2 Alerts
X

Beginning March 23, all ODFW offices will be closed to visitors. ODFW staff will be available by phone and email.

Effective March 18, all state-owned fish hatcheries are closed to public access and visitors. Trout stocking in lakes and ponds continues for now.

Recreation Report

Northwest Zone

Regulation Updates

 Regulation Updates as of  June 11, 2020

These are in-season regulation changes adopted on a temporary or emergency basis. Please see e-regulations for permanent regulations.

2020 Summer/Fall Regulation Changes 

NW Zone Salmon Fisheries
Necanicum River, Nehalem River and Bay (including North Fork Nehalem River),
Tillamook Bay/Rivers, Nestucca River (incl. Little Nestucca River & Three Rivers) and Salmon River
No changes. Permanent rules as shown in the 2020 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations apply.
Siletz River South to Siuslaw River
Period Date Bag Limits Closure Areas
SILETZ RIVER AND BAY (incl. Drift Creek and Schooner Creek)
May 1 through July 31 Two (2) adult salmon or steelhead per day;
no more than one (1) adult wild Chinook Salmon for the period.
Five (5) jack salmon per day.
Permanent rules as shown in the 2020 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations.
   
August 1 through December 31 Two (2) adult salmon or steelhead per day;
no more than one (1) adult wild Chinook Salmon daily / five (5) for the period
in aggregate with all waters from the Siletz River south to the Siuslaw River.
Five (5) jack salmon per day.
YAQUINA RIVER (incl. Big Elk Creek); ALSEA RIVER (incl. Drift Creek)
August 1 through December 31 Two (2) adult salmon or steelhead per day;
no more than one (1) adult wild Chinook Salmon daily / five (5) for the period
in aggregate with all waters from the Siletz River south to the Siuslaw River.
Five (5) jack salmon per day.
Permanent rules as shown in the 2020 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations.
YACHATS RIVER  
August 1 through December 31 Two (2) adult salmon or steelhead per day;
no more than one (1) adult wild Chinook Salmon may be harvested from the Yachats River for the period. Wild Chinook Salmon harvested from the Yachats River count as part of the aggregate adult wild Chinook Salmon limit for the period and all waters from the Siletz River south to the Siuslaw River.
Five (5) jack salmon per day. 
Permanent rules as shown in the 2020 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations.
SIUSLAW RIVER, including North Fork Siuslaw
August 1 through December 31 Two (2) adult salmon or steelhead per day;
no more than one (1) adult wild Chinook Salmon may be harvested from the Siuslaw River or the North Fork Siuslaw River for the period.  Wild Chinook harvested from the Siuslaw River count as part of the aggregate adult wild Chinook limit for the period and all waters from the Siletz River south to the Siuslaw River.
Five (5) jack salmon per day.
Permanent rules as shown in the 2020 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations.
LAKE CREEK (tributary to the Siuslaw River) 
August 1 through December 31 Closed to salmon angling Permanent rules as shown in the 2020 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations.

SILETZ RIVER

  • Effective May 1, 2020 through July 31, 2020, no more than 1 wild Chinook may be harvested from the mouth of the Siletz River to Moonshine Park.

For more information contact your local ODFW office:

  • Tillamook North Coast Watershed District Office 503-842-2741

Recreation Report

largemouth bass,
A nice largemouth bass caught at Munsel Lake. Photo by Robert Ramsey

If there’s not a photo, it didn’t happen

Submit your fishing photo  to ODFW and we might use it here or elsewhere on MyODFW.com.

 

Send us your fishing report

We’d love to hear about your recent fishing experience. Send us your own fishing report through ODFW Fishing Reports―the information will be forwarded to the local biologist who may use it to update various ODFW resources such as the weekly Recreation Report.

LAKES, PONDS, RESERVOIRS

North and mid-coast lakes and ponds got their last stocked trout of the year in May and early June. There are still plenty of trout left over from those stockings.

Trout fishing on north coast lakes is challenging this time of year; warmer water temperatures can make trout lethargic and promote weed growth. Concentrate on lakes at higher elevations where water temperatures will remain cooler that lower elevation waters through late September, and fish early morning and late evening when trout will be more active. 

Warmwater fisheries are still in full swing with water temperatures that promote good feeding activity. Warmwater species will be using cover like lily pads, reeds and logs to ambush prey, so fish close to that cover. As the aquatic weeds become thick, do a quick internet search for “weedless bass rigs” and you’ll see plenty of options to keep fishing.

