Table of Contents
Feb. 21, 2024
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- North Coast rivers have been fair for steelhead fishing the past week. Conditions should be fishable through the weekend but some heavy rains are predicted for early next week so anglers will need to check conditions. There are steelhead throughout the fisheries. The Nestucca and Wilson Rivers will provide the best opportunities for catching hatchery fish.
- Surplus hatchery winter steelhead were recently planted in Town Lake, Coffenbury Lake and Vernonia Pond. Catching a steelhead out of still water can be a fun and unique experience and may be a good option while the rivers are blown out.
- The Mid Coast steelhead bite has slowed down a bit over the past week. Going into the week end it's likely the fishery will stay slow.
- Lakes up and down the Mid Coast are back on stocking schedule. As rivers are blown out lake fishing offers additional opportunity to catch some fish! Check the stocking schedule for an up-to-date look at recently stocked lakes!
- If you're striking out on the rivers, the Mid Coast beaches offer some great opportunity for surfperch and other near shore species. The surf going into the weekend is a bit high for surf perch, but it can still be a fun way to get outside! The Mid Coast beaches will also see some decently low tides this weekend which will offer some evening clamming opportunities in the bays. The Alsea, Siletz and Salmon River bays offer some excellent opportunity for shellfish harvest!
Scheduled to be stocked this week: No stocking scheduled for the week of Feb. 19.
Recently stocked: Munsel, Lost Lake, Dune Lake, Cleawox, Carter Lake and Alder lake Olalla Res, Big Creek 1 and 2 have all been stocked in the past few weeks.
See the Trout Stocking Schedule
Trout stocking maps
Check out the ODFW fishing and trout stocking maps to find nearby fishing locations, driving directions and descriptions of amenities.
Steelhead are here; are you ready?
These popular steelhead videos are great refreshers for both new and experienced anglers.
- Winter steelhead fishing in the Mid Coast district (video)
- Winter steelhead fishing in the North Coast district (video)
- Steelhead fishing the small water of the North Coast (video)
If your favorite fishing spot isn't listed
It's probably because that river, lake or reservoir is closed for the season, inaccessible due to snow and bad roads, or offers limited fishing opportunities during the winter months. These waterbodies will re-appear in the Recreation Report when they re-open next spring, or when access and/or opportunity improves.
E-tagging tips for anglers
It's important for anglers to tag their salmon and steelhead immediately, which means you'll need to know how to navigate the MyODFW app outside of cell phone range. Here are some tips for e-tagging in the field.
Watch for boating hazards
Boaters should use extreme caution following this storm. The high water may have brought down new trees and created new obstacles. Check the Oregon State Marine Boards, Boating Obstructions map.
Sign up for the latest information on boater access
Marine Board's Opportunities and Access Report incorporates information from federal and state agencies, local facility operators and fellow boaters to provide up-to-date information so boaters can decide where to recreate and what to expect this season. Subscribe to receive email updates.
Updates by waterbody
ALSEA RIVER: winter steelhead
The early winter steelhead have entered the Alsea River basin. Most of these fish took advantage of the huge storms we've had the past few weeks to dart upriver. Not many lingering lower down in the system. The Alsea Hatchery holes have been providing some excellent bank fishing for some of these early fish. There are hatchery steelhead that are open for retention in the Alsea Basin.
As we progress into the season, the hatchery has been a good place for bank fishing. The upper Alsea floats have also been producing a decent number of fish caught as a new batch of fish works its way up into the system. Newer fish have been filtering into the system, as the water stays cold and clear. We are seeing some decent numbers of fish being caught lower in the system.
Although conditions were good last weekend, we didn't see a ton of fish caught. The bite on the Alsea is slowing a bit as we move into later February. We should still see more fish pushing into the system as we move into March!
Check the regulations before you head out this weekend! Last updated 2/21/24.
KILCHIS RIVER: winter steelhead
The Kilchis will be low through the weekend but should rise to favorable fishing conditions with forecasted rains. Expect fair opportunity with the catch mostly consisting of wild steelhead (catch-and-release only).
The Mapes Creek (logging bridge) boat ramp was damaged in the December storm and is still closed. Boaters should use extreme caution and check the ramp before launching there. Last updated 2/21/24.
LOWER COLUMBIA TRIBUTARIES (Big Creek, Gnat Creek, Klaskanine River): winter steelhead
The hatchery steelhead returns in Big Creek, Gnat Creek and Klaskanine River are nearly complete. Very few bright fish remain in the systems. Last updated 2/14/24.
MIAMI RIVER: winter steelhead
Fishing should improve with a rise in river levels. Wild fish are present and provide catch-and-release opportunity. Last updated 2/14/24.
NECANICUM RIVER: winter steelhead
The hatchery steelhead run on the Necanicum River is nearly over. There are wild steelhead throughout the fishery that should provide some catch-and-release opportunity. Boaters should use extreme caution on the Necanicum as the winter weather over the last few weeks could have brought down trees and created new boating hazards.
