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BEST Bets for Weekend Fishing!

Best bets for weekend fishing

The coho salmon run has been a bright spot this season, with a strong return and anglers success from the coast to the Willamette Valley to some eastern Oregon Columbia tributaries.
Recent rains will have pushed fall Chinook into the freshwater of coastal rivers. Look for fishing to be fair to good on the mid- and north coast.
Some fire closures have been lifted allowing access to popular locations like Hemlock Lake and Lake in the Woods. Fishing should be very good until the snow flies and the roads are closed.
Check out the Willamette Zone where a handful of waterbodies will be stocked, or have recently been stocked, with trout for fall fishing.
Steelhead anglers have been finding fish in Grande Ronde and Imnaha rivers.

Elk hunters: Get your elk tested for CWD

ODFW will set up voluntary CWD check stations during Rocky Mountain elk 1st season on Oct. 31 and Nov. 1, 2021 from 9 a.m. – dusk at:
I-84 West at Celilo Park (Exit 97).
Prineville ODOT weigh station (just east of Prineville on Hwy 26).

Learn more about what hunters can do to prevent the spread of CWD to Oregon.

Several popular fisheries close Oct. 31

Anglers have just two more weekends to hit several popular fisheries before they close for the season. These include: all cutthroat fishing in coastal rivers and streams, Pacific halibut, Laurance Lake, Crane Prairie, Odell Lake, Wickiup Reservoir and the Metolius River above Allingham Bridge. These closures are to protect migrating salmon/steelhead smolts, and/or sensitive native species like bull trout. Check the regulations for more closures.

Game bird harvest statistics at ODFW wildlife areas

As upland bird and waterfowl hunting continue, hunters can use the harvest statistics from ODFW wildlife areas to help plan their next hunting trip.

Tips for e-tagging

Whether you plan to hit the field for deer or the water for salmon this weekend, here are some tips for tagging your harvest.

FISHING

NW FISHING

Send us your fishing report

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

FISHING UPDATES

LAKE, PONDS, RESERVOIRS

Town, Cape Meares, Coffenbury, Lost, and Sunset lakes were stocked with trophy trout in mid-September. Many of these fish have probably been caught by now, but there should still be a few around and these are bigger trout that put up a fun fight. In addition, there are still hold over trout from the spring stockings available in many North Coast lakes and those fish should be active and hungry this time of year. Some of the best lakes for holdover trout on the north coast are probably Lost Lake (Clatsop county), Lake Tahoe (Tillamook county), South Lake (Mount Hebo) and Town Lake (Pacific City). Last updated 10/20/21.

Fishing for warmwater species is species is mostly over for the season, with temperatures getting cold at night and water temps dropping accordingly, these species will be mostly inactive until next spring. Last updated 10/13/21.

Mid-coast lakes are slowing down for trout as there have not been any stockings since June but there are still some trout around in the lakes that were stocked and often times the fishing picks up as the water temperatures cool down in the fall. Here is a list of the lakes that were stocked this spring and have potential for trout fishing this fall: Thissel Pond, Cleawox, Munsel, Mercer, Sutton, Alder, Dune, Buck, Lost, Carter, Devils, Woahink, Elbow, Siltcoos, Eckman, and Big Creek Reservoirs #1 and #2. Some of the larger lakes like Mercer, Munsel, Siltcoos and Sutton fish better for trout in the fall months.

Warmwater fisheries in the mid-coast are winding down for the season with the cooler weather and dropping water temperatures. Some of these lakes receive trout stockings and have opportunities to catch trout through the fall and winter months. These lakes include: Siltcoos, Tahkenitch, Mercer, and Munsel.

Siltcoos and Tahkenitch opened for coho fishing on Oct. 1 and provide a great opportunity to catch a wild coho in a beautiful coastal lake setting. Daily bag limits are 1 wild coho per day and 1 wild jack coho per day, 5 per year for the wild Coho aggregate in the Northwest and Southwest zones. Meaning you can only harvest 5 wild Coho per year within the Northwest and Southwest zones combined.

RIVERS AND STREAMS

Wild coho fisheries on the Nestucca and Tillamook Bays closed after Oct. 13. There is NO retention of wild coho (including jacks) in North coast bays or rivers for the remainder of 2021.

Fishing conditions are going to be challenging this week, most of the north coast rivers are on the rise, off color, and packing a lot of leaves. The good news is, there are a lot of Chinook and coho moving into the rivers and when conditions are fishable there should be plenty of opportunity to catch them. The bays will probably slow down while flows are up, but there should still be some fresh fish coming in following the storm. Last updated 10/27/21.

Sea-run cutthroat trout season closes Oct. 31, so this is the last week to target them. There are fish available in decent numbers throughout most north coast rivers. Last updated 10/27/21.

Mid-coast bays are producing some nice fall Chinook. Overall, fishing remains fair to slow in most basins but there are fish being caught every day. The numbers of fish in the bays and estuaries will continue to increase through the month of October as more fish will be staging waiting for some rain.

The Siletz River summer steelhead fishing continues to be slow. Fishing pressure continues to be very light and there will be opportunities to catch a summer steelhead through the fall months.

Cutthroat trout fishing in streams improves this time of year with cooling water temperatures and an increase in the number of sea-run cutthroat. The mid-coast offers endless places to fish for cutthroat and all of the rivers and creeks have good populations. Check the regulations for open areas and bait restrictions when targeting cutthroat trout. Trout fishing in streams remains open until Oct.31.

RECENTLY STOCKED
Stocking will resume in February.
Check out the complete 2021 trout stocking schedule.

TROUT STOCKING MAPS: Find your place to fish

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

ANNOUNCEMENTS: closures, special events, etc.

Rivers and streams close to trout Oct. 31

Each year, most coastal rivers and streams close to trout fishing on Oct. 31 in order to protect out-migrating salmon and steelhead smolts. Be sure to check the regulations if you plan on trout fishing this fall.

UPDATES BY WATERBODY

ALSEA RIVER: Fall Chinook, cutthroat trout

Fall Chinook fishing has picked up on the Alsea River as of late. Although still a bit slow, things have improved and fish are being caught every day. Forecasted rain over the next couple weeks should have fish on the move and up into the river portions of the Alsea. The numbers of fish in the estuary will continue to increase through October until we get a significant rain event to move fish up into the river.

***Reminder*** There is no wild coho retention in the Alsea for the 2021 season. Please practice good catch-and-release for wild coho, keep them in the water and release immediately.

Trout fishing in streams remains open through Oct. 31. Check the regulations for open areas and bait restrictions. Last updated 10/20/21.

BIG CREEK (Clatsop County): Chinook, coho

Big Creek opened to fishing on Oct. 1 (two weeks earlier than normal). A good return of hatchery coho salmon and a surplus of hatchery Chinook salmon are the reasons for the early opener. Last updated 10/6/21.

KILCHIS RIVER: Chinook, Chum (catch and release only)

Chinook salmon should be moving into the Kilchis river following these rains. The river is on the rise, and slightly off color but should be fishable on and off this week. The Kilchis is known for a later Chinook run, but I would expect some to be showing up. Last updated 10/27/21.

The catch-and-release fishery for chum salmon is open until Nov. 15 and it’s likely some of them are showing up now as well. This is a popular fishery, and can be really fun, but anglers are reminded to use ethical tactics and release fish unharmed. Last year we observed and received multiple complaints about snagging of chum salmon, which is illegal. Oregon State Police will be watching for snagging activity and continued non-compliance could result in a loss of fishing opportunity. Last updated 10/27/21.
MIAMI RIVER: Chinook, Chum
There should be some Chinook moving into the river with the recent rains. The Miami is a little off color as of this writing, but is still fishable. Last updated 10/27/21.
The catch-and-release fishery for chum salmon is open until Nov. 15 and it’s likely some of them are showing up now as well. This is a popular fishery, and can be really fun, but anglers are reminded to use ethical tactics and release fish unharmed. Last year we observed and received multiple complaints about snagging of chum salmon which is illegal. Oregon State Police will be watching for snagging activity and continued non-compliance could result in a loss of fishing opportunity. Last updated 10/257/21.
NECANICUM RIVER: Chinook
The Necanicum gets a decent run of Chinook salmon, including some hatchery fish, and following this rain event there should be fish throughout the system. Last updated 10/27/21.

NEHALEM RIVER: Chinook, coho
Chinook and coho fishing in the bay has really slowed, and with the recent rain and associated river rise we are seeing a lot of fish moving up river. The best fishing for Chinook this week on the Nehalem basin will probably be in the lower mainstem and lower North Fork. The upper deadline for salmon fishing on the Nehalem mainstem is the Foss Rd (CC) bridge located at river mile 15.1 Last updated 10/27/21.
In addition to getting some Chinook, there are still hatchery coho moving into the North Fork Nehalem, many fish are getting dark, but there are still a few decent fish around. Last updated 10/27/21.

NESTUCCA RIVER, THREE RIVERS, AND LITTLE NESTUCCA RIVER: Chinook
The wild coho fishery on the Nestucca and Little Nestucca Bay closed after Oct. 13. There is NO retention of wild coho (including jacks) in North coast bays or rivers for the remainder of 2021.

There should be good numbers of Chinook pushing into the Nestucca basin this week, and fish are probably throughout the fishery. Conditions are going to be a little challenging until the weather calms down though. The bay may be a little slow as many fish moved upstream, but there should still be fresh fish coming in. Last updated 10/27/21.

Three Rivers from the mouth to the hatchery weir (Cedar Creek Hatchery) should get a good push of Chinook this week. Last updated 10/27/21.

SALMON RIVER: fall Chinook, cutthroat trout

Fall Chinook fishing has been fair on the Salmon River. The forecasted rain and cooler weather this week will stir things up and have fish pushing into the upper estuary and into the river headed for the hatchery.

***Reminder*** There is no wild coho retention in the Salmon River for the 2021 season. Please practice good catch-and-release for wild coho, keep them in the water and release immediately.

Trout fishing in streams remains open through Oct. 31. Check the regulations for open areas and bait restrictions. Last updated 10/6/21.

SILTCOOS AND TAHKENITCH LAKES: Coho

Coho fishing in Siltcoos and Tahkenitch lakes opened on Oct. 1. Fishing has been slow to start off the season but the forecasted big rain events over the next couple of weeks should bring more fish up into the lakes and get things going for the season. Check the regulations for bag limits and open areas within these lakes. Last updated 10/20/21.
SILETZ RIVER: fall Chinook, summer steelhead, cutthroat trout
***Update*** The Siletz Basin did have a limited wild Coho season that ended on Oct. 15. No wild Coho retention is allowed for the remainder of the 2021 season.
Summer steelhead continues to be slow on the Siletz and the numbers of fish returning this year is low. The recent rains and cooler water temperatures have helped the conditions but the low return is still making the summer steelhead fishing tough. Fishing pressure continues to be very light.
Fall Chinook has picked up on the Siletz and many fish are now staging in the upper portions of the estuary waiting for some significant rain. The forecasted big rain events over the next couple of weeks will have fish on the move and headed up the river.
Trout fishing in streams remains open through Oct. 31. Check the regulations for open areas and bait restrictions. Last updated 10/20/21.
SIUSLAW RIVER: fall Chinook, cutthroat trout

Fall Chinook fishing has picked up on the Siuslaw but it’s still slow overall. The numbers of fish in the system will continue to increase as we get further into October as the fish are staging and waiting for some rain. The forecasted rain over the next couple of weeks will have fish on the move and push them up into the river systems.

***Reminder*** There is no wild coho retention in the Siuslaw for the 2021 season. Please practice good catch-and-release for wild coho, keep them in the water and release immediately.

Trout fishing in streams remains open through Oct. 31. Check the regulations for open areas and bait restrictions. Last updated 10/20/21.

TILLAMOOK BAY: Chinook, coho

The wild coho fishery on Tillamook Bay closed after Oct. 13. There is NO retention of wild coho on the North coast bays or rivers (including jacks) for the remainder of 2021.

The bay might be tough fishing this week due to weather, and it’s likely that many fish have moved into the rivers. When the weather calms down, however, there should still be fresh Chinook coming in and still some opportunity to catch them. Last updated 10/27/21.

TRASK RIVER: Chinook, coho
The Dam Hole (Mile Post 7 on Trask River Road up to Blue Ridge Creek) is closed to all fishing Sept. 1 through Nov. 30.

There are good numbers of Chinook pushing into the Trask and as conditions allow there should be opportunity to catch them throughout the fishery. There’s also still some hatchery coho moving in, most are getting dark, but there’s probably still a few decent ones out there. Last updated 10/25/21.

WILSON RIVER: Chinook

I expect to see a decent push of Chinook into the Wilson River this week given the rains and associated river rise. Conditions may be challenging, but there should still be some opportunity to catch fish here. Last updated 10/27/21.

YAQUINA RIVER: fall Chinook, cutthroat trout

Fall Chinook fishing continues to be slow on the Yaquina. Fish are now spread throughout the estuary while they stage and wait for more significant rain. The forecasted rain should have fish on the move and pushing into the upper tidewater and into the river systems.

***Reminder*** There is no wild coho retention in the Yaquina for the 2021 season. Please practice good catch-and-release for wild coho, keep them in the water and release immediately.

Trout fishing in streams on the Yaquina/Big Elk remains open through Oct. 31. Check the regulations for open areas and bait restrictions. Last updated 10/20/21.

SW FISHING

Send us your fishing report

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

FISHING UPDATES

LAKE, PONDS, RESERVOIRS
Water surface temperatures have dropped dramatically in the last week or two. ODFW finished or in the middle of “fall fingerling” and sub-legal size rainbow trout stockings in larger reservoirs for overwintering. Fish must be 8 inches to legally retain. If anglers encounter them, handling them with care and releasing them gently will allow them to grow and be of catcheable size by the spring. Larger legal and pounder trout are also being stocked over the next few weeks.
Even with very low water levels at many popular destinations, small personal watercraft such as kayaks, float tubes and canoes can still launch in most instances. Some of the larger reservoirs will still have boat access on improved (concrete) ramps. Staff tries to update ramp access in a timely manner, so check the local waterbody for any updated information on launch conditions.
Bass and panfish fishing is slowing down with the cooling surface temperatures in many small ponds, reservoirs and lakes. Later in the afternoon or evening are better options if targeting these fish.
Anglers and other members of the public should remember that it’s illegal to fish with live fish as bait in all lakes, ponds, reservoirs, creeks and rivers in Oregon. Also, transporting fish, shellfish, crayfish, amphibians, or even dumping the contents of an aquarium into a waterbody is illegal and can be very detrimental to these systems. If you see someone doing any of these things, please report it to OSP or your local fish and wildlife office immediately. Or better yet, if you feel safe, ask the person to stop as you see it happening. Education is key to keeping Oregon’s waterways free from additional invasive or unwanted species.
RIVERS AND STREAMS

Trout fishing is open on most mainstem rivers through Oct. 31. Checks specific streams within a larger basin in the exceptions section to see if they are open or closed or are open after October 31. In general, all tributaries to the Rogue, Applegate and Illinois are closed to fishing, unless noted in the exceptions section of the SW Zone.

RECENTLY STOCKED:

Scheduled to be stocked this week: Bradley Lake, Hemlock Lake.

Check out the 2021 trout stocking schedule.

TROUT STOCKING MAPS: Find your place to fish

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

ANNOUNCEMENTS: closures, special events, etc.

See temporary regulations for Chinook and coho above.
Rivers and streams close to trout Oct. 31

Each year, most coastal rivers and streams close to trout fishing on Oct. 31 in order to protect out-migrating salmon and steelhead smolts. Be sure to check the regulations if you plan on trout fishing this fall.

UPDATES BY WATERBODY

AGATE LAKE: crappie, yellow perch, brown bullhead

Agate Lake is still hovering around 10 percent capacity. The boat ramp is covered with mud and unusable. Personal watercraft can still launch, or anglers can fish from the bank. Some of the best fishing is over near the dam. Surface water temperatures have cooled dramatically over the last few weeks and warmwater fishing will be have slowed.

This is mostly a crappie and bluegill fishery with some bass in the mix. Yellow perch are also prolific. Anglers may want to consider fishing for bullhead catfish with chicken livers fished off the bottom in the early morning or late evening. The Jackson County Parks day use area closes after sunset and day use fees are charged. There is a 10mph speed limit on this reservoir. Last updated 10/20/21.

APPLEGATE RESERVOIR and river above the reservoir: trout, largemouth bass, yellow perch (lakes east of Applegate Reservoir)

Applegate Reservoir just receive 25,000 sub-legal rainbow trout. These trout should overwinter nicely and be ready to catch next year. If encountering these fish, please handle them with care.

The only useable boat ramp at Applegate Reservoir is the French Gulch Boat Ramp. Recent reports indicated plenty of concrete left and no mud. It’ll be next spring before Hart-tish and Copper are usable again.

Hart-tish campground is now closed for the season.

Bait is allowed and 5 trout per day, year-round, on the streams above Applegate Dam and the lake itself.

There is a longstanding health advisory for consumption of resident species due to elevated levels of mercury. See Oregon Health Authority consumption guidelines or the 2021 sportfishing regulations for more information.

For a change of scenery, try driving up to the lakes above Applegate Reservoir. These lakes have illegally and stunted yellow perch with no limit. Bass and bluegill are also in these lakes. There also is camping available but expect crowds on the weekends.

The reservoir is 15 percent full, with an elevation of 1,900.8 ft. Surface temperatures have dropped significantly over the last week and is now 50 degrees Fahrenheit. Anglers can get the latest information by calling the US Army Corps Lost Creek Lake and Applegate Reservoir projects information line at 1-800-472-2434. Last updated 10/20/21.

APPLEGATE RIVER below Applegate Dam: trout

The river is open to trout fishing throught the end of the year. Only hatchery trout may be retained, 2 per day. All wild rainbow trout and cutthroat trout should be immediately released unharmed. Anglers are reminded that the Applegate River is closed to salmon fishing. Trout anglers are asked to be mindful of spawning Chinook salmon and no disturb these fish or their gravel redds. Anglers are also encouraged to catch and remove non-local pikeminnow. Areas such as Fish Hatchery County Park have lots of pikeminnow.

There is good bank access around the Hwy 199 bridge, Fish Hatchery Park, Cantrall Buckley Park, upstream of Murphy, and near McKee Bridge. There are also scatterings of BLM lands in the upper river around McKee Bridge. In-flows to Applegate Lake have dropped significantly, and outflow from the dam is 149 cfs and 56 degrees F. You can check the flows on the Applegate when planning a trip. Last updated 10/13/21.

ARIZONA POND: rainbow trout

Slow. Water levels have come up some from recent rainfall, but the pond is still quite weedy. The pond was stocked heavily this spring and some wily rainbows are likely still lurking around in the deeper water. Young anglers may have some success early in the morning when the wind is mild. A bobber with good old -fashioned PowerBait should entice these fish to bite. Pulling spinners could work as well but might be more challenging with the additional vegetation this time of year.

Oregon State Parks manages Arizona Pond for anglers ages 17 and under. This is a great place for new anglers to learn fishing techniques. Last updated 10/27/21.

BEN IRVING RESERVOIR: rainbow trout, bass, bluegill, yellow perch, crappie

Lots of rain has likely muddied the waters at Ben Irving. Fishing should still be okay, try flashier presentations to get the fish’s attention. Last updated 10/27/21.

BRADLEY LAKE: trout, largemouth bass

Trout fishing has been good at Bradley Lake for trout that were stocked earlier this month. More trout are scheduled to be stocked into Bradley Lake the first week of November, which is a change from the original trout stocking schedule. Anglers are having success trolling spinners in the main lake. Last updated 10/27/21.

BUTTERFIELD LAKE: warmwater fish

Anglers are reported great fishing at Butterfield Lake for trout that were stocked earlier this month and for holdover trout that were stocked this past spring.

Anglers are having success using PowerBait or trolling spinners. Last updated 10/27/21.

CHETCO RIVER: Chinook, trout

We got significant precipitation recently causing water levels to rise and color up some. There are good numbers of Chinook spread throughout the lower river and more to still come as this is just the beginning of the run. Temporary rule changes for wild adult Chinook are now in place Aug. 31-Dec. 31. One wild adult Chinook per day and two total for the time period. This temporary rule change affects only adult wild Chinook. All other zone regulations still apply including the hatchery Chinook retention and the bobber rule. The bobber rule is in effect through Nov. 3.
With trout season winding down, closes Nov. 1, anglers should try and get out to target sea-run cutthroat trout as they are moving in and following the Chinook. These big cutthroat will eat any offering. In particular, anchovies and salmon eggs.

ODFW tracks hatchery survival and other important information through Coded Wire Tag returns. Anglers with hatchery catch are encouraged to return adipose fin-clipped Chinook snouts to ODFW. A snout box with instructions is located inside the fish cleaning station in the port near the boat ramp. Thank you for your participation. Last updated 10/27/21.

COOPER CREEK RESERVOIR: rainbow trout, bass, bluegill, coho and Chinook smolts

Caution: The west boat ramp at Cooper has a severe drop off that had stopped some boats from launching and some trailers had been damaged. With recent rains this may have changed. Please use caution if using the ramp. The East Ramp has been usable.

The reservoir may start to fill back up again, but it was still low at last check. ODFW couldn’t stock the last group of fish in Cooper, but over 10,000 trout were stocked this year so there should be plenty still around. Warmwater fishing seems to still be good with anglers catching some bluegill, perch and crappie.

Beginning in 2016, Cooper has been stocked with coho and Chinook salmon juveniles. Just recently ODFW stocked over 28,000 coho juveniles in the reservoir in 2021. These are often mistaken for kokanee. Anglers may retain up to 5 salmon juveniles in the reservoir as part of their daily trout bag limit. Please remember to release salmon and trout less than 8 inches. Last updated 10/27/21.

COOS RIVER BASIN: bottomfish, trout, salmon

Boat and bank anglers (on the jetty) are still catching rockfish inside lower Coos Bay. Smaller jigs with a twister tail or 1-ounce jigging spoons have been working to catch rockfish. The daily bag limit for marine fish was recently reduced to 5. As of June 1, boat anglers are no longer able to retain China, copper and quillback rockfish. Anglers can still harvest 2 lingcod per day.

The wild coho fishery in Coos Basin closed Oct 15. There are a few diehard Chinook salmon anglers fishing the upper portions of tidewater but the majority of salmon anglers in Coos Bay have put away their gear. Salmon anglers are allowed 2 wild Chinook per day and 10 for the season in the Coos Basin this year.

Trout fishing in streams and rivers remains closes after Oct. 31. Last updated 10/27/21.

COQUILLE RIVER BASIN: striped bass, smallmouth bass, trout

There are still a few striped bass in the lower river that can be caught by casting swimbaits and crankbaits or by fishing bait on the bottom. There is no size limit or daily bag limit on striped bass.

The temporary regulation allowing anglers in Coquille River system to use spears and spear guns to harvest smallmouth bass ends on Oct. 31.

Note that for the remainder of 2021 season, there is a complete closure of salmon fishing in the Coquille Basin, due to a severe decline in both wild and hatchery fall Chinook returns.

Trout fishing in streams and rivers closes after Oct. 31. Last updated 10/27/21.

DIAMOND LAKE: trout

The crowds are small this time of year at Diamond, but the fishing is good. Recent reports show that anglers are easily finding fish.

Anglers should check with the Umpqua National Forest (541-498-2531) for information on camps and ramps. All campgrounds at Diamond are now closed. Anglers can check fishing and water conditions at Diamond Lake on the Diamond Lake Resort Facebook page, or call 541-793-3333 for updates. Diamond Lake is open year-round.

Diamond Lake has been stocked with tiger and brown trout. These fish are intended to assist in controlling illegally introduced tui chub. These trout are catch-and-release only and need to be released immediately and unharmed if caught. Last updated 10/27/21.

EEL LAKE: trout, warmwater fish

Anglers are still reporting catching a few trout this past week from a boat and from the fishing dock in Eel Lake. Boat anglers have been picking up trout by trolling with wedding ring spinners tipped with a worm. Anglers are catching trout from the fishing dock casting spinners, fishing PowerBait, or casting a nightcrawler on a hook with no weight.

Be aware that anglers are also catching juvenile coho salmon which are not legal to harvest and must be released immediately unharmed.

Crappies and bluegills are transitioning to deeper water for the winter as the water temperatures continue to cool. Last updated 10/6/21.

ELK RIVER: Chinook, trout

Recent rain most likely brought the first few groups of early Chinook into the river. Anglers may even find a few hatchery Chinook all the way up at the hatchery. Temporary rule changes for Chinook are now in place Aug. 1-Dec. 31. No retention of adult wild Chinook. All other zone regulations still apply. Last updated 10/27/21.

EMIGRANT RESERVOIR: largemouth and smallmouth bass, crappie, bluegill, bullhead, catfish, rainbow trout

No boat ramps are usable. Anglers fishing from watercraft such as rafts, kayaks, SUPs and float tubes may need to drag vessels closer to the point to find firmer substrate. The A ramp area is a mud pit. For bank anglers interested in a little hike, walk along the shore toward the dam to find the deepest water.

Emigrant is close to deadpool. Still, there should be areas with 40-50 feet of water. Trout will be found in these areas.

There is a longstanding health advisory for consumption of resident warmwater species in Emigrant for high levels of mercury. Consult the sportfishing regulations or the Oregon Health Authority for more information on consumption guidelines.

For more information on park facilities closures visit the Jackson County Parks website. The RV Park is only open to fire victims, but the tent campsites are open to the public.

The reservoir is continuing to drop and is currently at 2 percent capacity. Surface temperatures should be in the mid-60s. Last updated 10/13/21.

EMPIRE LAKE: rainbow trout

Anglers are reporting good fishing in Upper Empire Lake for recently stocked rainbow trout. Anglers are having success catching trout casting spoons/spinners or by fishing PowerBait. Last updated 10/20/21.

EXPO POND: rainbow trout, largemouth bass, bluegill, black crappie

Warmwater fishing continues at Expo and should probably be picking up with the recent cooling temperatures. The most northern pond is probably the best bet for largemouth bass, black crappie and bluegill. There are still some trout down very deep in the middle Expo Pond, but don’t expect much trout success out here.

Bluegill are prolific and very close to the shore, especially along the deeper drop-offs. A very small hook and piece of nightcrawler, or small fly under a bobber can be a very easy setup for young anglers to have success out here.

Daily trout and bass limit at Expo Pond is 5 fish per day of each species. There is no trout stocking planned until early spring.

Chinese mystery snails are present here in the most northern pond. Please do not move these creatures and drain and dry any personal watercraft before using them in another waterbody. Last updated 10/13/21.

FISH LAKE: rainbow trout, brook trout, spring Chinook

The store, restaurant, and marina are now closed for the season. They will reopen on Nov. 26. Unfortunately, this also includes the boat ramp at the resort is closed. Call 541-949-8500 or check their Facebook page for more info.

The current lake level is 19 percent full and the lake is slowly filling with input from natural springs. Unfortunately, the USFS dock is still unusable at this time, as well. Expect mostly rain with some sparse scattering of snow for at least the next week. Personal watercraft is the best bet if wanting to get on the water at the USFS access.

Fish lake is an excellent fall destination and recently received 900 trout nearing a pound each. Recent angling reports have been good and water clarity is excellent with the input from natural springs.

For more information on National Forest developed recreation sites, fire restrictions and campground information for the Rogue River Siskiyou National Forest please visit here.

Any tiger trout caught should be immediately released unharmed. Anglers are encouraged to report their catch or any other fish stories to Rogue Fish District Staff 541-826-8774. Last updated 10/20/21.

FLORAS LAKE: trout

Fall is a great time to fish the lake. Usually there is very little wind and the trout are eager to bite. This a good time for anglers to pick up some nice size cutthroat and carry over trout. Casting or trolling with spinners, bait and bobber, and fly-fishing are all popular fishing methods for chasing trout in Floras Lake. Bank access is very limited and most anglers fish from a boat. The boat ramp is located at Boice Cope County Park. Last updated 10/20/21.

