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Fising Report Oct. 11, 2019

OCEAN OUTLOOK

COASTWIDE: Winds Friday are forecast to creep in around 5 knots with 3-foot wind waves and ease down to 2 feet. Saturday calls for much of the same, while Sunday sees things kick up a bit to 15 knot winds and swells to 7 feet.

Rockfish anglers no longer have to stay within the 30-fathom line for the remainder of the year. That means halibut anglers can keep limits of bottomfish during the same trip.

The marine aggregate rockfish daily limit for bottomfishers is five fish. Cabezon has closed for boat-based anglers, and boat anglers have to release copper, quillback and China rockfish. Shore anglers can still keep cabezon because they have a separate poundage quota. A descending device to help release rockfish caught in deeper water is mandatory on all boats.

The halibut limit is two a day in the Central and South Coast sub-areas. The all-depth season has been extended to every Friday through Sunday until the quota is reached. That includes this weekend.

Surfperch fishing should pick up with the favorable forecast. Try casting Berkley Gulp sandshrimp, sand worms or prawns.

Recreational crabbing is open coastwide, and Dungeness catches have been good in Coos Bay and the Coquille estuary at Bandon.

There are no minus tides for clammers this week. Razor clamming is open coast-wide now that the North Coast beaches are open again. Bay clamming and mussel harvesting are open along the coast. Before digging, call the shellfish hotline at 1-800-448-2474.

LAKE OUTLOOK

AGATE: The lake has jumped up to 11 percent full, but it is still getting very little interest from anglers. Water conditions are decent for crappie and perch fishing, but there is very little structure along the shore. Bass fishing has been slow. The ramp is open. No gas motors are allowed. Electric trolling motors are OK. The park closes at dusk.

APPLEGATE: The lake was down Thursday to more than 84 feet below full. Outflows from the lake have dropped and steadied at 200 cubic feet per second. Muddy banks are discouraging most anglers. Bank anglers should try off points. Trollers are working off the Copper ramp and near the dam. Launch at the low-water French Gulch ramp. No fresh fish have been stocked since mid-summer. Troll Wedding Ring lures spiced with a piece of worm or a worm behind a flasher. Bass fishing should be fair to good. The surface temperature is dropping amid freezing nights.

DIAMOND: Trout fishing has been fairly good but cool weather and changes in water temperatures have fish moving around more. Most of the action is in 20 feet of water, but winds have forced most anglers to the north side. The resort charterboat continues to limit out daily. Trolling is slow but still-fishing is best with worms or PowerBait in chartreuse, rainbow and even corn-flavored dough. Fly-fishers are using woolly buggers and chironomids fished with intermediate or sinking lines and stripped short but fast. The south end ramp is open. All tiger trout must be released unharmed, and some of them are pushing 20 inches.

EMIGRANT: The lake was holding steady this week at 23 percent full, with barely enough water to launch at the low-water ramp at the county park. The lake is low enough that there is no vegetation available to hold fish. Largemouth bass fishing is good on sunny days for those working the points with plastic worms. Smallmouth bass are on the gravely flats. Perch fishing is fair. Rainbow trout fishing is nonexistent.

EXPO: The pond last received trout in June, and that’s the last stocking of the season. Some bass and panfish are getting caught, but effort is light. Parking fees are required.

FISH: The lake is dropping, and rainbow trout are congregating around springs in the lake bed. Fishing has been good early and late in the day. The lake is scheduled to get 900 trophy trout next week. The lake was holding steady at 10 percent full, making hand-launching of boats possible. Troll Wedding Rings with worms or small Rapalas that look like tui chub for rainbows and tiger trout. Fish off the bank with PowerBait near underwater springs. All tiger trout must be released.

HOWARD PRAIRIE: The marina and boat ramp at the resort are closed for the season due to low water, and the restaurant is closed. The lake is 33 percent full. No ramps are usable, so bank fishing or launching smaller boats like kayaks or pontoon boats off the bank are the only options.

