2009 OREGON SPRING FISHING FORECAST courtesy ODFW
Most lakes in the Northwest Zone are open all year for trout angling and many will be stocked a couple of weeks prior to the traditional trout opener. Depending upon location, spring stocking consists of legal-sized trout (8-10 inches), “larger” trout (about one pound each), and “trophy” (about two pounds each) planted from March to May, with “larger” trout stocked in mid-late June in some areas. Early spring stocking of North and South lakes has been delayed by snow or other access problems. Trout stocking schedules for the Northwest Zone can be found on the ODFW Web site. Anglers should check with the local ODFW office before heading out to confirm these lakes have been stocked. Fall "trophy" trout stocking is scheduled for mid-September, but may occur earlier or later in the summer, depending on water temperatures and hatchery water supplies. Many Northwest Zone lakes and freshwater sloughs provide bass and panfish angling opportunities.
Trout fishing in many northwest Oregon coastal streams and lower Columbia River tributaries opens Saturday, May 23. New for 2009, anglers will be allowed to retain two trout over 8 inches (no more than one over 20 inches) from north coast streams. Lower Columbia River tributaries remain catch-and-release for trout. While trout are not stocked in coastal streams, angling can be very good for native coastal cutthroat trout. Consult the 2009 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations to check the status of specific streams in your area.
Spring chinook angling is expected to be only fair this year due to anticipated low returns. Expect angling similar to 2008, or possibly slightly better. Anglers are reminded that only adipose fin-clipped spring chinook may be retained in the Nestucca and Tillamook Bay systems, and Lower Columbia River tributaries.
Summer steelhead angling in the Wilson, Trask, Nestucca and Siletz Rivers should be good this year with many areas expected to have limited angling pressure. As of mid-April, several summer steelhead have already been caught on some of these streams. Summer steelheading on local rivers does not require a boat and it can be an excellent family fishing opportunity during the warm days of the spring and summer. Look for ample public angling access on the Wilson River along Highway 6, on the Nestucca River above Blaine, and on the Siletz River around Moonshine Park just north of the town of Logsden.
As of mid-April, rivers flows were back to normal on the North Coast after experiencing several high water periods earlier in the year. As spring flows in these rivers do not depend on snow pack, they are expected to remain in good fishing condition as long as spring rains continue at moderate levels. Winter steelhead angling closed on March 31 on some rivers; however, several remain open and will continue to provide fishable numbers through mid-April, after which most fish will be spawning or have spawned and are heading back down river.
Alsea River: Resident cutthroat trout fishing should be good in late May and June. Sea-run cutthroat trout are expected from July through September. Small spinners and flies work well for cutthroat trout. Use of bait is not allowed May 24 – August 31 above tidewater. Fair angling is expected for fall chinook in the bay and lower river. For 2009, the deadline for fall chinook may again be moved downstream to the mouth of Five Rivers, and the bag limit reduced to one per day and five per year.
Big Creek and Gnat Creek (Lower Columbia): Expected low returns of hatchery spring chinook to the lower Columbia River should provide only fair angling opportunities in these streams. The season is open January 1 to July 31 for adipose fin-clipped spring chinook. The daily bag limit is two adipose fin-clipped adult chinook and/or steelhead and five adipose fin-clipped jack chinook. Anglers casting spinners and drifting small baits, such as salmon roe, will experience the most success. There are good bank access areas adjacent to Gnat Creek and Big Creek hatcheries.
Coffenbury, Lost, Sunset and Cullaby lakes, and Vernonia Pond: These lakes will be stocked with trout throughout the spring. The lakes are open all year, but are stocked in the spring when water conditions are good. Additionally, larger “trophy” trout will be stocked later in the year in some lakes. Coffenbury, Sunset, and Lost lakes, and Vernonia Pond also receive surplus adult winter steelhead when available. Anglers interested in opportunities for bass should consider Coffenbury, Sunset and Cullaby Lakes where conventional bass gear (grubs, spinner-baits, and plugs) can provide good fishing. An earthworm under a bobber can make an excellent opportunity for kids to catch their first fish.
Both Coffenbury and Lost Lakes are featured in ODFW’s Easy Angling Oregon publication. Coffenbury offers angling opportunities for hatchery trout, as well as bass and panfish. Surveys conducted by ODFW in 2006 showed good numbers of bluegill and some very good-sized largemouth bass. Lost Lake is located high in the coast range and generally offers an excellent family trout fishing opportunity, particularly in the spring and early summer.
The Youth Angling Enhancement Program will host a trout angling event for kids at Vernonia Pond on Saturday. May 2 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. (Contact: Robert Bradley in Tillamook at 503-842-2741 for additional information regarding that event).
The Oregon Parks and Recreation Department will host a Free Fishing Weekend event for kids at Coffenbury Lake (inside Ft. Stevens State Park) on Saturday, June 6 from 9:30 a,m. to 4 p.m. (Contact Steven Wascher, 503-738-8673, for more information.)
Devils Lake (Lincoln City): Adipose fin-clipped trout will be available for anglers. Only adipose fin-clipped trout may be retained. Public access can be found at any of the five parks along the lake. The lake provides good recreational boating opportunities.
Mid Coast Lakes: Many mid coast lakes have been stocked repeatedly this spring with catchable and trophy sized rainbow trout. The following lakes in the Florence area will be stocked before the early trout opener and/or free fishing weekend: Alder, Buck, Carter, Cleawox, Dune, Elbow, Erhart, Georgia, Lost, Mercer, Munsel, N. Georgia, Perkins, Siltcoos, Sutton and Woahink lakes. The Florence area has numerous day use and overnight camping facilities located on or near multiple lakes and trail systems.
Many lakes in the Florence area offer excellent angling for warmwater fish. Mercer, Siltcoos, Sutton, Tahkenitch and Woahink Lakes have healthy populations of largemouth bass, perch and bluegill. Siltcoos and Tahkenitch also provide good fishing for cutthroat trout.
Necanicum River and Tidewater: Tidewater angling in the Necanicum estuary during the spring can produce good catches of starry flounder. Anglers should use sand shrimp fished on or near the bottom for best success. Angling for coastal cutthroat trout is open from May 23 through October 31. Angling for sea-run cutthroat trout should be good in tidewater sections beginning in July with spinners and flies being among the best techniques.
Nehalem Bay and River (including the North Fork Nehalem): Nehalem Bay is open for spring chinook April 1-July 31. These chinook do not typically begin arriving in catchable numbers until July. Trolling herring (whole or plug-cut) is the most popular method for catching these fish in the bay, although spinners can be very productive when trolled in the mid to upper bay. The Nehalem River (upstream of Miami-Foley Road Bridge) is open for spring chinook May 23 – July 31. However, chinook angling in the river is generally very slow due to low water conditions in the summer. The Nehalem River above tidewater is restricted to artificial flies and lures from May 23 through Aug. 31. Angling for coastal cutthroat trout in the Nehalem Basin is expected to be good this year. Anglers using flies and small spinners will find increasing numbers of returning sea-run coastal cutthroat beginning in July. The North Fork Nehalem River will also provide good angling opportunities for coastal cutthroat trout.
Nestucca and Tillamook bays and rivers: The spring chinook season is open April 1-July 31 in the bays and the Wilson, Trask and Nestucca rivers. Trolling large-bladed spinners for spring chinook in Tillamook Bay near Memaloose Boat Ramp (south side of the bay) has become increasingly popular in recent years. Trolling herring in the lower bays is also productive. While chinook can be caught using this technique on both the incoming and outgoing tides, many anglers concentrate their effort as the tide is receding. Don’t hesitate to fish shallow flats and channels when the tide is out as spring chinook will often hold in these areas. Bobber and salmon eggs are the most popular techniques in the upper sections of tidewater.
The Little Nestucca, Tillamook, Kilchis and Miami rivers are open May 23-July 31 for adipose fin-clipped spring chinook salmon. Spring chinook are not stocked in these systems and the fishery is limited to a very small number of strays from other rivers. Three Rivers is open April 1 - June 30 below the hatchery for adipose fin-clipped spring chinook and adipose fin-clipped summer steelhead. While Three Rivers receives considerable angling pressure, angling success can be very good as fish tend to congregate in the river below the hatchery. Bank access and parking are available off of Highway 22 immediately downstream of the hatchery. Small (1/8 ounce) jigs floated under a bobber can be very effective for summer steelhead on Three Rivers and other areas. Where bait is allowed, try tipping your jig with a sand shrimp tail or earth worm – this technique can be very productive.
Summer steelhead also are available in the Wilson, Trask and Nestucca rivers. The spring chinook runs in these rivers are expected to be fairly low, although possibly slightly improved from last year. Summer steelhead returns will likely be similar to recent years. The daily bag limit is two adipose fin-clipped adult chinook and/or steelhead and five fin-clipped jack chinook. Summer steelhead anglers should use small spinners (#2s and #3s) or small baits (earth worm, sand shrimp, salmon eggs, crayfish tail) as the rivers begin to clear in the late spring. Later in the summer, fish early in the morning or in the evening for best success. ODFW staff survey these rivers every August and regularly see good numbers of summer steelhead throughout the river. These fish will be available and in good condition through October.
Sturgeon fishing in Tillamook Bay (open all year) can be productive throughout the spring. Fall chinook gear is adequate for this angling in the shallow water. For sturgeon, anglers should use sand shrimp or mud shrimp, and target channel edges on the outgoing tide.
Angling for sea-run coastal cutthroat trout in the Tillamook and Nestucca basins is expected to be good this year. Look for these fish to hold on edges and tail-outs of deep pools as the summer progresses.
Newport area lakes (Big Creek Reservoirs 1 & 2 and Olalla Reservoir): Will be stocked before the early trout opener. Olalla also receives surplus steelhead adults and has a variety of warm water species.
Siletz River: Winter steelhead angling is expected to be fair through April. Summer steelhead angling is expected to be good by late May and peak in June and July. Most summer steelhead fishing is done from the bank as river levels are typically too low for drift boats. Good public bank fishing can be found in the vicinity of Moonshine Park, which offers good river side camping and/or day use facilities, near the town of Logsden. The upper Siletz River (above Moonshine Park) offers excellent bank fishing for steelhead and cutthroat trout but is only open to the public on weekends as this area is private timber company lands. Bait is allowed in the Siletz year round. Fresh bait such as eggs, worms or sand shrimp work well for summer steelhead. Casting spinners and drifting brightly colored jigs also works well. For 2009, the deadline for fall chinook angling may again be moved downstream to the first bridge downstream (or north) of the town of Siletz. Chinook daily and seasonal bag limits also may again be reduced to one per day and five for the season.
Siuslaw River: Resident cutthroat trout fishing should be good in late May and June. Sea-run cutthroat trout are expected from July through September. Bait is restricted above tidewater from May 23 – August 31. Small spoons, spinners and flies work well for cutthroat trout. Fair angling is expected for fall chinook in the bay and lower river. For 2009, fall Chinook deadlines may again be moved downstream to the confluence of Lake Creek and the mainstem Siuslaw River.
Thissell Pond (Near Fall Creek Hatchery): Will be stocked with catchable and trophy trout just before the April trout opener.
Tillamook area lakes (Hebo, Cape Meares, Smith, Spring, Lytle, Town, Tahoe, Battle, North and South lakes, and Lorens Pond): These lakes are stocked throughout the spring. Although open all year, they are stocked heavily before spring break to provide angling opportunities for youth and adults. Several of the lakes have some carryover trout (up to 18 inches) from last year. Additional, larger “trophy” trout will be stocked later in the year in some lakes.
Cape Meares Lake, Spring Lake, Town Lake, Tahoe Lake and Lorens Pond will also receive surplus adult steelhead when available. Hebo Lake, Nedonna Pond and Trask Hatchery will host Free Fishing Weekend activities (June 6-7). (Contact the Tillamook ODFW office at 503-842-2741 for details).
Cape Meares, Smith and Town lakes, and Lake Lytle all have small populations of largemouth bass, which can provide a good opportunity for anglers in the spring and summer as water temperatures increase. While these populations are small, ODFW surveys in 2006 show that many of these bass are very large. Launch facilities are available at Cape Meares Lake, Town Lake, and Lake Lytle, although anglers fishing from float tubes and from shore have experienced good success in the past.
The Youth Angling Enhancement Program will host a trout angling event for kids at Hebo Lake on Saturday, April 25 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. (Contact: Robert Bradley in Tillamook at 503-842-2741 for additional information regarding that event).
Yaquina River: Resident cutthroat trout fishing should be good in late May and June. Sea-run cutthroat trout are expected from July through September. Fair angling is expected for fall chinook in the bay and lower river from September through November. Anglers are advised that the deadline for fall chinook angling was moved downstream to the mouth of Bear Creek (near Updyke Road) in 2008 and likely again will be at Bear Creek in 2009. A new fishery has been proposed to allow retention of non-fin-clipped coho salmon in the Yaquina Basin below Elk City in 2009. Consult the ODFW website or the ODFW Office in Newport after June, 2009 to determine if the new regulations allowing retention have been put in place.
Applegate Reservoir: Applegate Reservoir offers good fishing for largemouth and smallmouth bass, as well as rainbow trout. Spring chinook salmon, stocked into the reservoir for the trout fishery, provide additional sport. The reservoir will be stocked for the first time this year the week of April 20. Anglers should try fishing a variety of depths off of points and tributaries. Night crawlers, small spinners and streamer flies have been working the best. Angling for bass and panfish will improve as the water warms.
Boat ramp availability changes based on reservoir levels. The Copper Ramp is reported to be open as of mid-April. Updated boat access and day use area information is available by calling the Applegate Ranger District at 541-899-1812.
Applegate River: The river is closed to trout fishing in the spring, but re-opens for adipose fin-clipped rainbow trout May 23. Two adipose fin-clipped rainbow trout may be kept per day, 8-inch minimum length. Non-adipose fin-clipped rainbow trout and all cutthroat trout must be released unharmed. Use of bait is allowed. Much of the Applegate is privately owned, and anglers are reminded not to trespass. Access is available at parks on the river.
Agate Lake: Largemouth bass, bluegill, black crappie and brown bullhead provide good fishing at Agate Lake. The reservoir is full as of mid-April, and fishing conditions will be good this year. Angling should improve as the water warms.
Arizona Pond: Located half way between Gold Beach and Port Orford, Arizona Pond is an excellent place to take the kids fishing. ODFW regularly stocks the lake with trout, and fishing should be good all spring and into summer. Angling is limited to ages 17 and under.
Babyfoot Lake: Babyfoot is a hike-in lake located in the Kalmiopsis Wilderness. Anglers wishing to fish Babyfoot Lake should contact the Cave Junction Forest Service office for maps and road conditions. The lake is stocked in the fall with trout prior to ice up. There is also has a small population of bass. Summer is usually the best time to fish the lake.
Big Butte Creek above Cobleigh Bridge and Little Butte Creek above the forks: Open to trout angling May 23. Angling is restricted to flies and lures only in both streams. Anglers may keep two trout per day, 8-inch minimum length in Big Butte Creek, while catch-and-release rules apply to Little Butte Creek. Both streams are closed to angling for salmon and steelhead. There is no limit on brook trout in the headwaters of both streams.
Cascade Mountain Lakes: These small, high lakes offer excellent fishing opportunities for brook trout, and some rainbow and brown trout. Many of these lakes see very few visitors during the summer months. These lakes are open to angling all year, but check on access into higher elevation areas before venturing into these isolated areas.
Cooper Creek, Plat I, Ben Irving and Galesville reservoirs, Loon Lake and Lake Marie: Local reservoirs and lakes have already been stocked this year although most will continue to receive additional trout through early June. Lake Marie has been stocked with legal trout. Cooper Creek was stocked with large brood trout in February and there are still plenty of fish to catch. Only one trout over 20 inches may be kept per day.
Coos Bay and Coquille estuaries: Recreational crabbing is a popular family activity in the Coos Bay and the Coquille estuaries. Popular areas for crabbing from docks are the Bandon and Charleston marinas. For those with a boat, the inside of Coos Bay’s North Spit, between Charleston and the BLM boat ramp produces lots of Dungeness and red rock crabs. Crabbing can be excellent in the fall, winter and early spring, but typically slows down in the estuaries during late spring and summer, as many crabs will become soft-shelled with the molt. Numerous clam species such as gapers, cockles and butter clams are available on sand and mud flats of Coos Bay nearly year-round. Marine perch and rock fish species are caught in the bays around concentrations of pilings and rock formations.
