Willamette Valley – With counts at Bonneville starting to blossom, metro anglers are getting anxious to take on the fall run Chinook that are literally swimming past their doorsteps. Although these prized fish can be somewhat finicky, if the run comes through as predicted, there should be good action to be had in the coming 3 weeks. Wobbler anglers seem to be having the most consistency right now but trollers should come on strong when temperatures start to drop.
Lower Willamette water temperatures are in the mid-70s, making this an ideal environment for warmwater gamefish. Which we encourage anglers to try as long as this heat wave continues. Dave Neels of Fisherman’s Marine Oregon City (503-557-5600) let the cat out of the bag about an upcoming fishery here.
There is no change in level and flow forecast for the McKenzie. Trout fishing has remained fair but steady for quite some time, despite the weather.
Water levels are low on the entire Santiam River system. While this comes as no surprise at this time of year, that some fish are getting caught here raised an eyebrow or two.
Unchanged for some time now and showing no change in forecasts for early next week, the Clackamas River may have reached its bottom limit.
Hot weather finally caught up with the Sandy River which turned milky from glacial runoff this week. Fortunately, Pro guide Jeff Stoeger with O2BFISHN Guide Service (503-704-7920) gave us some inside information.
Northwest Oregon – Buoy 10 anglers finally found a short reprieve from the challenging fishing. Success on Tuesday and Wednesday improved, but fell flat again by Thursday. Despite promising numbers passing at Bonneville Dam, most fisheries downstream of Bonneville remain highly inconsistent. Coho are starting to show, but not in good number, as predicted.
Ocean fishing out of the Columbia is also sporadic, but with the run timing of both Chinook and coho, the CR Buoy or Buoy 1 may provide some of the more consistent options.
Fall salmon anglers are also getting excited about prospects in northern estuaries such as Tillamook, Nestucca and Nehalem Bays. The Necanicum, Salmon and Siletz are also strong options as we nudge into September and action has already been reported in some of these estuaries for fall Chinook to the mid-twenty pound range.
The Nehalem remains stagnant as anglers transition from summer to fall run Chinook. The softer morning tides should allow for some successful jaws fishing for late run summer fish or early run fall Chinook. Bay crabbing should also be improving.
There have been fish reported in Tillamook Bay, which isn’t unusual. Coho will be scarce this year however; there have been no confirmed reports for coho, but this is the time of year when anglers start catching early returning hatchery fish.
The Salmon River near Lincoln City is good early season option and Chinook should start to show in the Nestucca tidewater as well. Boaters working herring in the jaws should find some success this weekend. It should also be a good weekend to do some crabbing.
Bottomfishing remains consistently good but the quota for the nearshore halibut fishery is down to 10%. There remains a substantial quota for all depth fishing however (68%).
Central & South Coast Reports – Catches of nearshore halibut have been excellent the last couple of weeks. So good, in fact that we expect a closure announcement at any moment.
Albacore have moved far offshore along with the warm water they favor. Few private boats are equipped to make so long a trip out and back.
Central Oregon coast charters report good catches of bottom fish along with excellent catches of ocean Dungeness.
We share several indicators which point to a good showing this season for fall Chinook in coastal estuaries.
Reedsport resident and author of fishing lore, Pete Heley, (peteheley.com) tells of good and improving crabbing in Winchester Bay. He says the fishing ain’t bad, either!
Summer and fall Chinook are being caught on Rogue Bay, which has been a blessing as ocean charter boats have been fishing this as an alternative when it’s been too rough to get out. Fishing is best upriver as it has been fairly slow in the middle and lower Rogue.
According to the latest data posted online just today, August 25th, there is plenty of quota remaining for south coast halibut anglers south of Humbug Mountain to continue fishing seven days a week.
Central & Eastern – Escape the heat and catch some high lakes trout! Many of these lakes have just been stocked to so fishing should be easy.
Trolling for kokanee has been successful for anglers fishing Paulina Lake.
Kokanee fishing at Green Peter has remained reliable for good numbers of smallish fish although reports this year indicate there may be some improvement.
Boat anglers who have been trolling at Detroit Lake have been doing well.
SW Washington – Cowlitz River anglers are still cleaning up on summer steelhead and fall Chinook are starting to show in better numbers. In last weekend’s creel check, anglers averaged nearly a fish per rod average when accounting for wild and hatchery steelhead, as well as a few fall Chinook.
The only other quality fishery, besides the mainstem Columbia, is Drano Lake. Drano anglers are also spanking the steelhead and fall Chinook are starting to fall with more regularity. Anglers here averaged better than a fish per rod when accounting for wild and hatchery summer steelhead and a growing number of fall Chinook.
The Kalama and Lewis are quiet but some early returning hatchery coho have already shown at the Lewis River hatchery.