Pacific halibut sport regulations

Pacific halibut fishing seasons are set by the Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission in April each year.

Updated June 22, 2020

2020 halibut season

Updated 2020 sport halibut season map and regulations 

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  • Columbia River all-depth and nearshore: The opening of these seasons is postponed pending further consultation between ODFW and the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife. The two agencies manage this shared subarea in close coordination, although each state may adopt different opening dates if necessary. The Columbia River all-depth season was originally planned to open April 30 and the nearshore season on May 4. ODFW will announce new opening dates after a decision is made.
  • Central Coast spring all-depth:  After a delayed opening, the season is open as originally scheduled on May 21-23, May 28-30, June 11-13, June 18-20, July 9-11, and also July 23-25.  On June 22, ODFW, NMFS, and IPHC determined that enough quota remained to add two additional openings, July 16-18 and July 30-Aug 1(Why the delayed opening? After working with local governments and ports to address COVID-19 concerns, ODFW delayed the all-depth halibut opener by one week, from May 14-16 to May 21-23, to allow more time for ports, charters and other facilities to prepare for reopening and to ensure fair and equitable access to halibut across the entire central coast subarea.) 
    • Many coastal communities remain concerned about a large influx of visitors while COVID-19 restrictions remain in effect. Anglers are asked to be mindful of the Governor’s Executive Order as well as coastal community concerns and:
      • Stay home if you are sick.
      • Check for access before you go. Even if fishing is open, the boat ramp or park where you want to go might be closed. ODFW does not control access to land or facilities it doesn’t manage, so check with the land manager or facility owner where you want to go about what’s open before you leave home.
      • Stick close to home. Don’t travel far to hunt or fish. Some places may still be closed to overnight camping/lodging. 
      • Be prepared. Restrooms and other facilities may be more limited. Bring your own soap, water, hand sanitizer, toilet paper, food, etc. Buy your license online before you go.
      • Avoid crowds. Go someplace else if your destination looks crowded.  
      • Practice social distancing. Keep six feet between you and anyone who doesn’t live in your immediate household, including while on a boat or at a fish cleaning station.
      • Wash your hands often. Keep up on personal hygiene and bring your own water, soap, and hand sanitizer with you.   
      • Pack out what you pack in. Take any garbage with you, including disposable gloves and masks.
  • Central Coast nearshore: Opened May 1 as planned. Unlike the Central Coast all-depth season, the nearshore season normally does not attract a large number of halibut anglers in a short period of time, particularly in the early part of the season.
  • Southern Oregon Subarea: Opened May 1 as planned. Many boat ramps and access points remained open in this area, which stretches from Humbug Mountain to the Oregon-California border, through the spring, and the halibut fishery here typically sees lower participation spread out over time.

ODFW strongly recommends anglers follow the Governor’s Stay Home, Save Lives order by following social distancing guidelines and by continuing to stay at or near their home or place of residence, whenever possible.

Before heading out, anglers are advised to check that the facilities they plan to use (boat ramps, cleaning stations) are open. 

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