Coos Bay, Coos River and Coquille River: Striped bass, shad and sturgeon are available for anglers in the spring. Both green sturgeon and white sturgeon were tagged in Coos Bay by researchers a few years ago, and anglers are asked to report tags recovered, even if the fish are released. If you release a tagged sturgeon, please leave the tag in place, but report information on date, location caught, size of fish, and tag number. Popular sturgeon fishing areas for the Coos estuary are near McCullough Bridge (Hwy. 101), Haynes Inlet, and upriver near the confluence of the South Coos and Millicoma rivers. Green sturgeon catch is very low, but white sturgeon are commonly harvested in the Coos tidewater. There are new sturgeon regulations for 2009. See the 2009 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations for the most current regulations.
Shad will appear with warm, sunny weather in late May and into June. Locals say shad are available in the South Coos, Millicoma and Coquille river tidewater from Mother’s Day to Father’s Day. Popular shad fishing areas are near Myrtle Tree and Doras Place boat ramps in the Coos/Millicoma, and near Sturdivant Park on the Coquille. In 2008 the shad made their spawning run in the South Coos and Millicoma rivers during late June and the numbers of shad were low like the three previous years.
Striped bass congregate in upper tidewater of the Coos and Coquille rivers in the springtime. The population of striped bass in the Coquille River has been stronger in recent years than the population in the Coos Basin. The striper bite usually slows down during the spawning period in late May and early June, but picks up again post-spawning. Surfperch anglers occasionally catch striped bass in the surf in early spring. The minimum length for striped bass in streams including tidewaters and bays has changed to 24 inches. The minimum length for striped bass in the ocean, coastal bays and beaches is still 30 inches.
Steelhead angling in the Coos and Coquille basins continues through April in waters open to this species. The winter steelhead run is winding down in April, and many of them will be “kelts” migrating downstream after spawning. Adipose fin-clipped steelhead may be harvested in these basins during the open season.
Coos County Lakes and Ponds (Powers and Johnson Ponds, Bradley, Upper and Lower Empire, Saunders, Bluebill, Eel, Sru, and North and South Tenmile lakes): These waters are stocked with legal-sized trout (8-9 inches) from March to early June. The early June stocking is just prior to Free Fishing Weekend events held at Eel Lake and Powers Pond.
Empire Lakes, Bradley Lake, Powers Pond, and Johnson Pond received trophy rainbows in the two pound range this spring. Those water bodies, plus Saunders Lake, receive a fall stocking of 14 to 16-inch trout in October. These public lakes are open the entire year. Native cutthroat trout are also found in Eel Lake and the Tenmile Lakes along with a fair numbers of holdover hatchery rainbow trout up to 17 inches or more.
Eel Lake, Tenmile Lakes, and numerous other small lakes in Coos County support populations of largemouth bass. As highlighted in ODFW’s warmwater angling brochures, the Tenmile Lakes provide one of Oregon’s premier largemouth bass fisheries. Numerous competitive bass tournaments are held there each season, and bass exceeding six pounds are weighed-in each year. Camping, motels, parks, boating facilities and businesses are located in and around the town of Lakeside, on the shores of Tenmile Lakes. Anglers are reminded that a regulation is in effect for Tenmile Lakes, requiring the release of largemouth bass 15 inches or larger. Johnson Pond, Saunders Lake, Beale Lake, Eel Lake, Horsefall Lake, and a plethora of dune lakes within the U.S. Forest Service’s “Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area” also have a mix of warmwater fish available in the spring and summer. Some of the more obscure lakes in the dunes are only accessible by foot or ATV trail.
Bluegill and yellow perch are excellent fish to target for both beginning and experienced anglers, especially when fishing with kids who like plenty of action. These species tend to be relatively abundant where they are found, and are often found in schools. Bluegills are abundant in Powers and Johnson Mill ponds. Both of these waterbodies can be extremely weedy in the summer making fishing difficult. Yellow perch are very abundant in North and South Tenmile lakes. Fishing for yellow perch will be the best in the spring and fall. Equipment for these warmwater species can be as simple as a piece of worm on a hook fished below a bobber and split shot. They also can be caught with a tiny jig tipped with a small piece of worm or other bait to entice the bite. Brown bullhead catfish feed closer to the bottom, and can be taken with night crawlers fished on the bottom using a sliding egg-shaped sinker. The public parks located on South Tenmile, Eel, and Saunders lakes provide ample access for beginning anglers. Angling can be done from the bank, or from fishing docks identified with signs at these locations.
The Empire Lakes in the city of Coos Bay provide an “urban” trout fishery, but in a park-like setting. The two main lakes are heavily stocked with catchable-sized trout and a paved trail system encircles the lakes. These lakes have low to moderate populations of warmwater fish such as bluegill, yellow perch and largemouth bass, which are occasionally caught by anglers.
Coos County streams: Opening May 23 for trout fishing, the late stream opener is designed to protect out-migrating salmon and steelhead smolts, which are usually into the ocean or estuary by late spring. Trout regulations for open streams allow harvest of two fish per day, with an 8-inch minimum size. Note that some streams remain closed to all angling. In streams above tidewater, from May 23-Aug. 31 angling is restricted to artificial flies and lures only. Native trout in area streams are primarily coastal cutthroat, although resident rainbow reside in some streams above South Fork Coquille Falls. Check regulations carefully for stream closures, gear restrictions, catch-and-release areas, and season dates, and contact the Charleston Field Office at (541) 888-5515 if you have questions about regulations. With a little exploration, streams on the Elliott State Forest provide excellent cutthroat trout angling away from the crowds. Keep in mind that the bag limit is only two fish per day on these native fish that are not stocked.
Curry County Streams: Most Curry County streams are open May 23 for trout angling. Exceptions are Brush, Hubbard, Hunter, Mussell/Myrtle, Myers, and Thomas creeks, which remain closed to trout fishing. Where open for trout the daily bag limit is two trout greater than 8 inches.
Denman Wildlife Area Ponds: The Kenneth Denman Wildlife Management Area, situated conveniently near Medford, Central Point and White City, offers very good fishing for a variety of warmwater species in ponds found throughout the property. Whetstone Pond, adjacent to the office, is the largest pond. Anglers at Whetstone target largemouth bass, bluegill, black crappie and brown bullhead. Carp are also present, and green sunfish are found in some of the ponds. Good bank fishing is available, and boats with electric motors are permitted. A map of all ponds on the wildlife area is available.
A variety of fishing techniques can be effective. A simple technique is to fish a size 10, 12 or 14 hook baited with worms below a bobber. Casting small lures and jigs is also effective. Largemouth bass will strike surface or shallow running lures fished around cover as the water warms in the spring. Information is available at the Rogue Watershed District office of ODFW at 541-826-8774.
Diamond Lake: This year's opener is April 25. Although snowpack is less than last year, contact Diamond Lake Resort for up to date news on the ice. This year there will be no stocking of legal-sized trout. However, from last year’s fingerling stocking there should be about 140,000 nice 12 to 14-inch trout available as soon as the season starts. There should also be about 25,000 trout left over from the catchable trout stocked in 2008. This means that Diamond Lake will have about twice as many trout available for harvest than it has had for the last couple of years. With an anticipated 166,000 trout over 12 inches currently in Diamond Lake, ODFW will stock 300,000 fingerling trout later in June. (This is why Diamond Lake does not appear on the stocking schedule.) Many of these will be legal-sized by mid-August.
Emigrant Reservoir: Emigrant Reservoir is nearly full as of the middle of April, and has been stocked with good numbers of legal-sized rainbow trout. Bass and panfish are also available, and fishing has picked up a bit near Songer Wayside. Trout anglers will likely want to fish in and around the county park and boat ramps using floating bait or worms with a weight about two feet above the hook. As the water clears in the spring, trollers fishing flies, lures or a flasher and worm combination can have good success.
Later in the spring as water temperatures increase, the full reservoir should be a boon for warmwater anglers. Anglers should fish the flooded willows, the dam face and dike structures in Emigrant and Hill Creek arms for black crappie and largemouth bass. For bass and panfish use a size 10, 12 or 14 hook baited with worms below a bobber. Casting small lures and jigs is also effective. Bass will strike surface or shallow running lures fished around cover as the water warms.
Emigrant is within biking distance from Ashland, and is a short drive for most Rogue Valley residents. The combination of good numbers of panfish, full facilities at the county park, and a water slide combine to make Emigrant a great site for a family outing. Anglers should be aware that a health advisory has been issued recommending limits on consumption of all fish from Emigrant except rainbow trout. Information on the Emigrant Reservoir advisory, along with general information on mercury and fish can be found on the DHS website at www.healthoregon.org/fishadv.
Expo Pond and Reinhart Park Pond: These urban ponds offer an excellent family fishing opportunity in the communities of Central Point and Grants Pass. Both ponds are stocked with rainbow trout throughout the spring, and provide good fishing for bass and panfish in the summer and fall. Expo Pond is located immediately adjacent to the access road at Gate 5 at the Jackson County Fairgrounds. Reinhart Park Pond is located at Reinhart Park in Grants Pass. Fishing bait, either from a bobber or on the bottom with weight, can be effective.
Fish Lake: Fish Lake is heavily stocked each year with legal-sized rainbow trout, and brook trout are also available. The first release of trout in 2009 is scheduled for the week of April 20.
Bait fishing with worms and floating bait is effective, and is probably the best bet for use during summer at the lake. The bank between the two campgrounds is a good place for youngsters to fish. Trollers can do very well at Fish Lake in the spring, fishing flies, lures and small spoons or spinners.
As of mid-April, the road in to the resort is open. The lake is mostly covered with ice, but it has been melting fast. There is open water near the resort. For current information on snow and ice conditions at the US Forest Service boat ramp and campgrounds, call the Butte Falls Ranger District office at 541-865-2700. The Fish Lake Resort can be reached at 541-949-8500.
For the third consecutive year, a US Forest Service-led effort to manage non-native tui chub will take place at Fish Lake. Chub will be netted and removed from the lake in the spring and early summer. One benefit that may occur is a reduction in algae blooms and an increase in water clarity during the summer.
Floras Lake: Floras Lake is located near Langlois and is stocked in late spring with 5,000 trout. Trout fishing can be good through the spring before weed growth and water temperatures get too high. The lake does have a small number of bass. The best way to fish the lake is in a boat as there is very little shore access. The boat ramp is located at Boice Cope County Park.
Garrison Lake: Garrison Lake is located in Port Orford and is stocked several times in the spring. Fishing can be really good through May for trout. There are a small number of bass in the lake. The best way to fish the lake is by boat. Boat ramps are located on 12th Street and Pinehurst Roads. Anglers should keep an eye on the weather and target the lake when winds are light.
Howard Prairie Reservoir: Howard Prairie opens for fishing on April 25. The reservoir is 80 percent full as of mid-April, and the ice has melted.
With funding from a Restoration and Enhancement Program grant, the Rogue District is in the second year of a pilot project testing a fall release of rainbow trout fingerlings to improve the trout fishery. The fall fish are marked with an adipose fin clip. Legal-sized rainbow trout will be stocked as well, marked with a right ventral fin clip. ODFW will be conducting a creel survey at Howard Prairie during the fishing season. Trout angling should be improved in 2009.
Both boat and bank anglers do well at Howard Prairie. Floating baits are popular, while boat anglers trolling flasher and worm or lure combinations usually do well. Fly anglers can do well at the shallow upper end of the lake during years of good water conditions, especially early in the year. Largemouth bass, pumpkinseed, brown bullhead and smallmouth bass are also available.
Four boat ramps are available on Howard Prairie Reservoir, along with full service campgrounds. Improvements have begun on the Willow Point boat ramp, but construction is not planned during the fishing season. The Willow Point ramp may or may not be usable on opening day pending reservoir levels. Contact Jackson County Parks at 541-774-8183 for more information. Boat rentals are available at the Howard Prairie Resort at 541-482-1979. A universal access fishing platform is located on a jetty near the resort.
Hyatt Lake: Hyatt opens for fishing on April 25. The lake is full as of mid-April. Anglers are encouraged to call ahead for an update on conditions and to avoid ice due to hazardous thinning conditions. As of mid-April, the lake still has ice cover.
Largemouth bass are available at Hyatt, and the lake remains overpopulated with a large number of smaller-sized largemouth averaging 7-8 inches in length. These fish are easy to catch in the warm summer months, and present a nice family fishing opportunity. Most techniques will catch these fish, from fishing a night crawler below a bobber, to casting bass lures, and even trolling flies and lures. For anglers who keep bass, these small bass offer a good chance to take some bass home for the table.
Trout anglers at Hyatt should have improved fishing success in 2009. Due to a recent decline in fingerling survival, trout stocking will temporarily switch to releases of legal-sized fish this year. If weather conditions allow, Hyatt will be stocked in time for opening day. Hyatt was stocked with trophy trout last year, and holdovers should spice up the catch for trout anglers this spring.
Four boat ramps are available on Hyatt Lake, along with full service BLM campgrounds. Boat rentals are available at the Hyatt Lake Resort at 541-482-3331.
Illinois River: The Illinois is closed to all angling April 1 - May 22. The Illinois River below Pomeroy Dam opens to steelhead and adipose fin-clipped trout on May 23. Angling is restricted to artificial flies and lures, and no bait is allowed. The fishery at this time of year is primarily a catch-and-release fishery. Adipose fin-clipped rainbow trout, which are actually half-pounder steelhead, can at times be caught in the lower Illinois during the summer months. The remainder of the river and its tributaries are closed to all angling.
Laird Lake: This lake is located in the headwaters of Elk River. The lake is stocked with several hundred trout in late spring and usually fishes really well all summer. The lake is full of downed wood and bank access is somewhat limited. A small pram or float tube can be a very effective way to fish the lake.
Lake Selmac: The largest standing waterbody in Josephine County, Lake Selmac is heavily stocked with legal-sized rainbow trout from February through June. The lake is also a renowned producer of largemouth bass, and is managed for trophy bass through a one bass per day limit. Bluegill, black crappie and brown bullhead are also available. Fish for trout near the dam as the water warms. Look for largemouth bass around the stumps and overhanging brush, and for black crappie and bluegill fish from pier and dikes. Fish close to shore at Lake Selmac; it is easy to cast too far and miss the bulk of the fish.
All lake-fishing techniques can be effective. Trout anglers use floating bait or worms with a weight about 2 feet above the hook. Cast and retrieve lures or flies. Troll with lures and flies from a boat. For bass and panfish, use a size 10, 12 or 14 hook baited with worms below a bobber. Casting small lures and jigs is also effective. Largemouth bass will strike surface or shallow running lures fished around cover as the water warms in the spring. During hot weather largemouth bass seek deeper, cooler water, so use leadhead jigs, plastic worms and deep running plugs.
Bank access, boat ramps and camping facilities are available through Josephine County Parks at 541-474-5285. Boat rentals are available at the Lake Selmac Resort at 541-597-2277.
Libby Pond: Libby will be stocked prior to Free Fishing Weekend June 6-7 with 5,000 trout. The annual Libby Pond kid fishing derby will be held on the Saturday, June 6. Anglers are reminded that Libby Pond is private and no boats are allowed.
Lost Creek Reservoir: Lost Creek Reservoir is heavily stocked with legal-sized rainbow trout, and offers very good trout fishing only a 45 minute drive from the Medford area. Throughout the summer months, smallmouth and largemouth bass provide an important fishery at the reservoir. Casting jigs along the northern shoreline can be very effective for good-sized smallmouth bass.
Lost Creek is expected to be a hot spot for trout anglers in 2009. Anglers fishing the reservoir following the end of last year’s blue green algae bloom reported good fishing on 14-15 inch holdover trout in excellent condition. Trout stocking began in March, and releases continue through early June. Trout anglers fishing from the bank primarily fish either floating bait or worms. Boat anglers use a wide variety of techniques. Trollers often fish wedding ring and night crawler combinations behind a weight, while fly anglers can have success both trolling and casting.
Angling for bass and panfish will improve as the weather warms. As of mid-April, the surface water temperature at Lost Creek was 47F. Largemouth bass are expected to provide more of a fishery at Lost Creek due to recent ODFW transfers from other lakes.
Rogue River, middle and upper: Early spring angling on the middle and upper Rogue River means winter steelhead angling. The Rogue is open to fishing for adipose fin-clipped steelhead the entire year. Until April 30, non-adipose fin-clipped steelhead at least 24 inches in length may be kept, one per day and five per year. This year’s winter steelhead run is down, although fishing has been fair at times through mid-April.
Very good bank access can be found above Rogue Elk County Park. The river gets smaller in this section, with more defined holes. Drifting bait, casting lures, and back-trolling plugs are all popular techniques. Later in the season, flyfishing can be very productive.
