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Fishing report: Friday, Nov. 12

Mail Tribune/file photo
OCEAN OUTLOOK

COASTWIDE: A chance of rain and winds up to 15 knots are forecast for Friday, with swells up to 5 feet. Saturday calls for winds of 5 knots but the swells are forecast to rise to 7 feet. Sunday will be much the same as Saturday.

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 should improve after last week’s big waves. 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 are open year-round. Crabbing has been slow in bays because heavy offshore surf this past week pushed crabs offshore. But look for Dungeness to move back into estuaries this week as rains subside.

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.

LAKE OUTLOOK

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 88 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 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 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.

RIVER OUTLOOK

ROGUE: After a pretty good flurry of summer steelhead catches in the upper Rogue with last week’s end of the flies-only restrictions, catches have started to drop off. The middle Rogue has been OK for a mix of wild summer steelhead near creek mouths 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 1,300 cfs at Dodge Bridge and forecast to drop steadily into 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 3,605 cfs Thursday at Agness, and conditions are going to drop all week. This should produce some early winter steelhead catches from Quosatana Creek downstream. Fish roe or plugs.

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 closed to angling until Jan. 1.

CHETCO: The river is pulling into excellent shape for fall chinook fishing as flows dropped to 4,700 cfs Thursday and are forecast to drop steadily all week. Look for chinook to be river-wide, with plugs working best and side-drifting roe a second choice. These chinook are on the move to get into those migration lanes. Higher up in the system will be less crowded. The limit is two chinook a day, but only one can be wild.

ELK/SIXES: Flows had dropped to 3 feet and clear Thursday, making it look like tough fishing on the Elk this weekend. Chinook are present river-wide.