Fishing Report: Friday, Dec. 2


    COASTWIDE: Moderate winds but big swells are forecast this weekend on the Southern Oregon coast, with five-knot winds and swells up to nine feet expected today and Saturday. Sunday calls for 15-knot winds and 14-foot swells off Southern Oregon beaches. 

    Rockfish anglers can venture past the 20-fathom line, but there is not much need to because lingcod and rockfish catches have been good close in. Anglers can keep one cabezon a day as part of their seven-fish aggregate limit. Look for that aggregate limit to change for 2017.

    The ocean and all coastal bays are closed to crabbing due to domoic acid levels. Razor clamming is also closed along the coast because of domoic acid. Bay clams and butter clams are available coastwide, but mussels are off limits coastwide because of domoic acid. Before digging, check the shellfish hotline at 1-800-448-2474.


    AGATE: The lake was listed Wednesday at 26 percent full, though there's been little angling interest of late. Fishing is fair at best for a mix of bass, crappie and perch. No trout stockings are planned this year. No gas motors are allowed. Electric trolling motors are OK.

    APPLEGATE: Trolling for rainbows has been good when the wind is down. Anglers are catching rainbows up to 18 inches by trolling higher in the water column. Last week's outflows have held steady at 500 cubic feet per second and inflows are less than that now. Bass fishing has slowed. The French Gulch ramp is now the only usable ramp at the lake.

    DIAMOND: The lake is fishing fairly well between rainstorms for the few anglers working it. PowerBait and worms are out-fishing trolling, but trollers using small lures such as Triple Teasers are doing well. Rainbows are spread out. The 300,000 fingerlings stocked last spring have reached legal size. All tiger trout must be released.

    EMIGRANT: The lake was listed Thursday at 22 percent full, and the county boat ramp is usable again, but fishing is a bust.

    FISH: The lake was up to 41 percent full Wednesday, with the water quality improving. Fishing is pretty good for what's left of the 900 trophy trout stocked at the boat ramp in late September. The ramp is usable for most trailered boats. The resort is closed. Watch for stumps in the water. Fish worms under bobbers or use PowerBait. Tiger trout as big as 18 inches have been caught, but they must be released unharmed.

    HOWARD PRAIRIE: Fishing is fair to good, but there has been little activity. The resort is closed, but other ramps are open. Holdover trout in the 14- to 19-inch range are being caught by trollers. Morning trolling is best. The lake was stocked last month with 7-inch and 5-inch rainbows that should be 8- to 10-inchers by spring. The lake was listed Wednesday at 48 percent full. Bank fishers should stake out deeper water near the dam. Look for snow this weekend.

    HYATT: Trout and bass fishing have slowed. The lake is 45 percent full. Expect snow this weekend. Bank access is best near the dam.

    LOST CREEK: The lake has fished very well for rainbows by trolling Wedding Ring lures with small pieces of worm near the dam or upstream of Peyton Bridge. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers held the releases steady at 1,700 cubic feet per second this week. It was listed Thursday as a hair above the normal low-pool level of 1,812 feet above sea level. Trolling is best near the dam. Landlocked salmon have been holding deeper than the trout. Bass fishing is slow.

    LAKE OF THE WOODS: The lake is fishing fair to good for a mix of rainbows, brown trout and perch near the resort for anglers using worms under bobbers or PowerBait off the bottom. Fishing is best at dawn and dusk.

    WILLOW: Trout fishing has leveled off since anglers picked through many of the 450 one-pound trout released at the county boat ramp late last month. The lake remains low, and fishing is best with worms under bobbers or PowerBait directly out past the ramp.

    EXPO: Fishing in the pond at the amphitheater is still very good for the 1,500 one-pound trout stocked for last week's post-Thanksgiving Free Fishing Weekend. Catch them with bobbers and worms or PowerBait. Access the pond through Gate 1.5 off Peninger Road. No boats or float tubes are allowed.


    ROGUE: The upper Rogue has been decent for a mix of summer steelhead and coho salmon in both bait and plug waters. The middle Rogue also has been kicking out summer steelhead for the few anglers who are targeting them, and the lower Rogue has seen some early winter steelhead, with murky water conditions for plunkers targeting them.

    That keeps the best bet on the upper Rogue, which has consistently produced mixes of steelhead and coho, particularly for those fishing plugs in the cold water.

    Upstream of the Shady Cove boat ramp is open for all things steelhead, with side-drifting roe most popular and effective since the flies-only season ended Nov. 1. Catches have been best with roe or roe-soaked yarn balls side-drifted from driftboats. Those fishing plugs such as Mag Lip 3.0 or crayfish plugs were also running into some nice steelhead and some surprisingly bright hatchery coho salmon. Wild coho and chinook must be released unharmed.

    Downstream of the Shady Cove ramp is open for artificial lures but not bait. Effort there has been lighter than upstream of Shady Cove, and there definitely are fewer steelhead down lower than higher up. Fishing deeper, somewhat slower runs has been most effective. Fall chinook are no longer spawning, so it's not as simple as fishing below spawners. Plastic egg flies or juiced-up egg balls are also working well for side-drifters.

    More than 700 "retread" steelhead were recycled last week from Cole Rivers Hatchery to the Denman Wildlife Area and TouVelle State Park. Those fish are starting to spread out as they head upstream.

    Flows look good and steady through the weekend, with 1,700 cfs of water was coming out of Lost Creek Lake. Flows Thursday at Dodge Bridge were a pleasant 2,367 cfs and were up to just shy of 3,000 cfs at the old Gold Ray Dam site.

    In the middle Rogue, summer steelhead fishing was good this week with plugs from the city of Grants Pass on down. Flows at Grants Pass were 3,255 cfs Thursday and forecast to bump up Monday and Tuesday before dropping again.

    APPLEGATE: The river is open for trout fishing but closed for steelhead and salmon, both of which are present now. All wild trout must be released unharmed. No fin-clipped rainbows are stocked there.

    CHETCO: Anglers are catching early winter steelhead after last week's freshets while side-drifting roe and corkies with Bouncing Betties.

    ELK: The river was in good shape for late-run chinook fishing, with fish widely spread throughout hte system. Most salmon are in the upper half, but a lot of those getting caught now are dark. A few early winter steelhead have shown up this week.

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