Fishing Report July 27, 2018
COASTWIDE: A small-craft advisory is in effect through Friday evening, with winds to 15 knots and wind waves up to 6 feet. Saturday looks much the same for most of the coast but winds will be down to 5 knots in the Brookings area with 3-foot wind waves. Sunday calls for winds up to 10 knots a wind waves again at 3 feet. Smoke is forecast to start blowing in Saturday evening and continue into next week.
The marine aggregate rockfish daily limit for bottomfishers has dropped from five fish to four for the remainder of 2018. The cabezon limit is one per day, and that counts against the four-fish aggregate limit. Rockfish angling is open only inside the 30-fathom line. A descending device to help release rockfish caught in deeper water is mandatory on all boats.
Lingcod fishing is very good when anglers can get out, particularly out of Brookings. Look for some good morning action through the weekend.
The ocean chinook salmon season is open, and catches along the Oregon Coast have been good out of Brookings. Brookings anglers through July 8 have logged 1,790 angler-trips to catch 273 chinook and release another 49 chinook for a catch rate of .15 per angler, just about at the statewide level. No new estimates were available Thursday. Work the water near the California border, trolling slowly 150 to 180 feet down with anchovies or sardines. The Southern Oregon coastal chinook season runs through Aug. 26.
Look for good surfperch fishing along the Southern Oregon Coast, particularly near the mouths of rivers. Fish with Berkley Gulp sand worms or sandshrimp, as well as lug worms.
Commercial and recreational crabbing is open coastwide, but ocean and dock crabbing in the Charleston area have slowed.
A set of decent minus morning tides continues through Monday. That bodes well for weekend clammers, but only a small area around Coos Bay is open in Southern Oregon for razor clams because of domoic acid levels. Bay clamming and the recreational harvest of mussels is open along the entire coast, but that can change quickly, so check the shellfish hotline at 1-800-448-2474 before digging.
AGATE: Perch, bass and some crappie are dominating a light catch. Most of the action is on perch and bass near the submerged and partially flooded willows. Wind-drift worms with light weight or just a swivel, or cast small spinners or flies. The lake is dropping quickly and was listed Thursday at 54 percent full. No gas motors are allowed. Electric trolling motors are OK. The park closes at dusk.
APPLEGATE: The lake is down to almost 27 feet from full, down 4 feet from last week amid outflows of 275 cubic feet per second and inflows of just 56 cfs. Trout are well dispersed in the lake, but most of the action has been where Carberry Creek drops into the reservoir and deeper water near the dam and ouflow tower. Bass fishing is good for those casting crankbaits toward rocky points. Slow trolling could be good for trout, and still-fishing in the French Gulch cove with PowerBait should be good. The surface temperature was at 78 degrees earlier this week.
DIAMOND: Trout fishing has slowed amid warm water and a spreading algae bloom. Surface temperatures were at 75 degrees Thursday. Most of the action is in the south end with worms under bobbers in about 15 feet of water. Find the leader depth to get the worm a little off the top of the weedline. Trollers should start with Wedding Ring lures spiked with a small piece of worm about 4 feet behind a small flasher. Still-fishers and fly-fishers working the south side, the shrimp beds and the old cheese hole have done OK this week but not as well as last month. Fly-fishers can use chironomid flies stripped slowly in the bottom half of the water column. All tiger trout must be released unharmed, and they are showing up pretty strongly in the catch, particularly at the south end.
EMIGRANT: The lake is down to 42 percent full. The lake was stocked last month with 1,000 rainbow trout at the county boat ramp. Expect light action around there. Bait fishers using PowerBait or worms under bobbers will do the most damage. Trollers should use Flatfish or Wedding Ring lures with worms, with or without dodgers. Bass fishing has been good with plastic worms or grubs fished slowly near submerged willows, and with crankbaits deep. Fish early morning or late evenings. The county boat ramp is open during daylight hours.
EXPO: Country Crossings concerts are on. Stay away.
FISH: The lake received another 2,500 legal-sized trout two weeks ago at the Forest Service ramp near the resort. Look for good fishing in the marina area and the cove near the ramp. A 26-inch tiger trout was caught and released recently on a chub-looking lure. The lake dropped to 56 percent full this week. Use streamer flies and small Rapala plugs that look like tui chubs. Also focus on the springs out in the lake.
HOWARD PRAIRIE: Fishing is decent for rainbow trout for still-fishers in deeper water near the dam with PowerBait, but warming water has the trout less active. Trollers are working the far-side channel with Wedding Ring or Tasmanian Devil lures spiced with small pieces of worm. The lake was stocked earlier this month with 7,500 legal-sized rainbows. The lake was listed Thursday at 49 percent full.