Spring chinook salmon fishing peaks in the lower river in April and May, while anglers in the upper river above Gold Ray Dam enjoy peak fishing for spring chinook between late May and early July. Based on jack returns last year, the spring chinook run is expected to increase in size in 2009, and should be even better in 2010. Summer steelhead numbers are also expected to be up in 2009 due to good returns of half-pounder steelhead last year.
The river is closed to trout fishing in the spring, and re-opens for adipose fin-clipped rainbow trout on May 23. Anglers may keep five adipose fin-clipped rainbow trout per day, 8-inch minimum length. All non-adipose fin-clipped rainbow and cutthroat trout must be released unharmed.
Anglers should be aware that the Bureau of Reclamation is removing a significant portion of Savage Rapids Dam in 2009. Fish passage delays are expected in April. More information on the project is available at http://www.usbr.gov/pn/programs/lcao_misc/savage/index.html. The project will open a new drift for boat anglers beginning next winter.
Rogue River, lower: Anglers are focused primarily on spring chinook in April, May and June. An early run of summer steelhead usually enters the river the latter part of May and early June. Flows and water temperatures affect spring chinook fishing success the most. Anglers will want to keep an eye on current river conditions before deciding when and where to fish.
Rogue River above Lost Creek Reservoir: Most campgrounds and public access sites on the North Fork Rogue River above Lost Creek Reservoir are stocked with legal-sized rainbow trout on nearly a weekly basis between Memorial Day and Labor Day. The program provides some of the best summer trout fishing for residents of the Rogue Valley, and offers an additional excuse to escape the summer heat for the scenic upper Rogue. Brook trout are also available in the headwater streams. Contact the Rogue Watershed District ODFW office at 826-8774 for a map of stocking sites.
Southard Lake: Southard is a hike-in lake with some carryover trout. The lake is annually stocked with a couple hundred fish in the spring. Anglers wishing to fish Southard should contact the Gold Beach Forest Service office for maps and road conditions. The lake gets very little pressure and usually fishes well all summer long.
Spaulding, Burma, and Dutch Herman ponds: The road to Spaulding Pond is still blocked by snow as of mid-April. All three ponds are scheduled to be stocked the week of April 20. Fishing should be good, with the best action this spring occurring in the afternoons when the water is the warmest. Updated road access information is available by calling the Siskiyou Interagency Office at 541-471-6500.
Toketee and Lemolo Reservoirs: Both reservoirs have good brown trout populations with sizes ranging from 11-14 inches. Rainbow trout will be stocked in Lemolo Reservoir after opening day. Anglers should check reservoir level conditions and boat access for Lemolo Reservoir prior to planning a fishing trip. Toketee Reservoir is open year around and provides excellent brown trout fishing in late spring and fall
Umpqua Basin Rivers and Streams: Trout angling in many local streams, primarily for resident cutthroat, will open this year May 23. Anglers should check regulations carefully for stream closures, gear restrictions, catch-and-release areas, and season dates prior to fishing. Rainbow trout are not stocked in Umpqua basin streams and rivers.
Umpqua River: Spring chinook fishing should be good this year as long as water flows and temperatures stay steady. At this time there are spring chinook currently being caught in the lower Umpqua. Spring chinook fishing in the lower Umpqua declines as warmer water temperatures and algae blooms occur. Then the fishing effort generally moves upstream to the North Umpqua, particularly the Swiftwater area. The average run size for North Umpqua spring chinook the last several years has been about 7,000 fish. The first spring chinook crossed Winchester Dam March 20. Anglers will have good opportunities to catch spring chinook this year.
Steelhead numbers have been slightly less than last year’s run. The winter steelhead season remains open on the South Umpqua through the end of April. Good numbers of fish continue to be in the river through April and fishing pressure is light. The number of hatchery fish is much less than it has been in the past due to a high mortality of smolts scheduled to be released in 2007. Steelhead angling is open in the mainstem Umpqua and North year round. Hatchery summer steelhead are available throughout the spring and summer.
Striped bass are available in the lower Umpqua and tidewater portion of Smith River. Angling should improve as the water warms. Shad will also run in the mainstem Umpqua as the water warms. Various points from the Umpqua boat ramp to Yellow Creek are popular shad fishing spots. The run normally occurs from late April through mid-June.
Smallmouth bass are also available on the mainstem Umpqua and will become progressively more active through the spring and summer. Bass season opens in the South the same day that trout season opens (May 23). From Winston to Roseburg there are several floats that can be done with an inflatable raft to access the bass.
Willow Lake: Willow Lake offers fishing on stocked rainbow trout, as well as largemouth bass, black crappie, bluegill and yellow perch. Cabins and the group campground information are available through Rogue Recreation at 541-865-3474
Trout anglers are reminded that most streams draining the Cascades on the east side of the north Willamette Valley are closed to trout angling until May 23. Many of these streams support winter steelhead, including the Clackamas, Sandy, Molalla, Tualatin, Yamhill, and North and South Santiam rivers, and the late opener is designed to protect the out-migrating juveniles, or smolts. On May 23, many of these waters will open to catch-and-release fishing for trout with angling restricted to artificial flies and lures. The season remains open through October 31. Check the 2009 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations for more information.
ODFW anticipates that a moderate run of summer steelhead will offer fair to good angling opportunities and catch rates in the Willamette River system. Keep in mind that winter steelhead can also still be caught in the lower Willamette River system in early spring. The Willamette spring chinook run is expected to be less than average but still higher than in 2008. The daily bag limit is two adipose fin-clipped adult salmonids, only one of which may be a chinook. Anglers should be aware that a new angling regulation is in effect for the upper Willamette Basin this year that allows the retention of unmarked steelhead greater than 24 inches. The period of time this regulation is in effect varies by water body, so consult the 2009 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations for that information. The regulation will allow the harvest of mismarked and naturally reproducing summer steelhead. Summer steelhead are not native to the basin and harvesting these fish before they spawn will be a benefit to wild rainbow trout. Although native rainbow trout over 24 inches are extremely rare, anglers who happen to catch one are encouraged to release it unharmed.
Catch of Clackamas River stock spring chinook usually peaks in May and June, with the run ranging from late March through June. Summer steelhead in the Clackamas River return from March through October, with the peak usually seen during late spring and early fall. Spring chinook in the lower Willamette are also readily available from late-March through June, or when the water temperature rises to the mid-fifties. Some summer steelhead are already in the Clackamas, Sandy, and Santiam Rivers, particularly in the lower reaches of these rivers, with numbers increasing daily. Good stream flow levels and water conditions this spring have offered some quality angling opportunities and some good action on early season winter steelhead, even with numbers of fish down a little. Chinook usually show up in catchable numbers around the first of May. Only salmon and steelhead with a clipped adipose fin may be retained. Streams that support winter steelhead, including the Clackamas, Sandy, Molalla, Tualatin, Yamhill, and North and South Santiam Rivers, will remain closed to trout fishing until late May to protect out-migrating juvenile steelhead. On May 23, many of these waters will open to catch-and-release fishing for trout with angling restricted to artificial flies and lures. Check the 2009 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations for more information. In addition to several new consumptive angling opportunities for trout in the Upper Willamette River, coho salmon angling should be on the radar screen of any angler interested in catching fish. In 2007, several streams above Willamette Falls including the mainstem Willamette, Molalla, Tualatin, Yamhill opened for retention of adipose fin-clipped or non-adipose fin-clipped coho. Check the 2009 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations for more information.
Please note: All bull trout must be released unharmed from the McKenzie River, Cougar Reservoir, Trail Bridge Reservoir, Hills Creek Reservoir, and the Middle Fork Willamette. A picture of a bull trout is in the angling regulations on page 16 and 69. Anglers are asked to call ODFW in Springfield at 541-726-3515 ext. 26 to report any bull trout you catch.
Canby Pond: Canby Pond has been re-opened as a youth and disabled anglers only fishing pond. It is open to youngsters ages 17 and under as well as persons who possess an Oregon Disabled Angler’s fishing license.
Under Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations, anglers ages 13 and under can fish for free while those 14-17 will need to have a juvenile angling license. All fishing regulations continue to apply.
Canby Pond will be stocked several times throughout the spring with rainbow trout. Warming water will likely make it difficult to stock into the summer. The pond also holds a variety of warmwater species.
Clackamas River: The main stem Clackamas River up to North Fork Dam and is open year-round for adipose fin-clipped chinook salmon and adipose fin-clipped steelhead. Effective March 1, 2009, the daily bag limit for salmon and steelhead in the Clackamas River upstream to North Fork Dam will be two adult adipose fin-clipped salmon or steelhead per day.
The main stem Clackamas River from the mouth upstream to North Fork Dam is open for adipose fin-clipped trout May 23-Oct. 31, two trout per day, and no minimum length; the use of bait is allowed in the lower river. The main stem Clackamas and tributaries above North Fork Reservoir are catch-and-release only for trout with artificial flies and lures. Exceptions to this regulation are in the Oak Grove Fork (and all tributaries) between yellow markers at upstream end of Harriet Lake and Timothy Lake Dam, which is open to the harvest of two trout per day, 8-inch minimum length. However, there is no limit on size and number of brook trout taken in the main stem Clackamas River or tributaries above North Fork Dam.
There is ample bank access in McIver Park near the upper boat ramp, Clackamas Fish Hatchery, and the lower boat ramp near the disc golf course. Boaters will find good ramp availability at Clackamette, Riverside, Carver, Barton, Feldheimers, and McIver Parks. The float from the upper McIver boat ramp can be a little sketchy, so it is recommended that only experienced boaters float this section. You can put in at lower McIver and avoid all of the difficult water. Lower McIver is only about 1 mile upstream of Feldheimer boat ramp, but there are two good holes between it and Feldheimer that can hold good numbers of fish.
Clear Lake (Linn Co.): We expect to be able to release trout for the April 25 weekend. Parking may be limited by snow.
Detroit, Foster and Green Peter Reservoirs: All of these reservoirs have been stocked with catchable-sized rainbow trout this season. Cool early spring water temperatures will allow anglers to fish quite close to the surface to be successful, so bank angling can be most productive in the spring. In addition to trout, Detroit and Green Peter support kokanee and chinook populations that provide anglers with the opportunity to catch a larger fish. Both kokanee and chinook are more sensitive to warmer water temperatures than rainbow, and will move deeper into the lake as summer comes on. Foster and Green Peter also support good numbers of bass that will start to bite as the water becomes warmer. Most boat ramps should be usable by late April.
Dorman Pond: This 8-acre pond near Balm Grove (at the junction of Hwy 8 and Hwy 6) was stocked with trout in March and is scheduled to be stocked again in April. Access and parking are excellent.
Estacada Lake: Estacada Lake up to the Hwy 211 Bridge is open year-round for adipose fin-clipped chinook salmon and adipose fin-clipped steelhead. The trout season is open May 23 - October 31. Anglers are reminded that the bag limit is five adipose fin-clipped trout. The boat ramp at Estacada Lake has been relocated to the McIver Park side of the lake (enter through the park) and can be accessed at the campground. The lake will be routinely stocked with trout throughout the spring and summer seasons. There is limited access for bank fishing, but you can reach the lake through the Timber Park on the Estacada side and McIver Park on the south side of the lake.
Gales Creek: Gales Creek opens May 23 to the catch-and-release of trout with artificial flies and lures only. This stream now has a late trout opener to reduce the catch of steelhead smolts, which are abundant in the creek during April and May.
Haldeman Pond: This pond on Oak Island at Sauvie Island is open from April 16 through September 30. It will be stocked with rainbow trout several times this spring. Anglers are reminded the daily bag limit is five trout, and that a permit is necessary to park on the Sauvie Island Wildlife Area.
Harriet Lake: This lake on the Oak Grove Fork of the Clackamas River will be stocked mid-April (if accessible) and throughout the spring and summer. There are good opportunities for anglers to catch hatchery rainbow, cutthroat, brook and brown trout. A detour road off Highway 224 near Ripplebrook takes you directly past this popular lake. There is still a large snowpack, so you’re best bet is to check with the U.S. Forest Service at 503-630-6861 to ask if the road is open.
Henry Hagg Lake: Henry Hagg Lake is a large, 1,100 acre lake, located 30 miles west of Portland near Forest Grove, and offers some of the best standing water angling opportunities in the Willamette Valley. Hagg Lake is open from March 7 through November 22. The lake is heavily stocked throughout the spring and again in the fall with rainbow trout to support a very popular and successful fishery. In recent years, large brood trout have been released on occasion to enhance the angling experience. Excellent angling also exists for largemouth and smallmouth bass, crappie, bluegill, yellow perch and catfish. The state records for smallmouth bass (over 8 pounds) and brown bullhead catfish were caught here.
Trout fishing is best from March to mid-June, and again in the fall when the water is cooler. Angling for bass and crappie is best in the spring when the fish move into shallow shoreline areas to spawn. Summer is a good time to fish for panfish and catfish. Two boat ramps are maintained to provide boating access, and bank anglers can reach most of the lake shore via trails or family picnic areas.
Light or medium weight spinning tackle provides a good all-around set-up. Trout can be caught on a variety of lures or baits. Spinners work well while worms, salmon eggs or artificial trout baits can be fished using a bobber or with a weight on the bottom. Bass anglers can also use spinners, but jigs and plastic baits or lures that imitate prey such as small fish and crayfish are also effective. For crappie, try fishing a small white or red-and-white jig at different depths by suspending it below a bobber that can be adjusted up or down the line. For other panfish, use a small hook baited with worm or other panfish bait suspended 12-18 inches below the bobber to keep the bait off the bottom. Catfish anglers will want to fish on the bottom using bait. Refer to the Sport Fishing Regulations for bag limits on specified species.
Hills Creek Reservoir: Hills Creek Reservoir has been fishing well this year for good-sized adipose-fin clipped rainbow trout. Adipose fin-clipped spring chinook are also showing up in the creel and may be included in the trout bag limit (5 adipose fin-clipped fish per day). Unmarked trophy-size trout are providing excellent catch-and-release opportunities. Anglers are reminded to release bull trout and all other unclipped trout unharmed, preferably without removing them from the water. Warmwater species including crappie and bass are also available for harvest. Catch rates for warmwater fish will increase as temperatures rise to near 60F.
Huddleston Pond: This pond, off of NE Yamhill Street in Willamina, has changed names and was formerly known as Hampton Pond. Trout stocking begins in December and typically continues into early June, or until water conditions are no longer suitable for trout.
Luckiamute and Little Luckiamute River: New for 2009: The mainstem Luckiamute and Little Luckiamute up to the falls at Falls City open May 23 with a limit of two trout per day, 8-inch minimum length. The Little Luckiamute above the falls at Falls City opens for trout April 25 with a limit of two fish per day, 8-inch minimum length. Angling in both streams is restricted to artifical flies and lures. Both streams support healthy populations of native cutthroat trout, particularly in their upper reaches where excellent bank angling opportunities abound.
Marys and Long Tom Rivers: Open April 25 to the harvest of trout with a limit of five fish per day, 8-inch minimum length; bait allowed. Both streams support healthy populations of native cutthroat trout, particularly in their upper reaches. The Long Tom below Fern Ridge Dam is well populated with an assortment of warmwater gamefish (e.g. bass, crappie, bullhead catfish) though bank angling access is limited.
McKenzie River: WARNING! Guide: Do not run Martins Rapid
Angling success is usually a bit slower early in the year with high, cool water expected. The river will be stocked with 5,850 rainbow trout from Leaburg Lake up to Blue River with an additional 2,900 in Leaburg Lake for opening day. Rainbow trout will not be released into the McKenzie River below Leaburg Dam until the last week of April. All hatchery rainbow trout released into the McKenzie River are marked with an adipose fin clip and anglers must release all non fin-clipped trout in the mainstem McKenzie. The lower 11 miles of the McKenzie River below the Hayden Bridge and the McKenzie River upstream from Forest Glen Boat Ramp at Blue River up to Trail Bridge Reservoir are restricted to angling with lures and flies only, and all trout must be released. A few summer steelhead may be available below Leaburg Dam. The McKenzie River is open to salmon angling from the mouth to 200 feet below Leaburg Dam. Only adipose fin-clipped chinook salmon may be harvested during the season that will extend to Aug. 15. The daily bag limit on spring chinook salmon has been reinstated to two per day. Every effort should be made to release wild (non fin-clipped) chinook without taking them out of the water. Bait is not allowed for salmon downstream from Hayden Bridge. Bait may be used beginning April 25 in the area between Hayden Bridge and Leaburg Dam.