FLORAS CREEK/NEW RIVER: Chinook

Rain this week should open the mouth and bring in some early chinook and coho. Access is very limited in New River and most anglers fish from a boat. The only good small boat launch is located at the BLMs Storm Ranch property. Temporary regulations are in effect for wild fall Chinook from Aug 1 – Dec 31. Only 1 wild adult Chinook may be kept for the season. This is also part of a sub-zone aggregate bag limit with the Sixes River. Please see tables at the top of the zone report for details.

GALESVILLE RESERVOIR: rainbow trout, bass

Even with recent rains, the reservoir is the lowest it has been since the gage started in 2007. This shows just how much the drought has affected the area this year. The boat ramp is unusable at this time! With the loss of Rock Creek Hatchery, no “trophy trout” were stocked this year, but there should be lots of trout from earlier stockings. The lake was recently stocked with close to 30,000 fingerling trout.

Call 541-837-3302 for information on camping and boat launching conditions. Check out the Lake Level Gage for more information. If the gage is under 1820’ anglers should be cautioned the lake may be too low to launch a boat.

In Galesville Reservoir, all landlocked salmon are considered trout and are part of the five-per-day trout limit, with only one trout over 20 inches long allowed for harvest. If you catch any salmon in Galesville please e-mail a picture to Greg.f.Huchko@odfw.state.gov. Last updated 10/27/21.

GARRISON LAKE: trout

Best time to fish is early or late in the day when the wind is not howling. Bank fishing is somewhat limited by aquatic vegetation this time of year. With the onset of fall, water temperatures are starting to cool and may affect fish behavior.

Bank anglers can find access at the 12th street or Pinehurst boat ramps and off Paradise Point Road. The lake can be very windy so anglers will want to check the weather before heading out. Fishing earlier in the day is usually better because the winds tend to pick up in the afternoon. Last updated 10/6/20.

HEMLOCK LAKE & LAKE IN THE WOODS (Douglas County): trout

Hemlock and Lake in the Woods are finally open! ODFW stocked A LOT of trout in Hemlock this summer and early fall. There should be plenty of trout available. There are some road closures in the area. Information can be found here.

Anglers should check with the Umpqua National Forest (541-496-3532) for information on camp, road and ramp closures.

Anglers fishing the high lakes in the Umpqua District are encouraged to email fishing reports to Greg.f.Huchko@odfw.oregon.gov. Remember to only keep trout at least 8 inches long, and only one trout over 20 inches per day. Last updated 10/27/21.

HOWARD PRAIRIE RESERVOIR: rainbow trout, smallmouth bass, largemouth bass

Emergency regulations are no longer in effect at Howard Prairie. Zone regulations are back in place, and size limits and daily bag limits apply.

Small personal watercraft such as kayaks, canoe and float tubes are probably the best access for getting on the water. Trout appeared to have survived the summer’s warm temperatures. We recently stocked fall fingerlings and anglers should be aware of these small non-legal size fish. If handled with care, they will grow nicely over the winter.

The reservoir is at 4 percent capacity and is slowly starting to rise. The forecast of a wet la Nina winter, if materializing, will help fill Howard as it is mainly filled by higher elevation rain, not snow.

The Rogue Fish District is still interested in anglers catch composition, so there are trout stocked with differential fin marks representing different fish stocks. Anglers interested in reporting their catch or learning more about this program and what to look for, are encouraged to call 541-857-2411 and speak with the local STEP Biologist. Specifically, look for clips on ventral fins or adipose fins in your catch.

There is a Hwy 66 and Hyatt Lake Rd webcam that may help if you’re planning an adventure. There is a Jackson County webcam at the Dead Indian Memorial Summit.

More information on facilities and camping can be found on Jackson County Parks website. Most campgrounds are now closed for the season except the campsites at the resort. other boat ramps are inaccessible. The best bank access is near the dam. Last updated 10/13/21.

HUNTER CREEK: Chinook

Rain this week should open the mouth of the creek and bring some fall chinook in. Temporary rule changes for wild adult Chinook are now in place Aug. 1 – Dec. 31. Only 1 wild adult Chinook is allowed for this period. Please see tables at the top of the zone report for details. Last updated 10/20/21.

HYATT LAKE: rainbow trout, largemouth bass

Emergency regulations have been lifted at Hyatt Lake and zone regulations now apply. Hyatt Lake doesn’t seem to have fared as well as Howard did over the summer. There still may be some bass to be found, but don’t expect much for trout.

All water users should keep an eye out for harmful algae blooms at low reservoirs and check this article to learn how to be safe while fishing. Water conditions this past weekend resembled split peas soup, as a yellowish green cloudy tint. Folks should keep their dogs from drinking water and consider avoiding contact with the water themselves if conditions continue to look that way.

Hyatt lake resort, store and restaurant are still open. This is a great place to swing by and grab a bite to eat for mountain visitors.

There is a Hwy 66 and Hyatt Lake Rd webcam that may help you if you are planning a trip. Also, ODOT trip check is worth looking at. Last updated 10/13/21.

ILLINOIS RIVER: trout

Emergency Angling Closure: All fishing is closed from the green bridge on 8 dollar Road which crosses the Illinois River (downstream of Kerby), upstream to Pomeroy Dam (Near Cave Junction) from Oct. 1 through Nov. 30.

Salmon fishing is closed year-round on the Illinois as per SW zone regulations. Anglers are also reminded that the mainstem Illinois upstream of Pomeroy Dam and all tributaries on the entire river are also closed year-round. There are numerous spawning grounds upstream of Pomeroy Dam and salmon should be left to do their job for the next generation. If you suspect illegal activity, please call OSP or the local ODFW District Office.

The rest of the the Illinois is open to trout fishing and hatchery steelhead through the end of the year. There are no hatchery programs on the Illinois, so anglers will mostly encounter wild cutthroat and rainbow trout. These fish must be immediately released unharmed. Steelhead don’t typically enter the Illinois until at least December.

During the emergency angling closure trout fishing is still open downstream of 8 dollar bridge road. There is also good bank access along the Illinois River Rd. outside of Selma, all the way downstream to Miami Bar. Please park outside of the white lines to keep roads clear. Do your part and pack out what you pack in, as well as someone else’s trash. There is trash service available at the Siskiyou Field Institute outside of Selma.

Much of the publicly accessible reaches of the Illinois River fall under the USFS Wild Rivers Ranger District. More information can be found on their website.

Check the USGS Kerby guage which provides up to date river flow information. Last updated 10/13/21.

LAKE SELMAC (Selmac Lake): trout, largemouth bass, bluegill, crappie

No trout are planned to be stocked in Selmac Lake until the spring. However, bass fishing should remain fair to good out here through the fall and winter months. Fishing from a boat is probably the best bet, targeting the shore and vegetation lines. Summer aquatic weeds will be starting to die off in the coming weeks. If trout is your thing, then fishing off the bottom near the dam is probably the best bet.

Bluegill fishing from shore has slowed, but still a small chironomid fly under a bobber, or very small piece of worm should pick up a few fish. This can be fun for the young anglers. As always, switching up fly colors is recommended.

The Resort at Lake Selmac is under new ownership. This is a great place to pick up a fishing license, bait, ice and snacks. Check them out. Camping is also available.

Lake Selmac facilities including most campgrounds, day use, and boat ramps are operated by Josephine County Parks are currently open. More information about Josephine County Parks can be found on their website.

Lake Selmac has its share of non-native aquatic hitchhikers. Boat owners should do their part to remove as much vegetation as possible while leaving the ramp, as well as drain and dry their vessel before using another waterbody. Lake Selmac has had a recent introduction of a non-native bryozoan. Bryozoans are mossy like creatures that usually help to clean water and that are not typically harmful to humans. However, this particular species has been known to harbor a disease that can be transmitted to salmon and steelhead. Please help stop the spread of Oregon’s aquatic hitchhikers!

Anglers are reminded that only 1 bass may be harvested from Selmac per day. Last updated 10/13/21.

LEMOLO RESERVOIR: brown trout, rainbow trout, kokanee

Not many recent reports from Lemolo. ODFW stocked a lot of trout in the reservoir this year, so it should be good. The reservoir has been dropping while it is drawn down for the fall. The lake is currently about 20 feet lower than a month ago. This can concentrate fish and make them easier to target. Anglers have also reported catching tiger trout. Unlike at Diamond Lake, anglers can retain tigers at Lemolo.

Kokanee in Lemolo are considered trout and fall under the daily limit for trout of 5 per day, with only one of those measuring over 20 inches. Last updated 10/27/21

LOST CREEK RESERVOIR: rainbow trout, bass

The only ramp usable at Lost Creek Lake is the Takelma ramp operated by the US Army Corps of Engineers on the NW side of the lake. As conditions at area lakes and reservoirs continue to deteriorate due to low water levels, the Takelma ramp will continue to be a place where larger vessels can launch. However, there is no dock here.

Trout fishing should be good. 5,000 legal trout and 2,300 larger trout near a pound each are scheduled to be stocked this week. Last week 15,000 sub-legal trout were also stocked. These will be undersized, and anglers should handle these fish with care as they will over-winter and be of catchable size for next spring.

By late fall trout that have remained in the reservoir over the summer carry a lot of copepods. This is due to fish congregating near cold water sources from the late summer. Copepods pose no threat to humans, are still edible, and can be scraped off the fish prior to cooking. Anglers are encouraged to harvest these fish to help lower copepod levels.

Spinners, wedding rings, and spoons all tipped with nightcrawlers do well up here when trolled. Dead drifting nightcrawlers with the wind under a bobber also do well. With surface temperatures cooling significantly over the last month, trout will again be dispersing throughout the lake. Bank fishing near the dam and tower, above Hwy 62 and along the Lost Creek Arm are good bets.

Bass anglers can still do fairly well targeting steep drop offs near the bank and rocky outcrops.

Joseph Stuart Recreation Area is managed by Jackson County Parks. All loops except “Loop A” will close on Nov. 1. The boat ramp at the marina is closed due to low water. If you’re a frequent user of day use facilities here, a Jackson County Parks season pass is $40 and covers many other local Rogue Valley fishing destinations, as well. More information can be found on the Jackson County Parks website.

The lake continues to drop and is 12 percent full, with an elevation of 1,771.1 ft. The lake surface temperature dropped 6 degrees as of last week and is 54 degrees.

Anglers can get the latest surface temperatures by calling the US Army Corps Lost Creek Lake and Applegate Reservoir projects information line at 1-800-472-2434. Last updated 10/20/21.

MEDCO POND: rainbow trout, largemouth bass, bluegill

In general fishing has been slow up here as trout were last stocked in the early summer. However, cooling fall weather should improve the trout bite for the remaining fish still around. A small boat or float tube are a good bet up here that can give more access than along the Western bank along the road. Fishing from the bank for bluegill can be very productive. Bass should be more active.

For kids, try fishing a nightcrawler on a #4 hook or smaller under a bobber. A red/black/white choronomid fly is also a tempting target for feisty bluegill along the shore. These small flies can be fished with spinning gear under a bobber/bubble instead of a fly rod.

Medco Pond is a private pond and access can be revoked at any time. Bank anglers should stay away from the east portion of the lake, again due to private property. To help keep access open, anglers should make sure to pick up their trash, as well as other trash when they are there. The owners of Medco have restricted vehicle access to along the roadway because of vandals and dumpers. If you see someone doing something that may risk access for everyone, please let ODFW know. Last updated 10/13/21.

PACIFIC OCEAN AND BEACHES: bottomfish, surfperch, salmon, halibut
Boat anglers have been doing very well catching nice size lingcod and rockfish when the ocean swells are down. Bottom fishing is now open to all depths . The daily bag limit for marine fish was recently reduced to 5 fish. As of June 1, boat anglers can no longer retain China, copper, and quillback rockfish. Anglers can still harvest 2 lingcod per day.
As of July 1, anglers may keep one cabezon (minimum length of 16 inches) as part of their 5 fish general marine fish daily bag limit.
Anglers may also choose to fish the offshore longleader fishery outside of the 40-fathom regulatory line, which is open year-round. The longleader fishery has a daily bag limit of 10 fish made of yellowtail, widow, canary, blue, deacon, redstripe, greenstripe, silvergray, chillipepper, and bocaccio rockfish. No other groundfish are allowed and offshore longleader fishing trips cannot be combined with traditional bottomfish, flatfish or halibut trips. Find information about a longleader setup here.

Ocean Chinook salmon fishing closes from Cape Falcon to Humbug Mountain after Oct. 31.

The Central Coast Subarea and Southern Oregon Coast Subarea for halibut both close after Oct. 31.

There are still a few surfperch anglers having success fishing the southern Oregon beaches. Anglers have been catching surfperch when the ocean swells are calmer, using sand shrimp, mole crabs or artificial sand worms. Last updated 10/27/21.

2021 sport bottomfish seasons

PISTOL RIVER: Chinook, trout

Rain this week should open the mouth and bring in good numbers of chinook. For anglers still interested in catching trout, this is great time of year to target sea run cutthroat as they usually follow the Chinook. Bait is the best way to catch these fish, with anchovies or salmon eggs being some of the best. Temporary rule changes for wild adult Chinook are now in place Aug. 31-Dec. 31. One wild adult Chinook per day and two total for this time period. All other zone regulations still apply. Last updated 10/20/21.

PLAT I RESERVOIR: bass, trout

No recent reports from Plat I. Temperatures are cooling, but the bass should still be biting.

Plat I has some of the best disabled access in the area. Last updated 10/13/21

POWERS POND: rainbow trout

Powers Pond was stocked earlier this month with fall rainbow trout. Anglers should have success catching trout on spoons/spinner or by fishing PowerBait. Last updated 10/27/21.

ROGUE RIVER

Rogue River, lower: Chinook, summer steelhead/half-pounders, hatchery coho

Rain this week will probably move most of the remaining salmon out of the estuary for the season and into tributaries or onto the mainstem spawning grounds. This has been a very good fall chinook year, along with summer steelhead, half-pounders and coho.

The Huntley Park seining season is coming to a close at the end of October. Counts from this project will continue to be updated every two weeks until the end of the month and can be found here.

ODFW tracks hatchery survival and other important information through Coded Wire Tag returns. Anglers with hatchery catch are encouraged to return adipose fin-clipped Chinook snouts to ODFW. A snout box with instructions is located inside the fish cleaning station in the port near the boat ramp. Thank you for your participation. Last updated 10/20/21.

Rogue River, middle: Chinook salmon, summer steelhead, rainbow trout

From Sept. 1 through Oct. 31, within the wild and scenic section from Foster Creek upstream to Whiskey Creek, only artificial flies and lures are allowed. No bait is allowed in that reach.

Chinook fishing is now closed upstream of Hog Creek boat ramp through the remainder of the year.

Summer steelhead fishing has been pretty good. Steelhead are being caught all the way from Gold Hill to Galice. The waters around Galice can be a great fishing destination this time of year. There is much public land and open water in this area, and riffles are looking nice. Only hatchery steelhead and hatchery trout may be harvested. Up to 2 hatchery steelhead as part of the daily combined salmon/steelhead bag limit and 5 hatchery trout may be retained.

Locally-owned and operated tackle and fly shops in Grants Pass have excellent gear and very fresh bait, local flies and knowledge that is specific to the Rogue and to your particular technique. Go check them out and offer them support during this time.

It is illegal to snag and keep a snagged fish, whether it’s wild or hatchery! Report violations to Oregon State Police by calling *OSP.

Expect river flows to bump up with this week rain, later in the week. The USGS Grants Pass gage was reading 1,250 cfs on Wednesday morning, with turbidity at 2 NTU and temperatures high 40s. By Friday the river is forecast to bump to around 2,000 cfs. This should have Steelhead on the move, with moving fish for the weekend and a slight increase in temperatures and turbidity.

For those interested in checking conditions before getting on the river, the City of Grants Pass Water Division’s website offers information on river conditions at Grants Pass as well as a link to a river camera. Anglers can check all the USGS gaging stations, which have the most current temperatures and river flows here. Last updated 10/20/21.

Rogue River, upper: summer steelhead, spring Chinook, rainbow trout, cutthroat trout

Beginning Sept. 1 through Oct. 31, all fishing gear from Fishers Ferry to Cole Rivers hatchery is restricted to artificial flies, with no added weights except for a bubble or similar floating device attached to the line. No bait is allowed. After Nov. 1, from Fishers Ferry boat ramp, upstream to Shady Cove Boat ramp, artificial flies and lures are allowed, but no bait. On Nov. 1, upstream of Shady Cove boat Ramp to Cole Rivers Hatchery, bait can again be used. Anti-snagging gear restrictions are in place for the Hatchery Hole (Cole Rivers Hatchery Blocker Dam to 1200 feet downstream): no more than 1 hook and a leader length less than 6 feet.

Anglers are catching trout and summer steelhead regularly. Anglers can only retain hatchery trout (5 per day) and hatchery steelhead. Chinook fishing is closed from Fishers Ferry upstream to Cole Rivers Hatchery through the end of the year.

Cole Rivers Hatchery recycled 1,022 summer Steelhead to the Modoc Access at the Denman Wildlife Area last week and fishing should be very good. There are also good numbers of wild fish in the area.

Salmon eggs are in the gravel in the upper river now, and especially with the extremely low flows, boat anglers are encouraged to fish below Shady Cove, and preferably Dodge Bridge as drift boats and rafts may drag bottom in some shallow riffles. Be mindful of redds (salmon nests) that can be found along river margins and at tailouts from McGregor Park all the way down to the old Gold Ray Dam site.

As of Oct. 12, 3 straggling spring Chinook entered the hatchery ladder, bringing this year’s total to 2,231 fish. Fish will continue to trickle in for the next month or so, but only adipose fin clipped fish will be counted as spring Chinook. Unmarked fish are more than likely fall Chinook and will be counted as so. There is no fall Chinook hatchery program at Cole Rivers Hatchery.

As of Oct 12, two coho had entered the ladder at Cole Rivers Hatchery.

Also as of Oct. 12, 28 fresh summer steelhead also entered the ladder bringing the total to 1,501 fish for the year. This is roughly a bit under 50 percent of the run if long-term averages persist. As noted earlier, 1,022 excess summer steelhead were re-run down river last week.

Flows coming out of William L. Jess Dam have dropped another 50 cfs and are now at 912 cfs. This is to facilitate water saving in the reservoir and spring Chinook rearing in the gravel. Currently the discharge from the dam is 950 cfs (with 685 cfs inflow). River temperatures in the upper river are near 47 degrees as the US Army Corps is completing maintenance on the outflow towers.

Locally-owned and operated tackle and fly shops in Medford, Shady Cove, and Ashland have excellent gear and very fresh bait, local flies and knowledge that is specific to the Rogue and to your particular technique. Go check them out and offer them your support.

For the latest fish counts, call into the Lost Creek Reservoir hotline or check the MyODFW.com fish counts page.

For the most current releases of water out of Lost Creek Reservoir, call 1-800-472-2434. For real time streamflow from USGS gauges on the Rogue click here. Last updated 10/20/21.

Rogue River, above Lost Creek Reservoir: trout

Expect rain up here for the foreseeable future. The current forecast is not calling for snow, so you still have good access throughout all the reaches that were stocked over the summer. All summer the Rogue above Lost Creek received 3,500 rainbow trout weekly. Stocking is over for the year, but there should still be rainbow trout available to target from Prospect to Minnehaha Creek. Fall weather should still be conducive to trout fishing and crowds should be greatly diminished with summer over.

The Rogue and tributaries above Lost Creek Reservoir remain open year-round, with a retention limit of 5 trout. Stocked trout in this reach are not fin-clipped. There are also residential cutthroat and brown trout that are periodically hooked by anglers.

Great techniques up here include throwing small Panther Martin spinners or small hooks with a single Pautske fire egg under a bobber. You also can’t go wrong fishing nymphs up here, or nightcrawlers under a bobber.

Flows above Prospect seem to have leveled off and are 290 cfs.The river flow below prospect is approximately 500 cfs. Many reaches in this section of river have bed rock crevices and wading can be tough. However, there are great trails and openings along the river throughout the stocked reach, which provide good access. The river gradient lessens above Farewell Bend toward Minnehaha Creek.

ODOT trip check maintains a camera at Union Creek (OR62), where you can get an idea of weather and smoke levels, or check out the AQI index around Prospect.

The Rogue River Siskiyou National Forest Lands are in extreme fire danger and recently implemented Stage 3 fire restrictions. Only commercial stoves fired by liquid fuel or propane are permitted. All campfires, even in developed recreation sites are now prohibited forest wide. More information on Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest lands can be found on their website or calling the RRSNF office. Last updated 10/20/21.

SAUNDERS LAKE: rainbow trout

Trout fishing on Saunders Lake has been good this past week for recently stocked trout. Anglers are having success catching trout on spoons/spinner or by fishing PowerBait. Last updated 10/20/21.

SIXES RIVER: Chinook, trout

Recent significant rainfall was enough to warrant lifting the low water closure. Anglers may now fish the previously closed section in the lower river. Anglers may find some early run success near the mouth of the river. One wild adult Chinook per day and 10 per year may be harvested. Please note that the Sixes River bag limit is part of an aggregate limit with Floras Creek and New River. See tables at the top of this zone update for details. Last updated 10/27/21.

SMITH RIVER, Umpqua: Chinook, striped bass

The Smith is open for Chinook fishing up the head of tide at Spencer Cr. Fish will likely move upriver more with lots of rain in the forecast. Anglers are reminded that only 1 wild adult Chinook may be kept per day and five for the year. Trout season closed as usual on Sept. 16. This also means the river and tributaries above Spencer Creek are closed to all fishing.

Some anglers are finding some nice-size striped bass. There is no limit on the number of bass you can keep in the Smith including “stripers.”

The Smith sees only light pressure for most of the season and can provide a great experience for anglers looking to get away from the crowds. Last updated 10/20/21.

SPALDING MILL POND: rainbow trout

Spalding Mill Pond is a small 3-acre lake, with a small campground, ADA accessible trail and restroom. It received 1,200 rainbow trout in May. Water temperatures should be significantly dropping out here, and anglers may catch a few trout. In late September, rainbow trout fingerlings will be stocked for overwintering. This pond is outside of Selma and within the Forest Service Wild Rivers Ranger District. The USFS Wild Rivers Ranger District has implemented extreme fire danger with level 2 restrictions in place. More information can be found on the USFS website Last updated 9/15/21.

TENMILE LAKES/TENMILE CREEK: largemouth bass, trout, yellow perch, coho salmon

Most largemouth bass are in deeper water along hard bottom points in Tenmile Lakes. Some bass can still be found in shallower water and around boat houses and other structure. During the middle of the day bass can be caught on crankbaits, jigs and plastic worms/stickbaits by fishing in the shade or deeper water. The lake level is low this time of the year, so many submerged logs are out of the water.

Yellow perch anglers are reporting decent catches of yellow perch in the 9- to 13-inch range. Fishing for yellow perch has been good for anglers fishing mud flats in 15-20 feet of water. Yellow perch will bite on worms or jigs tipped with a worm fished near the bottom.

The wild coho salmon fishery opened on Tenmile Lakes on Oct. 1. There are no reports of coho in the lakes yet. Anglers are allowed to harvest 1 wild coho per day and have up to 5 for the season in aggregate with all the other coastal wild coho seasons.

Trout fishing in the lakes will pick up as the water temperatures cool down. Trout anglers will want to concentrate their fishing in the deeper water.

Trout fishing in streams closes after Oct. 31. Last updated 10/27/21.

UMPQUA HIKE-IN LAKES AND FOREBAYS: trout

The Forest Service just lifted a lot of closures in the area. Bullpup is still not accessible, but Big Twin and Fuller are now accessible. Cliff and Buckeye are also accessible, but anglers would need to go the long way as the 28 Rd is closed between Dumont and Ash creeks. Calamut, Linda, Wolf, Connie, Skookum, and Maidu would also be good to check depending on the weather. Check with the Forest Service before making the trip. You can check the latest fire closure here. This can be a great time of year to check out the lakes before they are buried in snow.

Clearwater Forebay Two can be a great place to fish with brook trout and rainbow available.

Anglers fishing the high lakes in the Umpqua District are encouraged to e-mail fishing reports. Last updated 10/27/21.

UMPQUA RIVER, MAINSTEM: bass, trout, Chinook

Bass fishing is slowing, but anglers are still catching.

Chinook fishing will be winding down as the fish have started moving upriver to spawn. The Mainstem is restricted to one wild adult Chinook per day and five per year. There is no retention of wild coho in the Umpqua this year. Please practice good catch-and-release techniques with fish that are not retained.

Trout fishing will close Oct. 31 in the main and all its tributaries. Last updated 10/27/21.

UMPQUA RIVER, NORTH: trout (Closed from the mouth to Soda Springs)

Anglers are still wondering, but the North and tributaries from the confluence with the South to the marker below Soda Springs is still closed to all fishing through Nov. 30. This closure is in response to the lowest return of summer steelhead on record. Trout fishing is open year-round upstream of Slide Creek Dam and in tributaries in this section. Fishing above Slide Creek Dam can be a great idea before the snow hits.

Learn more about this closure. Last updated 10/27/21

UMPQUA RIVER, SOUTH: CLOSED

The South closes every year from Sept. 16 through Nov. 30 to protect spawning Chinook. The river reopens for steelhead on Dec. 1. Last updated 9/15/21.

WILLOW LAKE: rainbow trout, largemouth bass, black crappie, brown bullhead, yellow perch

Water levels in Willow continue to drop as irrigation shutdowns in other reservoirs have switched things over to Willow Lake. The reservoir is 41 percent full and the improved boat ramp is no longer usable, but personal watercraft such as kayaks and float tubes are able to find areas to launch. There may be a dirt ramp entrance within the campground near the host that is available but ODFW district staff have not confirmed this as of the writing of this update.

Trout, bass, crappie and perch are most prevalent here. Fishing from shore will likely produce plenty of perch and bluegill. Anglers targeting deeper water on the bank opposite the boat ramp by trolling will have greater success with rainbow trout. No trout have been stocked since late spring, but there should be fish still present.

Campgrounds at Willow Lake are closed for the 2021 season. Day use is open, but fees are collected. A yearly Jackson County Park pass are also available for $40, but expires at the end of the year. For more information please visit the Jackson County Parks website.

Anglers encountering illegally introduced yellow perch are always encouraged to take as many of these as they want. This illegal introduction has only resulted in stunted perch and impacts to the bass and trout fishery in this lake and numerous others around the Southwest District. Anglers are reminded that using live fish as bait is prohibited. If you see someone transporting live fish from or into a water body, please get a photo and/or call OSP with this information. Last updated 10/13/21.

WINCHUCK RIVER: Chinook, trout

Recent rainfall should have pushed the first good groups of early Chinook. Temporary rule changes for wild adult Chinook are now in place Aug 31-Dec 31. One wild adult Chinook per day and two total for this time period. All other zone regulations still apply. Last updated 10/27/21.

WILLAMETTE FISHING

Send us your fishing report

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

FISHING UPDATES

LAKE, PONDS, RESERVOIRS

Most valley-floor ponds are still low and anglers should focus on warm-water species like bass and catfish. Some valley ponds will be stocked again with trout later this fall when water temperatures cool off further. The larger reservoirs are in great shape and less crowded, although boat ramp access may be restricted because of dropping water levels.

If you are planning to release the trout you catch, be mindful about releasing them gently. Long exposure to the air and embedded hooks that cause bleeding when removed, are likely to lead to the fish not surviving. If a fish is bleeding after being caught or is not recovering after being placed in the water, please consider taking the fish home for dinner, if rules permit.

An unscheduled stocking of 2,500 trout went into Turner Lake last week. This is a relatively new public access waterbody in the city of Turner SE of Salem. Other ponds getting stocked this week are Timber Linn, Waverly Lake, and Walling Pond.

