Fishing Report: May 9, 2014
COASTWIDE - Winds will start out strong and ebb through the weekend, with Sunday looking good for bottomfishing.
Chinook fishing has been slow so far in the ocean, and the Brookings crowd can start plying the Pacific for chinook beginning Saturday.
Bottomfishers must stay within the 30-fathom line to protect yelloweye rockfish.
Near-shore jigging should be very good for lingcod and black rockfish when conditions allow. Black, white or red jigs are always good bets.
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.
Clammers will have a good morning minus tide today and Saturday.
All shellfish harvest is open along the entire Oregon Coast. Mussel harvest is now closed in the Clatsop County area.
COOS BAY - Bottomfish catches have been very good this past week, with anglers on charterboats averaging more than six fish apiece. The chinook bite has been slow, with only a few chinook caught recently. The chinook are scattered and tend to be tough to find in the early season.
Crabbing has been poor.
BROOKINGS - Pacific halibut fishing is open, and the chinook season opens Saturday, but don't expect too many fish to come back to port until the summer when more chinook are around. Bottomfishing remains excellent off Brookings, with near-limits of rockfish and lingcod. Nine-foot swells are forecast for Saturday, but they will drop to 5-foot swells Sunday.
GOLD BEACH - Surfperch fishing has perked up a bit off the sand spit when the surf lays down for a few days. Cast sandshrimp or Berkley rubber crayfish or prawns for them. Spring chinook salmon are moving through the bay, but the vast majority of the effort is in the first 15 miles above tidewater. Halibut fishing has been good when anglers can get outside.
AGATE - The lake is listed at 100 percent full, and the warmwater fishery is starting to heat up. 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. Trolling has been good off points and in the lower section of the reservoir. All the boat ramps are open. The lake is 10 feet from full and rising slowly, with the filling rate now about 10 feet short of schedule.
DIAMOND - The lake is ice-free, both boat ramps are open, and the resort is now renting boats. Fishing is good but slow for what Diamond Lake anglers are used to in May. Holdover trout are running either 12 to 13 inches or 19 inches long. 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 - The lake received another 1,500 legal-sized rainbows planted off the county park boat ramps this week, and fishing in that cove area is good for them. 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 Talent Irrigation District is transferring some water into the lake from Hyatt Lake, so look for the surface level to continue rising. It was listed Thursday at 77 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 stocked again this week with 1,500 rainbow trout, and fishing for them and a mix of legals and trophy trout stocked last month is very good. Small Panther Martin spinners, worms and PowerBait have worked well for rainbows there. Expect crowds there this weekend.
FISH - The lake is ice-free, and another 5,000 legal-sized rainbows were released there two weeks ago. 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.
HOWARD PRAIRIE - The lake is fishing fairly well for trout, with PowerBait working as well as trolling with flashers and Triple Teasers. Use lures spiced with a piece of worm. Most of the trout are 10-14 inches, with another group at 18-plus inches. The lake is listed at 56 percent full. Most of the still fishing is in 14 feet of water. 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 45 percent full, and that's left the BLM boat ramp unusable for larger boats but OK for cartoppers or other smaller boats. Anglers are not catching lots of fish, but the stringers contain nice, fat rainbows. Several 16- to 18-inch fish were caught by trollers working slowly 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 was recently stocked with rainbow trout. Expect good fishing for rainbows and brown trout in exposed waters along the shoreline. Brown trout can now be kept as part of the bag limit.
LOST CREEK - Another 20,000 legal-sized rainbow trout were stocked recently. The lake is filling fast and was about a half-foot from full Thursday. The fresh trout were split between the Taklema and Stewart boat ramps. That will entice anglers to work the lower section of the reservoir. Slowly troll Wedding Ring or Triple Teaser lures behind flashers, anywhere from 20 to 60 feet down. Wind-drifting worms or small clusters of roe has been good upstream of Peyton Bridge on days when the wind isn't blowing too badly. Bass fishing should pick up as the reservoir warms. The surface temperature Thursday was down a hair to 59 degrees, which does not help the largemouth and smallmouth bite.
LAKE of the WOODS - The lake is fishing well for trout from boats and from the bank. Rainbow and 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. Very little trolling has occurred, but trollers could try Tasmanian Devils or Triple Teasers, or wind-drift worms in the afternoon.
SELMAC - Fishing remains good from the bank with single salmon eggs or PowerBait for legal-sized rainbows stocked there earlier this month. Bass fishing will start picking up when the water warms.
ROGUE - The spring chinook salmon bite in the upper Rogue is surprisingly good for early May upstream of Shady Cove, while the springer bite turned on again Wednesday in the lower Rogue after a lull in the run. The middle Rogue remains a frustrating zone where chinook are rolling but few are biting.
That puts the best bet on the upper Rogue, only because anglers need to put in their time to catch springers.
In the upper Rogue, water flows out of Lost Creek Lake were down to 2,000 cubic feet per second Thursday as the lake hovers within inches of being full. That has helped the springer bite each morning, with the upper half of the upper Rogue best. Good percentages of hatchery springers are in the mix, with 18-pounders the most common size. Boat anglers are doing best back-bouncing roe, but plugs spiced with an anchovy fillet are running into springers in migration lanes and the heads of pools and deep runs. Flows at Dodge Bridge were down to 2,210 cfs Thursday afternoon and are forecast to rise to about 3,500 cfs Saturday before dropping. That should trigger a nice Mother's Day chinook bite. Avoid the holes, and fish the tailouts or the inside turns on gravel bars to intercept springers as they head upstream. Bank anglers casting beads or small Spin-Glo's are catching fish rather consistently at the Hatchery Hole. The hatchery count of spring chinook is up to 428 adults now. All wild chinook must be released unharmed through May.
Winter steelhead also are sprinkled throughout the upper Rogue, with catches better farther up the river. Another 127 winter steelhead ran into the hatchery this past week. Many of the fish are dark or spawned-out and they should all be released unharmed.
Anglers can no longer keep wild steelhead, which all must be released unharmed for the remainder of the year.
The middle Rogue is seeing some fair bank fishing for spring chinook at Hayes and Rainie falls, but nothing else is giving up fish.
The lower Rogue saw a great bite Wednesday, with all the guides boating at least one chinook. Bankies, not so much. Rain began falling Thursday, and the lower Rogue should peak Sunday and drop, likely triggering a nice bite Sunday and well into next week. Boat anglers are fishing primarily with anchovies and the Rogue Bait rig. The Brad's Cut Plug lure is about the only other thing working.