Catch-and-release fishing for cutthroat and rainbow trout in the lower McKenzie River and in the Willamette downstream to Harrisburg has been good this year. The March Brown hatch and some fairly dense caddis hatches have been developing during midday and are expected to continue into May.
Anglers should be aware that a new angling regulation is in effect for the McKenzie River this year that allows the retention of unmarked steelhead greater than 24 inches. The regulation will allow the harvest of mismarked and naturally reproducing summer steelhead. Summer steelhead are not native to the basin and harvesting these fish before they spawn will be a benefit to wild rainbow trout. Although native rainbow trout over 24 inches are extremely rare, anglers who happen to catch one are encouraged to release them unharmed.
An angler creel survey is planned for Leaburg Lake and the upper McKenzie River beginning in late April. ODFW staff will be contacting anglers with questions about numbers and species of fish caught. Information collected will be used to determine catch of native trout and other fish, as well as to improve the rainbow trout stocking program.
Molalla/Pudding River: The Molalla up to Pine Creek Bridge is open year-round for the retention of adipose fin-clipped chinook salmon, adipose fin-clipped steelhead, and coho. It is open to the harvest of non-adipose fin-clipped steelhead July 1 – August 31. The use of bait is allowed May 15 – July 15. The use of single barbless hooks is encouraged. Spring chinook will not show up in the Molalla until May. We no longer stock the Molalla with winter or summer steelhead but wild winter steelhead are providing a small, but popular catch-and-release fishery. Give it a try from the Pine Creek Bridge down to Canby in April and May for both winter steelhead and fresh spring chinook. The river opens May 23 to catch-and-release of trout. All unmarked trout in the Molalla basin must be released unharmed. The exceptions to this rule are Silver Creek above Silverton Reservoir, Abiqua Creek above Abiqua Falls, and Butte Creek above Butte Creek Falls, where retention of two trout per day, 8-inch minimum length is allowed (consult 2009 angling regulations for more information). Anglers are encouraged to use artificial flies and lures when fishing for trout in the Molalla Basin.
The Molalla/Pudding River also offers some warmwater angling opportunities. There is no limit on size or number of bass taken.
Mt Hood Pond: The pond has been designated a youth only fishing venue from April 1 – August 31. It is open to youngsters ages 17 and under. The new rules make it illegal for adults to fish in Mt Hood Pond between April 1 and August 31.
Under Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations, anglers ages 13 and under can fish for free while those 14-17 will need to have a juvenile angling license. All fishing regulations continue to apply.
North Fork Reservoir: The reservoir (up to milepost 32 on Hwy 224) is open May 23 through October 31 for the retention of adipose fin-clipped trout, five per day. The reservoir is stocked frequently throughout spring, summer and fall. There are a number of good access points along Highway 224 where anglers can fish from the bank.
North Santiam (above Big Cliff Dam), Breitenbush Rivers, and streams above Detroit, as well as Quartzville Creek and streams above Green Peter Reservoir: Will open for trout fishing on April 25 and several, including Breitenbush River, upper North Santiam River and Quartzville Creek, will be stocked with rainbow trout for Memorial Day weekend. These streams will provide anglers an opportunity to retain a standard bag limit of five trout per day and the use of bait is allowed.
North Santiam (below Big Cliff Dam), South Santiam (below Foster Dam), and mainstem Santiam River: New for 2009: Will open for trout fishing on May 23 with a limit of two adipose fin-clipped trout per day, no minimum length.
North Santiam (below Big Cliff Dam), Little North Fork Santiam, South Santiam (below Foster Dam), and mainstem Santiam River: New for 2009: Non adipose fin-clipped adult steelhead may be retained during the months of July and August. Bank anglers need to be aware that there have been angling deadline changes at two locations on the North Santiam: at Packsaddle Park and Mill City. Both changes provide increased bank angling access and the new deadline boundaries are clearly marked and described in the angling regulations booklet. Anglers must adhere to these new deadlines, making sure to fish and cast downstream of them. The new deadlines are being strictly enforced by law enforcement.
Little North Fork Santiam: New for 2009: Angling is restricted to artificial flies and lures only.
Portland-area Lakes and Ponds (Faraday, Benson, Hartman, Blue, Commonwealth, Bethany, Trojan, Mt. Hood Community College, and Small Fry Lake in Promontory Park): These lakes are open to the harvest of adipose-fin clipped trout. They are all stocked or will receive trout soon, with stocking continuing through early June in most ponds. These lakes and reservoirs should provide some of the best catches on opening weekend. Many of these lakes and ponds also offer great warmwater fishing opportunities for bass, bluegill, crappie and catfish.
Commonwealth Lake: The bass limit is one per day, no minimum length. The crappie limit is 10 per day, no minimum length.
Small Fry Lake: Angling restricted to youths ages 17 and under. Under Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations, anglers ages 13 and under can fish for free while those 14-17 will need to have a juvenile angling license. Open all year for trout angling, two trout per day with no minimum length.
The North Willamette Watershed District will host free youth fishing events at Trojan Pond on Saturday, April 25 and at Commonwealth Lake on Saturday, May 9 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. The events are part of ODFW’s Youth Angling Enhancement Program, designed to introduce young people to the fun of fishing. The Department will provide rods and reels, tackle, bait, and fish bags for use by young anglers who do not have their own fishing equipment. In addition, ODFW staff and volunteers will be on hand to help participants learn how to bait a hook, cast a rod, and land the catch. Packets of information including the Easy Angling Oregon booklet also will be available to participants.
Rickreall Creek: New for 2009: The mainstem of Rickreall Creek opens May 23 with a limit of two trout per day, 8-inch minimum length. Angling is restricted to artificial flies and lures. The stream supports a healthy population of native cutthroat trout though bank angling access is somewhat limited.
Salish Ponds: Salish Ponds Wetlands Park (located between Halsey St. and Glisan St. in the City of Fairview) is preserved to protect the natural areas surrounding Fairview Creek and the ponds. Trails lead through wetlands and forest, and a small picnic area with restrooms are provided for the public. Two ponds in the park provide great opportunities for both warmwater fish and trout. Both ponds offer small docks to enhance enjoyment of the area.
West Salish Pond is stocked with rainbow trout and brook trout. Large brood trout ranging from 4-20 pounds are stocked into the lake when available from area hatcheries. East Salish Pond holds warmwater fish including largemouth and smallmouth bass, crappie, bluegill and catfish. In East Salish Pond the daily bass limit is one per day, no minimum length. The daily crappie limit is 10 per day, no minimum length.
Rainbow trout and warmwater fish are easily accessible from the banks of the west pond for most of the year, especially on the Glisan Street side. However, trout will be found in the deeper, cooler water of the pond during the warm summer months. Warmwater fish are usually found in or along areas with aquatic weeds, or near other natural or man-made features (i.e., docks) that offer cover.
Angling for bass and crappie is best in the spring when the water temperature warms and the fish move into shallow shoreline areas to spawn. Summer is a good time to fish for panfish and catfish, and bass can still be caught during the morning and evening.
Light or medium weight spinning tackle provides a good all-around set-up. Trout can be caught on a variety of lures and baits. Spinners work well while worms, salmon eggs or artificial trout baits can be fished using a bobber or with a weight on the bottom. Try using spinners to catch brood trout for a few days after release, and then switch to bait suspended 6 – 10 feet under a bobber. Fish as far out as possible, but generally 20 – 30 feet from the bank. For warmwater fish, target areas close to shore and near weeds or other cover. Bass anglers can also use spinners, but jigs and plastic baits or lures that imitate prey such as small fish and crayfish are also effective. For crappie, try fishing a small white or red-and-white jig at different depths by suspending it below a bobber that can be adjusted up or down the line. For other panfish, use a small hook baited with worm or other panfish bait suspended 12-18 inches below the bobber. This is a great method for kids to use as it helps to prevent snags and lost tackle. Catfish anglers will want to fish on the bottom using bait. Be sure to check your bait if you have had no action after a while. Many small fish in the pond are nibblers and highly effective thieves!
The North Willamette Watershed District will host a free youth fishing event at the Salish Ponds on Saturday, May 16 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. The event is part of ODFW’s Youth Angling Enhancement Program, designed to introduce young people to the fun of fishing. The department will provide rods and reels, tackle, bait, and fish bags for use by young anglers who do not have their own fishing equipment. In addition, ODFW staff and volunteers will be on hand to help participants learn how to bait a hook, cast a rod and land the catch. Packets of information including the Easy Angling Oregon booklet also will be available to participants.
Salmonberry Lake: This small reservoir in the Milton Creek drainage, west of St. Helens, is scheduled to be stocked with rainbow trout in mid-late April. The road in is gated and anglers must walk in about 1/3 mile to access this secluded pond.
Sandy River: The Sandy River up to the ODFW markers at the mouth of the Salmon River is open year-round for adipose fin-clipped steelhead and from February 1 through October 31 for adipose fin-clipped chinook salmon. However, the area near Oxbow Park is closed during the fall to protect spawning chinook salmon (see the 2009 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations for these special regulations). The river and its tributaries open May 23 for catch-and-release only of trout. The use of bait is allowed up to the ODFW markers at the mouth of the Salmon River.
The mainstem and tributaries upstream from the ODFW markers at the mouth of the Salmon River, including the Salmon River is open to steelhead July 1 –August 31. Angling is restricted to artificial flies and lures (see the 2009 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations for restrictions pertaining to flies and lures).
There are reports of a few wild steelhead being caught and released in the section of river above the old Marmot Dam site. There may still be a few hatchery winter steelhead available above Cedar Creek, but there is some opportunity for catch-and-release of wild fish for those interested in a more remote angling experience.
Spring chinook angling should improve moving into late April and on through May. There are many good, safe access points for bank angling from Lewis and Clark Park up to Dabney Park along the side of the highway.
Access to the river can be gained from many parks including Lewis and Clark, Dabney, Oxbow, and Dodge. Bank access is also available to the Cedar Creek area at the Sandy Hatchery. When fishing the Oxbow Park area, remember that there is no angling from a floating device upstream from a point that is 200 feet below the Oxbow Park boat ramp.
Collection/recycling receptacles for discarded or lost fishing gear can now be found along the Sandy River. Look for them near boat ramps at Lewis and Clark, Dabney, Oxbow, and Dodge parks. Any tangled fishing line or old gear can be collected and disposed of in these canisters as an effort to maintain a healthy, clean Sandy River. Please use nearby garbage cans for any other types of trash.
Sheridan Pond: The pond is stocked year-round with catchable trout along with larger (12-14”) and trophy (14-18”) trout to enhance the angling experience. Keep a look out for periodic stocking of brood trout that can exceed 4 pounds. The local community hosts a kids fishing day in June.
Silverton Reservoir: The gate at Silverton Reservoir will be opened for the April 25 weekend and the lake stocked with rainbow trout. It will be re-stocked in May and June.
Timothy and Trillium lakes: Timothy Lake is home to rainbow, brook, and native cutthroat trout as well as kokanee salmon. Both lakes will receive rainbow trout in late April or early May, depending on accessibility due to snow. There is still a large snowpack, so you’re best bet is to check with the U.S. Forest Service at 503-630-6861 to ask when roads and gates are open. Timothy Lake has a catch limit of 25 kokanee per day and five adipose fin-clipped rainbow trout. However, there is no limit on size or number of brook trout taken.
Tualatin River: Lower elevation streams in the drainage are expected to be good for native cutthroat trout as well as warmwater fish, including smallmouth and largemouth bass, and bluegill. The trout season is open from May 23 through Oct. 31 for catch-and-release only. The use of bait is allowed in the Tualatin River up to the Hwy. 210 Bridge at Scholls. Artificial flies and lures must be used in the area above Scholls up to the Hwy 47 bridge in Gaston. A small boat or canoe will provide the best access to more water in this slow moving meandering river. Access points exist at major bridge crossings and some riverside parks.
Willamette Basin, Upper Reservoirs (Blue River, Cottage Grove, Dexter, Dorena, Carmen and Smith): Open to year-round trout angling and will be stocked with rainbow before April 25. Snow will hinder access to higher elevation lakes.
Willamette River, Lower: The Willamette River below Willamette Falls in Oregon City is open for adipose fin-clipped chinook salmon and adipose fin-clipped steelhead year-round. Fair numbers of spring chinook and good summer steelhead are anticipated this spring and summer. The lower river and sloughs are also a great place to find warm-water fish, including bass, bluegill and walleye. Special Regulations for walleye specify a 10 walleye per-day limit, and no more than five walleye per-day can be over 18 inches and only one may be over 24 inches. Trout are not stocked into this portion of the river. Use of bait is allowed in the lower river. Also keep in mind that the Willamette River regulations have recently changed under a temporary rule.
Willamette River (downstream of Willamette Falls)
- March March 1 through March 15 open seven-days-a-week
- 19 – April 30 open three-days-a-week (Thurs. – Sat.) for spring chinook, and open for retention of steelhead under permanent rule for the remainder of the week (Sun – Wed)
- The daily bag limit will be two adult adipose fin-clipped salmon or steelhead, but only one may be a chinook
- These rules apply to the Willamette downstream from Willamette Falls, including Multnomah Channel and the lower Clackamas River downstream of the Highway 99 Bridge.
- Willamette Tributaries
The Willamette River, upstream of Willamette Falls and the Clackamas River upstream of the highway 99 bridge will remain open under permanent rules
The Commission also approved permanent rules that set a 2009 recreational sturgeon season on the Columbia and Willamette Rivers as follows:
In the estuary below the Wauna powerlines
- January 1 through April 30, seven-days-a-week
- May 9 through June 28, seven-days-a-week
- July 2 through July 5
- 38-inch minimum fork length January through April, 41-inch minimum fork length remainder of season
From Wauna Powerlines to Bonneville Dam (including the lower Willamette River)
- Retention is allowed three-days-a-week (Thurs. – Sat.) during the months of January through March and October through December
- Retention prohibited August through September
Bank fishing for sturgeon can be found at Meldrum Bar and at the wall in downtown Oregon City as well as Kelly Point Park at the mouth of the Willamette River. Sturgeon anglers have been using frozen smelt, herring, or sand shrimp as effective bait. As in any fishery, anglers are reminded that all sturgeon released should be done so unharmed.
Willamette River above Willamette Falls: Upstream to Hwy 20 Bridge at Albany is open for adipose fin-clipped chinook salmon and adipose fin-clipped steelhead for the entire year. It is open for coho salmon the entire year. The use of bait is allowed.
Willamette River, Mainstem: Prospects should be excellent for native cutthroat and rainbow trout upstream of Corvallis. The stretch of river above the highway bridge at Albany to the highway 99 bridge at Harrisburg opens April 25 to the harvest of trout with at limit of 5 fish per day, 8-inch minimum length; bait allowed. Trout angling is restricted to catch-and-release/artificial flies and lures between the Hwy. 99 Bridge at Harrisburg and the mouth of the McKenzie River. There are also excellent opportunities throughout summer for smallmouth bass, crappie, and bluegill in the Willamette River from Salem to Willamette Falls.
Willamette, Middle Fork, below Dexter Dam: ODFW anticipates spring chinook and summer steelhead will arrive in peak numbers during May and early June, although a few will be caught before then. Most anglers target the area from Dexter Dam downstream to Pengra Boat Landing; however, during May anglers with boats catch spring chinook from Pengra Landing downstream to the confluence with the Coast Fork Willamette. The forecasted number of Willamette spring chinook at Dexter Dam is a bit higher than in 2008, so commensurate with the rest of the Willamette River and its tributaries, the daily bag limit has been reinstated to two adipose fin-marked chinook per day. Summer steelhead will remain available through the fall. Summer steelhead prospects also exist in the “town run” on the mainstem Willamette from Beltline Bridge to the Coast Fork of the Willamette. Only adipose fin-clipped salmon and steelhead may be harvested in the Willamette and Middle Fork Willamette from the mouth of the McKenzie to Dexter Dam.
Anglers should be aware that a new angling regulation is in effect for the Middle Fork Willamette River this year that allows the retention of unmarked steelhead greater than 24 inches. The regulation will allow the harvest of mismarked and naturally reproducing summer steelhead. Summer steelhead are not native to the basin and harvesting these fish before they spawn will be a benefit to wild rainbow trout. Although native rainbow trout over 24 inches are extremely rare, anglers who happen to catch one are encouraged to release them unharmed.
Willamette, Middle Fork, from Lookout Point Reservoir to Hills Creek Reservoir: Open to angling all year with lures and flies. This is a wild trout area and all non-adipose fin-clipped trout must be released unharmed. Up to five adipose fin-clipped trout may be retained per day. These hatchery fish originate from upstream stocking locations.