Now that the nights are cooler, fish are starting to feel the approach of winter. This will be their last chance to put on growth and fat reserves. Now is a good time to check out some high Cascade Lakes such as Big Lake, Marion Lake and others, especially now that most of the crowds have gone.

RIVERS AND STREAMS

The recent rain has boosted some river flows and with it the feeding activity of fish such as trout and smallmouth bass. Migrating fish such as coho salmon will likely also take advantage of this and push further up the river and begin to stage at tributary mouths. Fishing is still best, however, during the early morning or late evening hours.

Warmwater game fish such as bass are still available in the Willamette and lower sections of the main tributaries. Try fishing crank baits along steep banks and structure (watch those snags!) in 10-15 feet of water. Fish like an easy meal, so look for areas with current (not too much) and current breaks where fish can ambush prey without too much effort. A Carolina rigged worm might also work in flatter, less snaggy areas.

RECENTLY STOCKED:
Refer to waterbody listings for stocking information.
Check out the 2021 trout stocking schedule.

TROUT STOCKING MAPS: Find your place to fish

Check out the ODFW fishing and trout stocking maps to find nearby fishing locations (including high mountain lakes), driving directions and descriptions of amenities.

ANNOUNCEMENTS: closures, special events, etc.

Rivers and streams close to trout Oct. 31

Each year, most Willamette rivers and streams close to trout fishing on Oct. 31 in order to protect out-migrating salmon and steelhead smolts. Be sure to check the regulations if you plan on trout fishing this fall.

UPDATES BY WATERBODY

ALTON BAKER CANOE CANAL (ABCC): trout

Will be stocked this week with 1,400 rainbow trout of various sizes.

The canoe canal is open to fishing all year and is located within Alton Baker Park. A 4-acre pond at the midpoint of the canal is a good spot, as is directly behind Kowloon Restaurant. However, the canal can be fished all along its two-mile length from Day Island Road in Eugene to Aspen Street in Springfield. Last updated 10/20/21.

BLUE RIVER: trout

Trout stocking will resume in the spring.

Two wild trout may be harvested per day above Blue River Reservoir only. Otherwise, anglers may keep five hatchery trout per day. Use of bait is allowed April 22 through Oct. 31. Beginning Nov. 1 through April 21, only flies and lures are allowed. Last updated 6/2/21.

BLUE RIVER RESERVOIR: trout, warmwater species

Trout stocking will resume in the spring.

Blue River Reservoir is located east of Eugene near the town of Blue River, north of Hwy. 126 and is open to year-round fishing. Last updated 06/01/21.

BREITENBUSH RIVER: trout

The Forest Service Road up the Breitenbush River is closed due to wildfire related damage and safety concerns. The road will be closed through the end of the year. ODFW therefore has decided not to stock this river this year. Last updated 10/20/21.

CARMEN RESERVOIR:

Latest estimates for when access and fish stocking will resume are now 2024 at the earliest. Public access to Carmen Reservoir is prohibited until further notice. Closure is due to operations required by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) resulting in reservoir drawdown over the summer. Last updated 3/3/21.
CLACKAMAS RIVER: coho
Coho fishing has been decent on the Clackamas, where fish can be found throughout the system. Anglers can expect new fish to enter the system with each significant rain event for the next several weeks. Anglers have done best fishing with bait under a float.
Flow and visibility on the Clackamas will be affected by each passing front and change in snow levels.
USGS hydrological data readings from the Estacada gauge near Milo McIver State Park. Hydrologic data and river forecasts can also be accessed on the NOAA/National Weather Service NW River Forecast Center — NW River Forecast Center. Last updated 10/20/21.
CLEAR LAKE: trout
Was last stocked in mid-August. Stocking will resume next spring.
Clear Lake is accessed from Hwy. 126 approximately Clear Lake is accessed from Hwy. 126 approximately 70 miles east of Springfield. Linn County’s Clear Lake Resort rents cabins and boats. Last updated 9/1/21.
COAST FORK WILLAMETTE RIVER: Chinook, summer steelhead, trout
The river is open to fishing all year for trout, hatchery Chinook salmon, hatchery steelhead, and wild steelhead over 24 inches. Use of bait allowed April 22 – Oct 31, but beginning Nov. 1 anglers may only use lures and artificial flies. In addition to five hatchery trout, two wild trout may be kept daily. Last updated 7/7/21.
COTTAGE GROVE POND (ROW RIVER NATURE PARK POND): trout, bass, bluegill
Will be stocked this week 800 hatchery rainbow trout.
Cottage Grove Ponds are open to year-round fishing and via an asphalt pathway behind the truck scales on Row River Road. In addition to fishing, these ponds also offer wildlife viewing opportunities and a fishing dock is available on-site. Last updated 10/20/21.
COTTAGE GROVE RESERVOIR: trout, spotted bass, largemouth bass, crappie, yellow perch, bluegill
Will be stocked again next spring. Until then, anglers can target the warmwater species listed above and holdover trout in the cooler pockets of the reservoir.
Cottage Grove Reservoir is south of Cottage Grove and is open to fishing all year. Updated 8/18/21.
DETROIT RESERVOIR: trout
The reservoir was stocked several times this summer with tens of thousands of one-pound hatchery trout. It will be stocked again this week with 3,700 one-pound hatchery trout. The reservoir elevation is still dropping and is now roughly at the bottom of Mongold boat ramp. It may not be prudent to try to launch a boat there as there is usually a lot of mud and silt built up which may cause your trailer to get stuck. Those with lighter watercraft such as pontoons, canoes and kayaks shouldn’t have any problems. For bank fishing, the head of the reservoir in the town of Detroit could be a good place to try for trout.
For the latest information on water levels at Detroit Reservoir check with the Army Corps of Engineers’ website for more information.
Pretty much all techniques will catch fish, but it might take some experimenting to find out what is most effective on the day you’re out there. You will vastly improve your chances of catching a fish if you fish early or late in the day when light-levels are low and fish are less wary.
Kokanee fishing is pretty much done for the next few months as the adult fish are preparing their spawning runs up the tributary creeks.
Anglers have reported catching lots of small Chinook salmon in pursuit of kokanee and trout. Please take extra care in releasing these fish back into the water unharmed, as they are listed species and are only in the reservoir temporarily before they migrate downstream and out to the ocean.
As a reminder to anglers, fishing for and harvesting Chinook in the lake and the rivers above is prohibited. Any Chinook caught in Detroit must be released unharmed.
Anglers are encouraged to report their catch on forms available at signs and kiosks which have been installed at key locations around the lake. Simply fill out the form and return in the designated drop boxes. There is also an on-line form. Remember to indicate whether the fish you catch have their adipose fin or not. This information will allow ODFW to manage the fishery for the benefit of both recreational anglers and the resource. Last updated 10/27/21.
DEXTER RESERVOIR: trout, largemouth bass, smallmouth bass
Will be stocked again next spring. Until then, anglers can target the warmwater species listed above and holdover trout in the cooler pockets of the reservoir.
Dexter Reservoir near Lowell is visible from Hwy. 58. Boat and bank access is available through state and county parks. Parking and bank access are also available from the causeway near Lowell. Largemouth bass and some smallmouth are also available to anglers in this reservoir. Last updated 8/18/21.
DORENA RESERVOIR: trout, largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, yellow perch, crappie, bluegill
Will be stocked again next spring. Until then, anglers can target the warmwater species listed above and holdover trout in the cooler pockets of the reservoir.
Dorena Reservoir is east of Cottage Grove on Row River Road and is open to fishing all year. Trout and warmwater fish are available. Baker Bay Park (Lane County) is open seasonally from April – October. The park has a boat ramp, ADA restrooms, showers, picnic and camp spots. Last update 10/13/21.
EAGLE CREEK:  coho
Currently conditions are low and clear, though coho are present in the system. Anglers will still do best targeting fish near the mouth or waiting for the next heavy rain event.
Bonnie Lure State Recreation Area has reopened but visitors are advised to watch for hazardous trees.

Keep in mind that long stretches of Eagle Creek do run through private property, particularly up near the hatchery and from an area below the lower ladder on down near Bonnie Lure to the mouth. Anglers are advised to pay close attention to where you fish and we encourage you to ask permission prior to accessing or crossing private lands on your way to your favorite fishing hole. Last updated 10/20/21.
FALL CREEK: trout
Trout stocking will resume next spring.
Fall Creek is open all year for trout. Bait is allowed from April 22 through Oct. 31; however, beginning Nov. 1, anglers may only use lures and artificial flies. Five hatchery trout and an additional two wild trout may be harvested daily in the river.
Fishing for salmon upstream of Fall Creek Dam is prohibited. Below Fall Creek Dam the creek is open all year for hatchery Chinook, hatchery steelhead and wild steelhead greater than 24 inches. Last updated 8/18/21.
FALL CREEK RESERVOIR: trout
Was last stocked at the beginning of April with 4,667 legal-size and 667 pound-size rainbow trout. Will be stocked again next spring. Until then, anglers can target holdover trout in the cooler pockets of the reservoir. Last updated 8/18/21.
FARADAY LAKE: trout
Faraday Lake is now closed while PGE updates its powerhouse at Rivermill Dam. This closure is expected to continue until spring 2022. For more information, visit PGE’s Parks and Recreation webpage.

FERN RIDGE RESERVOIR: largemouth bass, crappie, bluegill, brown bullhead

This 9,000-acre lake just 12 miles west of Eugene is the Willamette Basin’s largest water body. The reservoir is getting lower and only Orchard Park and Richardson boat ramps are available to launch boats at this time. Check with Lane County Parks and Recreation for information on boat access.

For local information regarding the lake and available boat ramps, contact the Lane County Parks Department at 541-682-2000.

Bass and crappie are available throughout the spring and summer and with the warmer weather are now active. Look for crappie along the weedy edges on the south side of the reservoir. The south shore around Perkins Peninsula as well as along the face of the dam are good spots. A popular place to catch panfish and bullhead catfish is right below the dam spillway.
There is good bank access at several rest stops and campgrounds, and three seasonal boat ramps. Last updated 9/22/21.
FOSTER RESERVOIR: trout, bass, perch, catfish
The reservoir gets stocked in the spring and fall with hatchery trout. It was stocked for the last time this year in late September with 3,300 trout.
Besides trout, look for smallmouth bass and yellow perch near underwater structure and drop-offs. Please remember that only kokanee and adipose fin-clipped trout may be kept as part of the trout bag limit, but there are no limits on size or number of bass. Retention of warmwater fish species such as bluegill, catfish, crappie, and yellow perch is also allowed — no limit on size or number. Anglers report good success in the two arms of the reservoir, as well as the shoreline in between.
The water level in the reservoir is currently being lowered to provide winter storage. Calkins Park boat ramp is no longer usable. Gedney boat ramp is still usable for the moment but will likely be out of commission by the end of October. That leaves Sunnyside Park boat ramp as the best option during the rest of the fall.
This scenic 1,200-acre reservoir on the South Santiam River is located just 30 minutes from Interstate 5. There is good bank access at several rest stops and campgrounds, and three seasonal boat ramps. Last updated 10/6/21.
GOLD LAKE: brook trout, rainbow trout
Gold Lake is open for the season but will be closed after the end of this month. Gold lake is open for fishing from May 22 – Oct 31 annually, and has special fishing regulations in place that include no retention of rainbow trout, no limit on brook trout, fly-fishing only (has to be a fly rod, no spinning rigs) and barbless hooks. Oregon State Marine Board passed a new regulation in 2020 that allows ELECTRIC motors only on Gold Lake.

Gold Lake is a 100-acre lake located north of the Willamette Pass summit off Hwy. 58 approximately 23 miles southeast of Oakridge. Last updated 10/13/21.
GREEN PETER RESERVOIR: kokanee, trout, bass
The water level in the reservoir continues to drop and will continue to do so through the fall. Thistle Creek boat ramp is no longer available as the water level has dropped below the toe-slope of the ramp. It will stay this way until the refill season, which starts on Feb. 1.
This large reservoir gets stocked annually with 20,000 hatchery trout. Look for them in cooler, deeper water and around ledges, drop-offs and underwater structure. Smallmouth bass also like to hang out near underwater structure and tend to be found in shallower water. Also look for them near rocky outcrops.
Kokanee, trout and smallmouth bass are all fishable in this reservoir, although kokanee fishing is pretty much done for the year as they prepare for their spawning run up the tributary creeks. Anglers may keep up to 25 kokanee per day in addition to the 5-trout limit.
Best bet for anglers without a boat is to drive to the top of the reservoir where Quartzville Creek enters the reservoir. Large trout will sometimes forage where the river brings in food swept down from upstream. Last updated 9/29/21.
HARRIET LAKE: trout

Lake Harriet is now open, as is FR 57 between Harriet and Timothy Lake. Trout fishing has been good. Harriet Lake received 1,400 trophies the last week of May. For more information, visit PGE’s Parks and Recreation webpage.

Harriet Lake is a 23-acre reservoir on the Oak Grove Fork of the Clackamas River in the Mount Hood National Forest. Boat ramp is just past campground. Last updated 7/14/21.

HENRY HAGG LAKE: rainbow trout, smallmouth bass, yellow perch, largemouth bass, crappie, bluegill, brown bullhead, yellow bullhead, native cutthroat trout

Hagg Lake continues to receive regular stockings of catchable-size trout with some trophies mixed in. The bite for other species (bass, panfish, etc.) has picked up as water temperatures warm. Shallow bays and creek arms are responding more quickly to sunny weather than the main lake.

Located near Forest Grove (7 miles SW), Hagg Lake is one of western Oregon’s largest lakes (1,110-acre) and one of its premier warmwater fishing locations, with populations of record-class largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, crappie and bullhead.

Maintained and operated by Washington County, the park features numerous picnic areas, two boat launching facilities, more than 15 miles of hiking trails, and observation decks for wildlife and bird watching. The lake and lake park are currently open, although users are encouraged to check the Hagg Lake Park website, as conditions can change. Last updated 5/5/21.
HILLS CREEK RESERVOIR: trout, crappie, bass
Will be stocked again next spring. Don’t forget that you can keep hatchery Chinook in the reservoir as mentioned below.
Hills Creek Reservoir is located about four miles southeast of Oakridge and is open to year-round fishing. In addition to catchable-size trout, the reservoir is stocked with 60,000 adipose fin-clipped rainbow trout fingerlings and 100,000 adipose fin-clipped spring Chinook salmon fingerlings annually to provide a harvest fishery the following year.
Trout and salmon must be adipose fin-clipped to be harvested. Large native trout are available for catch-and-release fishing. Packard Boat Ramp (USFS) remains accessible at current reservoir elevation. Last updated 10/13/21.
LEABURG LAKE: trout
Was last stocked the week of Aug. 23 with 933 legal-size rainbow trout.

Leaburg Lake is open to fishing all year. Bait can be used from April 22 – Oct. 31, but beginning Nov. 1, anglers may only use lures and artificial flies. All wild trout must be released. Only hatchery fish may be kept. Last updated 9/1/21.
MCKENZIE RIVER below Leaburg Lake (R1): trout, salmon, steelhead
Was last stocked the week of Sept. 13 with 2,000 legal-size rainbow trout.

The Leaburg Dam fish counts are a great spring salmon and summer steelhead resource, and information is back online. Counts are updated by the Corps of Engineers weekly. These resources are most useful to anglers from May – September.
All non-adipose fin-clipped trout must be released unharmed. Check page 46 of the 2021 Sport Fishing Regulations for bait restrictions in the segment you plan to fish. Beginning Nov. 1, anglers may only use lures and artificial flies.
The lower McKenzie River is open to retention of adipose fin-clipped salmon and steelhead and non-adipose fin-clipped steelhead greater than 24 inches long. A Columbia River Basin Endorsement is required for anglers targeting salmon and steelhead in the McKenzie. Last updated 9/22/21.
MCKENZIE RIVER above Leaburg Lake (R2): trout, steelhead
Was last stocked the week of Sept. 6 with 1,833 legal-size rainbow trout.

Important reminder: When boating, treat this section of river like it is the first time you have been on it! Currently, there are still considerable fire-related cleanup efforts being conducted in this area.

Status of boat ramps in the upper McKenzie:
Forest Glen Boat Ramp – Open.
Finn Rock Boat Ramp – Open.
Silver Creek – Open. TAKE OUT! Or you have to go through Martin Rapids.
Rennie – Not open, but could pull out in an emergency.
Marten Rapids class III rapids. Take out at Silver Creek.
Helfrich Landing-Open.
All non-adipose fin-clipped trout must be released unharmed. Bait is allowed from Leaburg Dam to Forest Glen Boat Ramp from April 22 – Oct 31. Last updated 9/15/21.
MIDDLE FORK WILLAMETTE RIVER: trout, salmon, steelhead

The Middle Fork Willamette River is open to bait below Dexter Dam only. Reminder: Restrictions from Dexter Dam to approximately 700 feet downstream to the markers: No angling from the north shore, from a floating device, or while wading (page 44 in regulations). This river reach is open to retention of adipose fin-clipped salmon and steelhead and non-adipose fin-clipped steelhead greater than 24 inches long.

A Columbia River Basin Endorsement is required for anglers targeting salmon and steelhead in the Middle Fork Willamette below Dexter Dam.

The Middle Fork Willamette above Lookout Point and Hills Creek reservoirs is open to fishing using lures and artificial flies. All wild trout must be released upstream of Lookout Point Reservoir. The Middle Fork Willamette River is not stocked with hatchery trout. Last updated 6/2/21.

NORTH FORK RESERVOIR: trout

Trout fishing has been good in the North Fork Reservoir. Anglers have done best by trolling from a boat with spinners. For more information, visit PGE’s Parks and Recreation webpage.

North Fork Reservoir is a 350-acre reservoir of the Clackamas River behind North Fork Dam approximately 5.2 miles east of Estacada, Ore. This reservoir has two boat ramps, boat moorage, 50 campsites, picnic areas, boat rentals, grocery story, fueling station, and ADA-accessible fishing platforms. It is big and deep enough, and is fed by the upper Clackamas River, to stay cool longer into the summer than most of the other lakes and ponds. Last updated 9/9/21.

QUARTZVILLE CREEK: trout

This river above Green Peter Reservoir was stocked for the last time in late July. The river is currently running at around 500 cfs. Conditions are excellent for trout this time of year. Rain events after a long drought usually bring on an increase in feeding activity for trout as they try to put on weight before the winter sets in. Rain is forecasted for this weekend, but fishing can still be good as fish become less wary at higher flows.

Light tackle including flies works best, but bait is allowed.

Trout are active year-round, and anglers are allowed to keep up to five fish daily. Last updated 10/6/21.
SALMON CREEK: trout
Was last stocked the week of Aug. 23 with 667 legal-size rainbow trout.

Salmon Creek is open to fishing all year. Bait can be used from April 22 – Oct. 31, but beginning Nov. 1, anglers may only use lures and artificial flies. Trout are released at multiple locations upstream to Black Creek. Two wild trout per day, 8-inch minimum length, may be kept in addition to five hatchery trout. Last updated 9/1/21.
SALT CREEK: trout
No recent fishing reports. Salt Creek is an unstocked tributary to the Middle Fork Willamette River east of Oakridge. Salt Creek and its tributaries are open to fishing all year. Bait can be used from April 22 – Oct. 31, but beginning Nov. 1, anglers may only use lures and artificial flies. Two wild trout may be kept per day, 8-inch minimum length. Last updated 5/19/20.
SANDY RIVER: coho
Coho fishing has been slow as of late, despite fishing pressure remaining relatively heavy. Anglers can expect fresh fish to enter the Sandy with each significant rain even for the next several weeks.
Flow and visibility on the Sandy are greatly influenced by each passing front and change in snow levels. Colder temperatures, as well as less precipitation means this glacially fed system will not only be on the drop, but will also clear up much more quickly.
Anglers should confirm access before they go. All Metro Parks and boat ramps (including Dabney and Lewis and Clark) are now open, but may have modified operations. Check conditions at individual parks on Metro’s website. State parks and recreation areas appear open.
USGS hydrological data for the Sandy near bull run. Last updated 9/29/21.
SANTIAM RIVER (NORTH FORK): steelhead, coho, trout
Many public access points along the river are still closed from last year’s wildfires, including Fisherman’s Bend, and all recreation areas along the Little North Fork. But Packsaddle Park has recently re-opened, which is just below Minto Dam. Anglers can still access the river from Stayton downstream and in a few places above such as the Mehama bridge and North Santiam State Park.
No recent fishing reports. River levels best for fishing are at or below 3,000 cfs, and the river is currently running at 2,500 cfs at the gage in Mehama. Water clarity is good. These conditions are likely to change based on the expected rain forecasted for this week.
Fishing for hatchery steelhead is open year-round but the run numbers were disappointingly low this year. Anglers can still do catch-and-release for trout through Oct.31, as well as keep up to five hatchery trout if any dropped down from the reservoirs above.
The coho salmon run this year appears to be shaping up well. About 23,000 have been counted at Willamette Falls so far crossing into the upper basin with more to come. About 450 adult fish have already arrived at the Bennett dam fish counting station in Stayton. Anglers are allowed to keep two fish per day. Although the entire river below Big Cliff dam is open, these fish tend to concentrate below Mehama. For bank anglers, best bets to intercept these fish are at I-5 rest stop, Jefferson, Buell Miller County Park and Stayton Riverfront Park. Last updated 10/27/21.
NOTICE: Fishermen’s Bend, Niagara County Park and Minto County Park are still closed due to wildfire damage. There are also sporadic traffic delays due to road repair and hazard tree removal along Hwy 22.
WARNING: There are several large downed trees in the river creating some dangerous hazards for boaters. For more information check out the Oregon State Marine Board website.
SANTIAM RIVER (NORTH FORK) above DETROIT: trout

The highway along the upper North Santiam has re-opened but many places will look a lot different. Traffic delays are common because of hazard tree removal. Be aware that there are still many dangerous tree snags around with root structures weakened by fire and that could come down at any moment. It will be safer to fish in unburned areas further upstream (above Whitewater Creek).

In general, this river is open year-round to fishing, but fishing gets harder in the winter when the fish’s metabolism slows down. Now might be a good time to go before winter sets in for good. But plenty of trout were released throughout June and July and many of these fish are still available. Most trout can be found from Marion Forks down to the mouth and are well-distributed. Flies and spinners work best, but bait is allowed.

The river level has increased from recent rains but should still be clear. Currently it’s flowing around 600 cfs where it enters Detroit Lake. Anglers may see some salmon carcasses along the river in a few places. Many of them were placed there by hatchery staff and volunteers to provide vital nutrients into the river and enhance the food web.

Anglers may keep up to five trout per day. Remember, this section of river is closed to salmon fishing. Last updated 10/27/21.

SANTIAM RIVER (SOUTH FORK): steelhead, bass, trout

Fishing is generally best when flows are below 3,000 cfs. Currently flows are around 1,600 cfs at the Waterloo gage, but this is likely to change based on the amount of rain in the forecast.

Steelhead fishing is open year-round. The run this year is disappointing, but fish are still around, primarily from Waterloo Park upstream to the dam. Chinook have completed their spawning but a few carcasses may still be around on the river margins. Be careful not to allow pets to eat these carcasses as they carry a toxin that is poisonous to dogs.

Fishing for smallmouth bass can be very good during the warm months below Lebanon.

Trout fishing remains open until Oct. 31. Anglers are reminded that only fin-clipped trout may be kept. Last updated 10/20/21.

SMITH RESERVOIR: trout

Latest estimates for when access and fish stocking will resume are now 2024 at the earliest. The Eugene Water & Electric Board is enveloped in a construction project to retrofit, refurbish and upgrade capital equipment at its Carmen-Smith Hydroelectric Project.

The capital construction projects planned for the 2017-2024 time frame will create significant public access constraints due primarily to safety concerns. In order to keep the public and construction personnel safe during the five-year project, EWEB and the Forest Service agreed to close access to Forest Road 730 at the Powerhouse. The closure will deny public access to Trail Bridge Campground, Smith Reservoir and Lake’s End Campground. The closure of the road to the public will begin in March 2017 and continue through 2024. Last updated 8/18/21.

TIMBER LINN LAKE: rainbow trout

Will be stocked this week with around 1,000 hatchery trout. As a reminder to anglers, only one fish over 20 inches is allowed as part of the 5 fish bag limit.

This is a family-friendly fishing pond located within Timber-Linn Memorial Park in Albany. Timber-Linn Lake can be reached by turning east off I-5 onto the Santiam Highway (Hwy. 20), then immediately turning north onto Price Road and proceeding to the park entrance. Last updated 10/27/21.

TIMOTHY LAKE: trout

Trout fishing has been good and there is an abundance of crayfish in the lake.

Timothy lake is currently only accessible via US-26 for drive in access. The Timothy Lake campground is currently open. Check the Mt Hood National Forest website for updates. Last updated 8/11/21

TRAIL BRIDGE RESERVOIR: trout

The Eugene Water & Electric Board is implementing a construction project to retrofit, refurbish and upgrade capital equipment at its Carmen-Smith Hydroelectric Project. Latest estimates for when access and fish stocking will resume are now 2024 at the earliest. The capital construction projects planned for the 2017-2024 timeframe will create significant public access constraints due primarily to safety concerns. In order to keep the public and construction personnel safe during the project, EWEB and the Forest Service agreed to close access to Forest Road 730 at the Powerhouse.

The closure will deny public access to Trail Bridge Campground, Smith Reservoir and Lake’s End Campground. The closure of the road to the public started in March 2017 and will continue at least through 2024.

ODFW has discontinued stocking of Trail Bridge reservoir for the duration of the closure – hatchery fish allocated to the reservoir are being redistributed to other stocked waterbodies. Only adipose fin-clipped trout may be harvested from Trail Bridge Reservoir. Only flies and lures may be used. Last updated 8/18/21.

TRILLIUM LAKE: trout

This is a very popular lake, close to the Portland metro. Anglers should plan to arrive early to avoid the worst of the crowds. Last updated 8/11/21.

TURNER LAKE: bass, panfish, some trout

Some hatchery trout became available recently and so this lake was stocked for the first time with about 2,500 trout.

This approximately 70-acre lake just north of Turner is open to public fishing along the southern half. It is an old borrow pit and features largemouth bass, panfish such as bluegill, and a few trout. There’s a boat ramp in the southwest corner of the lake. This waterbody should produce fish year-round. To get there take Turner Rd south from Salem and take a left onto Holly St before you get to downtown Turner. No gas-powered motors are allowed. A good way to cover the water is to use an electric trolling motor and troll a spoon or spinning lure. On calm days a float tube or kayak can be a good way to get out as well. Last updated 10/27/21.
WALLING POND: trout, crappie, bass
In summer, anglers can target warmwater species that reside in the pond year-round, such as bass, crappie and bullhead catfish. The pond will be stocked with 1,200 hatchery trout.
This is an eight-acre privately-owned pond with public access in Salem at the northeast corner of McGilchrist and 16th Streets, S.E. There is no trash service out there so please pack out what you packed in. Last updated 10/27/21.
WAVERLY LAKE: trout, bluegill, catfish

This lake will be stocked this week with about 1,100 legal-size trout. Anglers may keep only one fish over 20 inches as part of their 5 trout bag limit.

From I-5 take exit 234 west towards Albany. The pond is located a quarter mile down Pacific Boulevard on the right. A paved ADA-accessible path runs all the way around the pond. Last updated 10/27/21.

WILLAMETTE RIVER: catch-and-release sturgeon, steelhead, spring Chinook, small and largemouth bass

Anglers should confirm access before they go. All Metro Parks and boat ramps are now open but may have modified operations. Check conditions at individual parks on Metro’s website. State parks and recreation areas appear open.
Coho salmon are currently pouring over Willamette Falls and up into the upper river. This is shaping up to be a better than average year. Anglers may keep up to two salmon per day. Anglers should focus their efforts at the mouths of the major tributaries (Molalla, Yamhill, Santiam).
The upstream section between Albany and Harrisburg is open year-round for trout fishing, which can be very good when flows are cooperating. Anglers may keep two trout per day. Smallmouth bass also can be a lot of fun to catch and are plentiful between Salem and Corvallis. From Salem downstream there are plenty of largemouth bass in the deeper, quieter sections.
The river is ideal for small boats such as canoes and kayaks, but there are enough public access points for bank anglers as well. Consult Oregon Parks and Recreation Department for specific locations.
The Willamette often gets overlooked because it is so close. But this river offers convenience, fairly good access and variety. Last updated 10/6/21.