Warmwater fisheries are in full swing on the mid-coast. Water temperatures have warmed up and fish activity is increasing. Many of the lakes in the Florence area provide great warmwater fishing opportunities.

Lakes and ponds to fish for trout this week:

  • Lost lake in Clatsop County stays fairly cool and we see good over summer survival of trout there. It also received some extra fish last spring so there should still be trout available. 8/5/20
  • Big Creek reservoirs have slowed down into the summer months but still have opportunities to catch a stocked trout. 7/29/20
  • Mercer and Munsel lakes in the Florence area are larger lakes that offer trout opportunities through the summer months. 7/29/20
  • Vernonia pond has good populations of bass and bluegill, and water quality is good this summer. There is a boat ramp to launch small or personal water craft, several fishing docks, and good access from the walking trail around the lake. 7/29/20
  • Sutton and Woahink lakes are great warmwater fisheries in the Florence area and are fishing well with the warmer weather and warmer water temperatures. 7/15/20
  • Siltcoos and Tahkenitch lakes (Florence area) are still some of the best warmwater fishing opportunites as well as good trout fishing for stocked trout and resident cutthroat on the mid-coast. 7/15/20

RIVERS AND STREAMS

Summer steelhead fishing is fair on the Wilson and Nestucca Rivers. These can be tricky fish to catch, but are well worth the effort both for the quality of the fight, and as table fare. Fishing early morning and late evening, using light gear, small presentations, and practicing stealthy tactics will all improve the odds of success.

Spring Chinook fishing continues to be slow as we near the end of the season, but there are still opportunities in the Trask and Nestucca Rivers through July 31.

Summer steelhead fishing on the Siletz has been slow but the bulk of the run this year is still showing up and is later than normal.

Cutthroat fishing is open on the mid- and north coast streams, and the majority of steams have cutthroat available throughout. (Be sure to check the regulations for open streams, bait restrictions and closures.)

Cutthroat fishing in streams is often overlooked but is an excellent local fishery with aggressive, hard-fighting fish

Rivers and streams to fish this week:

  • The Nestucca River has seen an uptick in the summer steelhead run and there are fish throughout the fishery (up to Elk Creek). There is plenty of bank access on the upper river in the BLM recreational area, and several boat ramps on the lower river. Cedar Creek hatchery has started recycling summer steelhead that come into their adult trap, and those fish should be available in the lower river as well. The river is getting a little too low for drift boats on all but the lowest floats, but it’s a great time of year to dust off the single person pontoon boats or other small watercraft. 8/5/20
  • Summer steelhead are still in the Wilson River and have been observed throughout the fishery (up to the South Fork), and there some fish being caught. With excellent bank access from Hwy 6 anglers should have plenty of opportunity here. On these warm summer days; fishing early morning will be the best chance of success, and of avoiding the swimming pressure. 8/5/20
  • The Siletz River summer steelhead fishing has picked up and fishing continues to improve each week as more fish move into the upper river. The upper portions of the river around the gorge are generally the best places to target the summer steelhead in the Siletz. 7/15/20
  • The reality is that all of the North Coast Rivers and streams have healthy cutthroat populations and good fishing opportunity. There are fish throughout the rivers and numbers in the upper rivers should just continue to improve through the fall. Some of my favorites are the Nehalem, Kilchis, Trask and Nestucca Rivers, all of which have public land access available. 7/29/20
  • The upper tide waters of Tillamook Bay and Nehalem bay still have decent numbers of sea runs coming in, and there can be good numbers of these aggressive fish around. Trolling or casting spinners can be really effective. 7/22/20
  • All of the coast streams along the mid-coast -- including Salmon River, Yaquina/Big Elk Rivers, Siletz River, Alsea River, and the Siuslaw River -- have good populations of cutthroat trout. Don’t forget that the upper portions of the estuaries of all these rivers have great cutthroat fishing in the summer months and this is where many of the larger fish spend their time when the rivers become low and warm. 7/15/20

RECENTLY STOCKED

We have taken down the online trout stocking schedule in order to prevent public crowding at waterbodies when we deliver hatchery fish. We will continue stocking trout but we will deliver on a slightly different schedule and at some different locations to avoid a rush of anglers showing up along with the hatchery truck.

NOTE: Local ODFW offices do not have access to the trout stocking schedule either.