Willamette, Middle Fork, upstream of Hills Creek Reservoir: The Middle Fork Willamette above Hills Creek Reservoir will be stocked with 1,350 fish by April 25; anglers must use lures or flies and may only keep trout with an adipose fin clip.
Willamette, Upper, tributaries: Salmon Creek above Oakridge (2,000 fish), Blue River above Blue River Reservoir (1,500 fish), Fall Creek (2,000 fish) near Lowell, and the Coast Fork Willamette River (1,500 fish) in Cottage Grove. The Alton Baker Canoe Canal has been stocked regularly since February and should be fishing well.
The South Willamette Watershed District will host a free youth fishing event at the Alton Baker Canoe Canal on Saturday, May 16 from 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. The event is part of ODFW’s Youth Angling Enhancement Program, designed to introduce young people to the fun of fishing. The Department will provide all angling equipment and instruction necessary. Information including the Easy Angling Oregon booklet will be available to participants. Contact the Springfield field office at 541-726-3515 for additional information.
Willamette Valley Lakes (Freeway Lakes, Waverly Lake, Walter Wirth Lake, St. Louis Ponds, Wilsonville Pond, and Woodburn Pond): Warmwater angling will start to improve as water temperatures become warmer. Bass, bluegill, crappie and catfish are available in many of the valley ponds. Sloughs and backwaters of the Willamette River also offer good opportunities for warmwater angling.
Junction City Pond, EE Wilson Pond, Freeway lakes, Timber Linn Lake, Roaring River Pond, Waverly Lake, Walter Wirth Lake, Walling Pond, and St. Louis Ponds #1, #3, #6: Trout stocking will continue through mid-May or early June, depending on the water body and water conditions.
St Louis Ponds: Angling from a floating device is prohibited on Pond #1 and Pond # 3. Angling from a personal float tube (no boats allowed) is allowed on all other ponds. Pond #6 has provided some excellent trout opportunities this spring.
Yamhill River: Angling for warmwater fish with bait is allowed from March 1 – October 31 up to the confluence of the North and South Forks. Angling in the South Yamhill River from the confluence with the North Yamhill upstream to the mouth of Rock Creek is restricted to artificial flies and lures. This section of river is open May 23 – Oct. 31, five adipose fin-clipped trout per day, and no minimum length. The South Yamhill River will be stocked with trout this spring. The rest of the Yamhill river system, and its tributaries, are open from May 23 through October 31 for artificial flies and lures only. An excellent catch-and-release opportunity for native cutthroat trout that may exceed 14 inches exists in the mainstem reaches and larger tributaries. Access in the Yamhill may be difficult due to large tracts of private ownership, so please ask property owners for permission before accessing the river. Fishing from a small boat would provide the best opportunity to access more water. Access points may exist at bridge crossings and small parks along the river.
The Upper Deschutes River sub-basin received slightly above average snowpack though the basin remains slightly below normal for overall precipitation. Most area reservoirs are filled this year. Current flow conditions for many Upper Deschutes Basin rivers can be accessed at http://www.usbr.gov/pn/hyromet/destea.html.
Angling for brook and brown trout should be good early in the season. Angling for rainbow trout and kokanee is expected to be fair to good, improving as water temperatures begin warming. The Central Zone Stream Regulations allow the harvest of two trout per day, flies and lures only, beginning May 23. Streams where bait is allowed are noted specifically in the Special Regulations for that water body. Anglers should consult the 2009 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations for any special regulations, and ODFW’s web site www.dfw.state.or .us for any changes or updates on regulations as the season progresses.
The 2009 spring snow conditions should provide for opening day access and ice free conditions to most the of the lower elevation Cascade mountain lakes. Please call the Deschutes National Forest or local lake resorts for current updates on road and lake conditions.
Antelope Flat Reservoir: Open to year-round angling, but anglers should contact the Prineville Ranger District at 541-416-6500 to check road conditions to the reservoir. Trout larger than 20 inches were present in the fall population assessment and good over winter survival is expected. Promising water conditions in combination with mid-May trout stocking should result in decent fishing through early July. Low water levels expected by late summer and a large population of illegally introduced bullhead catfish are expected to limit fishing success by late summer. There is an unimproved boat ramp for small to medium-sized boats; however, this is often not operational by late summer. Camping opportunities are available at a managed Ochoco National Forest campground.
Big Lava Lake: Opens to angling April 25. Big Lava Lake is always a solid bet for nice rainbow trout. Most fish will run 10-13 inches, with some fish in the 14 to 16-inch range, and an occasional fish up to 20 inches and above. Big Lava is a great lake for boat anglers and anglers using smaller pontoon craft or other floatation devices. There is also some great shoreline fishing opportunity. Big Lava is stocked annually in early spring with 100,000 fingerling trout. These fish grow quickly throughout the summer and a number of them will be legal-sized by summers end. Please check with Deschutes National Forest or Lava Lakes Resort for opening weekend boat ramp accessibility and campground access.
Clear Lake and Frog Lake: Anglers are reminded the lakes are open to angling all year. Lingering snow pack may limit access into these early in the season. The lakes will be stocked with both legal-sized and trophy rainbow trout as soon as access allows. Contact the Mt. Hood National Forest Hood River Ranger District at 541-352-6002 for access and camping information. Frog Lake provides good fishing throughout the summer, while Clear Lake (actually an irrigation storage reservoir) usually provides the best fishing opportunity early in the season before low water conditions prevail during the summer.
Crane Prairie Reservoir: Opens to angling April 25. Crane Prairie Reservoir is a great location to fish for rainbow trout, brook trout and largemouth bass. Good numbers of wild and hatchery rainbow trout are available. Hatchery fish are 100 percent marked with an adipose fin clip and left ventral fin clip or right ventral fin clip, so please voluntarily limit your harvest of wild trout to protect this fishery. Please note the regulation change for Crane Prairie that stipulates the five fish daily trout bag may include only one non-fin-clipped rainbow trout. The reservoir is close to 100 percent of capacity. Anglers should expect fish to be scattered early in the season and should target shallow water areas for best early season success. Large numbers of brook trout are available, and the best brook trout angling is early and late in the season. Fish for brook trout at dawn and dusk. Small spinners or spoons are often quite effective as are both wet and dry flies. Worms also work well. Anglers after bigger brook trout should cast their fly, lure or bait close to cover such as submerged logs or undercut banks. Once you hook your brook trout head for open water as they are notorious for tangling the angler’s line around logs and rocks. Crane Prairie offers good largemouth bass angling opportunities. Opportunities for largemouth should improve as water temperatures increase; target willow areas early in the season.
Crescent Lake: Open year-round for angling and is currently boat accessible. The Crescent Lake Campground and USFS boat ramp should be accessible by April 25. Angling this spring has been very good for brown trout and lake trout. Kokanee angling is predicted to be good this year, though it may be slow early in the season with improved catches expected in May and June. Please call the USFS Crescent Ranger District at 541- 433-3200 for current information on campground and boat ramp conditions.
Crooked River, Mainstem, below Bowman Dam: Anglers reported improved fishing in 2008 and the trend is expected to continue into 2009 if excessively high flows from Bowman Dam are withheld. Intensive population surveys in 2008 also showed the condition of redband trout was significantly better with improved lengths and weights. Although whitefish populations continue to outnumber redband trout, their numbers have declined sharply with the improved health of the redband population. River levels should be approximately 250 CFS throughout the spring and summer months. Daily bag limit is two trout per day. Use of bait is permitted May 26 through Oct. 31. The balance of the year gear is restricted to flies and lures only. Numerous overnight and day use areas are available on BLM lands.
All anglers are encouraged to visit informational kiosks located in the BLM campgrounds in the Wild and Scenic portion of the river where a flier has been posted to assist anglers in collecting valuable information. ODFW and OSU initiated a radio telemetry study on redband trout and whitefish in the fall of 2007. ODFW and OSU deployed new radio-tags in early October in fish caught by dedicated volunteer anglers from the Central Oregon Fly Fishers, Sunriver Anglers, ODFW and OSU. Anglers are reminded that radio-tagged fish cannot be legally harvested. To determine if a fish is radio-tagged, anglers should check for an 8-inch wire antenna protruding from the rear of both redband and mountain whitefish. A sample of redband trout and mountain whitefish are also tagged with a numbered floy tag protruding from the back. Anglers who later catch a trout or whitefish with a floy tag are encouraged to release the fish after recording the tag number, fish length and location caught. Anglers can send the information to ODFW at (541) 447-5111 ext. 24 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Cultus Lake: Cultus Lake is open year-round, providing a good early season lake trout fishery. There is also fair opportunity for anglers targeting rainbow trout. Please check with the Deschutes National Forest or Cultus Lake resort for up-to date opening weekend conditions.
Davis Lake: Davis Lake has good water levels for the third year running. Angling is expected to be fair through the early part of the season and again late in the season. Numbers of rainbow trout have been reduced but it’s hoped the population will rebound this year as a result of last year’s higher water levels. Most fish are in the 12 to 16-inch size class, with a number of fish larger than 20 inches. Davis Lake is fly angling only with a bag limit of two trout per day between 10 and 13 inches. Davis Lake also provides good opportunity for largemouth bass. Anglers fishing for largemouth bass in Davis Lake are restricted to fly angling only using barbless flies. There is no limit on the size or number of largemouth bass harvested. Bass angling has been good in past years in May and June tapering off as the lake level decreases and the water warms up later in the summer. ODFW’s largemouth bass translocation effort is scheduled to take place the third week of May. Please note that Odell Creek and the Odell Creek channel are closed upstream of West Davis Campground boat ramp until May 23, when they open for catch-and release trout angling using artificial flies and lures only. Please call the USFS Crescent Ranger District at 541- 433-3200 for current information on campground and boat ramp conditions.
Deschutes River, Lower: Nearly average snow pack should provide excellent water conditions throughout the summer for boaters and anglers. Information on boating and camping on the Lower Deschutes can be obtained from the Bureau of Land Management at www.boaterpass.com or by phone at 541-416-6700. Due to expected low returns of spring chinook salmon, the Deschutes will remain closed to salmon angling during the spring of 2009. The Deschutes will open to salmon angling on August 1 to allow anglers an opportunity to harvest summer and fall chinook salmon.
Trout anglers should find good success throughout the early spring, as many insect hatches begin occurring on the Deschutes in the spring. Anglers are reminded to avoid wading or fishing on, or near, gravel bars during the early spring to avoid disturbance to spawning steelhead and trout. Steelhead will be arriving in the lower river in early June, with their abundance peaking by the middle of September. Anglers can watch fish counts at Columiba River dams www.fpc.org to help gauge run timing into the Deschutes. They also can go the ODFW Web site to check out the number of steelhead passing Sherars Falls. The daily bag limit is two trout 10 to 13 inches in length, and all rainbow trout 20 inches or more are considered steelhead. Only artificial flies and lures are permitted except from Sherars Falls downstream to the upstream-most railroad trestle where bait is permitted. Trout, whitefish and hatchery origin steelhead angling is open all year from the mouth upstream to markers at the northern boundary of the Warm Springs Reservation, which is 17 miles upstream from Maupin. The Deschutes from that point upstream to 600 feet below the Pelton re-regulation dam is open to trout angling from April 25 through October 31, and April 25 through December 31 for adipose fin-clipped steelhead whitefish and coho salmon. Anglers may harvest three adipose fin-clipped steelhead per day in the Deschutes. The river from Sherars Falls upstream to the Pelton re-regulation dam is closed to chinook salmon angling.
Deschutes River, Lake Billy Chinook upstream to Benham Falls: Open year-round. Fishing during the 2009 season should be should be fair for brown trout and with some opportunity for redband trout. A number of entities are working to restore increased fish-sustaining summer flows through this reach of river and the initial results of these efforts will hopefully be seen in better angling in 2009. Best results will probably be had from Steelhead Falls downriver.
Deschutes River, Benham Falls upstream to Wickiup Reservoir: Season opens May 23. Fishing should fair for brown trout. The will also be opportunity for catchable hatchery stocked rainbow trout through the upper stretches of this reach.
East Lake: Opens to angling April 25. Kokanee, rainbow trout, brown trout and Atlantic salmon are present in the lake. Expect fair to good catches of rainbow and brown trout early in the season. Brown trout numbers are good with fair numbers of large fish. Catchable rainbow trout are stocked intermittently through the season. Expect fair to good numbers of carryover rainbow early in the season. East Lake has become a popular fly fishing destination for brown trout, rainbow trout and Atlantic salmon.
Haystack Reservoir: Open to year-round angling. Legal-sized rainbows are stocked in mid-April. Moderate numbers of large brown trout are present. Kokanee angling should be fair in the spring while angling for bass, bluegill and crappie should improve as the water warms. Angling for brown bullhead should be good. Launch ramps on the east and west shores are in good condition. The daily bag limit is five trout including kokanee. This is an irrigation re-regulating reservoir, thus water levels fluctuate daily. However, there will be adequate boating water throughout the season.
Hood River System (excluding West Fork): Average flow conditions will be prevalent in the Hood River throughout the spring, providing excellent fishing opportunities for both hatchery origin summer steelhead and spring chinook salmon downstream from Powerdale Dam to the mouth of the river. Fishery managers predict strong returns of both hatchery origin spring chinook and summer steelhead to the Hood River this season. The Hood River offers an excellent opportunity for anglers to land a spring chinook without the use of a boat. Successful anglers usually use a combination of bait and hardware for both steelhead and spring chinook. Anglers can check out the Hood River fish counts at Powerdale Dam on the ODFW Web site. The system opens for catch-and-release trout angling May 23 through Oct. 31. Only artificial flies and lures may be used when trout angling upstream from Powerdale Dam.
Anglers also are reminded that the Hood River system is closed to the harvest of bull trout. All bull trout must be released unharmed. Downstream from Powerdale Dam, anglers may harvest three adipose fin-clipped steelhead per day.
Hood River is open for spring chinook salmon angling April 15– June 30 downstream from Powerdale Dam.
West Fork Hood River, and tributaries: Closed to all angling for maximum protection of federally protected steelhead stocks.
Kingsley Reservoir: Anglers should focus efforts early in the year, as the reservoir level will drop rapidly as the season progresses. Kingsley will be stocked as soon as access allows with legal- and trophy-sized rainbow. Kingsley Reservoir is open all year. Anglers should be aware that Kingsley will also receive excess adult hatchery steelhead from the Hood River when available.
Lake Billy Chinook: Kokanee angling should be fair in 2009 with peak fishing pressure expected in July and August. Angling for trout should be fair in the uppermost reaches of all three arms. Opportunities for bull trout are fair, particularly during the spring and early summer months. Most anglers concentrate their efforts in the Metolius Arm. Smallmouth bass angling should be good in all three arms as the water warms. Bass average 6-10 inches in Lake Billy Chinook.
Anglers are encouraged to consult the 2009 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations before fishing. Regulations allow one bull trout per day and one bull trout in possession with a 24-inch minimum length. Bull trout must be immediately released unharmed unless kept in the daily catch limit. The trout daily limit is five trout per day, and only one trout greater than 20 inches may be taken per day. Kokanee are included as part of the trout bag limit. A tribal angling permit is required in addition to an Oregon State angling license to fish in the Metolius Arm. There is a closed-to-angling sanctuary from the cable downstream 350 yards at the head of the Metolius Arm.
Laurance Lake: Laurance Lake is open April 25 - Oct. 31 and will likely be full at the start of fishing season, but water levels will drop rapidly as the season progresses. Anglers should contact the Mt. Hood National Forest Hood River Ranger District at 541-352-6002 for access and camping information, as lingering snow may cause early season access problems. Holdover and legal trout will be available for the opener. All non-fin-clipped trout must be released unharmed, and only artificial flies and lures can be used. All bull trout must be released unharmed. Tributary streams are closed to all angling. Anglers are encouraged to keep any smallmouth bass caught, as bass have been illegally introduced and will negatively impact trout fisheries.
Lost Lake: Anglers should contact the Mt. Hood National Forest Hood River Ranger District at 541-352-6002 for early season access and camping information as lingering snow may hinder access. The lake will be stocked with legal- and trophy-sized trout as soon access allows. In addition to legal and trophy trout, natural brown trout, and holdover fish will be available. Lost Lake should remain at normal surface levels throughout the summer. Lost Lake is open year-round, and provides excellent angling opportunity throughout the summer. The picturesque lake offers excellent boating opportunity, though the use of motors is prohibited.