CENTRAL FISHING

Send us your fishing report

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

FISHING UPDATES

LAKE, PONDS, RESERVOIRS

Fall trout stocking gets underway this week, with the onset of cooler temperatures. The waters are getting cool enough to put trout on the bite, but aren’t too cool for bass and other warmwater species.
Most of the reservoirs in the Deschutes Basin are well below maximum capacity. If the dry weather continues, these low water levels will affect fishing and potentially trout stocking. Be sure to check back for updates as the season progresses.
RIVERS AND STREAMS
Cooler fall temperatures should get trout biting as they try to bulk up for the winter months.
RECENTLY STOCKED
Scheduled to be stocked this week (Sept. 20): Prineville Youth Fishing Pond.
Check out the 2021 trout stocking schedule.
TROUT STOCKING MAPS: Find your place to fish

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

ANNOUNCEMENTS: closures, special events, etc.

Emergency closures extended on lower Deschutes River

I-84 upstream to the Lower End of Moody Rapids
Closed to all fishing for all species through Dec. 31.

Moody Rapids upstream to Sherars Falls
Closed to steelhead fishing and retention through Dec. 31.
Closed to coho fishing and retention Nov. 1 to Dec. 31.

Sherars Falls upstream to Pelton Regulating Dam
Closed to steelhead fishing and retention through Dec. 31.
Closed to coho fishing and retention Oct. 1 to Dec. 31.

UPDATES BY WATERBODY

ANTELOPE FLAT RESERVOIR: rainbow trout

No recent fishing reports. Water is low and dirty. Last updated 9/1/21.

BIKINI POND: rainbow trout

No recent reports. The fall stocking at Bikini Pond has been postponed until water temperatures cool in the lake; the pond will be stocked by the end of October. Last updated 10/13/21.

CENTURY GRAVEL POND: rainbow trout

No recent updates. The pond is located ¼ mile west of the junction of USFS Rd 46 (Century Drive) and USFS Rd 4635. Last updated 10/6/21.

CRANE PRAIRIE RESERVOIR: rainbow trout, brook trout, largemouth bass, kokanee

Anglers report fair fishing with cooling water temperatures. Wild rainbow trout must be released unharmed. Reservoir will close to fishing for the season after Oct. 31. Last updated 10/6/21.

CRESCENT LAKE: rainbow trout, brown trout, lake trout and kokanee

Lake level is extremely low and developed boat ramps are unavailable for launching boats. Open to fishing all year. One lake trout per day, 24-inch minimum length. Last updated 10/6/21.

CROOKED RIVER: trout, whitefish

No recent fishing reports.

Crooked River anglers may encounter bull trout now that there is volitional passage at Opal Springs. Anglers who catch a bull trout should release it unharmed and report their catch to the US Fish and Wildlife Service at crookedbulltrout@fws.gov. Last updated 9/1/21.

DAVIS LAKE: largemouth bass, rainbow trout

No recent fishing reports. Water is low and it may be difficult to launch a bigger boat. Open to fishing all year. Fly-fishing only, barbless hooks required. Catch-and-release for trout. No limit on size or number of warmwater fish. Last updated 7/7/21.

DESCHUTES RIVER, mouth to Pelton Dam: fall Chinook, coho, redband trout, whitefish

Emergency closures have been extended on the Deschutes River and additional closures have been implemented in order to protect dismal wild steelhead returns. Additional coho angling closures will help reduce angling impacts on wild steelhead when fishing with similar gear types:

I-84 upstream to the Lower End of Moody Rapids
Closed to all fishing for all species through Dec. 31.

Moody Rapids upstream to Sherars Falls
Closed to steelhead fishing and retention through Dec. 31.
Closed to coho fishing and retention Nov. 1 to Dec. 31.

Sherars Falls upstream to Pelton Regulating Dam
Closed to steelhead fishing and retention through Dec. 31.
Closed to coho fishing and retention Oct. 1 to Dec. 31.
Anglers targeting salmon from Moody to Sherars through Oct. 31 must be mindful to minimize incidental catch of steelhead. Anglers targeting trout on the lower Deschutes from Moody Rapids to Pelton must also minimize steelhead bycatch. Check out these tips for avoiding steelhead while fishing.

Water temperatures in the lower Deschutes continue to decline. Shorter periods of solar input, changes in dam releases, and cooler air temperatures all contributed to current water temperatures in the low 60s F. Last updated 10/27/21.

DESCHUTES RIVER, Lake Billy Chinook to Benham Falls: rainbow trout, brown trout

Anglers report good fishing in the mornings and evenings. Open year-round for trout. Artificial flies and lures only. No limit on brown trout. Last updated 8/18/21.

DESCHUTES RIVER, Benham Falls to Little Lava Lake: rainbow trout, brown trout

Closed to fishing until May 22, 2022.

EAST LAKE: rainbow trout, brown trout, kokanee

The lake is low for this time of year so boat ramp access may be challenging. ODFW has removed over 11,000 pounds of invasive chub this year, which should reduce competition with trout and kokanee. Open all year to fishing. Last updated 8/18/21.

FALL RIVER: rainbow trout, brown trout

River was stocked with trophy rainbow trout recently. Anglers report good fishing throughout the river. Open to fishing all year. Restricted to fly-fishing with barbless hooks only. Last updated 8/18/21.

HAYSTACK RESERVOIR: rainbow trout, kokanee, black crappie, bluegill, smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, brown bullhead

The North Unit Irrigation District recently ended irrigation for the season and will not be releasing water into the reservoir. The water level will remain low for now.

Under these low water conditions, the boat ramps will be unusable, and shoreline access for any bank fishing will be from the muddy exposed reservoir bed. Last updated 9/1/21.

HOOD RIVER: steelhead

No recent fishing reports. Water clarity is turbid due to glacial flows. Last updated 7/21/21.

HOSMER LAKE: brook, rainbow and cutthroat trout

Anglers report good fishing. Open to fishing all year. Restricted to fly-fishing only with barbless hooks. Catch-and-release for all species. Last updated 10/6/21.

LAKE BILLY CHINOOK: bull, brown and rainbow trout, kokanee, smallmouth bass

No recent fishing reports. Closes to fishing Oct. 31

Harvest is limited to 1 bull trout over 24 inches under the daily trout limit. Anglers can now keep 5 kokanee in addition to daily trout limit. No bag or size limits on brown trout and bass. Last updated 5/19/21.

LAURANCE LAKE: trout

Laurance Lake is open for public access. Laurance Lake will be closed to fishing from Nov. 1 through April 21 under permanent rule. Last updated 10/27/21.

LAVA LAKE, Big: rainbow trout

No recent reports. Open to fishing all year. Last updated 10/6/21.

METOLIUS POND: rainbow trout

Youth (ages 17 and under) and disabled anglers only. Last updated 5/26/21.

METOLIUS RIVER: rainbow trout, bull trout

Anglers report good fishing. Catch-and-release for trout including bull trout. Fishing is restricted to fly-fishing only upstream of Bridge 99 (Lower Bridge). Section above Allingham Bridge will close to fishing after Oct. 31.

Artificial flies and lures permitted below Bridge 99 (Lower Bridge). River is closed to fishing above Allingham Bridge until May 22, 2021. All public access to Wizard Falls Hatchery is closed until further notice. Last updated 10/6/21.

NORTH TWIN LAKE: rainbow trout

Anglers report good fishing. Open to fishing all year. Last updated 10/6/21.

OCHOCO RESERVOIR: rainbow trout, black crappie, smallmouth bass

Water level is extremely low, bank access is limited and it’s walk-in only. Last updated 5/19/21.

ODELL LAKE: lake trout, kokanee, rainbow trout

No recent fishing reports. Kokanee limit is 25 per day in addition to daily trout limit. One lake trout per day, 24-inch minimum length. Bull trout must be released unharmed. Lake will close to fishing after Oct. 31. Last updated 10/6/21.

PAULINA LAKE: brown trout, rainbow trout, kokanee

Anglers report good fishing for kokanee and brown trout. Last updated 6/9/21.

PINE HOLLOW RESERVOIR: rainbow trout, largemouth bass, bluegill

Pine Hollow Reservoir was stocked on Sept. 28 with 1,500 legal-size trout and 500 trophy-size trout. Last updated 9/29/21.

PINE NURSERY POND: trout, largemouth bass

Pond was stocked with rainbow trout last week. Limit is 2 fish per day. Limit is 2 fish per day. Last updated 10/6/21.

PRINEVILLE RESERVOIR: rainbow trout, largemouth and smallmouth bass, crappie

Trout fishing has been good near the dam. All boat ramps are closed due to low water. Last updated 9/1/21.

SOUTH TWIN LAKE: rainbow trout

Anglers report good fishing. Open to fishing all year. Last updated 10/6/21.

SPRAGUE POND: rainbow trout

Due to low and warm water, the pond will not be stocked until conditions improve. Turn at Cow Meadow sign off USFS Rd 40. Take first left at first dirt road and follow road to pond. Last updated 7/21/21.

TAYLOR LAKE (Wasco County): rainbow trout

No recent reports from anglers. Some big largemouth bass can be found in the shallows of the lake. Taylor Lake was stocked on Sept. 28with 2,500 legal-size trout and 500 trophy-size trout. Last updated 9/29/21.

THREE CREEK LAKE: rainbow trout, brook trout

Anglers report good fishing for brook trout and hatchery rainbow trout. Open to fishing all year. Last updated 7/21/21.

WALTON LAKE: rainbow trout

The lake has been well-stocked and the fish should be very active with the cooler water temperatures. Last updated 10/6/20.

WICKIUP RESERVOIR: kokanee, brown trout, rainbow trout, largemouth bass

The Deschutes Arm of the reservoir is closed from the boat ramp at Gull Point to ODFW markers upstream of Sheep’s Bridge from Sept. 1 to April 21. Open from Gull Point Boat Ramp downstream to the dam open until Nov. 1. Last updated 10/6/21.

SE FISHING

Send us your fishing report

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

Keep your eye out for QR code signs posted at various fishing locations throughout Baker County! Anglers with smartphones can provide fishing reports and feedback on-site by scanning the QR code, which directs anglers to our ODFW Fishing Report survey. Directions on how to use the QR codes are provided right on the signs.

FISHING UPDATES

LAKE, PONDS, RESERVOIRS

Miller Lake was stocked several weeks ago with some of the largest trophy rainbow trout stocked in the Klamath Watershed District. Many of these trout are exceeding four pounds and excellent table fare. Fishing will be fair as most have been caught.
Most lakes and reservoirs in Lake County are experiencing extremely low water levels and they will not be stocked again this year. Make sure to look below for specific waterbodies.
RIVERS AND STREAMS
Access to many rivers is closed due to the Bootleg and Cougar Peak fires.

Yellow perch fishing in Crystal, Recreation, Fourmile and Williamson are still good.

The Wood, Klamath and Lower Williamson rivers remain the rivers to fish this week with the Klamath River below Keno Dam being the best bet.
RECENTLY STOCKED
Scheduled to be stocked this week: Becker Pond, Burns Gravel Pond.
Check out the 2021 trout stocking schedule.
TROUT STOCKING MAPS: Find your place to fish

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

ANNOUNCEMENTS: closures, special events, etc.

FIRE UPDATES

The Fremont-Winema National Forest is currently closed from Hwy 395 and Hwy 31 east to Hwy 97 and North of Hwy 140 due to the Bootleg fire. This encompasses forests near the towns of Lakeview, Paisley, Silver Lake, Bly and Chiloquin.

UPDATES BY WATERBODY

AGENCY LAKE (including Straights): redband trout, yellow perch, brown trout

Many redband trout have moved around in Agency Lake due to improved water quality conditions. Fishing near the mouth of the Wood River is difficult due to low water levels and extensive aquatic vegetation growth.

Agency Lake regulations are catch-and-release for redband/rainbow trout with no bait allowed (artificial flies and lures only). The boundary of Agency Lake is the south end of the Straits. This change is due to record low spawning escapement for trophy redband trout throughout the Klamath Basin last year. ODFW also encourages the use of single barbless hooks in this fishery, not removing the fish from the water and using catch-and-release rubber nets.

Keep on the lookout for radio tagged redband trout. These fish must be released unharmed. The long antennae looks like fishing line coming from the abdomen. Last updated 9/29/21.

ANA RESERVOIR: rainbow trout, hybrid bass

Last week fish were actively eating mayflies and caddis flies on the surface in the afternoon. Fish were caught casting lures but stripping flies could be lights out if you caught it right. Fish along any of the submerged weedbeds for success. Trolling lures or flies will also do a great job catching fish in this clear reservoir. Bait fishing with PowerBait or worms is also a proven method for putting fish on a stringer.

There haven’t been any recent reports on hybrid bass but fishing is usually hit or miss during this time of year. Fly-fishing during the evening hours was pretty good in July. Bait fishing for wipers is usually more successful, but trolling can be an effective method. Rapalas that imitate tui chub and rainbow trout, favorite food sources for hybrid bass, are good bets for catching these fish. On sunny days you will need to troll deeper than cloudy days. Last updated 9/22/21.

Read 12 tips for catching wipers in Ana Reservoir.

ANA RIVER: rainbow trout

Fly-fishing should be good right now as daytime temperatures start to decline. Ana River is a great match-the-hatch fly-fishing river with good hatches throughout the year. Hatches typically occur during the afternoon from 12-3 p.m. Small blue-winged olive mayfly hatches are typically best on overcast days with light rain. Beadheads under a bobber work as well as stripping minnow patterns in low light conditions.

Tui chub are abundant in the river therefore casting large flies or lures can be effective for catching larger fish. Bait fishing is allowed and anglers can keep 5 trout. Early this spring an angler caught a hybrid bass in the river, which happens occasionally. Last updated 9/22/21.

ANNIE CREEK: brook trout, brown trout and rainbow trout

Bait is allowed. Fishing in Annie Creek is slow due to cold water temperatures, low productivity and current high flows (43.3 cfs). Most of the creek is dominated by small brook trout up to 10 inches. Brown trout are rare and redband trout are highly unlikely in the catch. Please report any redband/rainbow trout caught in the creek to ODFW at 541-883-5732.

The creek is open year-round and bait is allowed. This might be worth a quick try with the kids during trips to Crater Lake National Park or in the area.

Access is available year-round off Hwy. 62 at the USFS snow park. There is plenty of public property on USFS, State Forest and Crater Lake National Park — fishing is regulated by the National Park (541-594-3000).

Several waterfalls occur on the creek inside Crater Lake National Park offering exceptional views. Last updated 10/27/21.

ANTHONY LAKE: rainbow trout, brook trout
No recent reports. Last updated 9/22/21.
BALM CREEK RESERVOIR: rainbow trout
With extreme temperatures at lower elevations, Balm Creek provides a good opportunity to escape the heat and go fishing higher up in the forest. Reports of good holdover trout in Balm Creek suggest there is a good chance fish in the 14- to 16-inch range can be caught. Last updated 7/14/21.
BEULAH RESERVOIR: redband trout, hatchery rainbow trout, whitefish, bull trout

The reservoir is now dry but fishing for stranded fish downstream of the dam may be productive. Last updated 9/9/21.

BLITZEN RIVER: redband trout

No recent reports, water temperatures have dropped and are now holding below 70 degrees F at Page Springs.

If you are looking for a carp fishing opportunity there is still one week left to go carp fishing from Sodhouse Lane downstream to the bridge on Boat Landing Rd. on the Malheur National Wildlife refuge. This fishing opportunity closes Sept. 15.

For information on river levels and water temperature visit the USGS water resources page by clicking here. Last updated 9/9/21.

BURNS POND: trout

Fishing for small rainbow trout has been good. There are also some largemouth bass available. Last updated 9/9/21.

BULLY CREEK RESERVOIR: bass, catfish, crappie, rainbow trout

No recent fishing reports

There was a fish die off in this reservoir likely due to poor water quality. Blue green algae (cyanobacteria) may also be present so avoid swimming and keep your pets out of the water. Last updated 9/9/21.

CAMPBELL LAKE: rainbow trout, brook trout

Inaccessible due to fire.

This lake was stocked with 2,400 legal rainbow trout last week. The lake is already low for this time of year, but fishing should be good. Trolling flies and lures can be great ways to catch fish as well as drowning bait from the shore. If you want to target brook trout try fishing on the northwest side of the lake. Definitely a great place to beat the heat of summer. Last updated 7/14/21.

CAMPBELL RESERVOIR: redband trout, largemouth bass, crappie

The reservoir is partly on BLM property. The reservoir is nearly dry with a pocket of water at the outlet at the dam. Fishing not recommended at this time. Last updated 9/22/21.

CHERRY CREEK: brook trout and redband trout

Mosquitoes are mostly gone. Flows are low. Open all year. Water temperatures are cold. This creek is very small; well-suited to fly-fishing. Brook trout are more abundant higher in the system. A very big fish in the creek is 10 inches. Water is crystal clear and habitat is exceptional. The Cherry Creek trail parallels the creek and leads to many productive wilderness lakes. One of the best waterfalls in the basin is just off the trail.

ODFW encourages unlimited harvest of brook trout and catch-and-release for the redband trout. Fishing is good for brook trout. Fishing improves as brook trout begin to concentrate for spawning. Last updated 10/6/21.

CHEWAUCAN RIVER: redband trout, largemouth bass, brown bullhead

Fishing will be poor this week due to rain. The recent fires will have a large impact on visibility into the foreseeable future. As usual lures and flies do a great job at catching these trout. The river is still low but rains this week should improve flows.

Check the Oregon Water Resources Near Real Time Streamflow website for current flow information. Last updated 10/20/21.

CHICKAHOMINY RESERVOIR: trout

Chickahominy Reservoir is now dry. Last updated 9/9/21.

CORRAL CREEK (SF Sprague): brook trout and brown trout

Inaccessible due to road closures from Bootleg fire.

Fishing for brook trout should be good. Flows are low. Open all year. Bait is allowed. There is a campground and wilderness trails near the creek. The creek is dominated by brook trout mostly smaller than 8 inches. Last updated 9/9/21.

COTTONWOOD MEADOW LAKE: rainbow trout, brook trout

Fishing last week was excellent. Trolling lures and casting flies were fielding trout in the 8- to 18-inch range. A boat is ideal at this lake and will allow the angler to cover more water more efficiently. If bait fishing you may want to try and keep it high in the water column so it’s not buried in the weeds. Last updated 10/20/21.

CROOKED CREEK (Klamath Co): redband trout, brook trout and brown trout

Opened to fishing through Oct. 31. Fishing is slow above Hwy 62 and anglers are reminded that no harvest of rainbow/redband trout is allowed in Crooked Creek. Brook trout can be found in the spring-fed beaver pond areas. Brook trout can also be found migrating to spawning areas. Also, all radio tagged redband trout must be released unharmed. Redband trout will have what looks to be fishing line coming from the abdomen. These fish will be 6-18 inches long. Last updated 9/22/21.

CRYSTAL CREEK redband trout and yellow perch

Crystal Creek will close to fishing after Oct. 31. Yellow perch fishing is fair. Be ready to move a lot until you find the schools of fish, then stay put. Use small hooks and small jigs for best fishing. A two-jig set up can be affective.

Please release redband trout quickly and do not remove them from the water. Pushing them down to colder water can also help.

. Anglers are reminded of the new regulation that only flies and artificial lures may be used. No bait allowed! Yellow perch fishing peaks in late August and September. Last updated 10/27/21.

DEADHORSE LAKE: rainbow trout

Inaccessible due to fire.

This lake was stocked recently with 2,400 legal rainbow trout. Fishing should be good whether you’re in a boat or on the shore. Trolling flies and lures can be great ways to catch fish as well as drowning bait from the shore. This is a great place to escape the heat this summer. Last updated 7/14/21.

DEEP CREEK: redband trout

The water is increasing from recent rains and should be good fishing on warmer days. On cold days there will be ice forming around the edges of the creek and redband trout may not be as active. Try casting small lures or flies under bobbers to catch these fish this fall. Dry flies can be effective, but most of the feeding takes place under the surface.

Check the Oregon Water Resources Near Real Time Streamflow website for current flow information. Last updated 10/16/21.

DELINTMENT LAKE: rainbow trout

No recent fishing reports but there should be plenty of trout available from stocking this past spring. Last updated 7/28/21.

DEMING CREEK: redband trout and bull trout

Inaccessible due to road closures from Bootleg fire.

This creek is tiny and difficult to fish due to the canopy of alders. Flows are probably too low to effectively fish. Open all year. Most fish in the creek are less than 8 inches. Closed to fishing for bull trout. If you incidentally catch a bull trout, don’t remove it from the water as you release it.

There is a trail along the creek that heads into the Gearhart Wilderness. Bring your camera as these redband trout are gorgeous. This is one of the first redband trout illustrated by the well-known artist Joe Tomelleri. Last updated 7/14/21.

DOG LAKE: largemouth bass, yellow perch, black crappie, brown bullhead, redband trout

There have not been any recent fishing reports but last month anglers targeting yellow perch and brown bullheads did fair. Using worms along the bottom seemed to be the most effective for these anglers. A small boat can really help when bait fishing for these species but is not absolutely necessary. Last updated 9/22/21.

DUNCAN RESERVOIR: rainbow trout, brown bullhead catfish

This reservoir is now dry. This is good news due to the fact someone illegally introduced brown bullhead and largemouth bass into the reservoir.

The number of trout at this once fantastic fishery has been declining due to the illegal introduction of both largemouth bass and brown bullhead. With continued introductions such as these, all fish species will end up becoming stunted and angler satisfaction declines. We will continue to monitor the fishery, but expect slow fishing unless it’s been stocked recently. Last updated 9/22/21.

Please report illegal fish introductions to 1-800-452-7888.

FISH LAKE (Steens Mountain): rainbow trout, brook trout

This lake was stocked last month with trophy rainbow trout. Fishing for brook trout should also be good right now. Last updated 7/7/21

FISH LAKE (Wallowa Mountains): rainbow trout, brook trout

Fish Lake and camping around the lake is accessible, and provides some relief from valley temperatures with cool water and mountain views. Recent reports suggest the fish are biting – spinners, spoons, etc. have been effective. Last updated 7/14/21.

FORT CREEK: brown trout, redband trout, brook trout

Closes to fishing after October 31. ASnglers are reminded that it is catch-and-release only for rainbow/redband trout. Fishing is almost always slow due to the crystal clear, cold water. Try in early mornings or late evenings for best bet. Brown trout are the dominant fish in the lower Creek and small 8-inch brook trout dominate the headwaters. Last updated 10/27/21.

FOURMILE CREEK (tributary to Agency Lake): brook, brown, and redband trout.

Open all year and access is available year-round off Westside Road at Fourmile Springs. A small car topper boat or canoe can improve fishing access at this area. Anglers should be aware of private property around this area and can check Klamath County Land Ownership for information.

The creek is very slow moving with one beaver dam impounding the creek. Fishing should be slow in front of and behind the beaver dam. If you are adventurous enough, the hole where Fourmile Creek enters Fourmile Canal is great. Also, fish where the Cherry Creek channel hits Fourmile Creek. Bait is allowed.

The headwater springs at Fourmile and Jack Springs are very cold. Brook trout will concentrate at the springs during spawning. Last updated 9/22/21.

FOURMILE LAKE: hatchery rainbow trout, lake trout, kokanee, brook trout

Fourmile Lake will not be stocked this year. The USFS will be removing hazard trees from the campground and surrounding areas due to extensive beetle kill of the trees. There will likely be no access to the lake at all until sometime this fall. Please call the USFS office in Klamath Falls if you have questions regarding the closure (541-883-6714),

Call Lake of the Woods Resort for recent fishing reports Toll Free at 866-201-4194. Last updated 6/16/21.

GERBER RESERVOIR: crappie, yellow perch, brown bullhead and largemouth bass

Open all year.

Targeting yellow perch continues to be your best bet. Fish sampling by Bureau of Reclamation has showed incredible densities of yellow perch. Fishing is also slow for crappie and fair for brown bullhead catfish. Use small hooks and bait for the perch as most are small sized with small mouths. The reservoir is 2 percent full. Most anglers are now fishing near the dam.

Gerber Reservoir is a large turbid reservoir. Bank access is good. Launching boats might be impossible.

Most of the reservoir is on BLM property. Last updated 9/29/21.

HEART LAKE: hatchery rainbow trout, brown bullhead catfish

There have not been any recent fishing reports from this lake, but fishing should be fair as fish have been observed jumping throughout the day. The boat ramp is currently out of the water and it’s very difficult to launch boats without large tires and plenty of clearance. Trolling can be great at this time of year and bait fishing closer to the bank can be productive.

Illegal introductions of brown bullhead catfish have been negatively impacting overwinter survival and the rainbow trout fishery. People have been catching small brown bullhead, but did catch some over 15 inches with worms last year. ODFW encourages the retention of all brown bullhead caught in this fishery. Last updated 10/13/21.

HOLBROOK RESERVOIR: hatchery rainbow trout

This reservoir is dry. Last updated 9/22/21.

J.C. BOYLE RESERVOIR (Topsy Reservoir): Largemouth bass, yellow perch, brown bullhead, pumpkinseed, crappie, goldfish, Sacramento perch, tui chub and blue chub

A few largemouth bass and crappie are being caught. Fishing at night for large brown bullhead can be good as well.

Past net sampling showed some large yellow perch in the reservoir above the bridge crossing. Highest catch of all fish was above Topsy Bridge.

Open and accessible all year. Water levels generally remain very similar and drop as the day progresses as water is released for power generation. There are numerous points of access on the reservoir as most property surrounding the reservoir is BLM or PacifiCorp property. There are three boat ramps on the reservoir. Last updated 9/29/21.

UPPER KLAMATH LAKE: native redband trout, yellow perch, kokanee, pumpkinseed, brown bullhead, tui chub and blue chub

Open all year. Water quality is improving. Redband trout are scattering throughout Upper Klamath Lake. Most anglers are fishing with dead minnows from shore in Howard and Shoalwater Bays.

Boat ramps are open. This includes Moore Park, Rocky Point, Wocus Bay and Eagle Ridge. Currently, most boat anglers are fishing near Rocky Point area and Pelican Bay

Hagelstein Park boat ramp, restroom and day use is open. However, the lake level is low therefore getting a boat out of Hagelstein might be challenging. Please remember that nets or traps of any type cannot be used to catch any species of fish. This includes minnows to use for bait. See page 20 of the Sport Fishing Regulations for legal harvest methods for minnows.

ODFW encourages catch-and-release on this fishery due to record low spawning numbers last year and low numbers two years prior. Please fight your fish quickly and then release your fish immediately without removing it from the water. Releasing fish is easier with barbless hooks.

The lake is 4.5 feet below full pool and 34 percent full.

Please remember that once you retain your one redband/rainbow trout limit you must stop fishing for redband/rainbow trout. Also, all radio tagged redband trout must be released unharmed. Redband trout will have what looks to be fishing line coming from the abdomen. These fish will be 6-18 inches long. Last updated 10/27/21.

KLAMATH RIVER: native redband trout, rainbow trout, brown trout

Keno Dam to J.C Boyle Reservoir

Catch rates were low on opening day and effort was very high. Remember bait is not allowed and only one fish over 15 inches can be harvested per day. Also, remember that once you retain your one redband/rainbow trout limit you must stop fishing for redband/rainbow trout.

Flows (685 cfs) and water temperatures look to be ideal — for fishing and wading. Large trout in this reach start to feed on the many fat head minnows and chub coming down from above Keno Dam. Few trout over 18” are being caught this fall. Flies and lures that mimic these minnows will be successful. Remember the Klamath River eats your fishing gear. Jig style hooks, heavy line and single barbless hooks can reduce the likelihood of losing a lot of gear.

