What’s Fishin’ In Oregon

Looking for a little ‘Nookie, err, some big ‘Nookie?

Head for the Oregon coast where fishing for ocean-fresh fall Chinook ranges from “fair” to “very good” right now, according to ODFW’s weekly Recreation Report.

The best fishing has been on the Coos system and Rogue Bay, where Jot’s Resort reportedly weighed in a 45-pounder in recent days.

“A bunch of silvers moved into the bay last week, and the kings started biting again,” said guide Andy Martin of Wild Rivers Fishing in Brookings. “We got a 25-pound king on Tuesday, and a few silvers.”


But kings aren’t the only fish gnawing on baits in the Beaver State. Coho are surging up the Willamette while fresh whopper trout were stocked on a mess of North Coast lakes and steelhead are moving into the Umatilla River.

Here are more highlights from the report:


  • The chinook bite took off at the mouth of the Rogue River this past weekend and fishing should continue to be good in the bay.
  • Chinook fishing has been very good in the Coos Basin.
  • With the onset of cooler temperatures trout fishing should pick up on many area lakes, and additional trout stocking is on tap to provide family fun. Trophy and large trout are being stocked in some lakes around the region.
  • Anglers have landed some wild coho on the Coquille River.


  • Trophy trout stocking is scheduled for the week of Sept. 20. Cape Meares, Town, Coffenbury, Lost and Sunset lakes are scheduled to receive trout averaging about 2 pounds each. Additional legal to larger size trout were also stocked in Lost Lake and Town Lake. Angling for warmwater species in district lakes is slowing as lakes begin to cool. There can still be some good action, especially for largemouth bass. Concentrate your efforts on the warmer parts of the day.
  • Alsea River: Fall chinook angling is slow to fair but starting to pick up more consistently. Fish are being caught from the mouth through tidewater. Recent rains should help to move more fish into the system. Trolling herring or lures near bottom seem to be producing fish. Cutthroat trout angling is fair to good with sea-run cutthroat trout can be found throughout most of the mainstem.
  • Salmon River: Anglers are catching chinook from the lower bay up to the hatchery. Fishing the incoming tide has produced the best results in the lower river. Cutthroat trout fishing is still a good option with sea-run cutthroat found from the bay through the lower to mid river area.
  • Siletz River: Fall Chinook angling is fair with fish being caught from the mouth up into the lower river. Recent rains should move new fish in and up river. The wild adult coho fishery is underway with low catch rates but starting to pick up. Steelhead fishing is very good in the upper river. Cutthroat trout fishing is fair to good with sea-runs showing up from the bay to mid river.
  • Siuslaw River: Fall Chinook angling is picking up as more fish are moving in. Anglers are catching fish from the lower bay into upper tide water. Trolling herring or lures close to the bottom can be productive. Cutthroat trout angling is still fair to good in most areas with sea-run cutthroat found from the bay into the lower river.
  • Tillamook Bay: Angling for chinook is improving. Fish are being caught throughout the bay. Trolling herring on the incoming tide in the lower bay is a good bet during soft tide series. Or try trolling spinners in the upper bay on larger tide swings. Hatchery coho are moving through the bay quickly, especially after recent rains. Best action will be in tidewater areas or the upper bay. Chinook are being caught in the terminal area just outside the bay. The ocean, including the terminal area, is closed for coho.
  • Yaquina Bay: Chinook fishing is slow to fair but expected to pick up any time. Anglers are catching some fish from the lower bay to upper tide water. Cutthroat trout angling remains fair to good with sea-run cutthroat trout are being caught in the upper tidewater and low river area


  • ODFW will host a youth fishing event at St. Louis Ponds near Woodburn this Saturday, Sept. 25, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Youngsters are invited to participate in this event where ODFW staff and volunteers will be available to provide instruction and fishing equipment.
  • Coho are moving into the Willamette River and its tributaries in good numbers and recent rains have improved conditions.
  • The first of two major trout releases will take place this week at Henry Hagg Lake near Forest Grove.


  • Summer steelhead fishing on the lower Deschutes River continues to be good.
  • With the cooler fall weather, trout fishing has been good in several area lakes including Lava, Little Lava, East and Paulina.
  • Insect hatches on the Fall and Metolius rivers have been prolific, creating good dry fly fishing opportunities.


  • Fishing for trout on the Blitzen River has been very good.
  • Deadhorse Lake has been yielding some massive rainbow trout.
  • Rainbow and brown trout fishing have been very good on Miller Lake. Miller Lake is one of the few places in Oregon anglers can target big browns after dark.
  • Brook trout fishing has been excellent in several Cascade mountain lakes.


  • With the onset of cooler temperatures, steelhead fishing has been good on the lower Umatilla River.
  • Trout fishing in many area lakes also has improved as with cooler weather.


  • Walleye fishing continues to be good in Troutdale.
  • Fall chinook angling is still good between Warrior Rock and Bonneville Dam, with an average of 8,433 passing through the Bonneville ladder daily.
  • The steelhead run is peaking in the McNary Dam area with anglers pulling plugs doing well above the dam, and bobber/jig producing well above and below the dam.
  • Walleye fishing below McNary Dam has been outstanding.


  • Most bottom fishers out of Garibaldi, Charleston and Brookings came home with limits or near limits of rock fish. The rest of the coast had was hit and miss with some anglers on the central coast doing poor one day and great the next. Some charter-boat operators blamed changes in water temperature for the fish being off the bite. Lingcod were harder to come by with the best catches being one fish for every two anglers.
  • Anglers are still finding tuna, usually landing between two and five fish per angler. This year ranks as the third best for Oregon tuna anglers. Oregon anglers landed more than 30,000 albacore so far this year leaving only 2009 and 2007 with more sport-caught albacore. Although a few good weeks might push 2010 above 2009’s 40,000, the 2007 record of nearly 60,000 fish is in no danger this year.

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