North Twin Lake: Open year-round and provides a “put and take” fishery for 9 to 11-inch rainbow trout. Some carryover fish up to 14 inches are available. North Twin is a nice setting to take children to fish. It provides good shelter from the wind and has nice shoreline for kids to fish from as well as run and play. The lake offers good boat angling also, though it is important to note that use of motors is prohibited.
Ochoco Reservoir: Ochoco Reservoir is not expected to reach full pool this year and the boat ramp may not be operational by late summer and fall. Angling for holdover rainbow trout has been good, and fish 12 to 16 inches are common and fish greater than 20 inches have been reported. Anglers are effective with a wide range of bait and tackle. Boat anglers should concentrate in the upper end of the reservoir near the mouths of Ochoco and Mill creeks during the months of April and May. The reservoir will be stocked with fingerling rainbows in mid-April, and the daily bag limit is five trout. Black crappie fishing should improve as temperatures rise and brown bullhead angling in the upper part of the reservoir is excellent in April and May. Black crappie and brown bullhead were illegally introduced to the reservoir and ODFW does not limit their harvest. Anglers are urged to report any knowledge of illegal introductions to ODFW as they negatively affect fishing, native species and water quality. Bank anglers are asked to respect private property on the shoreline. The reservoir is open to year-round angling. The boat ramp and camping facilities will be available for use.
Odell Lake: Open to angling April 25. Odell will provide good opportunity for kokanee and lake trout during the 2009 season. Expect fair kokanee catches early in the season with improved catches as lake temperatures increase in May and early June. Those anglers targeting kokanee will see the highest level of success at dawn and dusk. Kokanee should be running in the 11 to 13-inch size range and in good condition. Early season lake trout fishing also should be good. Only one lake trout per day is allowed as part of the daily trout limit and it must be at least 30 inches in length. Odell also provides some opportunity for nice rainbow trout. Please note that bull trout are federally listed as threatened and their numbers are extremely low in Odell Lake. Targeted angling for bull trout is not allowed and any incidentally caught bull trout must be released unharmed. Angling is closed within 200 feet of the mouth of Odell Creek to protect bull trout. Do not remove bull trout from water when releasing.
Olallie Lake: Access will be later than normal this season due the extremely heavy snowpack in the area. Anglers should check with Mt. Hood National Forest Clackamas Ranger District at (503)-630-6861 for access and camping information. The lake will be stocked with legal-sized and trophy rainbow trout as access allows. Anglers should also encounter many holdover fish from previous stockings. Anglers should note that the resort and store will not be open this season.
Paulina Lake: Opens to angling April 25. Paulina provides great opportunity for brown trout of all size classes. Expect best catches of large brown trout early in the season and early and late in the day. Kokanee angling is expected to be fair with most fish ranging from 9 to 12 inches. Kokanee catches will improve as lake productivity increases in May and June. As with the brown trout, early morning anglers have better success bringing home the kokanee. There is a five trout daily bag limit (includes kokanee) which may include one trout greater than 20 inches.
Prineville Reservoir: Angling for rainbow trout has improved significantly in recent years with fish averaging 13-16 inches. Opportunities remain good for black crappie, brown bullhead and bass. Crappie numbers are similar to recent years, and they are still readily available and support a popular fishery. Reports from bass tournaments showed that catches had increased from 0.09 bass per hour in 2007 to 0.13 bass/hr in 2008. Anglers, please note a misprint in the 2009 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations. The correct regulation is largemouth and smallmouth bass, 15 inch maximum length, only one of which may be a largemouth. Most largemouth bass anglers concentrate on the upper end of the reservoir, while smallmouth are available in rocky shoreline areas throughout the reservoir. Please note that the State Parks “Powder Cove” boat ramp is still inaccessible due to final reconstruction work. Please consult the Oregon State Parks for updates on completion.
Rock Creek and Pine Hollow Reservoirs: Both have been stocked and are open all year. Both reservoirs are currently full, but will drop rapidly as the season progresses. Pine Hollow should be good on the opening weekend since good numbers of fish over-winter in the reservoir. Good numbers of largemouth bass are also available in Pine Hollow reservoir. Both reservoirs will likely be full for the opening weekend, and boat ramps should be useable. Early season reports from both reservoirs have indicated good catches.
Simtustus Lake: Angling should be fair for kokanee, and good for rainbow trout (8 to 16 inches). Legal-sized rainbow trout will be stocked before opening weekend and through the summer. The store and campground at Pelton Park will be open, and a boat ramp is available. A tribal angling permit is required in addition to a state fishing license to fish in the lake. The bag limit is five trout per day including kokanee. Some bull trout are available. Bull trout limit is one fish with a 24-inch minimum as in Lake Billy Chinook. Open to angling April 25 - Oct. 31.
South Twin Lake: Opens to angling April 25. South Twin Lake is a popular and reliable lake for rainbow trout fishing and provides a sheltered angling opportunity when early season cold temperatures and wind become a problem on larger water bodies. South Twin provides nice shorelines for both kids and adults alike to fish from. Boat angling is also very popular; however, motors are prohibited. The rainbow trout in South Twin typically run 11 to 13 inches with a fewer carryover fish in the 14 to 16-inch range.
Suttle Lake: Open to angling year-round. Expect fair to good catches of brown trout and kokanee. Target brown trout early and late in the day along the north shoreline. Kokanee numbers should be good. Angling for kokanee should improve as water warms into June and then taper off into late summer. Suttle Lake has a kokanee bag limit of 25 fish per day in addition to the trout species catch limit.
Taylor Lake: Open the entire year. This lake close to The Dalles will be stocked several times throughout the early season with legal- and trophy-sized trout. Taylor is best in the early season before the water warms. Taylor provides good warm water fishing opportunity as temperatures increase during the summer.
Walton Lake: Open year-round. Anglers should contact Ochoco National Forest (541-416-6500) for updated lake and road conditions. Angling for holdover rainbow trout should be good early in the season. Legal-sized rainbow trout will be stocked in early May and through the season. Beginning in late May and continuing on a monthly basis throughout the summer, the lake will be stocked with trophy trout (one to two pounds each). The daily bag limit is five trout. Illegally introduced brown bullhead often make bank angling for trout difficult. Both flies and lures are effective for trout and are generally avoided by bullhead. Boating is restricted to non-motorized boats. A developed campground provides camping opportunity from mid-May through the fall. Contact Ochoco National Forest for exact dates.
Wickiup Reservoir: Opens to angling April 25. Wickiup Reservoir water level is 100 percent of capacity. Most large browns are caught early in the season, both early and late in the day. Some large rainbow trout are available. Target shallow water flats early in the season and river channel areas as the water warms. Kokanee numbers are expected to be fair to good again this year. Kokanee will be scattered early in the season and begin schooling in channels sometime in June. There is a bonus bag limit on kokanee of 25 fish in addition to the trout bag limit. Largemouth bass anglers should seek out the willow flats, though brown bullhead have, to some degree, taken over the southeastern area of the reservoir. The largemouth bass angling will improves as water temperatures get warmer. There is no limit on size or number of warmwater gamefish, including largemouth bass, in Wickiup Reservoir. Anglers interested in targeting brown bullhead should fish southeast areas of the reservoir
Reminder: Angling for bull trout is prohibited in the Northeast Zone except for the Wenaha and Imnaha rivers where it is catch-and-release only. Also, most northeast Oregon streams do not open until May 23. Check the angling regulations for details.
Aldrich Ponds: Open for trout May 23 with a two fish bag limit. Access is difficult, requiring a 4WD for 8 miles and a 2 mile hike but trout to 16 inches are available.
Cold Springs Reservoir: The entire reservoir is open to angling from March 1 to September 30. From October 1 to February 28 fishing is allowed from the dam face and along the inlet canal. The reservoir contains white crappie and largemouth bass and brown bullhead. Best angling opportunities take place in spring and early summer, prior to irrigation draw down of the reservoir.
Grande Ronde, Wallowa, and Imnaha basin streams: Open for trout May 23. Snow melt and resulting high flows generally make trout fishing a challenge early in the season. Best success occurs after early July in the lower reaches of the Grande Ronde, Wallowa and Imnaha rivers.
Hat Rock, Tatone and Weston Ponds: Open all year and are planted with catchable-sized trout during April, May and June. Hat Rock and Tatone ponds are accessible year-round and Weston Pond should be accessible by mid to late-April.
Holliday Park Pond: This is a new fishery created by ODFW in April, 2009 between the towns of Mt. Vernon and John Day. The pond is now a state park and is stocked with legal-sized rainbow trout. There is no boat ramp but camping is available.
John Day Basin Streams: Streams in the basin do not open to trout angling until May 23. Stream trout fishing is best on the Middle and South Forks where public lands are abundant. Hooks larger than 1/4 inch gap and all lures are prohibited in the North and Middle Forks above Hwy. 395 to protect spring chinook salmon. All rainbow trout 20 inches and larger are classified as steelhead and must be released unharmed. Smallmouth bass fishing is best from Service Creek to Twickenham but access is by boat only. Bank angling for bass is best between Service Creek and Kimberly where Hwy 19 follows the river. Anglers are also reminded that a slot limit is in effect for smallmouth bass in the John Day River from Service Creek Bridge downstream to Tumwater Falls. Bass between 12 and 16 inches must be released unharmed.
Jubilee Lake: Open year round, but access can be limited due to snow until late June or early July. Angling is expected to good for stocked and carry over rainbow trout. The lake is stocked with legal-sized rainbow trout as soon as access allows, the lake is also stocked with fingerling rainbow trout. The lake provides outstanding angler access. Boats are allowed but the use of motors is prohibited.
Kinney Lake: Will not open until May 23 at the landowner's request. It will be stocked with legal-sized rainbow trout before opening. We expect good angling for stocked and hold-over rainbow trout. Kinney Lake is located on private property, and the landowner allows public access for angling. Please help maintain the privilege of angling at Kinney Lake by respecting the property, cleaning up your trash and restricting vehicle travel to existing road.
Long Creek, McHaley, Seventh Street, Rowe Creek, and Anson Wright ponds: These ponds are open year-round and access will be good. All will be stocked with legal-sized trout by April 25 and provide good angling for kids
Magone Lake, Bull Prairie: These lakes are open year-round, each with a boat launch, picnic area and Forest Service campground. Both were stocked with fingerling brook trout and rainbow last year which will have grown to 9 to 12 inches by this spring.
Marr and Wallowa ponds: Will be stocked with legal-sized rainbow trout before April 25. Angling should be good.
McNary Channel Ponds: Open all year, the ponds are stocked with catchable-sized trout during April, May and June. The ponds also support bluegill, crappie, bullhead and largemouth and smallmouth bass. Angling for trout is good in the spring and warmwater species provide fair angling throughout the summer. There is a series of eight ponds connected by stream channels which are accessible by a series of hiking trails. There is good vehicle access to the ponds and hiking trails.
Morgan Lake: Open to angling April 25 and should be good for 8 to 12-inch rainbow trout. Brook trout, crappie and catfish are also available. Ice is expected to be off of the lake in time for the opening day event. A Free Fishing Day event will be held at Morgan Lake June 6 and will include stocking of legal- and trophy-sized trout.
Olive and Strawberry lakes: Are open all year but will not be accessible until June. Olive was stocked with 4,000 triploid legal-sized trout last year which will have grown to 10-12 inches. Strawberry is not stocked but natural reproduction keeps this lake full of 10-13 inch rainbow and brook trout each year.
Peach Road Pond (Ladd Marsh): Will be stocked with legal-sized trout several times throughout the spring. Legal and trophy-sized trout will be stocked for a youth fishing event on May 16.
Penland Lake: Open all year and fishing is expected to be good for rainbow trout. The lake is stocked with fingerling rainbow trout annually. The lake was stocked with legal-sized rainbow trout after the heavy winter kill of 2008.
Roulette pond: Will be stocked with legal-sized trout several times throughout the spring.
Tepee, Honeymoon, Salt Creek Summit and McGraw ponds: Will be stocked with legal-sized rainbow trout in late May or early June depending on access.
Umatilla Forest Ponds: Will be stocked with legal-sized trout in May and June. Angling should be good. Maps are available from the Umatilla National Forest Service offices or the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife office in Pendleton.
Umatilla River: The upper Umatilla River opens May 23, provides fair to good catch-and-release fishing for rainbow trout. About 6,000 spring chinook are expected to return to the Umatilla River this spring, and angling should be good. The spring chinook season is open April 16 to June 30 (depending on area). Consult the 2009 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations as special regulations are in effect.
Victor Pond: Will be stocked with legal sized rainbow trout later in the season. Stocking time depends upon water conditions, but generally occurs in early May.
Walla Walla River and Tributaries: Open May 23. All streams within the Walla Walla basin are restricted to flies and lures only. Angling for bull trout is prohibited.
Wallowa Lake: As of late March, the lake was still ice-covered. Legal-sized rainbow trout will be stocked in May. Good numbers of holdover rainbow should be available as well. Some larger kokanee were caught through the ice this winter and we expect to see some of them showing up in creels as the weather warms in May. Good fishing is expected.
Wallowa Mountain High Lakes: Snowpack and ice make high lakes inaccessible until mid-summer (early to mid-July).
Willow Creek Reservoir: Open all year and fishing is expected to be fair for trout 8 to 14 inches. Trout will be planted during April. Good fishing for largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, black crappie, bluegill, pumpkinseed and brown bullhead will also be available.
Willow, Rhea and Butter creeks: Open April 25. Willow Creek will be stocked with legal-sized trout in April and May through the cities of Heppner, Lexington and Ione.
Wineland Lake and Searcy Pond: Due to a change in ownership, these private ponds will not be stocked this year.
Angling opportunities in the Southeast Zone will vary by basin. Consult the local ODFW offices in Klamath Falls, Lakeview, Hines, Ontario or La Grande for more updated accounts of local stream and reservoir conditions.
To protect native populations of redband trout, hatchery trout stocking has been shifted primarily to standing water bodies. Consult the 2009 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations for details before you go fishing.
Agency Lake: Agency Lake is open all year with a bag limit of one trout. Angling for trophy native redband trout will be fair in the spring and late fall. The most productive methods on Agency Lake are trolling lures or casting flies from a boat. Bank fishermen are successful using bait at the Henzel Park boat ramp. Most of the Agency Lake shoreline is on private property. Launching boats at Petric Park to access Agency Lake is not recommended in the summer and fall due to a shallow sand bar at the mouth of the Wood River.
Ana Reservoir: Ana Reservoir is open to angling all year. The reservoir is stocked annually with legal- and trophy-sized rainbow trout, and every other year with fingerling hybrid bass (white/striped). The minimum size limit on hybrid bass is 16 inches with a bag limit of one hybrid bass per 24-hour period. Hybrid bass angling has been very good this winter, but is expected to decline gradually with the arrival of spring and summer. Trout angling was very good as well this winter, and is expected to continue to be good. The boat ramp is available for use April through November. Bait and lures are effective techniques for hybrid bass. The use of live fish as bait is prohibited. Ana Reservoir is located in close proximity to the Summer Lake Wildlife Area, where birding and hiking opportunities are available.
Ana River: Ana River is stocked with fingerling rainbow trout. Legal-sized fish are abundant. Ana River provides a year-round fishery due to moderate water temperatures. There are no gear restrictions, the use of bait is allowed, and up to five trout may be harvested each day. For fly fishers, this is a great match-the-hatch river. Hatches of blue-winged olive mayflies come off the river almost all year. Tricos, caddis flies and terrestrials are also common here. Angling is expected to be very good this spring; however, stealth is required year-round to catch large rainbow visible in the clear, deep pools.
Anthony Lakes: Rainbow trout are stocked each year in mid-late June and twice in July. Brook trout are also plentiful in the lake.
Balm Creek Reservoir: Should be fair to good for smallmouth bass and 10 to 14-inch rainbow trout, with a few larger fish. Boat motors are restricted to electric motors only. Snow can be a problem until early- to mid-May.
Beulah Reservoir: The reservoir was drained again last fall. Snowpack this year is well below average. At this point in time, the reservoir will not fill and is expected to be drained again this fall. The reservoir will be stocked in May with fingerling rainbow trout. A few wild redband trout drift into the reservoir from the river. Bull trout can be found in the reservoir through late May. Remember to release bull trout if you catch one.
Big Rock: This BLM reservoir went dry in 2007, and was restocked in April of 2008 with rainbow trout fingerlings. The water in the reservoir is relatively clear with abundant aquatic vegetation. This lake is easily fished from shore but a small boat or float tube can be used on this small reservoir. Catch rates for rainbow trout in the 8 to 10-inch size range are expected to be good this spring and early summer.
