Oregon Fishing Report for July 7th

Willamette Valley/Metro – With the depressed steelhead run, metro area fishing is next to non-existent. That could change however, as department officials re-opened the fishery immediately. Here is the official press release, it goes back to a 2 fish/day bag limit. Although a little bit past peak passage at Bonneville, adult Chinook numbers remain consistently just below 1,900 fish/day. That is certainly enough fish to justify opportunity.

The Willamette River fishery at the head of the Channel, continues to produce fair to good results. Willamette and Clackamas bound fish are due to phase out, but mis-guided Columbia bound summer Chinook will likely remain in the catches for a while longer.

The Sandy River is inundated with rafters and swimmers, making it difficult to fish. Pro guide Jeff Stoeger (503-704-7920) suggests targeting both salmon and steelhead in the upper reaches above Dodge Park.

The Clackamas River remains fair for steelhead and less than fair for spring Chinook. As we enter the summer doldrums, fish will be more challenging to entice, but the early bird will still get the worm.

Shad success in Oregon City is starting to taper, effort output is proving that true.

Northwest – Offshore salmon remains challenging out of most ports, but persistent anglers continue to find decent Chinook fishing both to the north and south of the Columbia River. Swift limits are NOT the rule however. Coho remain sparse.

The Tillamook spring Chinook fishery is largely over. Effort will remain focused on the river systems. Action will remain less than impressive with dropping and clearing flows, but again, early risers stand the best chance. The Trask, Nestucca, and Wilson Rivers in that order are your north coast options.

All north coast river systems should have cutthroat available. The better fishing is likely to be in the tidewater reaches however.

Ocean crabbing continues to improve, but softshell crab remain prevalent. Bay crabbing is fair at best in most estuaries.

All-depth halibut fishing has been good, but the quota hasn’t been updated since last weekend’s fishery. It’s likely to close when numbers come in.

Albacore catches remain mediocre. Experienced guys are saying we may a few more weeks before tuna are in range of the sport fleet.

Southwest – Pete Heley at PeteHeley.com tells us A few fall chinook salmon are starting to enter the lower Umpqua River. Boat anglers trolling herring along the South Jetty are having some success on the chinooks, but the best bite has been in the ocean for coho salmon.

Some of the less typical salmon catches last week would include Steve Godin and and his fishing partner who’s Friday catch of five salmon included four finclipped, keepable cohos.  The fishing for redtailed surfperch has been very good for the last ten days and there are plenty of fish in the spawning area, but the fish move around a lot and fishing success can vary greatly.

Quite often, when people rely on a single reporting source, the information given does not match up with the information that checking several sources would have provided.   Since trout plants stopped several weeks ago, trout fishing has been slow in most waters.

Shad fishing is starting to wind down on the Umpqua, but good catches are still being made. Chartreuse and hot pink remain the most productive colors.  Striped bass fishing on the Smith and Umpqua rivers appears to be very slow, but information has been hard to get.   Crabbing at Winchester Bay seems to be steadily improving with one guide offering short ocean crabbing trips with a two person minimum.

One fishery that seems to be largely ignored is for brown bullhead catfish which should be just coming off the spawn.   Bad news regarding the access to Horsfall Beach and Lake. It seems that being underwater for several months has degraded the road to the point where standing water is no longer the major factor in the road closure.

Eastern – Avid angler Tim Moran writes: “The heat is building and the Century Dr. Loop fisheries are cooling off and becoming early and late fisheries.  At Wickiup you can still get Kokanee by trolling in 30 to 40 feet of water with wedding rings and hoochies tipped with white corn and some anglers will find schools and jig them up.

Fall River was fishing good last week in the evenings with size 18 Adams and PMD’s.  Look for evening hatches through the summer here and match the hatch.

The Deschutes below Lava Lake is fishing good right now nymphing with Copper John’s, beaded  Hare’s Ear’s and  other small nymphs under and indicator.

Trout on Lake Simtustus are hitting wedding rings and hoochies tipped with a little worm and corn behind a flasher.  Reports are the fishing has been very good for trout from 10 to 14 inches.  Remember to pick up a reservation permit at the marina store before you hit the water.

Trout fishing has been very good on the upper McKenzie.  Fly fishing with small bead head nymphs and  hitting the occasional hatches of Mayflies have produced multiple fish days here.

On my favorite river, the John Day, the flow has dropped to about 850 CFS which is perfect for targeting bass in the seams and the slow water between the swifter currents.  This is the time of year when you can get a lot of fish on the surface in the slow on top water and in the seams with Wooly Buggers or small plastics and spinners.  We fished the area from Twikenham to Clarno last weekend and caught around 80 bass per person per day.  The fish will run smaller but they’re all fighters and my brother got the fish of the weekend, a 21 inch brute that was probably 41/2 lbs.  That’s a big Smallie anywhere!

SW Washington – The Cowlitz River remains the best option for salmon and steelhead with bank anglers targeting Chinook doing good by the hatchery and boaters finding summer steelhead above the I-5 Bridge.

With the reopener of the summer Chinook season, effort will obviously increase on the lower Columbia. Historically, both boaters and bank anglers are out in force targeting summer steelhead. With steelhead numbers clearly depressed, the focus will remain Chinook.

Most other fisheries remain quiet, but the Klickitat does have a few spring Chinook and fewer summer steelhead.

This and a lot more fishing information is available at our website.

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