This section of the river is very challenging fishing with white water and treacherous wading. The river is loaded with boulders and drop offs. ODFW recommends a wading staff, wading belt, excellent wading boots with studs, and maybe even a helmet and shin guards!
Public access is difficult but you can drive a horrendous road to immediately below Keno Dam. All other sites require a significant hike to the river. Last updated 10/27/21.

J.C. Boyle Dam to J.C Boyle Powerhouse

Open all year. Flows are low and stable. Catch rates should be good. Fishing is best below the spring inputs. The springs start to discharge into the river approximately one mile below J.C. Boyle Dam. This section of river requires a hike down steep grade to the river with the exception of the area just above the powerhouse.

Use small flies as fish are small in this section. Good hatches of caddisflies are occurring. Dry fly fishing will be good.

There is good access at the powerhouse. Park and walk upstream. This area is fished hard but you can hike to get away from the pressure. Hiking or wading upstream is difficult. Small nymphs such as pheasant tails and prince nymphs work well in this section. Small black Panther Martins or Rooster Tails work well cast upstream into the deeper pools. Last updated 9/22/21.

J.C. Boyle Powerhouse to State Line with California

Best fishing is when flows are less than 900 cfs. You can check flow estimates at PacifiCorp Weekly Flow Estimates. You can also call the flow line at 1-800-547-1501. Flows look fishable until around 9 a.m. this week. Fishing can be excellent this time of year if flows are fishable.

Large attractor flies such and wooly buggers, bead head prince, stimulators, and rubber leg stoneflies under a strike indicator work best this time of year. Olive and black wooly buggers almost always work well. Black spinners and Panther Martins can also work. October caddis style fly patterns can work well this time of year.

Below the JC Boyle Powerhouse the redband/rainbow trout get slightly larger than the aforementioned reach and average 12 inches but rarely exceed 16 inches. Currently, most redband caught are in the 10- to 14-inch range. Last updated 10/6/21.

KRUMBO RESERVOIR: trout, bass

No recent reports. There are likely some tagged trophy trout and native redband trout still available.

There may be cyanobacteria present so avoid swimming and keep your pets out of the water if you notice blue green stains on the rocks or shoreline. For more information on toxic algae blooms click here.

If you catch a tagged trout please report it here: MyODFW.com/tagteam. Last updated 9/9/21.

LAKE OF THE WOODS: hatchery rainbow trout, kokanee, hatchery brown trout, yellow perch, brown bullhead, smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, crappie, tui chub

There are a few stocked rainbow trout still around.

Look for large brown trout cruising the shallows looking for a place to spawn and also looking to eat spawning kokanee.

Fishing for yellow perch will be your best bet. The lake is dominated by stunted yellow perch. Very small bait and hooks will catch these fish. Even a few crappie are showing up in the catch.

You can also visit their website to observe current conditions at the lake. Click on the left side video link for a live video of current conditions on the lake at the Lodge. Last updated 10/27/21.

LINK RIVER: redband/rainbow trout

No recent report but redband trout numbers in the Link River are likely extremely low.

Fishing regulations for the Link River changed on Jan. 1, 2021. New regulations include catch-and-release for redband/rainbow trout and no bait allowed (artificial flies and lures only). This change is due to record low spawning escapement for trophy redband trout throughout the Klamath Basin. ODFW also encourages the use of single barbless hooks in this fishery, not removing fish from the water and catch-and-release rubber nets. Last updated 10/6/21.

LOFTON RESERVOIR: hatchery rainbow trout

There have not been any recent fishing reports, but fishing should be fair as temperatures have cooled down. Boats can be launched but know that the boat ramp is a quite a few feet out of water and there is no boat dock. Trolling with lures and flies are great options during this time of year. Last updated 10/16/21.

LONG CREEK: brook trout, redband trout, bull trout

Access is difficult but the upper part of Long Creek did not burn as part of the Bootleg Fire. Most roads are closed.

Fishing should be good for brook trout in the beaver pond areas. Brook trout are very abundant in the creek and some get very big. Fishing will also be excellent at the brook trout spawning grounds.

Open all year. Long Creek is located above Sycan Marsh coming off Yamsi Mountain. There is ample water to fish on Green Diamond property.

Brook trout can reach up to 20 inches in the creek. ODFW encourages unlimited harvest of brook trout in the creek. Make sure you know the difference between bull trout and brook trout. Bull trout are exceedingly rare. Last updated 10/6/21.

MALHEUR RESERVOIR: rainbow trout

No recent reports.

Malheur Reservoir is now quite low but fishing may be great for rainbow trout. Last updated 9/9/21.

MANN LAKE:

The lake is currently fishless.

MILLER LAKE: brown, rainbow, brook trout, kokanee

Fishing is fair for rainbow trout as effort has been high. The lake has been heavily stocked with 12- to 14-inch rainbow trout and trophy rainbow trout. Very large trophy rainbow trout were stocked on Tuesday, Aug. 31. Fishing will be slow for brown trout and kokanee. Brown trout will begin to cruise the shoreline and can also concentrate at the boat ramp looking for a place to spawn. Most kokanee are under 8 inches. There is ample room to bank fish. There is an excellent campground, boat ramp and swim beach on the lake as well.

The road into the lake is washboard and in horrible condition. Bring spare tires and travel extremely slowly if hauling a boat trailer. Last updated 9/29/21.

OWYHEE RESERVOIR: largemouth and smallmouth bass, crappie, yellow perch, catfish

Bass fishing has been good recently. Fishing from the Honeycombs down to the dam would be a good bet.

No reports on catfishing success but anglers targeting catfish may have better luck in the upper reservoir.

While crappie fishing has been good throughout the reservoir, anglers have reported catching larger crappie in the upper reservoir. If you observe any dead crappie or fish with red lesions on their body please report them by phone to 541-589-5372.

There is a health advisory in effect for consuming all fish caught in this waterbody. For more information click here to view fish consumption guidelines set by the Oregon Health Authority.

There may be cyanobacteria present in the upper reservoir so avoid swimming and keep your pets out of the water if you notice blue green stains on the rocks or shoreline For more information on toxic algae blooms click here.

The reservoir is now 36 percent full; view boat ramp elevations click here. Last updated 7/7/21

OWYHEE RIVER (Lower): brown trout and hatchery rainbow trout

No recent reports.

Avoid over-playing a hooked fish as they are expending a lot of energy and it will take a lot longer for them to recover. Last updated 7/28/21.

PHILLIPS RESERVOIR: rainbow trout, yellow perch

Bag limits on Phillips Reservoir have been reinstated as of Oct. 10, 2021. Remember that tiger musky and bull trout must be released unharmed. Phillips Reservoir water levels are sustaining at the lowest level seen in its 56-year history.

Both the Mason Dam and Union Creek Campground boat launches are unusable due to extremely low water levels. Last updated 10/13/21.

PILCHER RESERVOIR: trout

Pilcher Reservoir is nearly empty, and no boats can be launched. No fishing reports as of late. Last updated 10/13/21.

POISON CREEK RESERVOIR (Grant County): rainbow trout

No recent reports. Last updated 7/28/21.

POLE CREEK RESERVOIR: rainbow trout, black crappie

Anglers have reported catching some nice crappie this spring, but trout fishing has been slow recently. Last updated 4/21/21.

SEVENMILE CREEK: brook trout, brown trout, redband trout

Sevenmile is a very cold and clear creek. Fishing for brook trout is best in the beaver dam pools above Nicholson Road. Fishing will be good if you can find the concentrations of brook trout spawning. Most brook trout captured are less than 12 inches.

Open all year. Anglers can access Sevenmile Creek at Nicholson Road and fish upstream of Nicholson Road. Bait is allowed upstream of Nicholson Road. There are currently large beaver dam pools immediately upstream of the bridge. This might be worth a look. Last updated 9/1/21.

SKY LAKES AND MOUNTAIN LAKE WILDERNESS: brook trout and rainbow trout

All lakes were stocked this summer by helicopter with 3-inch rainbow trout from the Crane Prairie redband trout stock.

There is a lot of snow in the wildnerness areas now. Fishing is excellent at some lakes. Best lakes to catch fish are Clover, Como, Harriette, Echo, Weston and South Pass in the Mountain Lakes Wilderness and Sonya, Margurette and Isherwood in the Sky Lakes Wilderness.

Best lakes for brook trout are Badger Lake (Sky Lakes Wilderness), which is a short hike from Fourmile Lake, and Clover Lake (Mountain Lakes Wilderness). Fishing will improve as the big brook trout look for places to spawn along the edges of the lake.

The biggest trout come from the bigger and deeper lakes of Harriette, Isherwood and Margurette. Last updated 10/27/21.

SPENCER CREEK: redband trout and brook trout

Fishing will be very slow for very small trout mostly under 8 inches. Flows are at record low levels. Last updated 10/6/21.

SPRAGUE RIVER: redband trout, brown trout, largemouth bass, brown bullhead, yellow perch, and pumpkinseed

Opened to fishing through Oct. 31. Recent rains have increased flows; therefore, large redband trout from Upper Klamath Lake should be migrating throughout the river. Fishing is fair for redband trout with an occasional brown trout, as flows were low and water temperatures very warm in most of the river this summer. Most fish in the Sprague currently are small, so small spinners and spoons work well. Redband trout from 6-18 inches dominate the catch. There is ample public property on the Sprague River to fish. Best fishing is from a boat near Beatty.

Also, all radio tagged redband trout must be released unharmed. Redband trout will have what looks to be fishing line coming from the abdomen. These fish will be 6-18 inches in length.

Yellow perch fishing can be good in the S’Ocholis Canyon area above Saddle Mountain Pit-Road Bridge and above the town of Sprague River. A few bass occur in the backwater areas of the river as well. Brown bullhead also occur in this stretch but most are small.

Regulations have changed. Only one redband/rainbow trout can be kept with a 15-inch minimum length. This change is due to record low spawning escapement for trophy redband trout throughout the Klamath Basin. ODFW also encourages the use of single barbless hooks in this fishery, not removing fish from the water and catch-and-release rubber nets. Last updated 10/27/21.

NORTH FORK SPRAGUE RIVER AND ALL TRIBUTARIES: brook trout, redband trout, brown trout, bull trout

Public land is inaccessible due to road closures from Bootleg fire.

SOUTH FORK SPRAGUE RIVER AND ALL TRIBUTARIES: brook trout, redband trout, brown trout, bull trout

The South Fork is closed along the FS34 road but sections are open below the confluence of Whitworth Creek.Flows are near record low. Fishing is best near Blaisdell for redband trout. Fishing should be fair. Last updated 9/9/21.

Check stream level.

SUN CREEK: brook trout, bull trout, brown trout, redband trout

Fishing not recommended at this time. Flows are at 7 cfs.

Open to fishing all year but closed to fishing for bull trout. Only bull trout occur in upper Sun Creek just above the Sun Pass Forest bridge crossing. Fishing is not recommended at this time as fish density remains low. Recent electrofishing found low number of brook trout, brown trout and redband trout. The largest fish was 11 inches. Fish size and density remain low. Last updated 9/29/21.

Redband trout were reintroduced to Sun Creek in 2016 and 2017. These redband trout were small, most are less than 4 inches, and salvaged from the Wood River irrigation system. ODFW encourages release of all redband trout. The Sun Creek channel has been rerouted into the historic channel and is connected to the Wood River below Kimball State Park.

If you fish here, make sure you know your fish species really well. If you don’t know then let it go. Check stream level. Last updated 10/6/21.

SYCAN RIVER: brook, redband and brown trout (below marsh)

Inaccessible due to road closures from Bootleg fire.

Fishing below the Sycan Marsh is not recommended at this time as most of the river is dry. Last updated 10/6/21.

Check stream levels.

THIEF VALLEY RESERVOIR: trout

No recent reports. Last updated 10/6/21.

THOMPSON VALLEY RESERVOIR: rainbow trout, largemouth bass

The reservoir is very low but there should be some trout that have held over through the summer with less fishing pressure due to the fires. You can still launch a small boat by backing down the bank and pulling it off the trailer. Trolling flies and lures should prove fruitful as temperatures decrease this fall. There are also largemouth bass in this reservoir and fishing can be good along any type of structure. Last updated 10/20/21.

UNITY RESERVOIR: trout, smallmouth bass, crappie

Water level at Unity Reservoir is approaching minimum pool, restricting boat access. Anglers have reported decent catches of trout and smallmouth bass. Last updated 10/13/21.

WARM SPRINGS RESERVOIR: smallmouth bass, crappie, bullhead, perch, rainbow trout

Warm Springs reservoir is now dry. There may be some stranded fish available in pooled water downstream of the dam and in the mudflats upstream of the dam. Last updated 9/9/21.

UPPER WILLIAMSON RIVER: redband trout and brook trout

Opened to fishing through Oct. 31. Flows are very low this time of year. Hatches in poor water years are not as productive as in good water years. Best bet is to pay to fish on the Yamsi or Sand Creek Ranch. Look for hatches of small mayflies such as BWOs and mahogany duns.

Only one single point hook will be allowed beginning April 22. This change is due to record low spawning escapement for trophy redband trout throughout the Klamath Basin. ODFW also encourages the use of barbless hooks in this fishery and catch-and-release rubber nets. Last updated 0/27/21.

LOWER WILLIAMSON RIVER: redband trout and brown trout

Opened to fishing through Oct. 31. No treble hooks allowed! Very small mayflies are hatching and fish are feeding on them in certain locations. October caddis and other large caddisflies (Neophylax, Hesperophylax) are hatching as well.

Flows are very low. Fishing is good. When fly-fishing use long, light leaders and clear fly lines for best success. Caddis flies and many small mayfly species are hatching. Flies mimicking small mayfly nymphs can work well.

Regulations have changed on the Williamson River. Only one single point hook is allowed. This change is due to record low spawning escapement for trophy redband trout throughout the Klamath Basin in the spawning season of 2019-2020. ODFW also encourages the use of single barbless hooks in this fishery, not removing fish from the water and catch-and-release rubber nets. Many redband trout are starting to migrate to stage for fall spawning. Take extra care when handling these darker fish.

Also, all radio tagged redband trout must be released unharmed. Redband trout will have what looks to be fishing line coming from the abdomen. These fish will be 6-18 inches long. Last updated 10/27/21.

WILLOW VALLEY RESERVOIR: largemouth bass, crappie, yellow perch, bluegill, Lahontan cutthroat

Conditions are unknown. Try the Antelope Creek confluence or the shallow weed beds near the dam. Best fished from a boat if you can launch

Willow Valley is a very turbid, desert reservoir. Bass and crappie can be found at the habitat structures placed by BLM and ODFW in the past. Yellow perch are prolific in the reservoir but stunted. Last updated 6/23/21.

WOOD RIVER: redband trout, brown trout, brook trout and bull trout

Opened to fishing through Oct. 31. Petric Canal is considered part of the Wood River and is catch-and-release for redband trout. Fishing is good throughout the river below the town of Fort Klamath to the mouth.

Best section is from Fort Klamath to Weed Road for brown trout.. Small mayflies are hatching and matching them can result in catching some of the smaller brown trout.

Best fishing is from a boat. Rapalas and spoons work well for brown trout. There is ample public property to fish on the Wood River at the BLM Wetland but access to the river is difficult due to an excellent riparian area.

Most boats launch at Weed Road and float to Petric Canal take out. Fishing kayaks can be launched at all the road crossings, the USFS day use area or Kimball State Park. The float from Fort Klamath to Weed Road can be productive but there are numerous dams and obstacles that need portaged. A typical drift boat cannot make it under the bridges. Water temperatures are still very cold, therefore there’s not much activity in the upper river.

Many redband trout are starting to migrate to stage for fall spawning. Take extra care when handling these darker fish. Also, all radio tagged redband trout must be released unharmed. Redband trout will have what looks to be fishing line coming from the abdomen. These fish will be 6-18 inches in length. Last updated 10/27/21.

YELLOWJACKET RESERVOIR: trout

No recent reports.

If you catch a tagged trout please report it here: MyODFW.com/tagteam. Last updated 7/28/21.

NE FISHING

Send us your fishing report

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

FISHING UPDATES

Emergency fishing regulations: Where to find them

With all the special regulations currently in place to help protect fish during the ongoing drought, we keep telling anglers to be sure to check for regulation changes before they head out. But where do you find them? The latest regulation updates are always at the top the Recreation Report under the zone for which the regulations apply.

LAKE, PONDS, RESERVOIRS

Wallowa Lake has continued to produce trout into the fall. Fishing pressure is very light and anglers should have a lot of room to themselves. Trout will have switched to more natural food and anglers should consider using natural baits or artificial lures that closely mimic what the fish are feeding on.

RIVERS AND STREAMS
Recent rains will have flows slightly up and put fish on the move. Look for steelhead fishing in the Grande Ronde and Imnaha River to improve over the next week. Coho will also be available to anglers on the Grande Ronde.

Coho season opened on the Grande Ronde on Oct. 1 and some fish are already being caught. The limit for coho is two adult fish and five jacks per day, clipped or un-clipped. The season will remain open through Nov. 30 or until further notice.

Across the Columbia Basin, the steelhead run is poor, and fishing may be difficult this year. Additionally, some steelhead fisheries may require special regulations to conserve wild fish and ensure broodstock escapement to hatcheries. Anglers are advised to check the ODFW website regularly for updates to fisheries.

River levels in the John Day are at historic lows, with recent levels at Service Creek around 22 CFS. Conditions are still good for those looking to target smallmouth bass. Note that flows below 1,500 CFS make boating more challenging, and current flows will make any floating impossible. There are plenty of areas to bank fish along the John Day, and bass will still be active.

RECENTLY STOCKED

There is no stocking scheduled until spring.

Check the 2021 trout stocking schedule.

TROUT STOCKING MAPS: Find your place to fish

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

ANNOUNCEMENTS: closures, special events, etc.

Umatilla National Forest reopens most public access

Check here for remaining closures and updates.

UPDATES BY WATERBODY

ALDRICH PONDS (Roosevelt and Stewart Lakes): trout (2 fish limit)

Recent reports continue to be positive, with many anglers reporting success catching larger fish. Early fall is an excellent time to fish the ponds before snow will block access. Last updated 10/6/21.

CAVENDER POND (Monument, OR): trout, largemouth bass

A significant fish kill occurred at this site over the summer, with both stocked trout from this spring as well as largemouth bass affected. Drought conditions and very high temperatures are presumed to be the culprit. Fishing will not be great at this location until it is stocked again next spring. Last updated 10/6/21.

GRANDE RONDE RIVER: trout, whitefish, bass, steelhead

Trout fishing can be quite good during the fall with good October caddis hatches that get the trout feeding. Recent rains will have flows slightly up and put fish on the move. Look for steelhead fishing in the to improve over the next week.

Coho season opened on the Grande Ronde on Oct. 1 and some fish are already being caught. The regulations for the coho harvest on the Grande Ronde River are as follows: Open Oct. 1 through Nov.30, 2021, or until further notice from the Oregon-Washington border upstream to the Wildcat Bridge, approximately 7 miles upstream of the town of Troy, OR. The bag limit for adult coho salmon (>20 inches) will be two (2). For jack coho salmon (≤ 20 inches) the bag limit will be five (5) with two daily limits in possession.

Steelhead are showing up in the fishery as well and some reports of successful anglers have been received.

With a diverse makeup of fish species that anglers may encounter this year, anglers are encouraged to brush up on their fish identification skills and to release any fish that they are unsure of the species. Last updated 10/27/21.

HAT ROCK POND: trout

The pond was stocked in spring. Any fish still in the pond should become more active as the water temperatures start to cool. Last updated 10/6/21.

IMNAHA RIVER: trout, whitefish, bass, steelhead

Steelhead season is opened on the Imnaha and fish should now be available to anglers.

Across the Columbia Basin, the steelhead run is very poor, and fishing may be difficult this year. Additionally, some steelhead fisheries may require special regulations to conserve wild fish and ensure broodstock escapement to hatcheries. Anglers are advised to check the ODFW website regularly for updates to fisheries.

Anglers are reminded that bull trout and fall Chinook may be encountered in the fishery and must be released unharmed. With a diverse makeup of fish species that anglers may encounter, anglers are encouraged to brush up on their fish identification skills and to release any fish that they are unsure of the species. Last updated 10/27/21.

JOHN DAY RIVER: steelhead, smallmouth bass

Flows on the John Day River are at historic lows for this time of year, but will create good conditions for those targeting smallmouth bass. Floating will not be feasible as flows are below 30 CFS, but bank fishing opportunities abound, and bass will remain active through September.

Please note that steelhead fishing in the John Day will be completely closed this year for the entire basin. Wild A steelhead over Bonneville dam are well below the minimum 20,000 fish necessary to hold a fishery, in addition to a smolt-to-adult ratio currently anticipated to be 1 percent. This also means bass fishing will close Oct 31 for the remainder of the year. Last updated 9/1/21.

MAGONE LAKE: rainbow and brook trout

Fishing has been very good this summer, and should stay that way over the next month. Fishing has been best in the early morning and late evening hours, although some fish are still being caught midday. No recent reports, although cooler weather should help fishing conditions. Last updated 9/1/21.

McNARY PONDS: walleye, bass and trout.

The McNary Ponds have warmwater species and any trout that were not harvested after the last stocking events. As water temperatures cool, the fishing should get better. Last updated 10/6/21.

MORGAN LAKE: rainbow and bass

Morgan Lake has been closed indefinitely due to extreme fire risk in the area. Please contact La Grande City Parks and Rec for more information. Last updated 7/21/21.

UMATILLA RIVER: summer steelhead, coho, fall Chinook, trout, bass and walleye

Due to very poor predicated returns, retention of steelhead on the Umatilla River between the Hwy 730 bridge and Three Mile Falls Dam (TMDF) will be closed Sept. 1 through April 30, 2022. From TFMD to the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation boundary and from the upper border of the reservation boundary to the Umatilla headwaters, including all tributaries except for McKay Creek, is open for fishing and retention of steelhead. There have been a total of 259 steelhead counted at TMFD up to date for the this run year, with an average of 5 fish per day over the past week.

Trout fishing on the Umatilla River remains open until Oct. 31, with bass and other warmwater species open all year.

The fall Chinook salmon and coho salmon fisheries will remain open through Nov. 30. The bag limit being 3 adults, in aggregate, and 5 jack salmon (≤ 24 inches for fall Chinook and ≤ 20 inches for coho) per day. A return of 6381 ± 1,960 coho and 1,264 ± 295 fall Chinook are predicated to return to the Umatilla River. A total of 2,490 coho, with an average of 154 per day over the past week, and a total of 2,243 fall Chinook, with an average of 94.5 per day over the past week, have been counted at Three Mile Falls Dam.

For the past two weeks, the average number of hours spent to harvest a fish has been 2.5 hours. Anglers have been having good success near the mouth of the Umatilla on coho and fall Chinook, with most being fish caught in the early morning hours. Anglers have been using a variety of methods to catch coho and fall Chinook, however an egg rig bounced off the bottom, and pink or purple spinners have been the best producers. The number of fish being seen at the trap has picked up significantly this week, which is likely due to the increase in water in the river and the cooler fall weather. Both the fall Chinook and coho are still in good condition, so get out on the river and harvest some of the returning salmon. Last updated 10/27/21.

WALLA WALLA RIVER:

Upstream of the Oregon/Washington state line, the river is closed to retention of steelhead Sept. 1 through April 30. Last updated 9/9/21.

WALLOWA COUNTY PONDS: rainbow trout

Marr Pond still has active fish available, and anglers are finding success. Most fish are feeding on natural food at this point and anglers will have the best success with baits that mimic those foods. I’d personally stay away from baits like PowerBait at this point. Worms might be a better option.

Kinney Lake is currently filling and will receive a healthy stocking of hatchery trout in the coming days or weeks. After losing all the fish this summer to drawdown and high temps, these fish should provide a healthy fishery in the fall and support an ice fishery that has been growing in popularity. Last updated 10/27/21.

WALLOWA LAKE: rainbow trout, kokanee, lake trout

Wallowa Lake has continued to produce trout into the fall. Fishing pressure is very light and anglers should have a lot of room to themselves. Trout will have switched to more natural food and anglers should consider using natural baits or artificial lures that closely mimic what the fish are feeding on. Last updated 10/27/21.

WALLOWA RIVER: whitefish, trout
Fall fishing on the Wallowa River can be very good and anglers have reported catching trout up to 19 inches.
Steelhead season opened on Sept. 1, though fish aren’t expected to be available in catchable numbers until the winter months. Across the Columbia Basin, the steelhead run is very poor, and fishing may be difficult this year. Additionally, some steelhead fisheries may require special regulations to conserve wild fish and ensure broodstock escapement to hatcheries. Anglers are advised to check the ODFW website regularly for updates to fisheries.
Coho may be encountered in this fishery as they make their way to the Lostine River during fall and early winter. Coho may not be harvested in the Wallowa River and must be released unharmed.
With a diverse makeup of fish species that anglers may encounter this year, anglers are encouraged to brush up on their fish identification skills and to release any fish that they are unsure of the species. Last updated 10/27/21.
WILLOW CREEK RESERVOIR: trout, crappie, bass

There were 750 trophy trout stocked in Willow Creek Reservoir on June 9. This time of year, fishing tends to pick up for warmwater species. Look for bass and crappie to be cruising along the bank in the shallower water in the mornings, then into deeper water and near the rockier banks as the water warms. Fish for trout in the deeper, cooler water in the middle of the reservoir in the early mornings. You can also access a significant proportion of the reservoir of the via boat, so bring your boat and troll the depths for the larger trophy trout.

Fish have been taking both lures and flies. A spinner, damsel fly nymph or small jig should be productive this time of the year as the water warms. Fish bigger lures deeper in the middle of the reservoir once the sun gets on the water. Last updated 6/30/21.

SNAKE FISHING

Send us your fishing report

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

Baker County fishing reports

Keep your eye out for QR code signs posted at various fishing locations throughout Baker County! Anglers with smartphones can provide fishing reports and feedback on-site by scanning the QR code, which directs anglers to our ODFW Fishing Report survey. Directions on how to use the QR codes are provided right on the signs.

BROWNLEE RESERVOIR: crappie, bass, perch, catfish, bluegill, trout

Brownlee Reservoir now 37 ft. below full pool and the Spring Recreation and Steck Park boats launches appear unusable, while Hewitt & Holcomb park is approaching minimum water elevation required to launch a boat. One recent fishing report said fishing was good for channel catfish and smallmouth bass. Both were hitting nightcrawlers. The Powder Arm fishing has been slow of late, but producing bass in deeper water. Follow the links below to get up-to-date information on access along Brownlee Reservoir. Last updated10/13/21.

Call the Idaho Power Company’s recording at 1-800-422-3143 to get information on access at recreational sites. | Reservoir level information

OXBOW RESERVOIR: trout, crappie, bass, catfish

Smallmouth bass fishing has been quite good in Oxbow Reservoir recently, with anglers reporting several fish in the 13- to 15-inch range, and some greater than 16 inches. Smallmouth are transitioning from spawning to post-spawn behavior. Using soft plastics will work for a few more weeks, and transitioning to faster action lures such as crankbaits will become more effective once water temperatures are consistently above 70*. Last updated 6/16/20.

HELLS CANYON RESERVOIR: trout, crappie, bass, catfish

Water temperatures at Oxbow Dam are fairly consistent in the 60*-70* range, and is ripe for smallmouth bass fishing. Focus on targeting shallower water with soft plastics. Last updated 6/16/21.

SNAKE RIVER below HELLS CANYON RESERVOIR: trout, salmon, bass

Bass fishing will be good throughout the Oregon section of the Snake River. Look for bass is slow backwaters with good structure. Fish seem to be holding deep and getting lures and baits down is essential after the early morning.