Blitzen River: Special regulations exist for the whole drainage. In addition, there are radio tagged fish in the river as part of a redband trout life history study. All radio tagged fish must be released. The river and its tributaries have good numbers of wild redband trout. Fishing conditions will vary in the spring depending on weather and the rate of snowmelt. The highest average flows typically occur in late April, May and early June. Snowpack was below average this winter, so the river will likely be at low summer flow by mid-July. There should be good numbers of wild fish to catch. Anglers are encouraged to release all trout in this river system, which is managed as a wild trout fishery. No hatchery fish are stocked. East Canal access road on Malheur Refuge will be open to non-motorized traffic only.
Blue Lake: Access to the Blue Lake trailheads usually does not open until early summer. Rainbow trout angling was slow last year, and will likely be slow again this year. A 2.5 mile moderate hike is required from the closest road location. Water quality is very good in the lake.
Bully Creek Reservoir: The reservoir was drawn down to minimum levels again last fall. It is expected to nearly fill this spring, but should be drawn down to minimum levels again this fall. Fishing should be fair for small white crappie and for both largemouth and smallmouth bass.
Burnt River: A cool spring will likely lead to later than normal spring runoff that could affect the April 25 opener. Should provide fair to good angling for 8 to 14-inch rainbow when the runoff recedes. Legal-sized rainbow trout will be stocked in April and May.
Campbell/Deadhorse Lakes: These lakes are stocked annually with legal- and trophy-sized rainbow trout throughout the summer, and every other year with fingerling brook trout. These lakes are not accessible in the early spring because of snow drifts. The campgrounds are popular and receive extensive use during summer and fall. The campgrounds and roads to Deadhorse and Campbell Lakes were closed in 2008; and will likely not open until the end of July 2009 at the earliest. Please contact the USFS at the Silver Lake Ranger Station, 541 576-7561 to request information on the closure.
Chickahominy Reservoir: This reservoir provides good opportunities for shoreline and boat access, and a campground is also available. The reservoir is very low this year, and high winds have caused the water to be very turbid. As a result, angling has been slow this spring. If the weather stabilizes and the water clears, angling should improve for 12 to 18-inch rainbow trout, with a few trout reaching 20 inches. However, the reservoir is approximately 15 percent full this year, so it is likely that the fishery will be lost by late summer or early fall.
Chewaucan River: The Chewaucan River above the town of Paisley is open to angling all year and has a bag limit on native redband trout set at two trout, 8-inch minimum length. Angling is restricted to artificial flies and lures only. Angling for native redband trout and introduced brook trout in this section will be good this spring and summer. Below the town of Paisley, the angling season in the river, adjoining tributaries and at Rivers End Reservoir is open from May 23 through October 31. The native redband trout bag limit is also set at two fish per day, 8-inch minimum length; however, the use of bait is allowed. Success in the lower river declines as water temperatures increase. The lower river and reservoir provide summer angling opportunities for largemouth bass and brown bullhead. Angling catch rates for largemouth bass are expected to be very good this year.
Cottonwood Meadows: Cottonwood Meadows is annually stocked with fingerling and legal-sized rainbow trout. Angling for rainbow trout should be good in the lake and creek. Angling for rainbow trout is best in the month of May. Average size of rainbow trout captured is around 12 inches with some larger trout available. Brook trout angling is good in the spring but they rarely show up in the catch in the summer and fall. Angling becomes difficult for bait fisherman in the summer and fall due to aquatic vegetation growth. Fat head minnows occur in the lake and lures that mimic them work well. No gas motors are allowed on the lake but two boat ramps exist for small boats. Snow drift will preclude access until late May. Campground facilities exist at this scenic lake.
Cottonwood Reservoir: This reservoir, located off of highway 140 west of Lakeview, is managed for native redband trout and is not stocked. Trout of harvestable size will be available this spring; and the reservoir is open year around. The reservoir is usually most productive in spring and fall. This reservoir also contains fathead minnow and can produce larger trout than Cottonwood Meadows. A boat ramp is available, although no camp sites exist at the reservoir. Bait and lures are effective, especially near the face of the dam.
Cow Lakes: Both lakes are a spring only fishery due extensive emergent weeds present. Low numbers of largemouth bass, brown bullhead, white crappie and yellow perch are available.
Dairy Creek: Angling for native redband trout and brook trout should be good. Dairy Creek is open to angling all year and has a bag limit of two redband trout, 8-inch minimum length. There is no size or bag limit on brook trout. Angling is restricted to artificial flies and lures only. There are two campgrounds on Dairy Creek, and the area is very scenic.
Deep Creek: Expect angling on Deep Creek to be fair to slow for native redband trout. The Deep Creek redband trout population experienced a drought last year and will take several years to recover. Deep Creek is open year around for angling and is restricted to artificial flies and lures only. The bag limit for native trout is set at two fish per day, 8-inch minimum length. There are brook trout in the head waters of Deep Creek; there is no bag limit or size restriction for these non-native trout.
Delintment Lake: This reservoir has a campground, good bank access and an accessible fishing dock. It is a fairly high elevation reservoir located in a pine forest. This lake sometimes experiences problems with fish mortality during the winter due to low oxygen levels under ice cover. However, snowpack was below normal this year, so some holdover trout may be available. Angling will improve when the reservoir is stocked with legal-sized and fingerling rainbow trout in early May. Legal-sized trout make up the bulk of the catch until fingerlings begin entering the fishery by September. The lake should be accessible by early to mid May.
Dog Lake: A warmwater fisheries reservoir with plenty of yellow perch, brown bullhead and black crappie available to the angler. This lake also contains a small population of largemouth bass. The bag limit on largemouth bass is three per day and restricted to a 15 inch minimum length. Additional largemouth bass were planted in the lake last summer, but will not be of harvestable size until 2010. It is not stocked with hatchery trout, and is closed to all trout angling and retention for conservation of native redband trout found in the lake and one tributary.
Drews Reservoir: A large irrigation reservoir west of Lakeview that holds primarily warmwater fish. There are channel catfish, black crappie, brown bullhead, largemouth bass and yellow perch in this water body. There are also native redband trout in the reservoir entering from Dog Creek and Drews Creek. Angling is typically slow for all species. The reservoir is very turbid. An improved boat ramp and camping facility is located at the southwest end of the lake. Water levels in the reservoir are expected to be very low during 2009.
Duncan Reservoir: Located south of Hwy 31 near the town of Silver Lake off of Duncan Road. Fishing is expected to be good this year for rainbow trout, which are stocked in the reservoir as fingerlings. An improved boat ramp and primitive camp exist at this reservoir.
Eagle Creek: A cool spring will likely lead to later than normal spring runoff that could affect the May 23 opener. Should provide fair to good angling for 8 to 14-inch rainbow when the runoff recedes. Will be stocked three times in July and August.
Fish Lake (Steens): The lake is stocked annually with 5,000 legal-sized rainbow trout in late June to mid-July. There also are naturally reproducing brook trout in the lake. The snowpack was below average through the winter, so the road to the lake likely will open sometime in late June or early July.
Fish Lake (Eagle Caps near Halfway): The number of legal-sized trout stocked in the lake has been increased to improve fishing. Stocking will occur in June when the road becomes free of snow. Naturally reproducing brook trout are also numerous.
Fourmile Lake: Open to fishing all year. The road in to the Fourmile Lake is normally accessible by late June. Prospects for kokanee and brook trout should be better than normal. Brook trout and rainbow trout are more abundant than in the past. Average size of kokanee has increased from 8 to 14 inches. The north end of the lake is most productive. Rainbow trout angling should be fair with some rainbow trout reaching five pounds. Lake trout angling will be very good with some lake trout reaching 10 pounds. Fourmile Lake should fill this year so launching boats will not be a problem.
Gerber Reservoir: Open to fishing all year. Crappie angling should be fair to good this year. The Barnes Valley and Ben Hall arms of Gerber Reservoir are the most productive for crappie. The best time to fish for crappie is late-May. Brown bullhead and yellow perch are abundant and can be caught all around the lake including the campground areas. Gerber Reservoir should fill this year and spill so launching a boat will not be troublesome.
Grande Ronde Lake: Rainbow trout are stocked each year in mid-late June, July and August. Brook trout are also plentiful in the lake.
Heart Lake: Heart Lake is located south of Hwy 140 west of Lakeview near Quartz Mountain. Kokanee and rainbow trout are stocked in the lake, both rarely exceed 12 inches. Fishing for Kokanne is expected to be good in the spring and early summer, catch rates on rainbow trout are good in the spring and expected to decrease as summer progresses. An improved boat ramp is present and two camping spots are available near the lake. Snow drifts often restrict access until late spring. Holbrook Reservoir, Lofton Reservoir and Heart Lake are all located within a couple of miles of each other off of USFS road 3715.
Highway 203 Pond: Will be stocked with legal-sized trout on several occasions, beginning in mid-April. Angling should be good for 8 to 12-inch fish. Bluegill are also very plentiful (but small) and are fun for kids to catch. A Free Fishing Day event will be held at Hwy 203 Pond on June 6. Legal and trophy-sized trout will be stocked for the occasion.
Haines Pond and North Powder 1 and 2: Will be stocked with legal-sized trout on several occasions, beginning in mid April. Angling should be good for eight to12-inch fish. Stocking at North Powder Pond #2 is being discontinued due to heavy aquatic vegetation that inhibits harvest of the stocked trout.
Higgins Reservoir: Opens for angling April 25. Fly fishing is a favored angling method on this reservoir, but the landowner has restricted entry to walk-in only. The walk is ¾ mile. Please respect the property, haul out your trash, and help maintain the privilege of angling on private land. Fingerling stocking was discontinued on this reservoir in 2006 due to the limited access.
Holbrook Reservoir: Annually stocked with fingerlings, legal and trophy-sized rainbow trout. Catch rates for rainbow trout are expected to be very good this spring and fall, but generally decrease as summer progresses. A boat ramp and a few primitive camping spots are available at this reservoir. It is a very scenic location, with lots of wildlife to observe. The reservoir can experience high winds at times which makes casting and boating a challenge. Snow drifts often restrict access until late spring. Holbrook Reservoir, Lofton Reservoir and Heart Lake are all located within a couple of miles of each other off of USFS road 3715.
Juniper Lake: The lake has been dry for several years, and has very little water this year.
Klamath Lake: Open all year with a bag limit of one trout. Angling for large native redband trout will be fair. Many large trout should be available to the angler this year. Most fishing methods will catch trout in Klamath Lake. The most popular methods for fishing Upper Klamath Lake for trophy redband trout are trolling lures at Eagle Ridge, or bait fishing from shore at Eagle Ridge, Howard Bay or near Pelican Marina. Other anglers are successful fishing from an anchored boat and casting lures at Eagle Ridge or Pelican Marina. Flyfishing can be successful and most occurs in the Pelican Bay and surrounding area. Trout in Upper Klamath Lake feed primarily on minnows, leeches and midge; therefore, PowerBait and lures/worms behind flashers are not productive in Upper Klamath Lake.
Klamath River: Angling peaks in May and June. For a successful outing on the Klamath River, anglers need to be aware of river flows on the river. Flows in the Klamath River below the J.C. Boyle Powerhouse fluctuate widely on a daily basis. Angling is slow when flows are high during the fluctuation. Anglers can call 1-800-547-1501 for river flow information or visit the following websites: 1) for a ten day forecast of stream flows below the J.C.Boyle Powerhouse
2) for river flows below Keno dam and below the J.C. Boyle Powerhouse
-Keno Dam downstream to J.C. Boyle Dam is open Jan. 1 through June 15 and Oct. 1 through Dec. 31. Opportunities for native redband trout should be good. The best methods are lures and flies that mimic minnows or sculpin.
-J.C. Boyle Dam to the Powerhouse is open year-round. Angling should be good for small native redband trout from 8-12 inches. This stretch typically has stable flows and is mostly spring fed which keeps water temperatures warmer in the winter and colder in the summer. Angling in this stretch is best in May-June during the golden stonefly and salmonfly hatch. The best methods on this stretch are dry flies and small black rooster tail spinners.
-J.C Boyle Powerhouse to Oregon/California State Line. Angling should be fair for redband up to a maximum of 16 inches. This stretch fishes best during low flows when no water is going through the powerhouse. Angling in this stretch is best in May-June during the golden stonefly and salmonfly hatch and October-December. The best angling methods on this stretch are large brown rooster tails or wooly buggers and assorted nymphs on the wet fly swing.
Krumbo Reservoir: Open for angling April 25. Angling should be good this spring and early summer for rainbow trout before the weeds become too thick, and then again in the fall when water temperatures cool. There should be some large carryover rainbows from past stocking. Bass fishing will be a little slow until the water warms up. This reservoir has great parking, a picnic area, and an accessible fishing platform.
Lake of the Woods: Open to angling all year. The lake is annually stocked with fingerling rainbow, brown trout and kokanee salmon. Legal and trophy-sized rainbow trout (average 3 pounds) are stocked throughout the spring and summer. Additional trout will be stocked for the youth angling and free fishing events on June 7 and June 14. A late stocking of rainbow trout will occur before Labor Day weekend (September 6) and is a great last weekend with the kids before sending them back to school. Good catches of holdover rainbow trout occur early in the spring. Brown trout and kokanee fishing is also good in the spring. Kokanee are averaging around 11 inches. Brown trout are caught during late evening or early morning using large rapalas or other minnow imitations. There are good angling opportunities for largemouth bass, yellow perch and bullhead. Yellow perch dominate the catch. A small hook with a piece of worm under a bobber will catch numerous yellow perch. This is a great place to introduce kids to fishing. Night fishing can also be enjoyable and is legal. A worm fished on the bottom of the lake will catch brown bullhead.
Lofton Reservoir: Lofton Reservoir is annually stocked with fingerlings, legal and trophy-sized rainbow trout. Rainbow trout catch rates are expected to be very good in May and June, but decrease as summer progresses. This is a put-and-take fishery with few trout remaining in the reservoir following the high pressure angling it receives during the spring and summer. The illegal introduction of tui chub has reduced the survival of fingerlings planted in the reservoir and made angling for trout more challenging. Spring fishing is often the best time for catching trophy sized trout. Bait and lures mimicking minnows are very effective in this reservoir. There is an improved boat ramp and developed campsites available for use at this location. Holbrook Reservoir, Lofton Reservoir and Heart Lake are all located within a couple of miles of each other off of USFS road 3715.
Lucky Reservoir: Lucky Reservoir is stocked annually with fingerling rainbow trout. Angling should be good for rainbow trout this year, although difficult to master in the highly turbid water. The access road has been improved from County road 314A. This reservoir is extremely productive and large trout are caught at this reservoir each year. The reservoir receives little fishing pressure overall because of its remoteness. There is no boat ramp, but primitive camping is allowed. Access to the reservoir is often limited by snow until late May.
Malheur Reservoir: This reservoir filled in 2006, and has maintained water through this spring. The snow pack this winter was well below average and the reservoir is not expected to fill completely. It is expected to be drained this summer or fall. It was restocked with both legal-sized and fingerling rainbow trout in 2006, 2007 and 2008. It will be stocked this spring with legal-sized rainbow trout only. The reservoir has been ice-free since the late March and angling has been improving. The reservoir has been producing nice trout in the 12 to 17 inch range.
Malheur River drainage, Upper: Angling should be fair to good for wild redband trout and brook trout after spring flows drop. The snow pack is below average, so the streams in the basin will be at low summer flows early this year. Remember to release bull trout.
Malheur River, Lower: The reservoirs that feed this river reach will not fill and should be drained early this year. As a result, many of the stocked trout in this reach of river will probably be lost.
Mann Lake: Illegally introduced goldfish have disrupted the Lahontan trout fishery at this lake. Unfortunately, the goldfish compete with smaller Lahontan cutthroat trout, limiting growth and survival. The lake is managed as a trophy fishing lake. Artificial flies and lures only (no bait). The bag limit is two fish over 16 inches, and only one may be over 20 inches. The lake is not receiving much water this year, and water levels are very low after the low snow pack last year.
Midway Reservoir: Midway Reservoir is located just southeast of Gerber Reservoir. The Reservoir was drained in 2005 and yellow perch were eradicated. Largemouth bass were stocked from several locations in 2006 and 2007. Angling should be good for largemouth bass 10 to 14 inches before vegetation growth impedes angling in the summer.
Mill Flat Reservoir: Mill Flat Reservoir is small reservoir located North of Lakeview on the Fremont National Forest. Angling success is usually good in the spring and declines with rising water temperatures and an increase in aquatic vegetation. No camping facilities are available; canoes and pontoon boats can be carried in and launched from the edge.