HYATT: The lake is seeing little interest from anglers. Some canoes, kayaks and cartoppers are launching off the bank to find decent rainbow trout fishing in the canal and near the dam. Lots of small bass in the mix. The lake was listed Thursday at 35 percent full.

LAKE OF THE WOODS: Fishing is fair for a mix of brown trout, rainbow trout and perch. Worms and PowerBait are working best. The lake was last stocked in late June.

LOST CREEK: The lake received 5,000 legal-sized rainbows and 2,300 trophy-sized rainbows last week, split between the marina and the Takelma ramp. Most boat anglers are trolling Wedding Ring lures spiced with a worm, and some are using small flashers. Fishing single eggs or small chunks of worm is good where the Rogue flows into the reservoir. The area upstream of Peyton Bridge is a no-wake zone. Outflows were down a hair to 1,200 cubic feet per second. The lake is a hair above its normal fall low pool in preparation for the upcoming flood-control season that begins Dec. 1.

WILLOW: The lake received 4,000 rainbow trout and 1,500 trophy trout in late May at the county ramp. Fish them with worms and PowerBait or streamer flies. Fishing for them has been good.

SELMAC: Fishing for bass is fair. The Oregon Health Authority issued an advisory Wednesday for a harmful algae bloom at the lake.

MEDCO: Trout fishing is slow.

RIVER OUTLOOK

ROGUE: Cooler water in the upper Rogue means nymph fishing is better than swinging streamers in what has been a good flies-only season, while the middle Rogue is decent for summer steelhead and strangely devoid of fall chinook. The lower Rogue bay is very slow for fall chinook, while the Agness area continues to be decent for a mix of chinook, summer steelhead and halfpounder steelhead.

That makes the upper Rogue the best bet, with fly-fishing either with traditional gear or spinning rods and bubbles unless you want to make the drive to Agness.

Water temperatures have dropped in the upper Rogue, making nymphs more effective now than streamer flies. Ugly Bug droppers and single egg flies, caddis nymphs or prince nymphs as point flies are the most common offerings this week. The flies-only season continues through October. Those fishing spinning rods can use a float but no other attachments such as swivels or weights. Steelhead are pretty well spread out.

The cold water has slowed steelhead migration, with just 26 new fish collected this week at Cole Rivers Hatchery. Still the showing so far is the second best in the past 25 years.

Flows out of Lost Creek Lake dropped 50 cfs to 1,200 cfs, and river flows have dropped commensurately. Flows at Dodge Bridge were holding pretty steady and Thursday were at 1,330 cfs, and 1,493 cfs at the old Gold Ray Dam site. The water is cooling and will continue to get cooler as water is released from Lost Creek Lake.

The flies-only season runs through Oct. 31 upstream of Fishers Ferry boat ramp.

In the middle Rogue, very few adult fall chinook have showed up this week at Rainie Falls. Chinook fishing is now closed upstream of the Hog Creek boat ramp.

Summer steelhead fishing has been good from Grants Pass upriver to Gold Hill and from Robertson Bridge downriver to Grave Creek. Fish with worms or Panther Martin lures or streamer flies.

APPLEGATE: The river is open for trout fishing, and all wild rainbow trout and cutthroat trout must be released unharmed. That’s pretty much all of the catch. Flows out of Applegate Lake will drop to 200 cfs by Saturday morning.

CHETCO: The river is open for trout fishing, and only artificial flies and lures are allowed above tidewater.

ILLINOIS: All angling is closed between Pomeroy Dam and the Eight Dollar Bridge (also known as the Green Bridge) through Nov. 30 to curb illegal snagging of fall chinook salmon.

Brian Winkler holds a 7-pound winter steelhead caught by his son Eric Winkler, left. It was the first steelhead Eric has caught, and it came amid the strongest upper Rogue River return in more than a decade. Photo by Mark Freeman