Fall Chinook season will close at the end of fishing hours on Sunday Oct. 31. The daily bag limit is three adult Chinook with no mark requirements. There is no bag limit nor mark restrictions on jack Chinook. Barbless hooks, a combined angling tag and Columbia Basin endorsement are required.

Steelhead season opened on Sept. 1, though fish aren’t expected to be available in catchable numbers until later in the month. Across the Columbia Basin, the steelhead run is very poor, and fishing may be difficult this year. Bag limits for steelhead have been reduced to ensure broodstock escapement to the hatchery hatcheries. Anglers are advised to check the ODFW website regularly for updates to fisheries. Last updated 10/27/21.

SNAKE RIVER (above Brownlee Reservoir): channel catfish, flathead catfish, smallmouth bass

No recent fishing reports.

There has recently been a catfish die off in Brownlee Reservoir near Huntington likely due to a bacterial infection. Last updated 7/7/21.

COLUMBIA FISHING

Send us your fishing report

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

Help keep ODFW fish checkers safe

ODFW samplers (aka fish checkers) will be at docks, boat ramps, and bank areas in a number of locations along the Columbia and Willamette rivers to collect information required to manage fisheries. Your cooperation in maintaining a minimum of 6 ft. distancing and providing your catch for inspection and collection of sampling data in a safe manner is appreciated.

Emergency fishing regulations: Where to find them

With all the special regulations currently in place to help protect fish during the ongoing drought, we keep telling anglers to be sure to check for regulation changes before they head out. But where do you find them? The latest regulation updates are always at the top the Recreation Report under the zone for which the regulations apply.

Current and upcoming fishing opportunities:

As of Oct. 1, fall salmon season is open for Chinook and coho from Buoy 10 to the Oregon/Washington border above McNary Dam. Please refer to the latest regulation updates for bag limits and mark selective fisheries.

Columbia River regulation updates for salmon, steelhead, shad and sturgeon can be found above.

Salmon, Steelhead and shad

Buoy 10:
Weekly checking showed 45 coho kept, and two Chinook and 19 coho released for 37 boats (113 anglers); and 0.45 coho kept per angler for 71 bank anglers.

Tongue Point/Rocky Point to Longview:
No report.

Rainier to St. Helens:
Weekly checking showed one adult Chinook and four adult coho kept, and two adult coho released for 11 boats (22 anglers).

Sauvie Island to Portland:
Weekly checking showed two adult Chinook and 9 adult coho kept, and one adult coho released for 18 boats (39 anglers).

Troutdale:
Weekly checking showed one adult Chinook and three adult coho kept, and one adult coho released for 22 boats (33 anglers).

Gorge:
Weekly checking showed 17 adult Chinook, three jack Chinook, 19 adult coho, and three jack coho kept, and one adult Chinook, one jack Chinook, one steelhead, and 5 adult coho released for 36 boats (96 anglers).

Bonneville Pool (Bonneville Dam upstream to The Dalles Dam):
Weekly checking showed 33 adult Chinook, two jack Chinook, 110 adult coho, and 13 jack coho kept, and four adult Chinook and two adult coho released for 81 boats (197 anglers).

The Dalles Pool (The Dalles Dam upstream to John Day Dam):
Weekly checking showed two adult Chinook and four adult coho kept, and one adult coho released for 7 boats (12 anglers).

John Day Pool (Columbia River above John Day Dam and John Day Arm):
Weekly checking showed two adult Chinook and 10 adult coho kept, and one steelhead and two adult coho released for 14 boats (29 anglers).

STURGEON

Lower Columbia River

Wauna Powerlines to Bonneville Dam:
Closed for retention. Weekly checking showed three sublegal and one legal size released for three boats (7 anglers).

Bonneville Pool:
Closed for retention. No report.

The Dalles Pool:
Closed for retention. No report.

John Day Pool:
Closed for retention. Weekly checked showed two sublegal, 6 legal, and two oversized released for one boat (one angler).

WALLEYE

Lower Columbia:
No report.

Bonneville Pool:
No report.

The Dalles Pool:
No report.

John Day Pool:
Weekly checking showed 61 walleye kept and 43 walleye released for 10 boats (22 anglers).

MARINE FISHING

For the latest regulations, including in-season changes

See the Regulation updates section above.

Send us your fishing report

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

Saltwater News Bulletins

You can subscribe to receive e-mails and text message alerts for marine topics that interest you. It’s easy to unsubscribe at any time. Your phone and e-mail information will remain confidential. Three different lists of interest to ocean enthusiasts are available: bottomfish, halibut and ocean salmon.

FISHING REPORTS

BOTTOMFISH

Rough conditions last week put a damper on ocean fishing. When breaks in the weather allow, winter is an excellent time for bottomfish fishing.

The offshore longleader fishery gives anglers a year-round opportunity to catch a larger daily bag limit of rockfish – ten in aggregate – and helps distribute effort away from nearshore species. Only certain species may be retained. We invite you to learn more about the gear and the fishery.
Bottomfish Resources:
Know what you’ve caught with some helpful rockfish identification tips (including online quizzes and video)
What can I keep and how many? Keep up with in-season regulation changes
Waypoints for fathom lines and other restricted areas
Catch estimates and available quota for bottomfish species

PACIFIC HALIBUT

The Columbia River subarea is CLOSED to Pacific halibut fishing for the remainder of 2021.
Anglers have just a few more days to bring home some halibut from the central coast and southern Oregon subareas before the season closes on Oct. 31. Halibut fishing is open daily at all depths, and anglers may retain two Pacific halibut per day (six annually), as well as rockfish and lingcod caught with standard gear. Catch estimates

Remember: Regulations require anglers to IMMEDIATELY record their catch on their Combined Angling Tag – paper or electronic.

Anglers who keep two halibut per day in Oregon south of Cape Falcon (as allowed for the remainder of the 2021 halibut season), and who are using a daily or multi-daily combined angling tag to record their halibut harvest, must:
Record the first halibut on the paper tag or MyODFW app as usual.
Record the second halibut in any open space on the paper tag, or on any paper if e-tagging (anglers using e-tagging should plan to have paper and pen with them to do this).
Remember to include the species, location code, day and month, and length of the halibut in inches.

OCEAN SALMON
Recreational ocean salmon fishing within the Columbia River Ocean Salmon Management Area (Leadbetter Point, Washington to Cape Falcon, Oregon) is CLOSED for the remainder of 2021.
The ocean from Cape Falcon to Humbug Mt. remains open for Chinook salmon fishing (and all salmon except coho) through Oct. 31. The daily bag limit is two salmon per day, a 24-inch minimum length for Chinook and a 20-inch minimum length for steelhead (no minimum length for ocean caught pink, chum, or sockeye salmon). Single-point barbless hooks (no more than 2 per line) are required when fishing for salmon or when fishing for other species in the ocean once salmon are on board the boat.
For the week of October 11 through 17, ocean conditions severely limited recreational fishing effort. No ocean salmon angling effort was documented for the week. Anglers are reminded:

Make sure to “tag” each fish immediately upon retaining the fish by recording the fish on your catch record card, your daily license, or in your electronic license app. Learn more about how to e-tag.
For any salmon that you intend to release, whenever possible, release them without netting the fish or bringing them on board.
Recreational ocean salmon fishing is CLOSED south of Humbug Mountain to the OR/CA border for the remainder of 2021.
Find the ocean salmon seasons, catch updates, and more information on the ocean salmon season page.
SHORE AND ESTUARY FISHING

The general marine fish bag limit is 5 daily only one of the 5 fish may be a China rockfish, copper rockfish or quillback rockfish if caught from shore. Anglers fishing from boats may not retain any of these three species.

Surfperch are available in the surf year-round along sandy beaches and rocky shore, with the best fishing (and safest fishing) occurring when swells are small. Learn about ocean surfperch fishing.

When fishing from shore or inside estuaries and bays, it is important to check the tide. Many fish that swim into estuaries and bays, including salmon, surfperch, and Pacific herring, tend to come in with the tide. Catch of these species is more likely to occur closer to slack tide. Additionally, the accessibility of some areas can be completely dependent on the tide. Do not allow the incoming tide to become a safety issue.

CRABBING AND CLAMMING

Always check for closures at the ODA Shellfish Safety page before clamming or crabbing.

As we move into fall and winter, negative low tides suitable for clamming occur in the evenings. Clammers should be mindful of safety while clamming at dark. Safety measures include not clamming in unfamiliar areas, bringing a reliable light source and avoiding clamming alone.

BAY CLAMS

Check out the Where to Clam articles for places to find bay clams. You can also get more clamming maps here.

Always call the ODA shellfish safety hotline at 1-800-448-2474 or ODA shellfish closures website before harvesting for the most current information about shellfish safety closures.

RAZOR CLAMS

Razor clamming is now open the entire Oregon coast.

CRABS

Crabbing is closed in the ocean from Oct. 16 – Nov. 30. Bays, beaches, estuaries, tide pools, piers and jetties remain open.

Crabbing slowed significantly in most bays this past week, possibly influenced by changing ocean conditions and recent rain. Crab are mostly hard shelled now and continue to fill with meat, as expected this time of year.

In addition to Dungeness crab, another Oregon native present in some of Oregon’s estuaries is the red rock crab. Look for them in larger bays with jetties and other rocky habitats. Crabbers can retain 24 red rock crabs of any sex or size. There have also been higher numbers of Pacific rock crab in Yaquina Bay. This crab counts as your “Other” shellfish, which has a daily bag limit of 10 in aggregate with other species that fall in this category (see page 82 of the fishing synopsis for more details). While they look very similar to red rock crab, their long antennae and large claws distinguish them; they sometimes have spots on their abdomen.

Some crabbers in estuaries may also encounter non-native European green crab in their catch this year. While they look similar to Oregon’s native shore crabs, identify them by the three prominent bumps between the eyes and 5 spines down the side of the carapace. They are not always green and color is not a good identifying feature. The daily catch limit for European green crab also falls in the “Other shellfish” category and is 10 in aggregate with other species that fall in this category (see page 82 of the fishing synopsis for more details). European green crab can be any size or sex.

Effective Jan. 1, 2020, recreational crabbers must mark all floating surface buoys with a name and other identifying information. See more information in the Regulation updates section above. While this rule does not apply to gear tied to docks, piers, jetties or beaches, we recommend marking buoys on any gear that could become derelict or lost. Find more information here.

MUSSELS

The entire Oregon coast is now open to mussel harvest.

WILDLIFE VIEWING

NW WILDLIFE VIEWING

TILLAMOOK COUNTY
Birds
Large numbers of waterfowl will begin to arrive during October and will likely spend the rest of the winter here. They will raft up out in the middle of most local estuaries on calm days but will move around with the incoming tide and on windy days. Many species of diving ducks can be seen on area lakes and bays. Likewise, many migrating geese are beginning to arrive and are using area fields, along with many egrets, herons and wintering raptors.

Most of the familiar forest, rural and urban birds of spring and summer have left for warmer spots down south. They have been replaced by juncos, titmice, chickadees and towhees. Winter wrens should be present in damp, brushy areas as well as dippers along streams. Both are usually noticed by their ringing, complex songs long before they are seen.

CLATSOP COUNTY
Birds
The Columbia River estuary is stopover spot #1 for migrating ducks and geese during the fall. Puddle ducks will more likely be found around flooded fields and creek mouths, while diving ducks will be using deeper water in lakes, bays and sometimes larger sloughs. Bald eagles will be found nearby, looking to pick off the unwary or injured.

Ft. Stevens offers many viewing opportunities, including forest, wetlands, grasslands, dunes, seashore and river. Best viewing for pelagic birds, beach-foraging shorebirds and gulls would be with a spotting scope from the viewing platform near Parking Lot C. The viewing bunker a short walk from Parking Lot D offers views of Trestle Bay, with more waterfowl, marsh-foraging shorebirds and salt marsh passerines present. A number of duck species use Coffenbury Lake.

Jewell Meadows Wildlife Area

Elk viewing has been good at Jewell Meadows Wildlife Area. With recent warm weather, elk have been visible in the mornings and evenings. Good places to look are the Fishhawk Tract along Hwy 202 and the Beneke Tract along the first 1.5 miles of Beneke Road.

Migratory species that have returned to the wildlife area include band-tailed pigeons, violate-green swallows, tree swallows, and wood ducks.
Look for band-tailed pigeons near viewing areas.
Swallows can be seen gliding over the open fields and nesting in boxes along fences near viewing areas.
Wood ducks, hooded mergansers, and mallards have been seen in the shallow pond areas, in fields with standing water, and along creeks.

Other wildlife to watch for include: coyotes in the fields, bald eagles perched in tall trees near creeks or soaring overhead, and songbirds near the viewing area feeders. Listen for pacific tree frogs in the evenings.

The wildlife area is open for use, but our office building is closed the public. Visitors need to be aware that they will need to take all necessary Covid-19 precautions, follow social distancing guidelines, wear face coverings, and use the facilities at their own risk.

Brochures with maps are available at the main viewing area kiosk. Remember that areas posted as “Wildlife Refuge” are closed to public entry. Posted portions of the Beneke Tract are closed to public entry Aug. 1 through March 31. (See Big Game Hunting Regulations for exceptions.)

A parking permit is required to park at Jewell Meadows Wildlife Area. Find out how to buy a parking permit.

SW WILDLIFE VIEWING

COOS and CURRY COUNTIES

While warm weather is often a problem for wildlife viewing in much of Oregon, it is less of an issue in Coos County. This is especially true closer to the coast. Temperatures rarely go over 80 degrees due to the marine influence. That said, often fog that forms when warm conditions occur inland poses a significant issue if a person is trying to view marine mammals or coastal birds. Warm air inland rises which causes cool air sitting over the ocean to be drawn inland, this creates ideal conditions for fog to form. At times this marine fog is limited to less than a quarter mile from beach or headland.

Coquille Valley Wildlife Area (CVWA)

Coquille Valley Wildlife Area (CVWA) in Coos County is open to public access. Permits for access are required and are available, free of charge, at the kiosk located in the parking lot along North Bank Road. You must access to CVWA through this point. Please fill out the upper half (“A” half) of the permit and deposit it in the slot located on the post of the kiosk. Sign and carry the lower half (“B” half) with you while you enjoy CVWA. At the end of your visit please fill out the B half and deposited it in the same slot.

The Winter Lake Tract of CVWA is open for public access (hunting or viewing) all days of the week from March 11 through Aug. 31.

Birds

For birders in Curry County, waterfowl viewing hotspots include Battle Rock Beach, Humbug Mountain State Park, and Floras Lake/Boice Cope Park. Learn more about these and other south coast birding hotspots here.

In the fall schooling fish like herring, sandlance and anchovies will move into coastal bays. As the base of the food web these fish attract predators like seals, sealions and birds. These schools are perused from the water by the marine mammals and from the air by the avian predators. The resulting spectacle can be worth seeing. Those interested is seeing it will find great opportunity in any of the local bays but in particular Coos Bay because it is so big and productive. Cape Arago Hwy in the Barview area offers many places to pull off the road and see the action. Also, Point Adams, near the Port of Charleston, is a great place to watch. What the viewer is in for is an opportunity to watch pelicans diving from the air on dense schools of fish while marine mammals corral them from the bottom. There will also be gulls, cormorants, terns and other birds attacking these schools. The action can be fierce.

Big game

The elk rut, or breeding season is generally in September but there is usually some activity in October. Bulls will be defending harems of cows from other bulls, hoping for a chance to breed. The activity will be somewhat less than in September, there are still a few cows that have not successfully bred and are receptive to bulls later. Soon all the breeding activity will be done for the year and bulls will be harder to see as they will move away from cow herds and become more solitary or live in bachelor herds. It seems that all the insults and fighting between bulls in the rut is forgiven once the rut concludes.

While this is a unique and impressive spectacle that everyone should see, it is extremely important to keep your distance from these animals. They can become aggressive during these fits of rage.

Dean Creek Elk Viewing Area is a good place to watch elk as several herds are currently spending most days in the fields near observation points. Dean Creek is also a good place to see a variety of birds from waterfowl to wintering songbirds.

DOUGLAS COUNTY

Big game

This time of year, also keep an eye out for Columbian white-tailed and black-tailed deer throughout much of the Umpqua Valley. Herds of deer are often found on private agricultural lands in strong numbers.

Birds

Ford’s Pond in northern Douglas County is home to nearly 200 species of birds. During the fall, you can expect to see plenty of ducks, geese, swallows, and a diversity of shorebirds such as dowitchers, sandpipers, yellowlegs, snipe and egrets. Other fall birding hotspots in Douglas County include Stewart Park near Roseburg (great for swifts, swallows and waterfowl).

Acorn woodpeckers are year-round residents of Douglas County, where they can be found living in groups and defending granary trees. Birds drill holes into granary trees, which they then use to store insects and acorns during the fall. Typical habitat for this loud and vocal woodpecker is oak-pine woodlands, and common locations to find acorn woodpeckers include Roseburg at River Forks Park, N. Bank Mgt. area and Whistlers Park.

In September and October, greater white-fronted geese migrate along the Pacific flyway from breeding habitat in Alaska to wintering areas in the western US and Mexico. Listen for the characteristic “laughing” call of large flocks as they pass overhead. Fields and lakes or ponds are good places to look for geese that may stop over to rest and forage before continuing the migration.

JACKSON and JOSEPHINE COUNTIES

Birds

In the fall, Vaux’s swift may be seen in large congregations as they prepare for their southbound migration from breeding territories in the Pacific Northwest to wintering grounds in South and Central America. Vaux’s Swifts may use artificial roosting sites such as chimneys and will remain in these locations for a few weeks before continuing their journey.

Lewis’s woodpeckers are year-round residents of the Rogue Valley. During the winter, this species may be found in oak woodland habitats defending stored acorn masts.

American white pelicans are starting the fall migration to warmer waters along the Gulf and Pacific Coast. With historically low water levels in many reservoirs in southern Oregon, birds have been seen in some atypical stopover sites in Josephine and Jackson Counties.

Ospreys have been seen on the Denman Wildlife Area recently near the Rogue River and Whetstone Pond. Ospreys are a large bird of prey that almost exclusively feed on fish. If you spot one watch it hunt as it flies over the water and strikes with a splash, if successful it should take flight again with a fish in its talons.

Mourning doves are found across the Rogue Valley wherever there are open grain fields and areas with roosting trees that have plenty of water. They are currently found nesting in trees or other shaded structures. They can have multiple nests throughout the early summer. They are a fast flying, graceful, wing-whistling birds. They feed on small seeds of weeds and various grains. A species that is similar but slightly larger is the Eurasian collared dove. Unlike the mourning doves, Eurasian collared doves are a non-native species. They are seen around residential areas and have been known to visit bird feeders. Unlike the pointed tail of the mourning dove their tail will be square shaped.

This is the time of year that many different species of waterfowl are migrating through our area. Look for them near rivers and other bodies of water. Wetlands and marsh areas can also be a great place to seen geese feeding. There is a wide variety of duck species to observe as well as a few species of geese.

Table Rocks

The two Table Rocks of southern Oregon provide excellent hiking opportunities. The Upper Table Rock Trail is located off Modoc Road and is a slightly shorter hike, whereas the Lower Table Rock Trail is located off Table Rock Road and is longer, yet a slightly less steep climb. Both of these trails provide a good opportunity to see a variety of native wildlife. Listen for vocal northern flicker and acorn woodpeckers. Both hikes offer excellent views of the surrounding Cascade and Siskiyou mountain ranges if you hike to the top of the trail, but beware of muddy conditions this time of year.

Jacksonville Forest Park

The Jacksonville Forest Park is located just outside of the historic town of Jacksonville, Ore. This is a 1,100-acre park with over 30 trails provided access to scenic forests, creeks, and sunny oak woodlands. The park provides excellent opportunities for hikers (and bikers and equestrians) of all skill-levels. The city of Jacksonville offers a digital map to help users stay on-trail, available here. Looks for some of the Rogue Valley’s spring residents including foxes, deer, and birds such as towhees and jays.

Denman Wildlife Area

Denman Wildlife Area is a birding hotspot. There are two trails off Tou Velle Road that provide birding, hiking, and other recreational access. The green gate on Tou Velle Rd is open to the public; however, you’ll need to first pick up a gate key at the Denman Wildlife Area office.

Below the fourth pond and to the north, you can access the Denman Horse Trail (2.5 mile) with great views of the Upper Table Rock. While a daytime encounter is unlikely, keep an eye out for mammal sign (scat, scrapes, trails and tracks) to learn about how deer, fox, bear, beaver and muskrat use the important riparian habitat along Little Butte Creek. Waterfowl are also common on Little Butte Creek, especially near the confluence of the Rogue River.

Hike the Denman Interpretive Trail (1.5 miles long and located south of Tou Ville Road on the fourth pond dike) to learn about the rich natural and human history of Denman Wildlife Area. An interpretive trail guide is available from the Denman Wildlife Area office; call ahead to ask for a copy or to get a map of other trails on with wildlife area (541-826-8774).

The covered viewing station on Whetstone Pond off East Gregory Road provides a bit of relief from the hot sun and offers a great opportunity to view waterfowl, egrets, raptors and songbirds. The viewing station was installed by Oregon Hunters Association and can be accessed from a paved, ADA-accessible pathway that also extends into the pond for up-close viewing access.

A parking permit is required to park at Denman Wildlife Area. Find out how to buy a parking permit.

It is illegal to dump domestic waterfowl and poultry. There are significant impacts to the wild birds that inhabit the area. Domestic ducks and geese compete with native/migratory ducks and geese for nesting habitat and food sources, and domestic waterfowl have the potential of introducing disease into the wild populations. The Denman Wildlife Area staff would also like to make you aware that feeding the birds on the wildlife area is not permitted. Feeding waterfowl can cause the spread of disease as both migratory and domestic birds congregate in large quantities when being fed.

On the last Wednesday of every month at 4 p.m. (Pacific time), Rogue Valley Audubon offers an online program for birders who are interested in learning more about local birds. Each episode is about an hour long with a variety of topics and speakers. Sign up to watch.

Keep an eye out for the two species of quail that live in southwest Oregon. If you see a ground bird with a long straight head plume and chestnut-colored throat and flanks, then you’re looking at a mountain quail–a species that typically lives at higher elevations.

Unlike the mountain quail, California quail have a curved head plume and the feathers on their chest give them a scaled appearance. The California quail, also referred to as the valley quail, is typically found in the lower elevation valleys, and can be more common than the mountain quail in agricultural and suburban areas near thick brushy cover.

The Denman Wildlife staff has recently seen a lot of activity from green herons in the area. Green herons are smaller than blue herons. They are short and stocky with relatively short legs and a thick neck. They are similar in size to a crow but have broader wings. They are very camouflaged in their environment. They have a velvety green back, a rich chesnut-colored neck and a dark cap/crown that is often raised into a short crest. They can be seen crouching patiently in the thick tangles of the leaves and branches surrounding shallow water resources that contain fish. Some have been observed using small twigs or insects as bait.

Crater Lake National Park

The crater proper is reason enough to visit this national park; however, Crater Lake itself is only a fraction of what you may see on your trip. In late summer, this attraction is a great place to view charismatic mammals including elk, golden-mantled ground squirrels, yellow-bellied marmots and snowshoe hares. Talus slopes are home to the American pika — a member of the lagomorph family known for its Mickey Mouse ears and its alarm call, used to warn other pikas of potential intruders. The call has been described as sounding like a rusty screen door, a high-pitched lamb bleat or a squeaky toy!

Keep an eye on your cooler; vocal and intelligent corvids including the Clark’s nutcracker, Canada jay and Steller’s jay are common in the summer (and will readily steal an unattended hamburger bun). Also watch out for recently transformed western toads, Cascade frogs and Pacific tree frogs near riparian areas. Small juveniles and migrating toadlets (numbering in the hundreds) are vulnerable to trampling from foot, bike and road traffic.

WILLAMETTE WILDLIFE VIEWING

Corvallis Area

EE Wilson Wildlife Area

There are lots of deer, shorebirds and waterfowl to see on the wildlife area – look for goose, mallard, hooded merganser and wood duck broods. Wildlife viewing remains good for waterfowl and shorebirds. Neotropical migrants in the area include yellow-breasted chat, American goldfinch, various swallows, warblers, thrush, kinglet and common yellowthroat.

Note: Dogs are required to be on a leash inside the wildlife area boundary. Rifles and pistols are prohibited year-round. Find directions to EE Wilson Wildlife Area.

A parking permit is required to park at EE Wilson Wildlife Area. Find out how to buy a parking permit.

Eugene Area

Fern Ridge Wildlife Area

Observant visitors may catch a glimpse of black-tailed deer and furbearers including beaver, otter, mink, red fox and coyotes. Some of the unusual and special bird species to be on the lookout for include white pelicans, black terns, band-tailed pigeons, yellow-headed blackbirds, osprey and bald eagles.

Throughout the year look for waterfowl, shore birds, wading birds, songbirds, raptors, reptiles, and amphibians. During summer, visitors may also see western pond turtles basking on logs, branches, and rocks in sunny areas of rivers, off-channel ponds, and other wetlands. Please report sightings of turtles here.

An elevated viewing platform in the Fisher Butte unit just south of Royal Avenue is open year-round. A second viewing platform is located 1/4 mile north of the Fisher Butte unit parking lot on Hwy. 126.

A parking permit is required to park at Fern Ridge Wildlife Area. Find out how to buy a parking permit. Maps of the wildlife area can be found on the ODFW website.

Portland Area

Sauvie Island Wildlife Area

The Sauvie Island Wildlife Area Eastside units and Westside, Oak Island and North units closed on Oct. 1 and will remain closed through April 15, 2022. Rentenaar Road, Eastside Viewing Platform and Raccoon Point will remain open for viewing. The trail to Warrior Rock Lighthouse remains open and offers a great hike along with bird viewing. All open areas are on Reeder Road and require a parking permit. We ask that you please practice social distancing guidelines while recreating.

Viewing opportunities are plentiful as the fall migration is upon us with a variety of waterfowl and migratory birds currently returning to the island, including geese and peak numbers of sandhill cranes. Be sure to bring your binoculars. When planning your trip to the island please see the current Game Bird Regulations for the hunt schedule and plan accordingly.

Sauvie Island is a main stopping point for migratory birds as they travel along the Pacific Flyway, and ODFW actively manages the Wildlife Area to provide food and cover for these creatures.

Sauvie Island Wildlife Area is located on Sauvie Island, only 10 miles north of Portland off Hwy. 30. A parking permit is required for the Sauvie Island Wildlife Area and can be purchased at ODFW license vendors or on line at myodfw.com

For more information, call (503) 621-3488.

CENTRAL WILDLIFE VIEWING

CROOK COUNTY

There are red-tailed, rough-legged and ferruginous hawks, northern harriers, American kestrels, prairie falcons and golden eagles throughout Crook County and they’re usually associated more closely with open/agricultural areas. Bald eagles and osprey, on the other hand, are more closely associated with water bodies. Look for northern goshawks throughout the Ochoco National Forest, and for ducklings and goslings in rivers and lakes.

Prineville Reservoir Wildlife Area

The Prineville Reservoir Wildlife Area offers access to view a wide variety of wildlife, including deer, coyotes, otter, beaver, raptors, shorebirds and waterfowl. Maps of the wildlife area are available at the Prineville ODFW office, at Prineville Reservoir State Park office and the ODFW website. Vehicles must remain on open roads, designated by a green dot, and cross-country motorized travel is prohibited.

DESCHUTES COUNTY

The Lower Deschutes River provides ample wildlife viewing opportunities. California bighorn sheep are frequently observed in the canyon and can provide fantastic viewing all times of the year. The best spot to view sheep is from the BLM access road just downstream and across the river from Sherars Falls (along Hwy 216). Focus your efforts near large cliff complexes for best viewing. Fall is a great time of year to see rams display their dominance by butting heads with one another.

You can also see sheep from The Lower Deschutes Wildlife Area access trail on the east side of the river by hiking up from the mouth of the river. Sheep can be seen as low as river mile 7 or 8.

