Fishing report: Nov. 5
COASTWIDE: A hazardous seas warning was set to expire Friday morning, but that doesn’t mean conditions miraculously will improve. The forecast calls for winds up to 20 knots and swells up to 12 feet Friday, followed Saturday by winds up to 25 knots and swells building to 18 feet. Sunday’s forecast calls for conditions to back off slightly to 20-knot winds and swells up to 13 feet from the west.
The halibut season on the southcoast is now closed until spring.
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 be nonexistent again this weekend. Once conditions improve, sandshrimp and mussels are the best baits, with plastic sand worms and shrimp as secondary choices.
Recreational crabbing is closed in the ocean until Dec. 1, but bays remain open year-round. Crabbing has been slow in bays because heavy offshore surf this past week has pushed crabs offshore.
Razor clamming is open from Netarts Bay south to the California border. But razor populations are low outside of 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. 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. Electric trolling motors are OK. The park closes at dusk.
APPLEGATE: The Hart Tish Park boat ramp and dock are closed due to low water. The French Gulch and Copper ramps are 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 87 feet from full Thursday and rising slightly, while water releases have increased to 200 cfs.
DIAMOND: Trout fishing has been best on the south end near the Silent Creek channel for rainbows and tiger trout. Fishing is best with worms under bobbers. All tiger and brown trout must be released unharmed. The lake is not yet starting to ice over.
EMIGRANT: The lake is holding at 2% full, and that has all but shut off angling activity. Some bank fishing for catfish with chicken livers has been good.
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 24% full, a slight upswing.
HOWARD PRAIRIE: The lake is open, but access is very poor. Those able to drag a boat to the water have done very well trolling worms and flashers for rainbows. The lake was stocked with 50,000 fingerling rainbows Oct. 8. The lake is down to 4% full and it appears to have bottomed out. Fishing access is best near the dam. Anglers can keep five trout a day, with just one longer than 20 inches.
HYATT: The lake was up a hair to 2% full Thursday. The limit is five trout a day, with just one over 20 inches. No fingerling trout have been stocked so far this year.
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. Ice has yet to form.
LOST CREEK: The lake received 7,300 more trout the week of Oct. 4-8, including 2,300 trophy trout. Bank fish with PowerBait near the ramp. Wind-drifting worms above Peyton Bridge has been good. The lake Thursday was rising quickly and was 40 feet below the normal late-season target for flood control as outflows have steadied at 900 cfs.
MEDCO: The lake was last stocked with 1,100 legal-sized trout in June. Fishing is slow.
SELMAC: The lake was last stocked with 1,000 legal-sized trout in mid-May and that’s it until February. Fish for them with worms or PowerBait. Bass are active.
WILLOW: The lake received another 4,000 legal-sized rainbow trout in mid-May and that’s it until next March. Fish them with worms or PowerBait near the county boat ramp and deeper water across the lake.
ROGUE: After a pretty good flurry of summer steelhead catches in the upper Rogue with Monday’s removal of the flies-only restrictions, catches have started to drop off as normal. The middle Rogue has been OK for a mix of wild summer steelhead near creekmouths and some halfpounders, while the lower Rogue is slow for steelhead as anglers await the first winter steelhead of the season.
That makes the far upper Rogue the best bet for late-season summer steelhead fishing. But how is still limited by where.
Upstream of the Shady Cove boat ramp is open to bait and artificial lures. That’s where the bulk of the recent action has been with small egg clusters and yarn balls soaked in egg juice.
Downstream of the Shady Cove ramp is open to only artificial flies and lures. Plugs like MagLips have been hot throughout most of this past week. For fly-fishers, this allows the use of molded plastic beads that are illegal during the flies-only season.
Water flows are back down, with just 1,115 cfs at Dodge Bridge. Though rain is in the forecast, flows are not expected to rise beyond 1,500 cfs through next week.
The flows out of Lost Creek Lake are holding at 900 cfs.
In the lower Rogue, large numbers of halfpounder steelhead have moved into the Agness area and throughout the Wild and Scenic Section of the lower Rogue canyon. That’s a great sign for fall fishing this year, and for summer steelhead fishing the next two seasons. But fishing has gotten tough as flows jumped to 3,500 cfs Thursday at Agness, and conditions are going to bounce around all next week.
The Rogue is closed for chinook salmon fishing upstream from Hog Creek. No worries, since there’s no action up there.
The Hatchery Hole is 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. The Hatchery Hole is now permanently closed to all chinook fishing and will remain open only for steelhead. Bait such as worms and roe are legal now.
Anglers can no long keep any wild steelhead Rogue-wide until 2022.
APPLEGATE: The river is open to trout fishing but anglers cannot target steelhead.
CHETCO: After some pretty good early fall chinook fishing river-wide this past week, flows shot up past 10,000 cfs Thursday and remained on the rise, but should drop quickly for good salmon fishing perhaps as early as Sunday. Fish them with roe or plugs, but there usually is a fair amount of leaves in the water through the first storm sequence. The limit is two chinook a day, but only one can be wild.
ELK/SIXES: With close to 4 inches of rain overnight Wednesday, both rivers blew out and were unfishable with turbid water and lots of debris. When conditions improve, look for good fall chinook catches from the hatchery on down, but don’t expect much success in tidewater until water conditions drop severely.
NORTH UMPQUA: The North Umpqua is closed to steelhead fishing because of low returns.