Regulation updates as of October 1, 2019
China, copper and quillback rockfish closed:
Bottomfish open at all depths:
More information can be found on the sport bottomfish seasons page
New for 2019
Season dates are below.
CLOSED to salmon angling
Chinook Season (all salmon except coho): Open March 15 through Oct. 31
Bag Limit: Two salmon per day, closed to retention of coho.
Notes: Within the Stonewall Bank Yelloweye Rockfish Conservation Area salmon angling is restricted to trolling on all depth halibut days.
CLOSED to salmon angling
Details available at .
Season dates are below.
Additional information about sport halibut management can be found on the ODFW halibut management webpage.
Descending devices are mandatory.
Whether you’re out after trout or bass, steelhead or salmon, surfperch or rockfish, we’d love to see photos of your adventure. When you submit your photos to ODFW they could appear on our website or signs, or in social or brochures. What a great way to share your experience with others!
Saltwater News Bulletins
You can subscribe to receive for marine topics you are interested in. It’s easy to unsubscribe at any time. Your phone and e-mail information will remain confidential. Six different lists of interest to ocean enthusiasts are available: Bottomfish (recreational), Halibut (recreational), Ocean Salmon (recreational), Ocean Salmon (commercial troll), Commercial Nearshore Groundfish, and Marine Reserves.
As usual, autumn finds bottomfish anglers pursuing other activities, but some level of effort is common through the winter when safe ocean conditions allow. The rockfish bite has been sporadic – from good to very slow, or vice versa, within a single day. Lingcod are trickling in. The week of Oct. 14, the first fall storm is due to hit much of the Oregon coast mid- to late-week with forecast seas of 18-20+ feet and winds of up to 50 knots. Anglers are reminded to carefully check the weather forecast before venturing out to the ocean fishing.
Retention of cabezon, China rockfish, copper rockfish, and quillback rockfish is prohibited. The quotas for these species have been reached. Shore-based fishing for these species remains open because quota is set aside to accommodate shore anglers.
Retention of yelloweye rockfish is prohibited by all anglers.
Excited to go bottomfish fishing but find yourself wondering what you can keep and how many?
Want to work on your identification skills of commonly caught bottomfish? Try the Common Bottomfish online quiz by . And also try the “Yelloweye Rockfish or Not?” .
The bottomfish fishery is open at all depths. The General Marine Species bag limit is 5 fish; a separate bag limit allows retention of 2 lingcod. For shore anglers, no more than one of the five fish may be a cabezon.
Anglers participating in the offshore longleader fishery frequently catch limits (10 fish) of large canary rockfish and yellowtail rockfish. The longleader gear fishery outside of the 40-fathom regulatory line is open all year.
Vessels fishing for or retaining bottomfish (including flatfish) species or Pacific halibut in the ocean are required (1) to have onboard a functioning rockfish descending device, and (2) use it to descend any rockfish released when fishing outside of the . For more information and videos, please see the rockfish recompression webpage.
In addition to the descending device rule, ODFW continues to encourage anglers to use a descending device when releasing ANY rockfish with signs of barotrauma. Signs of barotrauma, such as bulging eyes and a gut protruding from the mouth, are reversible when fish are returned to depth with a descending device. Use a descending device to safely return fish to a depth of 60 feet or more. Even fish that are severely bloated can survive after being released at depth.
(for fathom lines and other restricted areas)
In the Columbia River subarea, the halibut fishery is closed for the remainder of the year.
Elsewhere (south of Cape Falcon), anglers have a few more weeks to take advantage of an increased bag limit (two halibut daily). What’s more, in the Central Oregon Coast subarea, the all-depth halibut fishery is open three days a week, Friday through Sunday, through Oct. 27, and anglers may retain bottomfish (including lingcod) and halibut on the same trip, even on all-depth halibut days. (This is because the bottomfish fishery is also open at all depths, effective Oct. 1).
Reports are that some of the regular halibut spots (e.g., “the rockpile” out of Newport) are not as productive as they have been. However, some exploring and patience have resulted in halibut being landed.
The Central Oregon Coast nearshore halibut fishery is open daily through Oct. 31. This fishery takes place inside of the 40-fathom regulatory line. On days closed to the all-depth halibut fishery (Monday-Thursday), halibut may not be targeted, retained or on-board while fishing beyond the 40-fathom regulatory line (e.g., for bottomfish).
The Southern Oregon subarea, open through Oct. 31, has seen some effort and success this year. One hefty halibut (landed in Brookings during the week ending June 16) weighed 56 pounds; the average this season is 22 pounds.
Additional information about sport halibut management, including landing estimates (posted by noon on Fridays), can be found on the .
Details for the ocean salmon season, full catch and quota updates are available .
SHORE AND ESTUARY FISHING
Public piers provide opportunities to catch surfperch and baitfish and to drop crab pots (but check first for crab health safety closures).
Surfperch are available in the surf year-round along sandy beaches and rocky shore, with the best fishing (and safest fishing) occurring when swells are small. Learn about ocean surfperch fishing.
When fishing from shore or inside estuaries and bays, it is important to check the tide. Many fish that swim into estuaries and bays, including salmon, surfperch, and Pacific herring, tend to come in with the tide. Catch of these species is more likely to occur closer to slack tide. Additionally, the accessibility of some areas can be completely dependent on the tide. Do not allow the incoming tide to become a safety hazard.