Moon Reservoir: The reservoir has been stocked with fingerling rainbow trout for several years. However, the reservoir was very low last fall. Bass and trout angling should be fair this year.
Mud Lake: Mud Lake was drained in 2005 to remove illegally introduced goldfish. It was been stocked the last three years. It will be stocked again with fingerlings May of 2009. Mud Lake is a turbid reservoir with no constructed boat ramp and no campground facilities. Angling should be good for rainbow trout in spring and fall. Water boatmen/backswimmer patterns are of utmost importance here.
Murphy Reservoir: Trout angling should be fair to good this year. The reservoir did not go completely dry last year and a few fish should have survived the winter. The reservoir should be nearly full this year, and will be stocked with fingerling rainbow trout.
Murray Reservoir: Will be stocked with legal-sized trout in early May. Angling should be good for 8 to 12-inch fish.
Obenchain Reservoir: Obenchain Reservoir is located near Deming Creek and Campbell Reservoir in Klamath County just off the 335 rd (600-00). Angling for bluegill is excellent and most effective angling is from shore. This is a great place to take the family fishing. There are largemouth bass in the reservoir. The best angling is in June. This is a private reservoir so please clean up after yourself after angling.
Owyhee Reservoir: Angling should be good for largemouth and smallmouth bass and channel catfish. Crappie fishing probably will not be as good as it has been in the past few years. The reservoir is expected to reach 70 percent of capacity this year. All boat ramps should remain available all spring, but by early summer the ramps at Leslie Gulch and the State Park will be unusable. Remember, there is a fish consumption advisory for mercury here.
Owyhee River, Lower: The reservoir is expected to reach 70 percent of capacity this year. Water releases below the dam will be turned on in mid-April. The amount water released this year is expected to remain near normal into the fall. The brown trout population appears to be in good condition. There are good numbers of 16 to 20 inch brown trout. Rainbow trout continue to be scarce due to high harvest rates and predation by larger trout. Most trout are found between the dam and the tunnel. All brown trout must be released.
Owyhee River, Upper: There are good numbers of smallmouth bass and channel catfish. Runoff will be below average this year and the river should be at summer base flows by early July.
Paiute Reservoir: This moderate-sized water body, located east of Adel along Highway 140 at Guano Valley, is a turbid reservoir that is less than half full. Fishing should be fair for rainbow trout in the spring before the water heats up. Lahontan cutthroat are available in the reservoir as well. Without significant precipitation this spring Paiute Reservoir is expected to go dry by late summer.
Phillips Reservoir: Good water levels were experienced in 2008 which should equate to better angling for trout in 2009. Large fingerlings have been stocked annually in the fall since 2004 in hopes of boosting the trout fishery. The reservoir also receives several stockings of legal-sized trout throughout the summer. Best fishing for trout is near the dam or at Social Security Point. Yellow perch were larger last year; averaging 10 inches in spring gillnet samples. This trend is expected to continue in 2009. Occasional smallmouth bass can be caught as well, with some of trophy size.
Pilcher Creek Reservoir: Good numbers of trout 9 to 15-inches should be available. The reservoir was closed to winter fishing this year so the carryover should be better than in past years. Should also be fair to good for crappie.
Pole Creek Reservoir: The reservoir was drained last year. It will be drained again this fall to facilitate maintenance on the outflow structure. There are a few carryover trout in the reservoir. A few more legal-sized trout will be stocked in late May. Fishing at this reservoir is expected to be slow and then end during the hot part of the summer.
Powder River, Pine Creek and tributaries: A cool spring will likely lead to later than normal spring runoff that could affect the April 25 opener. Should provide fair to good angling for 8 to 14-inch rainbow when the runoff recedes. Legal-sized rainbow trout will be stocked throughout the spring and summer.
Rogger Pond: Angling for rainbow trout should be good early spring and summer at this old borrow pit located along the Twin Springs road in the South Warner Mountains. This is a very scenic location and a good place to take children to fish near Lakeview, Oregon. Access to the pond can be delayed by snow until late spring or early summer.
Sevenmile Creek: Sevenmile Creek below Nicholson Road Bridge will open April 25 and should be fair for introduced brown trout. This section is on private property and anglers will need permission from the landowner to fish. Upstream of Nicholson Road Bridge also opens April 25 and has good brook trout opportunities. Access to upper Sevenmile Creek may be difficult early in the fishing season due to snow. Check with the Forest Service's Klamath Ranger District (541-883-6714) to determine road conditions.
Sherlock Gulch: Angling success is fair in this reservoir located north of Plush. The reservoir is very turbid. Water level is high and should remain good throughout the summer. Catching fish out of this reservoir difficult; however, large rainbow trout living in the reservoir make it worth the effort. Sherlock Gulch is located a mile north of Sunstone Reservoir near the BLM Sunstone Collection area. Primitive camping only and there is no boat ramp on the reservoir.
Sid Luce: Access is difficult, especially until the first of May. It is located up the Snyder Creek road, off of Hog Back Road just north of Plush. Angling success should be good for rainbow trout this spring and summer. Lures or flies that mimic crayfish work well. There was an illegal introduction of largemouth bass, which has reduced the size and number of rainbow trout in the lake. The reservoir experiences high winds regularly. There are no developed camping facilities and no constructed boat ramp.
Silvies River drainage: Angling should be fair for wild redband trout. The snow pack was below average throughout the winter. Streams should be low and fishable in mid-May. Warmwater fishing in the mainstem should be good by mid-May.
Slide Lake: A very scenic location in the Freemont National Forest off Forest Rd 3360. Slide Lake is a clear lake and contains both hatchery stocked rainbow trout and brook trout. There are few fish available in the lake, but they can be very large. Park at the trailhead and hike into the lake, it is approximately a ½ mile hike in. Small brook trout are also available in the pools of Slide Creek.
Spaulding Reservoir: The lake has been dry for several years, and has very little water this year.
Sprague River System: Angling for native redband trout should be good in late May and June. The area from Saddle Mountain Pit road upstream to Godowa Springs Road Bridge is open to the use of bait to take advantage of the brown bullhead. Brown trout are difficult to catch in this river but small spoons and sculpin imitations are productive. The South Fork Sprague should fish well on opening weekend (April 25).The Sprague River System is closed to angling for bull trout and any bull trout captured should be reported to the ODFW office in Klamath Falls (541-883-5732).
Sycan River: Angling should be good in the Sycan River above the Sycan Marsh for brook trout and redband trout from May-June. Flies and lures are effective in this stretch as this area receives little angling effort. The Sycan River below Sycan marsh will be slow with the exception of the Coyote Bucket area near the Forest Service Boundary which has large brown trout and small redband trout available.
Spring Creek: Opens May 28, and will be stocked with legal-sized rainbow trout through out the summer
Summit Prairie Pond: Angling for small rainbow trout should be good early spring and summer at this old borrow pit located along the Twin Springs road in the South Warner Mountains. This is a good place to take children to fish near Lakeview, Oregon. Access to the pond can be delayed by snow until late spring or early summer.
Sunstone Reservoir: The reservoir went dry in 2007 and was stocked with fingerlings and a small number of legal-sized rainbow trout in 2008. The reservoir is three quarters full and will be stocked with fingerling rainbow trout again this spring. Fishing should be good during the spring months; it will remain good until late summer if the reservoir remains above half full level. This is a turbid reservoir, bait anglers appear to have the most success. No developed camp spots exist but primitive camping is allowed. Sunstone Reservoir is less than a mile from the BLM sunstone collection area located north of Plush.
Thief Valley Reservoir: Good water levels were experienced in 2008 which should mean good fishing for trout this year. Trout sizes should range from 12 to 18 inches. A new stocking program was implemented in 2008 to address inconsistency of the fishery due to frequent droughts and reservoir drawdown. An angler creel survey is being conducted this year to evaluate the stocking change. Informational signs and brochures explaining the stocking change will be available at the reservoir this spring.
Thompson Reservoir: This reservoir is stocked annually with fingerling and legal-sized rainbow trout. The reservoir is very low, and will be drawn down significantly during the 2009 irrigation season. Low water levels create navigation hazards and reduce the ability of anglers to launch boats. The best fishing area for largemouth bass and rainbow trout are along the shorelines near the dam at the rocky northeast side. There are boat ramps and designated camping areas on both ends of the reservoir.
Twin Lakes (Eagle Caps near Halfway): The number of legal-sized trout stocked in the lake has been increased to improve fishing. Stocking will occur in June when the road becomes free of snow.
Vee Lake: Vee Lake is a moderate-sized lake located on Fremont National Forest property north of Mud Creek Campground. Water levels were very low in 2008 and most likely winter killed trout; catch rates are not expected to be very good during 2009. The lake provides scenic views of the surrounding Warner Mountains. A primitive boat ramp is present. Snow drifts will restrict access until late May. Vee Lake often has resident bald eagles to view.
Warm Springs Reservoir: The reservoir was drained to minimum pool by late August in 2008. The reservoir will probably not fill this year. Based on angler reports last year, bass and perch fishing should remain fair to good.
Warner Valley Lakes: The northern lakes are dry except for Flagstaff Lake. Lake levels in Crump and Hart lakes range from half to three quarter full. Largemouth bass, brown bullhead, white and black Crappie are available in Crump and Hart lakes. A primitive boat ramp is found on the east side of Crump Lake, as well as on the northwest corner of Hart Lake. Crump Lake was dry in 2007, and few crappie were available to the angler in during 2008. Catch rates for large crappie in Hart Lake were very good during the 2008 fishing season. Crappie fishing is expected to be good again in Hart Lake if the lake remains at or improves on the current water level.
Lower Williamson River: Angling should be fair this year for trophy redband trout. The most popular method on the river is flyfishing from a boat. Most anglers use full sinking lines and various flies to catch large trout that are not actively feeding. Anglers below Modoc Point Bridge troll lures and spoons effectively. Most of the Williamson River is on private property; however, there is bank access near Chiloquin and Collier State Logging Museum. Anglers should expect to catch larger than last year. The best time for angling is July-September with the giant Hex hatch being a big attractor in July.
Upper Williamson River: Angling in the Upper Williamson for native redband trout and brook trout should be good this year. The average size of redband trout in this reach is 12 inches but fish over 20 inches are available.
Wildhorse Lake: Located high on the south end of Steens Mountain, Wildhorse Lake has a naturally reproducing population of Lahontan cutthroat trout. A steep trail provides access to the lake. The road and trail into the lake should be accessible by mid-July.
Willow Valley Reservoir: Angling should be good for bass and crappie in the spring. Largemouth bass from Davis Lake will be transplanted in late May. Look for crappie and bass around the many wood and habitat structures in the reservoir. Yellow perch are very abundant but are typically small (6 inches). Lahontan cutthroat are available but rare in the catch. The most effective way to fish Willow Valley is from a boat but largemouth bass can be caught at the boat ramp and all along the dam.
Withers Lake: Withers Lake is located on the Fremont Forest National Forest northwest of the town of Paisley. The road into Withers Lake is located off USFS road 3360. The lake has been producing brown trout up to 17 inches. Small brook trout are very abundant in the lake as well. A short (1/4 mile) walk is needed to reach the lake from the parking area. Angling for brook trout is most productive on the shallower side of the lake near the creek inlet. The large brown trout seem to prefer the north side of the lake. Retrieving nymph and beadhead patterns from the shore near the headgate can be very productive for brown trout. No boat ramp and no camping facilities are available at this location.
Wolf Creek Reservoir: Good water levels were experienced in 2008. Good numbers of trout 10 to 14 inches are expected this spring. Trout are in better than normal condition this year. Crappie were plentiful last year around structures.
Wood River: The Wood River opens April 25 and flows should be high and cold which will reduce insect activity and rising brown trout. Brown trout angling should be fair for the entire season. Redband trout angling will be fair. The best months to fish are August and September when fish move in from Agency Lake.
Yellowjacket Lake: Angling should be good for 10 to 16-inch rainbow trout this spring and summer. ODFW will stock the lake with fingerling and legal-size rainbow trout in early May if the road is clear of snow. The fingerling trout should reach legal size by early fall. This lake has a campground, an unimproved boat ramp, and good shoreline access.
Brownlee Reservoir: Fishing is usually good for bass, crappie, catfish, perch and trout. Good fishing is expected this year for crappie 6 to 10 inches. Channel catfish angling will be slow until the weather warms up in May. Fluctuating water levels are common in spring and can throw the bite off temporarily. Best fishing for crappie, bass and perch are around points and in coves. Richland and Halfway are good places to find tackle and advice.
Oxbow Reservoir: Fair to good angling for bass, crappie, catfish, perch and trout. Halfway and Oxbow are good places to get tackle and advice.
Hell’s Canyon Reservoir: Fair to good angling for bass, crappie, catfish, perch and trout. Below the dam, in the Snake River is also good for smallmouth bass as the water warms. Catch-and-release for sturgeon can also be good below the dam in early spring.
Snake River upstream of Brownlee Reservoir: Channel catfish angling should begin to improve in late April with peak catch rates occurring from mid-May to mid-June. Smallmouth bass fishing will pick up when water temperatures rise. Angling should be good later into the summer this year due to lower than expected flows.
Snake River downstream of Hells Canyon Dam: Spring trout angling for residual steelhead smolts up to 18 inches is generally productive in the 15 miles below Hells Canyon Dam. Action for smallmouth bass picks up in April, target the backwaters and eddies.
Anglers are reminded that a shellfish license is required to harvest all shellfish except fresh water clams and crayfish.
Springtime provides excellent marine fishing opportunities. Catch rates for near shore species of ground fish are often best in spring, and several species are available from ocean and bay shores and jetties. In particular, lingcod, greenling, black rockfish, and perch species are popular with anglers. Black rockfish and lingcod are often on the bite after recently completing their annual spawning cycle.
Offshore opportunities include coho salmon and Pacific halibut. The ocean recreational fishery for coho salmon is expected to be the best in more than a decade remain open through September. The central coast from Cape Falcon to Humbug Mountain is closed to the retention of chinook; however, on the central coast they may retain up to three coho per day, the largest daily bag limit of coho since the early 1990s. The salmon bag limit on the rest of the coast remains at two per day.
On the north coast fishers may catch either chinook or coho from June 28 through Sept. 30 from Leadbetter Point to Cape Falcon, as long as quotas are not reached.
Coho fishing is expected to be excellent on the south coast from Humbug Mountain to the Oregon-California border. Anglers on the south coast will have to wait to catch chinook until fall when a limited chinook season runs Aug. 29 to Sept. 7.
May is a popular time for targeting Pacific halibut. The dates for the spring all-depth halibut fishery between Cape Falcon and Humbug Mountain have been set as May 14-16, 21-23, 28-30; and June 4-6. More days may be added if sufficient quota remains. Halibut is also open in this area inside the 40 fathom curve 7 days per week.
North Coast: Angling for chinook and coho salmon and bottom fish is available, weather and ocean conditions permitting. Deep-water and near shore halibut seasons opens May 1 and is open three days per week, Thursday through Saturday, until July 18 or the catch limit is reached. Check current regulations for season dates and bag limits.
Tillamook Bay and jetty: Lingcod, rockfish, greenling, and perch can be caught along the jetties of Tillamook Bay. Crabbing also is available in the bays and the ocean.
Coos County beaches and jetties: Redtail and silver surfperch, sand sole and starry flounder are biting in the spring and early summer. Striped bass can be a welcome surprise to those surfperch anglers casting in the surf. Anglers will find a mix of pile, white, and striped surfperch in Coos Bay around structures and along the Coos jetties in the spring and early summer. Also available are grass, black, blue, and copper rockfish, rock and kelp greenling, cabezon, lingcod, and starry flounder. Current regulations prohibit retention of yelloweye and canary rockfish and require a 16-inch minimum length for cabezon, 10-inch minimum for greenling. Surf smelt, sardines, anchovies, and herring are often caught in spring and early summer off docks and piers around Coos Bay, when large schools enter the estuary. Razor clams are presently open coastwide; however, contact the Department of Agriculture’s Shellfish Hotline at 1-503-986-4728 for more information on periodic clamming closures.
Curry County beaches: Redtail, striped, silver surfperch, and surf smelt are available in the spring and early summer. The most popular beaches are located at the mouth of Hunter Creek, Winchuck River, Elk River, and at Nesika Beach. Surfperch and smelt can also be caught from the Rogue River jetties.
Visit the ODFW Web site for trout stocking schedules and the Recreation Report, a weekly update of fishing conditions on rivers, lakes, streams and reservoirs throughout the state. Please note that stocking schedules may change due to access issues, water temperature or other unforeseen conditions.