The John Day River Canyon also is home to bighorn sheep but access is a bit more limited. The easiest place to access the canyon is at Cottonwood Canyon State Park. Hike up or downstream from the access point to look for sheep.

Oak woodlands throughout Hood River and Wasco counties provide food and cover for many wildlife species. Acorns from these trees are a particularly important fall and early winter food source for western gray squirrels and deer. Woodpeckers such as. Lewis’s woodpeckers, may be found scouring live and dead oak trees for insects found in the wood.

If you are out in the mixed conifer forests around Mt. Hood, you may be able to hear an elk bugle. The fall is the tale-end of the breeding season for elk. Bulls will bugle to establish dominance for any nearby subordinate bulls.

You can see a variety of common raptor species throughout the Mid-Columbia district. Common species this time of year include red-tailed hawk, osprey, golden eagle, bald eagle, American kestrel, and northern harrier. Other less commonly seen species include prairie falcon and peregrine falcon.

This is a great time of year to observe migratory birds passing through. We are beginning to see migratory waterfowl on the Columbia River. Wigeons, mallards, and ring-necked ducks have all been seen foraging offshore.

There also are great wildlife viewing opportunities on the Woosley Tract of Lower Deschutes Wildlife area. The area includes many unique bird species as well as bighorn sheep. You can get to this area through BLM lands at the mouth of Oak, Ferry or Ward canyons. You will need a boat to access the area, which provides a very remote experience, with very few, if any, other people around. Please call The Dalles district office at 541 296 4628 with any questions about getting to the area.

THE DALLES DISTRICT

The Lower Deschutes River provides ample wildlife viewing opportunities. California bighorn sheep are frequently observed in the canyon and can provide fantastic viewing all times of the year. The best spot to view sheep is from the BLM access road just downstream and across the river from Sherars Falls (along Hwy 216). Focus your efforts near large cliff complexes for best viewing. Summer months are great for viewing lambs as they learn from their mothers how to navigate steep and rocky terrain.

You can also see sheep from The Lower Deschutes Wildlife Area access trail on the east side of the river by hiking up from the mouth of the river. Sheep can be seen as low as river mile 7 or 8.

The John Day River Canyon also is home to bighorn sheep but access is a bit more limited. The easiest place to access the canyon is at Cottonwood Canyon State Park. Hike up or downstream from the access point to look for sheep.

Oak woodlands throughout Hood River and Wasco counties provide food and cover for many wildlife species. Acorns from these trees are a particularly important fall and early winter food source for western gray squirrels and deer.

Other woodpeckers such as Lewis’s woodpeckers may be found scouring live and dead oak trees for insects found in the wood. Even fallen oak limbs decomposing on the ground can provide havens for reptiles and amphibians looking for refuge from summer heat.

You can see a variety of common raptor species throughout the Mid-Columbia district. Common species this time of year include red-tailed hawk, osprey, golden eagle, bald eagle, American kestrel, and northern harrier. Other less commonly seen species include prairie falcon, and peregrine falcon.

In the summer months conifer forests in the district are home to many migratory songbirds. Hermit and Swainson’s thrushes have distinctive songs and can be heard almost anywhere in the forest. Abundance and diversity of songbird species will be highest in areas with recent forest disturbance. Good places to look are along the edges of recent burns (be sure to check the Mt Hood Ranger District for current closures) and five to 10-year-old clear-cuts.

There also are great wildlife viewing opportunities on the Woosley Tract of Lower Deschutes Wildlife area. The area includes many unique bird species as well as bighorn sheep. You can get to this area through BLM lands at the mouth of Oak, Ferry or Ward canyons. You will need a boat to access the area, which provides a very remote experience, with very few, if any, other people around. Please call The Dalles district office at 541 296 4628 with any questions about getting to the area.

White River Wildlife Area

Photography opportunities for deer and elk are still good, especially near agricultural fields and waterways. Many elk calves, deer fawns and wild turkey poults have been seen lately. Remember, young wildlife are rarely orphaned so leave young wildlife where you find them.

If you’re traveling on or near the wildlife area, be alert for big game animals and their young, particularly the deer and elk, crossing the road.

The wildlife area is also home to many other game and nongame species. Look for wild turkeys foraging, skunks, coyotes, the occasional river otter and muskrat in waterways, and black bear or cougar as they move throughout the wildlife area.

There are many opportunities to see bald eagles and golden eagles on the Wildlife Area. You can spot other raptors such as red-tailed hawks, American kestrels, osprey and northern harriers hunting their prey. Look for birds perched on powerlines/poles, fences and trees.

Lewis’ woodpeckers, pileated woodpeckers, flickers, western meadowlarks, Steller’s jays, scrub jays, gray jays, Townsend’s solitaire, horned larks, golden-crowed kinglets and robins are all at home on the wildlife area.

On ponds and streams, there are a variety of ducks and geese. Many birds are being seen in the local ponds and waterways, creating good photography opportunities.

You can also find many reptiles and amphibians around the wildlife area in the spring, summer and fall. With these warmer temperatures, look for bullfrogs, newts and other smaller species near bodies of water. Be on the lookout for a variety of snakes including garter snakes, bull snakes and the poisonous western rattlesnake.

A parking permit is required to park at White River Wildlife Area. Find out how to buy a parking permit.

Current road and weather conditions: The roads on the wildlife area are still dry and dusty. Most of the roads are seasonal and travel is allowed only on open roads designated by the green dot. Look for maps with road information at entrances to the wildlife area or click here WRWA Map. The weather forecast is cool with high temperatures in the low 60s and low temperatures in the 30s and 40s with a few scattered showers.

Reminder: Display your required parking permit when visiting the wildlife area. Camping in the wildlife area is only allowed in designated camping areas. Please pack out your trash. Campfires are allowed only in designated campsites. Only street legal vehicles are allowed in the wildlife area, no ATV’s or snowmobiles.

Please continue to follow the state guidelines for the coronavirus pandemic. More COVID19 information can be found at the entrances to the wildlife area.

SE WILDLIFE VIEWING

HARNEY COUNTY

Fall shorebird migration is in full swing! Lesser yellow legs, killdeer, avocets, black-necked stilts, white-faced ibis, curlews, pelicans, egrets and a variety of grebes species are a few of what can be seen. However, waterbird viewing is expected to be very limited this year as drought conditions have caused nearly all waterbodies to go dry. The best opportunities to view waterbirds in Harney County will be at the south end of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge near Frenchglen.

Fall migrating waterfowl are near peak numbers including northern pintail, northern shovelers, American wigeon, American green-winged teal, canvasback and redhead. Sandhill cranes can be found in agricultural fields throughout the Harney Basin.

Fall migrating passerine species are also passing through. White-crowned sparrows, American goldfinches, spotted towhees, Says phoebes and a variety of warbler species are a few that can be found in the basin. A large number of breeding passerine species and woodpeckers can be found in National Forest land throughout the county.

Raptors continue to be found throughout the area. You should be able to view osprey around lakes and reservoirs, golden eagles, a few bald eagles, red-tailed hawks, northern harriers, prairie falcons and ferruginous hawks.

As fall progresses, look for deer, elk, and antelope to remain active for longer periods of the day. Many populations of deer and elk will begin to move into lower elevations as severe weather events increase in frequency and daylight hours dwindle. This annual transition into winter ranges often makes large animals more visible and may provide opportunities for viewers and photographers.

MALHEUR COUNTY

Raptor and waterfowl viewing are available in the county. The Snake River corridor provides numerous opportunities to see multiple bird species associated with the river and adjacent agriculture areas, including red-tailed, northern harrier and rough legged hawk and, on occasion, golden eagles.

Many species of ducks including mallards, wood ducks, wigeon, green-winged teal, golden eyes, mergansers and bufflehead are also present.

KLAMATH COUNTY

Raptors such as red-tailed hawks are common in agricultural areas throughout the basin. Rough legged hawks should be arriving soon as winter approaches. Bald eagles can be viewed along Eagle Ridge and Shoalwater Bay accessed from Eagle Ridge Road from Hwy 140. The Lower Klamath National Wildlife Refuge provides great viewing opportunities as well.

The Link River trail below Upper Klamath Lake and the Wood River Wetlands are excellent places to view many species of wildlife including deer, river otter, muskrat, mink, buffleheads, goldeneye, great-blue heron and great egret.

Waterfowl including Canada geese, mallards, American coot, teal can be seen throughout the area. Flyway activity has begun to increase as weather patterns change and birds are populating suitable habitat. Sandhill cranes and other shorebirds can be found as well along with Wilsons, Clark’s, horned, and pied billed grebes.

Lower Klamath and Tule Lake NWR provides excellent viewing for waterfowl and other aquatic birds. The auto tour route loops drivers through the refuge where they can see many species of waterfowl. In addition, look for coyotes, beaver, river otter and muskrats. Due to drought conditions many of the impounds are dry this year.The refuge also provides several photography blinds. Contact the Refuge HQ for detailed information about their photography blinds and areas still inundated with water.

Mule deer can be observed throughout the district where there is suitable habitat. Wildlife viewers can expect the deer to begin migrating seek out wintering area in November.

Klamath Wildlife Area

Miller Island Unit

The Miller Island Unit is located 6 miles south and west of Klamath Falls. Miller Island Unit is closed to all access from 10 p.m. until 4 a.m.
Dogs are prohibited off leash Feb. 1 – Aug. 31 except in the authorized dog training area.
Overnight camping is not allowed on the Miller Island Unit.

A Wildlife Area Parking Permit is now required to park on the Wildlife Area. Cost is $10 daily or $30 annually. Free with purchase of hunting license; just be sure to put it on your dashboard. Find out how to buy a parking permit.

Waterfowl

Flocks and pairs of western Canada geese are scattered across the area. Broods of Canada geese can be found scattered around the area.

Species that can be observed are northern shoveler, American green-winged teal, cinnamon teal, gadwall, and mallard. Many diver species have migrated out at this time but bufflehead, canvasback, redhead, ruddy duck, hooded and common mergansers can still be observed. Many of the early nesting duck species have started to nest.

Shorebirds, waders and other waterbirds

Sandhill crane numbers and use on the area remain steady and will be for the rest of the summer. The first colts were observed over this past week. The best way to locate them will be through sound as they can be very vocal this time of year.

Yellowleg species, black-necked stilts, American avocets, common snipe, long-billed dowitcher, white-faced ibis, dunlin and several sandpiper species can be readily observed on the area and can usually be found in the shallow waters of receding ponds. Killdeer can often be observed scattered throughout the area; many are actively nesting at this time. Long-billed curlews have been observed using both agricultural lands and short grass/shrub areas.

American white pelicans and double-crested cormorants are common throughout the area and river.

Great blue herons, Great egrets, black-crowned night-heron and American bittern can usually be found scattered across the area.

Ring-billed, Franklin’s and Bonaparte’s along with other gull species have increased dramatically over the past couple of days, and they can be observed scattered across the area. Caspian and Forster’s terns are both common sights at this time.

Raptors

Great horned and barn owls can be seen at dusk. Red-tailed hawks, northern harriers, cooper’s hawks, American kestrels, and prairie falcons are foraging throughout the wildlife area. Osprey can often be observed fishing along the Klamath River and some of the area’s deeper ponds. Eagle numbers are decreasing as much of their prey base has migrated out of the area.

Peregrine falcons can occasionally be seen but are rare sightings.

Upland Game Birds

California quail and ring-necked pheasant are scattered around the old homesteads and the headquarters area.

Songbirds and other passerines

Visitors will find Eurasian collared and mourning doves scattered over the area.

American goldfinches, western kingbirds, house finches, house wrens, American robins, spotted towhees, western meadowlarks, and northern flickers continue to be a common sight throughout the area. Red-winged, yellow-headed and Brewer’s blackbirds also are commonly seen. Marsh wrens and song sparrows can be found in dense stands of tall emergent hard stem bulrush and broad-leaf cattail. House wrens and brown creepers can be seen around old homestead sites. White-crowned and golden crowned sparrows and dark eyed juncos continue to be a common site on the area, but numbers are declining as spring progresses. Black phoebes can still be found fly catching from perches throughout the area. Barn and cliff swallows are now common sights and American pipits can be found using pastures or open upland areas.

Warblers have been a common sight of late as large numbers of yellow-rumped have started to show up along with the orange-crowned warblers and common yellowthroats.

Belted kingfishers can sometimes be spotted in trees near ditches and canals.

Shrike can sometimes be found using the shrub dominated uplands of the southern part of Miller Island.

Common ravens and black-billed magpies are quite numerous at this time, with the occasional crow seen.

Mammals

Muskrat are easily observed this time of year around dusk. Beaver, river otter, mink, long-tailed weasel, coyotes, stripped skunk, black-tailed jackrabbit, mountain cottontail and raccoon may also be observed using the wildlife area. As the weather gets warmer yellow-bellied marmot, California ground squirrels and Belding’s ground squirrels can also be observed on the area. Deer are also routinely spotted.

Reptiles

Western pond turtles have become active. They can be observed basking on logs during warm sunny days.

If you have any questions, please contact Klamath Wildlife Area at (541) 883-5732.

LAKE COUNTY

Waterfowl

Most waterfowl can be found in the lakes that are still holding water during drought conditions. This year the Warner Valley is the only area with any water, but other small mountain lakes located within the Interstate unit do as well. Due to the extreme lack of water this year waterfowl abundance is reduced as migratory birds moved further north in search of adequate habitat. Remember, much of the USFS lands are closed and be sure to check to see if the area you are interested is open to the public.

Duck species are few and far between this year but look for divers including goldeneyes, canvasback, ring-necked and buffleheads present at this time. Look for them in deeper water habitats such as Thompson and Ana reservoirs. Large numbers of dabbling ducks including pintail, wigeon, mallard, green-winged teal and shovelers can be seen in shallower wetland habitats that have remained open.

Western Canada geese can be found in fair numbers at this time. Western Canada geese are widely distributed across Lake County. Look for family groups and broods on the larger impoundments and ponds where springs have kept water available, which are mostly on private lands

Some local trumpeter swans are part of restoration efforts and will be neck-banded with green collars and white alphanumeric symbols. Viewers are encouraged to “read” the collars and report them to ODFW. Collars will have the Greek letter Theta (Ѳ) or the symbol “@” and two numerals that are read from the body toward the head.

This time of year, visitors will see flocks of migrant warblers, flycatchers, sparrows and other passerines. Typically, rarities and vagrants show-up now, so keep a sharp eye out and scan flocks.

Shorebirds, waders and other waterbirds

Shorebirds including American avocets, black-necked stilts, dunlin, greater and lesser yellowlegs, killdeer, Wilson’s snipe, Wilson’s phalarope, snowy plover, semi-palmated plover, western, least and spotted sandpipers are likely to be hard to locate with the lack of water in Abert Lake Look for them elsewhere in the county such as Rivers End. Early migrants such as long-billed curlew and western willets have largely departed the area.

Gulls (ring-billed and California), terns (Caspian and Forster’s) and double-crested cormorants are around, while white-faced ibis and American white pelicans remain throughout Lake County.

Raptors

There is a variety of raptor species distributed throughout all vegetation types. They include bald and golden eagles, northern harriers, red-tailed hawks and rough-legged hawks. You also might see the occasional ferruginous hawks, and prairie and peregrine falcons. Look for large nests along rim faces and communication towers.

Great horned owls are calling at night and are widely scattered across Lake County. Common barn owls and short-eared owls may be observed or also heard calling at night.

Songbirds and other passerines

Passerine species, especially white-crowned and golden crowned sparrows and dark-eyed juncos, can be found with the best diversity in riparian areas. American and lesser goldfinches, house finches, spotted towhees, black-billed magpies, western meadow larks, norther flickers, American robins, varied thrushes, loggerhead shrikes, Steller’s and scrub jays numbers are increasing. Large flocks of red-winged, Brewer’s and yellow-headed blackbirds have been observed as they prepare to migrate.

Mule Deer

The weather is cooling down and deer will be more active feeding later into the mornings and emerging from their beds earlier in the evening. Most deer are still up at higher elevations. Look to areas of intermittent timber and meadows that provide forage this time of year. Another good spot to observe deer is in irrigation pivots, where you will find them browsing on high quality forage.

Remember that Lake County experienced large wildfires this year. Most of the fires impacted deer summer range, and while they are in transitional zones as we approach winter, we would like to remind folks to minimize disturbance to wild animals. Please check to make sure the lands you are planning to recreate on are open to the public.

Pronghorn

Pronghorn have just finished their breeding season called the “rut.” Bucks will likely be solitary this time of year or in small bachelor groups consisting of young males. Does will be grouped together and may be transitioning from summer range gearing up for their winter migrations throughout the county. Due to the extreme drought this year these critters are still strongly tied to water and may be a good place to catch them. Unlike most other large mammals, pronghorn tend to be mobile and active throughout the day.

The occasion to notice and watch wildlife makes for a great learning experience for children and families. Viewers are urged to use binoculars or spotting scopes, and watch pronghorn antelope from a distance, to reduce disturbing them as much as possible. Viewers are reminded that often times areas of high pronghorn use are private property, so pronghorn should be observed from a vehicle or roadside to avoid trespassing and landowner conflicts.

Pronghorn antelope have horns instead of antlers like mule deer and elk. Both buck and doe pronghorn antelope have horns. The outer sheath is shed annually by December with the new horn grown by the middle of March.

A prominent prong or point on the horn can identify buck pronghorn antelope. In addition, the buck’s entire nose appears black and all bucks have a visible black cheek patch. Doe pronghorn antelope do not have a prong or point and the horn is usually less than 5-inches long. A doe’s nose is much lighter colored and a doe will not have a visible black cheek patch. If you see a group of pronghorn remember to check behind the group. The dominant buck is often following well behind the group.
Bighorn Sheep

There are bighorn sheep on many of the peaks and rims in Lake County. During October, you may be lucky enough to hear the distinct sound of rams head butting each other in order to determine dominance for breeding rights. These loud “bangs” can be heard from an extreme distance on quiet days. This is the only time of the year that mature rams will spend much time around the ewes and lambs.

Look for sheep on rims along Hwy 395 from the Christmas Valley Hwy junction south to the Hwy 31 junction. Abert Rim just above Abert Lake along Hwy 395 offers good viewing. The Coglan Buttes offer good opportunities for the more adventurous. Hart Mountain Refuge has historically had a strong population of sheep, but viewer beware — predation and habitat changes have had an impact on Hart Mountain’s populations and have made sheep very hard to find.

Viewers wishing to observe bighorns should bring binoculars or spotting scopes, as sheep are generally found in steep rocky terrain and must be viewed from a distance.

Summer Lake Wildlife Area
This section was updated on Oct. 6, 2021

Facilities and Access

Wildlife Area Parking permits are required for all users of Summer Lake Wildlife Area. The cost is $10.00 daily or $30.00 annually and permits are valid on all ODFW Wildlife Areas. Find out how to buy a parking permit.

Wildlife Viewing Loop is now closed and will stayed closed tell the end of January.

Camping is permitted at four sites on the Wildlife Area. Campgrounds are primitive but each has vault toilets, trash barrels and a few picnic tables.

Non-motorized travel on spur levees or lateral dikes is permitted as is cross-country travel.
Visitor use is permitted only between the hours of 4 a.m. and 10 p.m.
Discharging of firearms is prohibited, except by special permit.

Waterfowl

Fall staging has started with large numbers of pintail, green-winged teal and wigeon in the area. White-fronted goose numbers continue to increase. Western Canada geese are widely distributed across the wildlife area. A few snow geese have started to show up, but can be found only at the head of Summer Lake proper.

A few resident and non-breeding trumpeter swans remain widely scattered across the wildlife area. These birds are part of restoration efforts and will be neck-banded with green collars and white alphanumeric symbols. Viewers are encouraged to “read” the collars and report them to wildlife area personnel. Collars will have the Greek letter Theta (Ѳ) or the symbol “@” and two numerals that are read from the body toward the head. A brood of four cygnets may be observed from the Wildlife Viewing Loop near Ana River Campground and two cygnets in Jacks Lake across from the headquarters. Swans have entered their molt stage and will remain flightless until later in the summer.

Shorebirds, waders and other waterbirds

Fall migrants are present in decent numbers, but continue to decline.

American avocets and black-necked stilts are still present in decent numbers.

Long-billed dowitchers and greater yellowlegs are common now. Migrant peeps (least and western sandpipers) can be found but numbers continue to drop.

American bittern, black-crowned night-herons, great blue herons, Great egrets and white-faced ibis are present. American bitterns are frequently heard making their classic and repetitive “umpa-loop” calls. The occasional snowy egret can also be seen.

American coots are widely scattered across the entire wildlife area. Virginia rails and soras are frequently heard and seen.

Cranes are beginning to stage in the Foster Place grain fields.

Grebes are widespread and common. At least four species (Clark’s, eared, pied-billed and western) have been observed recently and are best viewed in large open bodies of water such as Ana Reservoir, North Bullgate Refuge, North Levee Impoundment, Link Marsh and from the Schoolhouse Lake viewing blind.

Gulls are widespread across the wildlife area. Ring-billed gulls are the predominant species, but California gulls are common. Franklin’s gulls continue to be observed on an occasional basis.

American white pelicans are present in large numbers with flocks being observed in several locations across the wildlife area. Double crested cormorants remain fairly numerous as well.

Raptors and others

Northern harriers and red-tailed hawks are common this time of the year. Swainson’s hawks can be found across most of the area, viewers need to search the sky for these soaring species. Ferruginous hawks, rough-legged hawk, American kestrel, peregrine and prairie falcons, and osprey are occasional visitors. Visitors also see bald and golden eagles on a regular basis, since both species nest nearby and visit the wildlife area to forage. Red-shouldered hawk can sometimes be seen this time of year.

Turkey vultures are widespread and common this time of the year.

Great horned owls remain widely scattered across the entire wildlife area, especially in the trees at campgrounds. Common-barn owls are nesting in boxes at Headquarters and are sometimes heard at night. Look for short-eared owls in early morning or evening hours.

Upland game birds

Visitors sometime see California quail and ring-necked pheasants at Headquarters and north end upland areas.

Songbirds and other passerines

Eurasian collared doves remain very numerous at Headquarters Complex. Mourning doves remain in low numbers and are scattered across the wildlife area.

Nearly all swallows have departed the area, although late migrants, especially barn swallows are frequently seen.

American robins, loggerhead shrikes, Steller’s and sometimes scrub jays are in varied numbers across the wildlife area, especially around Headquarters.

Northern flickers remain common across most of the area and sapsuckers have been observed recently. Lewis’s woodpeckers along with the occasional sap sucker and hairy and or downey woodpecker can also be found.

Look for the occasional goldfinch, house finch, pine siskin or Cassin’s finch near the headquarters. Large numbers of white crowned sparrows have arrived.

There are very good numbers of marsh wrens and song sparrows in the dense stands of hard-stem bulrush and broad-leaved cattail along dikes and levees throughout the wetlands. Song sparrow and common yellowthroat singing, and marsh wren chattering is common across all of the area’s emergent wetlands. Savannah sparrows are common along dikes and roads. Yellow-rumped warblers can be seen fly catching from trees and the headquarters.

Red-winged and Brewer’s blackbirds are found across the wildlife area especially around campgrounds and homestead sites. Western meadowlarks are in good numbers at this time and are widespread across most of the area.

European starlings have gathered in large flocks.

Visitors can encounter sage thrashers, as well as upland dwelling sparrows such as Brewer’s and sagebrush, in sagebrush and greasewood uplands at the north end of the wildlife area. You might also find lark and vesper sparrows sometimes.

Staff and visitors see hummingbirds frequently.

Mammals

Coyotes are regularly seen in marsh and upland areas and frequently heard during evening hours.

Jackrabbits and cottontails are common in the area’s uplands.

The occasional white-tailed antelope squirrel can be observed on the areas north end. Yellow-bellied marmots can be found in the Foster Place and the tip of Gold Dike.

Muskrats remain very numerous across the Area’s wetlands, and mink, long-tailed weasel, striped and spotted skunk, raccoon and beaver are sometimes observed.
Deer numbers are low but can be found throughout the area.

Habitat

Seasonal marsh areas are starting to flood and water levels should increase as Ana River flows increases following the end irrigation season withdrawals. Reduced evapotranspiration should also contribute to improving wetland conditions.

Emergent vegetation remains very robust and largely green, but in some areas it is entering senescence and turning brown.

West of Windbreak and River Ranch are currently dry but water was recently turned into these areas so should fill over the next month.

For assistance and additional information, contact wildlife area staff at 541-943-3152.

NE WILDLIFE VIEWING

BAKER COUNTY

Bighorn sheep can be seen in the Burnt River Canyon west of Durkee or along the Snake River Road south of Richland. The best viewing is in the early morning and late in the evening.

Take the Snake River Road between Richland and Huntington to see bald and golden eagles along the Snake River.

There are deer throughout the valley. Early in the morning and late in the afternoon are good times to view wildlife. A drive through the foothills of the Baker valley and through the Keating valley can turn up good numbers of deer.

Elkhorn Wildlife Area

Elkhorn Wildlife Area is known for the Rocky Mountain elk and mule deer herds that frequent the area during the winter. There are two good viewing sites. The Anthony Creek site is located about eight miles west of I-84 on North Powder River Lane. From I-84 take the North Powder Exit (Exit 285). About 150 elk can be seen here on any given day. From the overlook on Auburn Road, watch hundreds of elk and mule deer. It is on the south side of Old Auburn Road, which branches off Highway 7 about six miles south of Baker City.

GRANT COUNTY

Bighorn sheep can be spotted from the South Fork road near Jackass Creek. Early mornings or late afternoons are your best chances for catching them out on the rocky outcrops.

Mountain goats can be spotted in the Strawberry Mountains above little Strawberry Lake for those willing to make a couple mile hike. If you would like the chance to spot one from a car, the vehicle roads end, near High Lake, is a good place for viewing. Also, goats can be viewed from Vinegar Hill in the Desolation Unit.

UNION COUNTY

Ladd Marsh Wildlife Area

Elk and deer continue to move onto and off the wildlife area seeking open water and green forage. The best time for viewing is early morning, although some animals will venture out to feed again just before dark.

Hundreds of waterfowl are using the area, including Canada goose, mallard, American wigeon, northern pintail and American green-winged teal. During the day, they are most often loafing on open water areas, often tucked into pockets out of the wind. A few tundra swans are still using the Foothill Road refuge, visible from the viewpoint.

Raptors are numerous around the area and include red-tailed hawk and northern harrier. Both Cooper’s and sharp-shinned hawks are present in the area and rough-legged hawks are here for the winter

A red-shouldered hawk continues to be seen intermittently near Foothill Road. Songbird flocks may hold winter visitors such as white-crowned sparrows and American tree sparrows. Northern shrikes can be seen hunting the area from fences and wires.

Note: All visitors must have in their possession a free daily permit to access the wildlife area. Permits are available at several self-check-in stations at entry points and parking lots. All visitors also need a parking permit to park on the wildlife area. Find out how to buy a $10 daily or $30 annual parking permit.

UMATILLA COUNTY

Columbia Basin Wildlife Areas

Willow Creek and Coyote Springs wildlife areas are both nestled between Interstate 84 and the Columbia River, and have excellent viewing for wetland and riparian obligate bird species. Many species are raising their broods and can be seen along the water’s edge.The upland areas of savanna and shrub steppe also host a variety of bird species. Willow Creek has an ample deer herd, and you’ll see evidence of beaver activity on the Willow Creek delta area of the wildlife area.

The Irrigon Wildlife Area has riparian and wetland habitat and hosts a number of bird species associated with each habitat. One can see a number of waterfowl and wading bird species in the pothole pond areas. Currently, there are a variety of waterfowl species with broods using the ponds. Painted turtles are also common in the pond areas. White pelicans are commonly found along the Columbia River as well. Numbers of geese and ducks are growing along the Columbia River and will be commonly trading back and forth along the river.

