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Fishing Report: Friday, Aug. 20

A winter steelhead is released on the Rogue River near Shady Cove in April. Mail Tribune / Jamie Lusch

COASTWIDE: A gale warning and a hazardous seas warning are in effect through Friday evening. The forecast Friday calls for up to 30 knots with wind waves up to 8 feet. Saturday calls for winds to 20 knots and swells to 6 feet. Sunday’s forecast calls for a repeat of Saturday.

The offshore season for salmon has closed along the south coast for the season.

Anglers had started running after tuna outside of Brookings, with tuna found about 20 miles offshore. However, high winds and swells will keep the fleet in port at least into early next week.

The general marine bag limit is five fish in aggregate, with copper, quillback or China rockfish no longer part of the daily limit for boat anglers. Boat anglers can keep one cabezon. The lingcod limit is two fish over 22 inches.

Surfperch fishing will likely be a bust this weekend due to harsh surf and winds. When things calm down, look for decent catches off south coast beaches. Sandshrimp and mussels are the best bets, with plastic sand worms and shrimp as secondary baits.

Recreational crabbing is open coastwide.

Razor clamming is open from Netarts Bay to California. It is closed on the north coast. Before digging, call the shellfish hotline at 1-800-448-2474.


AGATE: The lake received 2,500 legal-sized rainbow trout in early June, but don’t expect any more due to extremely warm water. Troll worms or fish worms or PowerBait under bobbers near the county boat ramp. Bank anglers need to stay off the ramp. The lake is 10% full and it appears to have bottomed out for the season. Electric trolling motors are OK. The park closes at dusk.

APPLEGATE: The lake was stocked in June with 10,000 legal-sized rainbows. The Hart Tish Park boat ramp and dock are closed due to low water. The French Gulch and Copper ramps are still usable. Fish for rainbows with PowerBait or worms from the bank or slowly troll Tasmanian Devil lures spiced with a piece of worm. Bass fishing has been fair to good with plastic worms and grubs fished slowly off the bottom along rocky points and flats. The reservoir was 62 feet from full Thursday and dropping steadily. Water releases are holding steady at 175 cfs. Inflows are down to 27 cfs.

DIAMOND: Trout fishing is best on the south end near the Silent Creek channel for rainbows and tiger trout. But hot weather is sending the trout into deeper water. Fishing is best with worms under bobbers. All tiger and brown trout must be released unharmed.

EMIGRANT: The lake is 4% full, and that has all but shut off angling activity.

EXPO: The pond was last stocked in May with 1,500 legal-sized rainbows. Some bass and panfish are available. Parking fees are required.

FISH: Fishing is good in the open water near the marina for rainbow trout. Boat access is all manual, with bank fishing best around springs near the resort. Use worms or PowerBait. All tiger trout must be released. The lake was listed Thursday at 9% full.

HOWARD PRAIRIE: The lake is open but access is poor. The lake was not stocked with rainbows this spring. The lake is down to 4% full. Fishing access is best near the dam. All limits on trout and other species have been lifted due to extremely low water.

HYATT: The lake was down to 12% full Thursday. All limits for size and numbers of trout and bass have been lifted because of poor water conditions.

LAKE OF THE WOODS: Trolling for rainbow trout is fair to good with worms behind flashers in the shallows. Go slow. Perch fishing is good near the resort.

LOST CREEK: The lake received 10,000 legal-sized rainbows in mid-June, split between the marina and the Takelma boat ramp. Bank fish with PowerBait near the ramp. Wind-drifting worms above Peyton Bridge has been good. The lake Thursday was 12 feet below the normal late-season target for flood control as outflows remain at 1,700 cfs.

MEDCO: The lake was last stocked with 1,100 legal-sized trout in June.

SELMAC: The lake was last stocked with 1,000 legal-sized trout in mid-May. Fish for them with worms or PowerBait. Bass are active. The lake is loaded with algae.

WILLOW: The lake received another 4,000 legal-sized rainbow trout in mid-May. Fish them with worms or PowerBait near the county boat ramp and deeper water across the lake.


ROGUE: Chinook fishing has been good to very good at times in the lower Rogue Bay and decent in the upper Rogue downstream of Dodge Bridge. The upper Rogue has improved for summer steelhead with everything from flies to bait and plugs, while the middle Rogue has been slow for chinook and steelhead.

That puts the best bet down at the bay, where trolling for early fall chinook has been worth the travel, with anchovies or herring as bait. Rogue blade rigs are still the best addition for bait, but some large chinook have been caught on straight herring recently.

Also in the lower Rogue, large numbers of halfpounder steelhead showed up the past week in the Huntley Park seining surveys. That bodes well for fun fishing in the Agness area soon and good summer steelhead adult returns in future years.

Summer steelhead are continuing to show in the upper Rogue. Another 73 summer steelhead showed up this week at Cole Rivers Hatchery, upping the count to 882 to date. It’s better than last year but still under the 10-year running average.

These are aggressive biters, with some big fish in the mix. Catch them on everything from plugs and worms to roe and various flies, from streamers to nymphs and single-egg patterns. For plugs, use MagLip 3.5s or 3.0s, with Misty River colors as well as gold, black and chartreuse. K-11 Kwikfish in gold or copper are also decent choices.

The Rogue from Dodge Bridge on down is now open for wild and hatchery chinook, and expect decent catches and crowded runs there, as it’s the only chinook game in town. Back-bounce roe and sandshrimp or tuna belly combinations, or larger plugs wrapped with anchovies or tuna bellies.

The Hatchery Hole is now open for summer steelhead anglers, and a few fish have been caught by fly-fishers nymphing with Ugly Bugs and single salmon egg point flies.

Anglers can no long keep any wild steelhead Rogue-wide until 2022.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has increased outflows to 1,700 cfs from Lost Creek Lake this week.

APPLEGATE: The river is open to trout fishing but anglers cannot target steelhead.

CHETCO: The river is open to cutthroat and rainbow trout fishing.

ELK/SIXES: The rivers have reopened to angling but interest is very limited.

NORTH UMPQUA: The North Umpqua is closed to steelhead fishing because of low returns and extremely warm water.