These north coast lakes are stocked in spring and/or early summer: Cape Meares Lake, Coffenbury Lake, Cullaby Lake, Hebo Lake, Lake Lytle, Loren’s Pond, Lost Lake, Nedonna Pond, Smith Lake, Spring Lake, South Lake, Tahoe Lake, Town Lake and Vernonia Lake.

These mid coast lakes are stocked in spring and/or early summer: Alder Lake, Big Creek Reservoir #1 & #2, Buck Lake, Carter Lake, Cleawox Lake, Devil’s Lake, Dune Lake, Eckman Lake, Elbow Lake, Erhart Lake, Georgia Lake, Lost Lake (Lane County), Mercer Lake, Munsel Lake, North Georgia Lake, Olalla Creek Reservoir, Perkins Lake, Siltcoos Lagoon, Siltcoos Lake, Sutton Lake, Thissell Pond and Woahink Lake.

The first week of June was the last stocking week for the mid-coast lakes but there are still trout in all of the stocked lakes and these lakes will continue to produce trout throughout the summer.

TROUT STOCKING MAPS: Find your place to fish

Check out the ODFW fishing and trout stocking maps to find nearby fishing locations, driving directions and descriptions of amenities.

ANNOUNCEMENTS

As temperatures rise, fish feel the heat, too

Warm water is hard on fish, especially colder water species like trout, salmon and steelhead. With the warm summer temperatures, you can do your part to reduce stress on fish by following a few simple tips. These are especially important if you plan to catch-and-release.

Follow these tips to help fish:

  • Fish early in day when water temperatures are cooler.
  • Look for trout in deep, high elevation lakes or shaded streams near headwaters. These places are often cooler. You can drive to many popular locations. But if you’re hankering for an adventure, consider hiking into one of backcountry lakes that are stocked every two years.
  • Use appropriate gear and land fish quickly. The longer the fight, the less likely the fish will survive.
  • Keep the fish in the water when you unhook it and cradle the fish upright until it revives enough to swim away.
  • Use good judgement. If conditions where you want to fish seems especially severe (low, hot water), consider fishing somewhere else where water conditions are better.

Tips to recreate responsibly

We continue to urge anglers and others recreating outside to stay close to home, keep your social distance, and travel safely. Here’s more information about how to recreate responsibly.

Special fall Chinook regulations for mid-coast rivers

Beginning Aug.1, special regulations for fall Chinook go into effect on many mid-coast streams, including the Siletz, Siulsaw, Yachats and Yaquina.

Spring Chinook fishing closes on North Coast Rivers on July 31.

Trask River from 200 feet above and 900 feet below Trask Hatchery is closed July 16 to Oct. 15. This stretch includes the hatchery hole and Loren’s Drift.

Three Rivers from the hatchery weir to the mouth is closed July 16 to Sept. 30.

UPDATES BY WATERBODY

ALSEA RIVER: fall Chinook, cutthroat trout

Fall Chinook fishing opened on the Alsea River on Aug. 1. The beginning of August is typically slow on the Alsea River but things start to pick up at the end of the month. Anglers are reminded that due to low forecasted returns for the 2020 season bag limits have been reduced. The bag limit for the Alsea River is 1 wild Chinook per day and 5 per year for the 2020 season.

Cutthroat trout fishing opened May 22 on the Alsea River and trout fishing has been good throughout the basin. The rivers are dropping quickly into more normal summer flows but are still providing good conditions for trout fishing, and will provide good opportunities through the summer months. Last updated 7/29/20.

KILCHIS RIVER: cutthroat trout

There are still plenty of sea run cutthroat in the Kilchis River and a fair amount of public access available from Oregon state forest lands. The Kilchis is low and crystal clear in the summer, so you’ll want to use light gear and stealthy tactics.

Water and fishing conditions are likely to remain unchanged until we get some significant rain. Last updated 8/5//20.

NEHALEM BAY: Chinook“Summer” Chinook fishing on Nehalem bay picked up a little this week with some fish being caught, and a decent little bite around Wheeler the last few days. The Nehalem gets an early run of fall Chinook, often referred to as summer Chinook. The bag limit for these wild fish is 1 per day, and no more than 5 total prior to Sept. 16. Last updated 8/5/20

NEHALEM RIVER: cutthroat trout

There are plenty of sea run cutthroat in the Nehalem River and a fair amount of public access available from Oregon state forest lands. Last updated 7/22/20.

NESTUCCA RIVER: steelhead, cutthroat trout

The Nestucca summer steelhead run continues to pick up. Cedar Creek hatchery recycled 70 this week to give anglers another crack at them. The lower river will give anglers access to those recycled fish and any fresh fish still coming in, but we also start to see decent number holding in the upper river, around the BLM recreational area, this time of year.

