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River Outlook

ROGUE - Spring chinook salmon fishing likely will take a back seat due to rain and rising waters for the next few days, but look for good action in the middle and upper Rogue early next week after storm runoff starts to drop and those chinook get back on the move.

That makes the best bet the upper Rogue, where fish numbers are getting a little better. As of May 25, 4,241 spring chinook had been counted at Gold Ray Dam, with triple-digit days common. That's still low, but certainly better.

In the immediate future, flash-flood warnings make poor fishing conditions likely today and Friday, but look for improvements by Saturday and early next week. As the water drops, look to intercept migrating salmon along the inside turns of gravel bars, riffles and chutes. Kwikfish wrapped with a sardine filet will out-fish roe in these lanes. When water levels stabilize, go back to fishing traditional salmon holes throughout the upper Rogue.

All wild fish must be released unharmed under emergency rules meant to boost the number of wild fish that escape the fishery to spawn in late summer. Fishing migration lanes instead of holes will improve your chances of catching fin-clipped hatchery chinook, which may be kept.

The Hatchery Hole along the Cole Rivers Hatchery dike remains the most consistent place for bank fishing, with first light best. Glow-in-the-dark corkies remain the rage there.

In the middle Rogue, a few fish are getting caught daily around the Weasku Inn by bank anglers casting beads and corkies, though the middle Rogue remains slow for spring chinook as warm water has put these fish off the bite.

The flows at Agness were a normal 2,500 cubic feet per second on Wednesday, but they are forecast to nearly double by Saturday.

Flows out of Lost Creek Lake have hovered just under 3,000 cfs, but look for some adjustments should new storms swell the in-flow to the reservoir, which was listed at one-third of a foot over full Wednesday.

The first 46 summer steelhead have been counted over Gold Ray Dam. All steelhead that pass the dam after May 15 are considered summer steelhead for counting purposes.

ILLINOIS - The river is open for angling, with a few resident trout available and steelhead all but gone.

UMPQUA - The lower stretch of the mainstem Umpqua is in good shape and fishing fairly well for spring chinook, with regular doses of 40-pound fish in the mix. The shad have started to show and catches have been good, but look for the shad to disperse this weekend during higher water flows. Striped bass are starting to get active, especially since Rock Creek Hatchery has released its smolts into the river. The North Umpqua is shaping up for good fishing in the Rock Creek area. Smallmouth bass fishing is good in the lower end of the South Umpqua, where anglers can keep up to 10 fish a day.

COQUILLE - The river is open to angling in freshwater. Sturgeon fishing in Coquille's tidewater has been slow. The first reports of a few shad turned up this past week.

COOS - The first shad have arrived in the South Fork of the Coos River. Anglers slowly trolling shad darts have caught a few. Fishing for sturgeon is slow in the estuary, as is fishing for striped bass. Good catches of black rockfish have occurred in the lower bay near the high and low slack tides.

CHETCO - Fishing for cutthroat trout is good river-wide, with a combination of spinners and streamer flies working well. Flows were down to 409 cfs Wednesday, but look for the river to double over the next two days. When the water starts to drop, cutthroat fishing will improve again.

ELK/SIXES - Both rivers are fishing fair to good for sea-run cutthroat trout with spinners and flies.

APPLEGATE - The river is open to angling, and a few fly-fishers are catching and releasing rainbow trout throughout the McKee and Applegate areas. Fluctuating water flows likely will keep the trout off the bite through the weekend.

METOLIUS - Recent warm weather should result in some improved insect hatches and great fishing.

KLAMATH - Fly-fishing for trout has been good in the Keno area below Keno Dam with caddis and mayflies as temperatures have climbed above 60 degrees.