River Outlook

ROGUE - Fall chinook are moving through the lower Rogue bay while huge schools of half-pounders have hit the lower Rogue in force. Fall chinook fishing is decent in the Grants Pass and Gold Hill areas, while summer steelhead fishing is holding its own in the upper Rogue, where chinook fishing is banned.

The best bet by far is the lower Rogue for half-pounders. A near-record run of early half-pounders has anglers very busy from Foster Bar down to Huntley Park. These fish are all around 14 inches long and are dynamite to catch on Panther Martin lures, streamer flies, worms and small egg clusters. You can keep only hatchery half-pounders, and the limit is five a day.

In the upper Rogue, almost 2,500 summer steelhead had been counted over Gold Ray Dam as of Aug. 12, the last counting date available this week from the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife. That's a pretty good showing so far. Many of the fish are smaller adults under 20 inches. They're hitting roe, worms, pink rubber worms, K-9 and K-11 Kwikfish, crayfish plugs and most streamer flies. Everything goes for early summer steelhead through August, before the Sept. 1 start of the flies-only season.

The middle Rogue has seen some decent fall chinook catches from within Grants Pass city limits all the way to Rainie Falls. These salmon are on the move and they're hitting Kwikfish better than roe.

The lower Rogue is still seeing around 40 fall chinook caught a day by trollers using anchovies and spinner blades. There is so much feed in the ocean and the estuary that it's difficult to get the attention of these chinook. Look for a good bite to develop soon in the Agness area.

The far upper Rogue's regular trout-stocking is close to normal, but downed trees continue to make stocking Hamaker impossible this week. The Crater Creek access, however, has opened this week. Worms, single salmon eggs and most nymph flies are working well for the stocked trout.

UMPQUA - Smallmouth bass fishing is excellent in the mainstem Umpqua around the Big K Ranch. A variety of rubber baits, both surface and bottom, are working throughout the day. Sturgeon fishing is slow in the bay.

The North Umpqua remains fair to good for summer steelhead. All wild steelhead throughout the system now must be released unharmed. The North Umpqua is open to catch-and-release trout fishing from the mouth upstream to Soda Springs Dam. Fishing is fair.

Smallmouth bass fishing is very good in the South Umpqua, with flies and rubber worms working well. Water levels are low, making boat access poor.

COQUILLE - Cutthroat trout are well dispersed within the system. Upstream fishing for trout remains slow. A few sturgeon were caught this past week in tidewater. Striped bass fishing is slow.

CHETCO - The Chetco River system is open to trout fishing, and cutthroat trout are well distributed. Hike-in fishing with flies in the far upper reaches is good in the evenings. Flows remain very low and warm.

APPLEGATE - The river is open to trout fishing, and anglers are finding some rainbows and cutthroat. The out-flows from the reservoir were at 301 cubic feet per second Wednesday. A few summer steelhead have hit the lower section, and fishing pressure on them is light. All wild trout and all cutthroat must be released unharmed.

DESCHUTES - Trout fishing is good on the lower Deschutes upstream from White River with the warmer temperatures and lower water flows helping anglers. Trout anglers should be successful using nymphs along with salmonflies, but anglers should also be watchful for mid-day hatches.

KLAMATH - The Klamath River from J.C. Boyle Dam to the J.C. Boyle Powerhouse is very good for catching redband trout. Most redband trout in this section range from 6-12 inches. The Klamath River below the Powerhouse is fair for redband trout 10-14 inches. Lures and flies imitating minnows and leeches work well.

WILLIAMSON - Flows are dropping and fish are moving into the mouth area from the lake. Fishing for redband trout is fair in the upper end.

WOOD - Flows are dropping in the lower Wood and that's helping improve fishing for brown trout and Klamath Lake trout now moving into the lower river. Chub-looking plugs and flies are working best.

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