Sea-run cutthroat should be available throughout the Nestucca and Little Nestucca basins.

According to the Oregon Department of Transportation Farmer Creek Wayside and boat ramp will be closed late this summer through fall of 2020 due to construction associated with the Hwy 101 realignment. Last updated 8/5/20.

SALMON RIVER: cutthroat trout, fall Chinook

Fall Chinook fishing opened on the Salmon River on Aug. 1. Expect fishing to be slow at the beginning of August but things typically start to pick up at the end of the month and into September. Last updated 7/29/20

SILETZ RIVER: summer steelhead, fall Chinook, cutthroat trout

Summer steelhead fishing is still slow on the Siletz River but overall it has improved in the last few weeks. The higher than normal flows in June and early July changed the migration timing and these fish and they are finally starting to stage in the upper portions of the river and gorge sections.

The high and cooler water has slowed the migration this year but now we are in a more typical summer pattern and the fish seem to be responding, moving up into the gorge where there is better summer holding water. Fish numbers should keep increasing through the month of July and into August.

Spring Chinook fishing closed on Aug. 1 above the Ojalla boat ram. Anglers are reminded that the bag limit has been changed for the 2020 spring Chinook season to 1 fish per day and 1 for the year.

Fall Chinook fishing opened this past weekend in the lower Siletz River tidewater up to the Ojalla boat slide. Expect fishing to be slow for the beginning of August but fishable numbers usually start to show up by the end of the month. Due to low forecasted returns for the 2020 season bag limits have been reduced. The bag limit for the Siletz River is 1 wild chinook per day and 5 per year for the 2020 season.

Cutthroat trout fishing is open in the Siletz basin and good trout fishing opportunities will remain through the summer months.

The 4.0 mile bridge (aka Steel Bridge) in the Siletz gorge is open to motorized vehicles, but is only open to public vehicles on the weekend. Anglers can walk/bike in the road during the weekdays. If anglers do walk in they can park at the one mile gate and start from there. Last updated 7/29/20.

SIUSLAW RIVER: cutthroat trout Fall Chinook

Fall Chinook fishing opened on the Siuslaw River on Aug. 1. Fishing is typically slow during the beginning of August but usually picks up by the end of the month. Anglers are reminded that due to low forecasted returns for the 2020 season bag limits have been reduced. The bag limit for the Siuslaw River is 1 wild Chinook per day and 1 per year for the 2020 season.

Trout fishing opened in the Siuslaw basin (including Lake Creek) on May 22 and has great opportunities to catch a trout throughout the summer months. Last updated 7/29/20.

TRASK RIVER: cutthroat trout, summer steelhead

Coastal cutthroat trout are still throughout the system, but the upper river including the North and South forks provide some of the best bank access.

The Trask River does not have a summer steelhead release, but it isn’t that uncommon to find a Wilson River fish in the Trask. Last updated 8/5/20.

For anglers fishing near the hatchery, please be advised that Trask Hatchery is currently CLOSED TO THE PUBLIC. There have been compliance issues recently; please DO NOT walk past the hatchery closed signs.

The hatchery grounds closure does not affect fishing on the river itself, only access through the hatchery grounds. During the hatchery grounds closure, all vehicle and angler access is prohibited until further notice to ensure public safety while the construction is in progress.

Parking is available to anglers on Chance Rd. near the entrance to the hatchery, and anglers can continue to access the river on the trail from the parking area but from there must remain on the riverbank without accessing the main hatchery grounds.

WILSON RIVER: steelhead, cutthroat trout

The number of summer steelhead in the Wilson River this should be increasing, and they are throughout the fishery (up to the South Fork), but fishing has been a little challenging with the low water and number of summer swimmers. There is great bank access all along Hwy 6 on the state forest land. Fishing early morning will provide the best opportunity for success. Last updated 8/5/20.

YAQUINA RIVER: fall Chinook

Fall Chinook fishing opened on the Yaquina and Big Elk systems on Aug. 1. These fisheries are typically slow at the beginning of August but start to pick up at the end of the month. Anglers are reminded that due to low forecasted returns for the 2020 season bag limits have been reduced on the Yaquina/Big Elk Rivers. The bag limit for the Yaquina/Big Elk is 1 wild Chinook per day and 5 per year for the 2020 season. Last updated 7/29/20.