mean Hyatt and Howard Prairie now join Fish Lake,...

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Tiger trout to battle chubs in Diamond Lake

Tiger trout to battle chubs in Diamond Lake

Oh, what a difference a tui chub makes.

The discovery of a single tui chub in Diamond Lake in October — nine years after a $5.6 million eradication effort — has state fish managers going all in on an effort to keep history from repeating itself.

The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife plans to stock as many as 25,000 fish-eating tiger trout in the eastern Douglas County lake this spring, and it will follow up with a crew literally working day and night next...

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Ashland watershed trail network to be expanded and upgraded

Ashland watershed trail network to be expanded and upgraded

ASHLAND — Mountain bikers barreling down legit trails built for hikers and horseback riders were already causing headaches for Ashland watershed managers in 2011, but then things began to get egregious on a little stretch of hiking heaven called Marty's Trail.

Someone drove a backhoe around a trail gate and dug in a series of bumps and jumps for "downhiller" cyclists, much to the chagrin of darn near everyone else.  

"That was a bold move," says Jeffrey...

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Kicking and gliding

Kicking and gliding

FISH LAKE — As he's about to ski a Nordic run called Lollipop on Wednesday, Bruce Evatt can't help but feel like a kid in cross-country skiing's candy store.

"You know what's great?" Evatt says. "We have some of the best skiing in the United States, and you look around and there's nobody here. I don't know why it hasn't caught on.

"But it is a Wednesday," he laughs.

With snow plentiful for the first time in a couple of years, Southern Oregon's Nordic community...

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Gear and Beer

Gear and Beer

You can now pick up a pint while you shop for outdoors gear
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Ski swap goes 4 seasons

Ski swap goes 4 seasons

ASHLAND — When Alan Anderson wanted to unload 18 of his unused Loon Outdoors fly rods, he naturally thought ... Ashland Ski Swap?

"Yeah, kind of ironic," says Anderson, president of the Ashland-based outdoor company.

But irony is only in the title these days, as the historically winter-only Ashland Ski Swap has gone four seasons.

The 41st annual swap at Stevenson Union on the SOU campus will expand beyond matching sellers with gear-poor winter-sports...

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5 ways to say 'NO' to Black Friday

5 ways to say 'NO' to Black Friday

Outrunning someone's grandmother to the tube-sock bin at dawn this morning does not qualify as post-Thanksgiving exercise, regardless of how good that Black Friday sale is.

Oregon Outdoors is designed to help Rogue Valley residents to get outside and enjoy Southern Oregon's unique outdoor world, and that's never more important than today for those looking to opt out of Black Friday and get into the outdoors.

Here are five things Rogue Valley residents who are trying to think...

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September 25, 2015

The Weyerhaeuser Experiment

September 04, 2015

Halibut in the Hood

August 20, 2015

5 summer-end adventures

July 10, 2015

Lingcod rebound

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