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Fishing Report: Friday, Nov. 4


COASTWIDE: A small-craft advisory was issued through this evening, with winds up to 20 knots and swells to 17 feet. Forecasts call for 25-knot winds and 12-foot swells Saturday, followed Sunday by 15-knot winds and swells starting at 15 feet and subsiding to 11 feet. That's a recipe for staying on land.

Rockfish anglers can now venture past the 20-fathom line, but there is not much need to because lingcod and rockfish catches have been good close in when anglers can get out. Anglers can keep one cabezon a day as part of their seven-fish aggregate limit. Halibut fishing is over across the Oregon Coast.

Only bays are open to crabbing coastwide, and catches have been good in Coos and Winchester bays between rain storms. The ocean is closed to crabbing until Dec. 1.

Razor clamming is closed along the entire coast because of domoic acid levels. Bay clams and butter clams are available coastwide, but mussels are off limits coastwide because of domoic acid. Before digging, check the shellfish hotline at 1-800-448-2474.


AGATE: The lake was listed Thursday at 21 percent full, though there's been little angling interest of late. Fishing is fair at best for a mix of bass, crappie and perch. No trout stockings are planned this year. No gas motors are allowed. Electric trolling motors are OK.

APPLEGATE: Trolling for rainbows has been good when the wind is down. Fish stocked earlier this year are putting on some size. Anglers are catching rainbows up to 18 inches by trolling deep higher in the reservoir and off points. Bass fishing is best off points and near submerged trees, but cooler water and yo-yoing reservoir levels are taking their toll on the warmwater bite. The lake was listed Thursday at 59 feet from full. The Copper, Hart-Tish and French Gulch ramps are usable.

DIAMOND: The lake is fishing fairly well between rainstorms. PowerBait and worms are out-fishing trolling, but trollers using small lures such as Triple Teasers are doing well. Rainbows are spread out. The 300,000 fingerlings stocked last spring are starting to reach legal size. All tiger trout must be released.

EMIGRANT: The lake was listed Thursday at 18 percent full with little open water and no submerged vegetation. Fishing is a bust. Trout and bass are in the deeper sections of what's left of the lake. The county boat ramp is not usable, and that has severely limited interest.

FISH: The lake was 31 percent full Thursday and slowly rising. Fishing remains pretty good for what's left of the 900 trophy trout stocked at the Forest Service boat ramp in late September. The ramp is usable for most trailered boats. The resort is closed. Watch for stumps in the water. Fish worms under bobbers or use PowerBait. Tiger trout as big as 18 inches have been caught, but they must be released unharmed.

HOWARD PRAIRIE: Fishing is fair to good as the lake continues to rise slightly from recent storms. Holdover trout in the 14- to 19-inch range are being caught by trollers using Tasmanian Devils or Wedding Rings with small pieces of worm. Morning trolling is best. The lake was listed Thursday at 48 percent full.

HYATT: Trout fishing has slowed, and bass fishing has tapered off. Anything red works for bass, especially around the Orchard and in the bay near the BLM ramp. Not much size to the largemouth, though. The lake is up slightly to 43 percent full.

LOST CREEK: The lake has fished very well for rainbows by trolling Wedding Ring lures with small pieces of worm near the dam or upstream of Peyton Bridge. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has held the releases steady at 1,800 cubic feet per second and inflows are starting to drop, but look for a spike in inflows with weekend rains. As the water comes up, boaters should watch for more floating debris. Landlocked salmon have been holding deeper than the trout. Fish for largemouth in the submerged willows and for smallmouth off rocky points.

LAKE OF THE WOODS: The lake is fishing fair to good for a mix of rainbows, brown trout and perch near the resort for anglers using worms under bobbers or PowerBait off the bottom. Fishing is best at dawn and dusk.

WILLOW: Trout fishing improved after 450 one-pound trout were released at the county boat ramp two weeks ago. The lake remains low but fishing is best with worms under bobbers or PowerBait directly out past the ramp.

EXPO: The pond got a bonus stocking late last month of 100 one-pound trout and 250 legal-sized trout, and fishing for them is good with worms and bobbers or small spinners.


ROGUE: The upper Rogue has been very good for summer steelhead in both bait and plug waters, and some decent coho salmon are showing up in the catch. The middle Rogue has been spotty for summer steelhead, and the lower Rogue has seen lingering coho and chinook catches in the bay.

That makes the upper Rogue the best bet for steelhead, with where to go dependent upon how you want to fish. Upstream of the Shady Cove boat ramp is open for all things steelhead, with side-drifting roe most popular and effective since the flies-only season ended Monday evening. Double-digit catches per driftboat were pretty common Tuesday and Wednesday, with catches best when the sun was off the water. Those fishing plugs such as Mag Lip 3.0 or crayfish plugs were also running into some nice hatchery coho salmon.

Downstream of the Shady Cove ramp is open for all artificials but not bait. Effort there has been lighter than upstream of Shady Cove, and there definitely are fewer steelhead down lower than higher up. Plug fishing has been good when the sun is off the water. Fishing deeper, somewhat slower runs has been most effective, as fall chinook are no longer spawning, so it's not as simple as fishing below spawners. Plastic egg flies or juiced-up egg balls are also working well for side-drifters.

Flows out of Lost Creek Lake were holding steady at 1,800 cfs this week, with flows at Dodge Bridge down to 2,000 cfs. The flows at the old Gold Ray Dam site were down to 2,391 cfs Thursday.

In the middle Rogue, summer steelhead fishing is spotty but best around creek mouths and behind what's left of the fall chinook spawn. Steelhead are still keying on loose eggs floating out of redds, and they are receptive to single-egg fly patterns. Worm fishing with watermelon corkies will work during and right after rain, particularly off creek mouths. Plug fishing is a bit slow, but some nice coho are hitting purple plugs fished far below driftboats in slower, deeper water. Flows at Grants Pass were down to 2,577 cfs Thursday and forecast to bump up Sunday after rains return Saturday.

Trolling anchovies with Rogue Bait Rig blades was still holding on for coho in the bay and fall chinook near the mouth of Indian Creek. Bank fishermen are still hooking into a few chinook there daily with Blue Fox spinners.

APPLEGATE: The river is open for trout fishing but closed for steelhead and salmon, both of which are present now. All wild trout must be released unharmed. No fin-clipped rainbows are stocked there.

CHETCO: The river was at 3,138 cfs and falling Thursday, with good fall chinook fishing with plugs or bait. Rain is forecast Saturday, but fishing should hold on as long as the color remains good. The bobber regulations that have been in effect this fall are over as of today.

ELK: The river was down to 3.6 feet and clear at the hatchery Thursday, making for tough conditions for fall chinook anglers floating the river. Fall chinook are not holding much in the estuary, so the vast majority of effort remains in freshwater this year.