HYATT: The lake received another 7,450 legal-sized trout last month. BLM’s campground and Mountain View boat ramp are open. The lake is at 25 percent full, and boat access is limited to kayaks, canoes, driftboats launched off the shore or cartoppers that can be carried to the water. Trolling and still-fishing for trout have been very good near the dam, in the Orchard area and along the creek channel.
LAKE OF THE WOODS: The lake is fishing decently for rainbows and perch with worms and PowerBait, while trolling has been fair to good for trout. Brown trout and kokanee fishing have been slow.
LOST CREEK: Another 10,000 legal-sized rainbow trout and 1,500 larger trout were stocked a month ago, and that has helped keep fishing decent near the dam and well above Peyton Bridge, where the no-wake rules are being enforced. Most of the action, however, remains in the lower 20 percent of the lake. Fishing is best near the Takelma ramp, around the island and trolling the far portion of the dam’s face. The lake is down to more than 27 feet from full. Bank anglers using PowerBait at either side of the dam are faring well.
WILLOW: The lake was stocked earlier this month with 5,000 legal-sized rainbow trout and 1,500 larger trout. Evening trout fishing has been best, while bass fishing is good early in the day.
SELMAC: The lake received 1,000 legal-sized rainbows late last month, but the water is warming and getting a bit rough on the trout. Catch them on PowerBait, small spinners and woolly bugger flies.
ROGUE: Chinook salmon and summer steelhead fishing has slowed in the upper Rogue largely because of hot water slowing fish movement and smoke that makes fishing hazardous. In the middle Rogue, fishing has been very good for summer steelhead in the Gold Hill to Rogue River stretch on plugs, with a few in the Galice area. The lower Rogue has been excellent for fall chinook, with good numbers of larger fish showing up in the mix.
That keeps the best bet on the lower Rogue, where multiple-fish days per boat have been happening this week and lots of 4-year-old chinook in the 28- to 30-pound range becoming more common. The big culprit last weekend was wind, making it tough to troll in heavy traffic. The upstream water is warm, and that’s keeping chinook from moving upstream. Troll anchovies with Rogue bait rigs; a variety of colors have been working, with green-on-green and chartreuse-and-green some of the better bets.
In the upper Rogue, water releases of 1,600 cfs out of Lost Creek dam have not helped to get chinook on the move. The triple-digit air temperatures don’t help either. And the smoke is scaring a lot of anglers off the water, particularly driftboaters who shouldn’t row without a mask.
Cole Rivers Hatchery technicians collected 174 new spring chinook and 103 recycled chinook. That’s better than last week, and it inches the count up to 3,644 so far this year — the best in three years but still below the 10-year running average of 5,422 springers. About 70 percent of the springers that will reach Cole Rivers this year probably already have. No new steelhead or chinook were recycled this past week.
Bank anglers are doing fair on spring chinook early in the morning at the Hatchery Hole when they try. When driftboaters get out, catches are best above Shady Cove. However, that will change Wednesday when all spring chinook fishing ends upstream of Dodge Bridge. Water below Dodge Bridge will remain open for spring chinook, and anglers can also keep wild fish as part of their two-fish daily limit. Look for more action on the run below TouVelle State Recreation Site. Fish by back-bouncing roe and sandshrimp combinations or use MagLip 3.5 or 3.0 plugs scented, but don’t abandon the smaller Kwikfish wrapped with sardines.
Another 95 summer steelhead showed up at the hatchery this week. The 740 fish counted so far is ahead of the 10-year running average of 614. Summer steelhead will hit most everything, and they range from under 20 inches to 12 pounds. Late-run or spawned-out winter steelhead should be released. All wild steelhead must be released unharmed river-wide for the remainder of the year.
Flows at Dodge Bridge Thursday were at 1,647 cfs. Flows at the old Gold Ray Dam site were at 1,673 cfs Thursday. Those are virtually unchanged from last week.
In the middle Rogue, anglers using plugs are hitting summer steelhead on the float between Valley of the Rogue State Park and Gold Hill. Cop Car and black-and-silver Weewarts are working, as are MagLip lures.
In the far upper Rogue, trout are stocked weekly at places such as Union Creek Campground, and fishing for them is consistently good with worms and single salmon eggs.
APPLEGATE: The river is open to rainbow trout fishing, and only hatchery trout can be kept. Don’t expect to find them, however, because only fin-clipped winter steelhead are released there, and they are small and should be avoided. All cutthroat must be released. Rainbow trout over 16 inches are considered steelhead, and the river is closed to steelhead fishing until Jan. 1.
CHETCO: The river is open to trout angling, and sea-run cutthroat trout should be present in the lower river and estuary.