The boat ramp on the Necanicum at Hwy 101 has been gated to prevent illegal camping and dumping, but anglers can call the Tillamook office at (503) 842 – 2741 to receive the combination to the lock and access to the ramp. Anglers will need to provide their ODFW hunter/anger ID number to receive access. Last updated 2/21/24.
NEHALEM RIVER AND BAY: winter steelhead
The Nehalem fished well over the last week but may get high and off color with coming rains. Check river levels before heading out. There are good catch-and-release opportunities for wild steelhead, with peak of the run coming over the next couple months. Last updated 2/21/24.
River levels and predictions for the Nehalem are available here.
NORTH FORK NEHALEM RIVER: winter steelhead
Steelhead fishing on the North Fork Nehalem has slowed this week. There are still wild broodstock hatchery steelhead coming in and will continue through the season, but numbers will be lower than earlier in the run. Last updated 2/21/24.
NESTUCCA RIVER: winter steelhead
Steelhead fishing on the Nestucca was fair last weekend, although slower than the week before. The Nestucca should fish through the weekend but may blow out early next week. Check conditions before heading out. Fish are spread throughout the basin. Hatchery steelhead on the Nestucca are from wild broodstock and are available throughout the season. Last updated 2/21/24.
River levels and predictions for the Nestucca are available here.
SALMON RIVER: steelhead
Early winter steelhead have been entering the system, though the bite hasn't picked up quite yet. With the rains coming in, the fishery has set up similarly to the Alsea where those early fish coming in went high into the system quickly. As the river levels dropped and cleared out, the fishing has certainly picked up. Floating from Red Bridge down is a great opportunity, as well as bank casting further up in the basin. More fish have been caught in the past few weeks and we should see additional fish coming into the basin as we move into March.
Check your regulations before you head out. Last updated 2/21/24.
SILETZ RIVER: winter steelhead
Like the Salmon and Alsea rivers, the first big push of winter steelhead have entered the system. The Siletz also has a hatchery component to its steelhead run and provides a great opportunity for early season steelhead retention. Most of the earlier fish have shot up and are hanging around in the upper Siletz Gorge. Some of the deeper pools after the 4-mile bridge likely have some fish hanging around. The Gorge provides excellent bank fishing opportunity but as winter flows settle in, be mindful of traversing the river at higher flows.
Lower down in the system floating through town, anywhere between Moonshine and Morgan has shown some excellent success. Folks are landing several fish per trip! The bite has slowed over the past week, although conditions have remained fair and will continue to remain fair going into the weekend.
Trout fishing will reopen May 22. Last updated 2/21/24.
SIUSLAW RIVER: steelhead
The Siuslaw is open for retention of hatchery winter steelhead. Fish have moved higher up into the system and it's been a fair fishery so far. Folks are catching fish throughout the basin as fish are moving through. The bite has remained fair but higher up into the system anglers should see some success on fish coming through!
Trout fishing will reopen May 22. Last updated 2/21/24.
THREE RIVERS: winter steelhead
There are hatchery steelhead available in Three Rivers. It could be a good bet for next week when the larger rivers are running high. Last updated 2/21/24.
TRASK RIVER: winter steelhead
The Trask River should fish through the weekend but may get high and off color early next week. Check conditions before heading out. There are no hatchery steelhead releases on the Trask, but wild steelhead are spread throughout the basin and should provide catch and release opportunity. Last updated 2/21/24.
Trask river levels and predictions are available here.
WILSON RIVER: winter steelhead
Steelhead fishing on the Wilson River has been fair the past week. It should fish through the weekend but may get high an off color later next week. Check conditions before going. There are hatchery steelhead and catch and release opportunity for wild steelhead throughout the river.
Hatchery winter steelhead on the Wilson are from wild broodstock and as such the run peaks January through March. Last Updated 2/21/24.
Wilson River levels and predictions are available here.
YAQUINA RIVER: winter steelhead
Winter steelhead will be entering the system and like our other basins will likely take advantage of the recent rains to move quickly upriver. It's been slow on the Yaquina. Last updated 2/7/24.
Regulation updates as of December 8, 2023.
The following regulations reflect changes or additions to the permanent regulations listed in the 2023 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations. All other permanent regulations remain in effect. Please see e-regulations.
As part of the wild coho salmon aggregate bag limit, no more than 5 wild coho salmon may be harvested per year in the Northwest and Southwest Zones with open wild coho salmon fisheries. Wild coho jacks may only be retained on days open to adult wild coho retention.
Hatchery steelhead, hatchery coho salmon, pink salmon, and sockeye salmon, may be retained as part of the adult and jack salmon daily bag limit in all Northwest Zone waters that are currently open to angling for Chinook salmon or steelhead, except as specified in Exceptions.
Aggregate: The total number of fish or shellfish in a bag limit. Generally used where several species make up a combined bag limit, or where a single species bag limit is set for the combined harvest from a specified group of water bodies.
For more information contact your local ODFW office:
- Tillamook North Coast Watershed District Office (503) 842-2741 (north of the Salmon River).
- Newport District Office Annex (541) 812-8689 (Salmon River south to Umpqua Basin).