WALLOWA COUNTY

A good place to observe mule deer is along the Wallowa Lake highway between Joseph and the south end of Wallowa Lake. Drive slowly and watch along the moraine on the east side of the lake around dawn and dusk. Be careful to use the turnouts when stopping to watch these animals, as there will be other traffic on the road. There are white-tailed deer throughout the Wallowa Valley on or near agricultural lands. Visitors can see elk at the Wenaha Wildlife Area at Troy or while driving the Zumwalt Rd. through the Zumwalt Prairie, please respect road and area closures.

Various waterfowl species are visiting Wallowa Lake and a number of the open-water ponds, ditches and streams. Canada geese and various species of ducks are feeding in agricultural fields and along streams and ponds around the county. You’ll spot raptor species in the upper valley, east of Enterprise and Joseph, also along the Zumwalt and Crow Creek roads.

MARINE WILDLIFE VIEWING

The Oregon coast is a great place to come and view a variety of wildlife. Enjoy the great diversity of life: from giant whales and barking sea lions, to majestic bald eagles and diving pelicans, to showy Harlequin ducks and flocking shorebirds, to the tiny anemones and crabs inhabiting tidepools. There is always something new to discover. Visit our wildlife viewing map for locations to visit and view wildlife along the Oregon coast. Maximize your viewing of coastal creatures by bringing binoculars for close-up views.
Beach Safety: http://www.oregon.gov/OPRD/PARKS/Pages/beach_safety.aspx

Whales, Orcas, and Porpoises

Whales migrate along the Oregon coast on their way to their feeding grounds and breeding and calving grounds. Peak times to view them are late December through late March to early April. In addition to migratory animals, there are approximately 200 resident gray whales that live nearly year-round off Oregon. Gray whales, humpbacks, orcas, and sperm whales can all be seen off the coast. For descriptions, visit our Whales, Dolphins and Porpoises page.

Look for whales as they surface to blow a spout of 6-12 feet high, depending on the sex. Gray whales usually surface to breathe 3-5 times before making a deep feeding dive when you can spot their tail flukes. The best time to view whales are on calm days when you won’t confuse whale spouts with whitecaps. While you can see whale spouts with the naked eye, use binoculars for the best viewing. A map of best places to see whales (and additional information for whale watchers) is available from Oregon State Parks.

Pinnipeds – Harbor Seals, Sea Lions, and Elephant Seals

The easiest marine mammals to observe are harbor seals and sea lions. Often seen in bays lounging on piers, tideflats, or sandbars, these animals can be entertaining to watch. Good locations for viewing include the South Jetty of the Columbia River, sandbars in Netarts Bay, near the mouth of the Siletz River, Yaquina Bay between the jetties and along the bay front, sandbars and beaches near the mouth of Alsea Bay, Cape Argo, Rouge Reef, and Simpson Reef. For descriptions, visit our Seals and Sea Lions page. Remember to stay away from seals and sea lions as they can become aggressive and are protected by the Marine Mammal Act.

A rarer sighting are Elephant seals which can be seen at Simpson Reef on Shell Island at Cape Arago State Park.

It is normal for seal pups to be left alone for long periods of time while the mother is out hunting and they often will not move when approached. Please remember to stay away from them. If they are in a high traffic area, please call your local State Park so signs can be placed around the animal to tell others to stay away.

If you think a marine mammal is in trouble, please call the Marine Mammal Stranding Network at 800-452-7888.

Birds

The bays, jetties, spits, and beaches are great places to see a variety of birds. At the coast, you can spot birds of prey, waterfowl, seabirds, songbirds, and shorebirds. The diversity of birds is highest during spring and fall migrations. Check ebird and Audubon Rare Bird Alerts for lists of recent sightings. Bird viewing tips are available from the US Fish and Wildlife Service. Another great resource for birders is the Oregon Coast Birding Trail website, which includes self-guided itineraries for any area of the Oregon Coast and a species checklist. For descriptions of birds species, visit our bird page.

Ducks, Geese, and Pelicans
Huge rafts of waterfowl can be seen in the estuaries and bays during spring and fall migrations. Common species during migrations include surf scoter, bufflehead, American widgeon, northern pintail, ring-necked duck, Brant, merganser, canvasback, redhead, greater and lesser scaup, goldeneye, green-winged teal, and ruddy duck. Some less common species include long-tailed duck (in Yaquina Bay), Harlequin duck, brown pelican, Eurasian widgeon, white-winged and black scoters, and an occasional Eider.

Birds of Prey
Birds of prey are common at the coast. Bald eagles sometimes perch on the beach, on a mudflat, in the bay or the tops of large trees. In the spring and summer, you might see osprey catching fish in the water and roosting on a nest built on a platform near the water. Peregrine falcons also nest near water on cliffs or bridges over estuaries. Places to see peregrine falcons include Cape Meares and Yaquina Head Outstanding Natural Area.

Seabirds
Don’t forget the seabirds! There are some common murres and pigeon guillemots in the bays but you’re more likely to see them on rocky islands or in the ocean by cliffs with nesting areas. From May to August, tufted puffins nest on islands at Haystack Rock in Cannon Beach and Face Rock in Bandon. Remember to bring binoculars or a spotting scope to see them. A great time to check out the coast for offshore pelagic seabirds is after a large storm. Check out the U.S. Fish & Wildlife’s Seabirds of the Pacific Northwest guide for information about Oregon’s seabirds, where to view them, and birdwatching etiquette.

Shorebirds
During spring and fall, shorebirds gather in flocks along the coast as they migrate. Jetties and beaches are good places to look ,as well as in the bays during mid-low tide as they feed at the water’s edge. If you go out at peak low tide, the birds may be too far out to ID depending on the tide. Some species you’re likely to see include whimbrel, marbled godwit, semi-palmated plover, dunlin, sanderling and western sandpiper. The black oystercatcher and western snowy plover are less common and protected resident species.

Black oystercatchers are easily identifiable with their distinctive black plumage, pink legs, long orange-red bill, and an orange red eye ring framing a bright yellow eye. Nevertheless, they can be difficult to spot since they nest on rocky shores. These monogamous, territorial birds return to the same spot each year and are indicators of a healthy rocky intertidal community. Look for oystercatchers on rocky shores that are inaccessible to ground predators and where there is little human disturbance.

These “sensitive” birds are best viewed from afar. An easily disturbed bird, especially during the nesting season, oystercatchers are listed as sensitive by the state and federally listed as a species of concern. The best chance to see them are near Cape Meares, Depoe Bay, at Yaquina Head Outstanding Natural Area, Seal Rock State Park, near Cape Perpetua, and many other rocky intertidal areas along the coast.

The western snowy plover is a small shorebird that prefers sandy beaches with little vegetation and is both state and federally listed as Threatened. They are relatively small and can blend into their surroundings with their pale brown and white or buff coloring, so it is possible to unknowingly approach them when walking along the beach. They nest above the high tide line in the sand, leaving them susceptible to a variety of predators and human disturbance.

Habitat alteration by human development, non-native European beach grass that conceals predators, and disturbance by unleashed dogs and motor vehicle use on beaches are the greatest threats to this tiny and important bird. In areas where they are nesting, state and federal land management agencies may close certain sections of beach or put special restrictions in place (e.g. no dogs, leashed dogs, access on wet sand only, etc.). For more information about closures, visit Oregon Parks and Recreation Department’s Beach Seasonal Recreation Restrictions page. Please obey all closures and follow activity restrictions to help save this struggling bird. If you see a western snowy plover outside a known protected area, please avoid that area of the beach and contact the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (541-867-4558) or your local Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife office.

Songbirds
As you explore around the bays, jetties, and beaches, keep an eye on the shore-side in bushes and trees and also on the ground for various songbirds like kinglets, chickadees, sparrows and warblers. Western meadowlarks are often seen on jetties and spits as they migrate. Other species that are common around the bay include great blue heron, belted kingfisher and cormorants.

Tidepools and Beach Combing

The Oregon Coast offers excellent opportunities for learning about and observing flora and fauna along shorelines. Here in the intertidal, the tides rise and fall twice daily. Be sure to consult a tide table to know if tides are incoming or outgoing when you visit and always keep an eye on the waves to have a safe, enjoyable experience.

Beaches
Beaches can be more than a place to lounge or fly a kite. In addition to the many types of birds that frequent Oregon’s shores, take a look for other inhabitants at the beach. Check the wrack line where the water deposits shells, algae and kelp, and driftwood that are food and homes to a large variety of unassuming actors. Beach hoppers, beetles, mussels, and gooseneck barnacles are just some of the animals you’ll find here. During the spring and summer, look for mole crabs under the sand. About the size of your thumb, mole crabs camouflage well but often leave tracks and divots and make small holes. Other tracks at the edges of the waterline are made by olive snails, which plow through the sand in search of food. Their colorful shells come in greys, purples, and pinks and have cultural significance to native peoples.

There are many other interesting finds that land ashore. Look for skate egg cases, also known as mermaid purses, and jellyfish-like By-the-Wind Sailor (Velella velella) hydrozoans that can land as huge blue rafts. Pyrosomes, which look like and feel like an opaque, bumpy pickle, are colonial tunicates that also wash ashore. Adult Dungeness crabs tend to molt simultaneously; females in the spring and males in the late summer. Molting is the shedding of their exoskeleton (outside hard parts) as they grow. Often people will encounter what they think are a beach littered with dead crab, but really they are crab molts (mass molting PIC).

Looking for ancient life? Wave action also reveals fossils of shelled animals at several locations, including Beverly Beach, Fogarty Creek State Park, Seal Rock, Cape Blanco, and Arcadia Beach.

Tidepools
Rocky shores are some of the most diverse ecosystems in the world. You’ll find all kinds of wonderful creatures – gumboot chitons, giant green anemones, and ochre sea stars, for example –along the rocky shoreline. The Oregon State Parks’ tidepools website has information on where and when to explore, what you can expect to see, and safety tips.
Watch your step! Did you know that barnacles can live up to 10-15 years, or that limpets (cone-shaped snails) are some of the most important grazers on rocky shores? Take care to minimize your impact as you explore Oregon’s rocky shores. Remember to leave things where they are for others to enjoy and to ensure these communities and important habitats persist.

Marine Protected Areas
Oregon hosts seven Marine Gardens, five Marine Reserves, and other marine protected areas. Marine gardens provide education and recreational experiences along beaches and tidepools. With the exception of single mussel and razor clam harvest at Cape Perpetua, marine gardens are “no take” areas. Check the Coast Explorer for a list and description of the marine gardens and the opportunities they provide. Oregon’s Marine Reserves prohibit fishing, but are open to many recreational activities including SCUBA diving, wildlife viewing, and tidepooling. Learn more about these opportunities at ODFW’s Oregon’s Marine Reserves.

BIG GAME HUNTING

NW BIG GAME HUNTING

Big game reports updated monthly
Reports are updated the first Thursday of each month. Sign up for email notification.

CURRENTLY OPEN

Cougar (check current harvest numbers), coyote, black bear, general season buck deer (closes Nov. 5), second season general archery (open Nov. 20 – Dec. 12; see regulations for open areas)

ANNOUNCEMENTS – fire closures, new regs to note

Bear and cougar check-in

The modified check-in procedures adopted in 2019 will continue for the 2021 season.

Hunting and fire season: Know before you go

Early season hunts often take place during the peak of the wildfire season. Experienced hunters know to check for fire closures before their hunt. Bookmark this page – it has links to the most current fire closures and restrictions.

Hunting out of state? Don’t bring CWD home with you

Chronic Wasting Disease has not been found in Oregon yet and we’d like to keep in that way. If you’re hunting big game in a state that has CWD, please follow these precautions.

Please report elk with hoof disease

If you see elk showing signs of elk hoof disease, including lame or limping elk or elk with damaged, injured, missing or deformed hooves, please report it using this online form.

Coyote and wolf ID

Coyote hunters need to take extra care to identify their target as wolves can look like coyotes, especially wolf pups in the mid-summer and fall. Test your ID skills.
Please report any wolf sightings or wolf sign to ODFW using the online reporting system.

DISTRICT UPDATES

NORTH AND MID-COAST (Saddle Mt., Wilson, western Trask, western Stott Mt., western Alsea, north Siuslaw wildlife management units)

General deer, north coast: Deer numbers, as usual, appear to be moderate across the north coast units, with higher densities occurring in eastern portions of the Saddle Mtn., Wilson, Trask, Stott and Alsea units. Days with rain in the forecast tend to be better than “bluebird” weather for deer movement, with bucks becoming less wary and more active as the rut approaches.

General deer, mid-coast: Weather patterns have changed to fall rain showers and fire season has ended for west Oregon District. Deer hunting appears to be slow, which is normal for the first part of the season. As the rut kicks in deer should become more visible. Rain showers are in the 10-day forecast so deer should be on the move as blacktails love the rain. Pay attention to areas with early successional grass/forbs/shrubs adjacent to forest edges as these are the preferred habitats of black-tailed deer.

Cougar: The most productive way to hunt cougar on the north coast is to use a predator call. Hunters are reminded if they harvest a cougar, they must have it checked in to an ODFW office within 10 days of harvest. See the 2021 Oregon Big Game Regulations for details.

Fall bear, north coast: During the fall, bears may be active any time of day but will typically seek out shade during the hottest part of the day. As berry crops are now mostly gone, bears may be seeking cascara trees as well as any other trees that still hold fruit. Check forest roads for fresh sign and then concentrate on overgrown roads or spurs with little or no traffic nearby. Hunters are reminded if they harvest a bear, they must have it checked in to an ODFW office within 10 days of harvest. See the 2021 Oregon Big Game Regulations for details.

Fall Black Bear, mid-coast: Blackberry crop was excellent this year especially in clear cuts with brush. The berries are starting to mold and/or fall off but there are scattered berry patches throughout the area. Key in on these berry patch areas and look for signs of bear scat to increase your chances of finding a fall bear. Fall green up is also occurring so look for green grassy patches as well. Please call your local ODFW within 10 days of harvest to check in your bear head for biological sampling to help assist with bear management.

WILLAMETTE UNITS (Scappoose, eastern Trask, Willamette, Santiam, McKenzie, N. Indigo wildlife management units)

General season antlerless elk: Hunters are reminded to only purchase this tag if they know where they will be hunting since the hunt areas are nearly 100 percent private property. In 2020 there were 120 cows reportedly harvested in the Trask unit (hunters = 209) and 145 harvested in the Willamette unit (hunters = 419). Please refer to the ODFW maps page to review maps of areas where this tag is valid.

General deer and elk: Overall, tags sales slightly increased in 2021 compared to 2020, so hunters can expect more people in the woods with them. Hunters may find more space walking behind a gate on legally accessible land or scouting areas where they can distance themselves from a road.

General “Any legal weapon” deer season opened the first weekend of October. You can expect deer activity to ebb and flow with the weather, with activity picking up during cool, overcast and/or rainy days. Deer spend most of their time feeding in the late evenings and early mornings, although during cool or stormy weather they tend to be more active during the day than during warm, clear weather. You can expect mature bucks to become less nocturnal and more active during the day during the later portion of the season as the rut grows nearer.

Spend time glassing areas that have had a recent disturbance event such as fire or logging activity to locate deer. Generally, 3-10 years post-disturbance is the sweet spot for diversity of vegetation and available forage. There are fifteen units that changed their bag limits to “One buck with visible antler” last season. That change remains in effect this year as well. Hunters should refer to the regulations before heading out to familiarize themselves with the appropriate bag limit for the unit they are in.

Western general elk season doesn’t open until November, but October has some of the best days of the year for locating elk, while there is still some lingering rut activity. It’s never too early to get out and scout for your upcoming elk hunt!

Many Youth Elk hunts started on Aug. 1 and continue thru Dec. 31. Youth elk tag holders should check their 2021 Oregon Big Game Hunting Regulations on pages 53-54 for specific information.

Many local timber companies that typically allow some form of hunting access, such as Stimson and Hancock, have lifted their access restrictions now that the IFPL has dropped. While best to check directly with the company, Oregon Forest & Industries Council tries to keep an up-to-date list of corporate fire closures. However, many of the public lands affected by both 2020 and 2021 fires remain closed to entry.

Fall black bear: Typically bears are targeting berries and insects during this time of year for the bulk of their food sources. However, widespread drought conditions have withered some berries on the vine, so bears may be seeking out other food sources such as fruit trees, manzanita berries, and Arctostaphylos berries. Berries in the western coastal range have fared better than toward the valley. Additionally, many apple orchards are dropping fruit so bears may find themselves a nuisance on private properties or a hunter may find sign of use around old homesteads properties with remanent apple trees.
Hunters in the valley may find better success targeting areas where there has been better water retention such as riparian areas or where consistent watering is conducted such as private agriculture properties.

The Scappoose unit typically has low harvest compared to the Trask unit. The Santiam, McKenzie, and N Indigo all have good numbers of bears. Most are taken opportunistically while deer or elk hunting, so make sure to buy your bear tag before going hunting. There have been multiple bears checked in by archery hunters so far.

With the majority of the season’s berry crop now gone you can expect bears to be widely dispersed on the landscape in search of any remaining fruiting plants or carrion. Serviceberry plants tend to hang on to fruit later in the season than most other berries, so finding these plants could help you find bears. With the first fall rains now behind us, you can expect bear activity to increase.

Bear check-ins have been steady each week with hunters harvesting bears seen while hunting deer and while archery hunting.

Cougar: A productive hunting technique is to use predator calls to mimic a distressed prey species. Approaching cougars can be difficult to see when you are predator calling so hunting with a partner is advised. Similar to bears, most are taken opportunistically while deer or elk hunting. Make sure to buy your cougar tag before going hunting.

SW BIG GAME HUNTING

Big game reports updated monthly
Reports are updated the first week of each month. Sign up for email notification.

CURRENTLY OPEN

Cougar (Check current harvest numbers), coyote, black bear, second season general archery (open Nov.13 – Dec. 5; see regulations for open areas)

ANNOUNCEMENTS – fire closures, new regs to note

Bear and cougar check-in

The modified check-in procedures adopted in 2019 will continue for the 2021 season.

Hunting and fire season: Know before you go

Early season hunts often take place during the peak of the wildfire season. Experienced hunters know to check for fire closures before their hunt. Bookmark this page – it has links to the most current fire closures and restrictions.

Hunting out of state? Don’t bring CWD home with you

Chronic Wasting Disease has not been found in Oregon yet and we’d like to keep in that way. If you’re hunting big game in a state that has CWD, please follow these precautions.

Please report elk with hoof disease

If you see elk showing signs of elk hoof disease, including lame or limping elk or elk with damaged, injured, missing or deformed hooves, please report it using this online form.

Coyote and wolf ID

Coyote hunters need to take extra care to identify their target as wolves can look like coyotes, especially wolf pups in the mid-summer and fall. Test your ID skills.
Please report any wolf sightings or wolf sign to ODFW using the online reporting system.

DISTRICT UPDATES

COOS COUNTY (west Tioga, west Powers, north Sixes, southwest Siuslaw)

Coos Mountain Access
The Coos Mountain Access Area has been extended through December 2023, providing year-round access to about 63,000 acres in the heart of the Tioga Unit. Learn more about the Coos Mountain Access Area on MyODFW.com or call the Charleston Field Office at (541)888-5515. Maps are available.

Deer: Deer populations in the district appear to have increased over the past several years. Survey and research work by ODFW and partners indicates deer populations in many parts of the Tioga, Sixes and Powers Units are fairly high in comparison to population levels of the early 2000s.

Most of us have noticed this was a dry summer and spring before that. Deer need to have access to water daily so with the dry conditions on the Oregon coast this year, look for them near water. Deer generally feed most heavily on browse. So look for early season deer in brushy and grassy clear-cuts and meadows.

As the Any Legal Whelpton season wears on and fall rains continue, vegetation will green up. This will have an impact on where deer will spend their time. As grass becomes a more important part of their diet, clear-cuts with lots of grass will be the places to look for bucks. They will be most active in early morning and late afternoon.

Fall black bear: Fall season will continue through the end of December with increasing opportunity as forage becomes more available.

Bear numbers appear to be healthy and the animals are well distributed across the district. Generally, populations appear to be more concentrated closer to the coast. Bear hunters should concentrate on areas with wild berry production. In normal years bears will concentrate on blackberries in the summer and early fall. Soon after the blackberries ripen and fall off the plants, evergreen huckleberries ripen and bears should turn their attention to them.

Cougar: Cougars are difficult to locate in Coos County. The majority of cougars are taken incidentally during deer and elk seasons by hunters who have also purchased a cougar tag.
The most productive way to hunt cougar is to use a predator call.

Coyote: Numbers are strong throughout Coos County. Using predator calls to lure them in can be an effective method for harvesting coyotes. Try calling in early morning and late afternoon. Be sure to ask permission before hunting on private land.

DOUGLAS COUNTY (Dixon, S. Indigo, NW Evans Creek, Melrose, SW Siuslaw, E. Tioga and NE Powers Units)

Archery deer and elk: With good over-winter survival of both deer and elk, hunter should expect deer hunting to be good in the Cascades and Umpqua Valley. Elk hunting in the Cascade Units should be about the same as the past few years.

Some of the better wildlife openings are created by clear-cuts, thinnings, or a few years after wildfires. Recent fire activity in the Dixon and Evans Creek units are already producing great forage and cover for deer populations.

Fall black bear: There was enough rain this spring that berry crops are good. Locating these berry crops and looking for bear sign should be productive.

Cougar: Look in areas adjacent to agriculture and within areas of higher concentrations of deer. When fresh tracks are found, set up and call with either mouth or electronic predator calls.

Cougars are abundant throughout with indicators pointing to stable or increasing numbers. Hunting cougar is a challenge because these animals are very secretive, but harvest success is greatest adjacent to private land with high deer populations using a predator call.

Coyote: Numbers are strong throughout Douglas County. Using predator calls to lure them in can be an effective method for harvesting coyotes. Try calling in early morning and late afternoon. Be sure to ask permission before hunting on private land.

JACKSON, JOSEPHINE, CURRY COUNTIES (Applegate, Chetco, Evans Creek, Rogue, portions of Dixon, and Sixes)

When heading out to hunt in October, remember that some areas here in Southwest Oregon are at a fire danger level of moderate, which may impose restrictions based on the land you are hunting on. Please consult a Forest Service map for details on the forest boundary. Visit the MyODFW.com website for more information.

Any Legal Weapon (formerly rifle) deer is open through Nov. 5. Remember that deer in the Dixon, Rogue and Evans Creek units typically are at high elevations during the early fall and migrate to lower elevations as year progresses and temperatures cool and weather events increase. However, there are resident deer on the valley floor year-round.

In the Applegate and Chetco units deer at higher elevations usually move only when pushed out by severe weather. A good strategy is to find well used trails at mid-elevations and sit on them to catch deer migrating. The best times for bucks to move is early morning and late evening. This will be the first year in over a decade that deer season will continue uninterrupted through the entire month of October, due to the Cascade Elk season being moved to after deer season in November.

Cascade elk is opens November 6 – 12. This is the first year in a long time that this season will be taking place in November. Hunters should see more success during this later timeframe as larger weather events are more likely to occur and push the elk herds lower.

The season will be open in the Dixon, Evans Creek and Rogue units with a bag limit of one bull elk. Be aware that there is the Upper Rogue Travel Management Area in effect during this time. In the Rogue-Siskiyou National forest motorized vehicle travel with be restricted to green dot roads, all other roads are open to walk-in access only.

We expect an average harvest this year. Numbers from our herd composition surveys earlier this year showed good bull to cow ratios in all units.

General Antlerless Elk Damage: This is the second year for the new over the counter General Season Antlerless Elk Damage tag. This tag is designed to address chronic elk damage in specific portions of the state. The tag is valid for one antlerless elk and will your only elk opportunity if purchased. There is no tag sale deadline, which means it can be purchased at any time during the season which runs from Aug. 1 to March 31 of the following year in our area. These tags are almost exclusively on private property. Please do not purchase the tag unless you have a place with permission to hunt within the hunt zone. Learn more about this program and find hunt area maps.

Fall black bear season is open. Hunters can expect a great year for pursuing bears. The Applegate unit has historically had some of the highest harvest in the state during the fall hunt, so focus your efforts there; however, the Rogue and Evans Creek units can also be very productive.

Oak groves with lots of acorns seem to be a good place to start your search for bears feeding throughout the day. Fawn calls can also be a useful tool when trying to harvest a bear. It is a good idea to have a bear tag in your pocket when while pursuing other species.

Cougar season is open statewide year-round or until zone quotas are met (see zone quota page). The majority of cougars are now harvested by hunters pursuing other game. So, consider picking up a cougar tag before you head in the field, so that you can capitalize on any opportunities that present themselves. Some hunters are also having success with a predator call and a lot of patience. If using a call, please do so safely.

Cougar and Bear Check In: Hunters need to report their harvest to an ODFW office within 10 days of killing the animal. Hunters can call the office in the district where they harvested their cougar or bear and report their name, ODFW ID number, date of harvest, location of harvest, sex of animal and confirmation number for electronic tags. If you would like to voluntarily come into the Central Point or Gold Beach offices to have a biologist check in you animal in person, please call ahead to make an appointment. Social distancing guidelines will be followed.

Western gray squirrel: Western gray squirrel hunting is open in all SW Oregon WMUs. See page 64 of the 2021 Oregon Big Game Hunting Regulations for more information.

Coyotes are abundant in our area but remember to ask for permission to hunt on private lands. Hunters can find coyotes around meadows and brush piles where mice and rabbits are found. Predator calls are very useful when used in conjunction to known prey base. Remember to identify your target.

COLUMBIA BIG GAME HUNTING

Big game reports updated monthly
Reports are updated the first week of each month. Sign up for email notification.

OPEN SEASONS

Cougar (Check current harvest numbers.), coyote, black bear

ANNOUNCEMENTS – fire closures, new regs to note

Bear and cougar check-in

The modified check-in procedures adopted in 2019 will continue for the 2021 season.

Hunting and fire season: Know before you go

Early season hunts often take place during the peak of the wildfire season. Experienced hunters know to check for fire closures before their hunt. Bookmark this page – it has links to the most current fire closures and restrictions.

Hunting out of state? Don’t bring CWD home with you

Chronic Wasting Disease has not been found in Oregon yet and we’d like to keep in that way. If you’re hunting big game in a state that has CWD, please follow these precautions.

Please report elk with hoof disease

If you see elk showing signs of elk hoof disease, including lame or limping elk or elk with damaged, injured, missing or deformed hooves, please report it using this online form.

Coyote and wolf ID

Coyote hunters need to take extra care to identify their target as wolves can look like coyotes, especially wolf pups in the mid-summer and fall. Test your ID skills.
Please report any wolf sightings or wolf sign to ODFW using the online reporting system.

DISTRICT UPDATES

HOOD RIVER, WASCO, SHERMAN COUNTIES (Hood, White River, Maupin, West Biggs Units)

ALW (All Legal Weapons) deer: Hunters saw moderate success opening weekend in the Biggs unit. The best hunting in this unit is on private lands. Be sure that you ask permission before accessing private property. Public hunting opportunities can be found on the Lower Deschutes Wildlife Area which offers thousands of canyon breaks habitat. The John Day canyon also provides public land hunting opportunities in the Biggs unit. In the White River unit, many deer are migratory and spend the summer months at higher elevation within the unit. Any areas with recent disturbance from fire or logging operations area a good place to focus efforts. The White River Wildlife Area also hold moderate amounts of deer in this unit. The Hood unit offers more a westside hunting experience with thicker timber dominating the unit.

County land and corporate timber lands have more logging activity and typically hold more deer. For hunters looking solitude, consider checking out the wilderness areas on the North side of Mt Hood. Burns from a decade ago provide ample forage and can hold larger bucks. The Maupin unit is primarily a private lands unit. Deer here are typically concentrated along canyon breaks and the edges of agricultural fields.

ALW elk: Elk are found in low densities and scattered throughout the White River and Hood WMUs.

In the White River and Hood units, heavy cover can make harvesting a bull difficult, but this also creates a less crowded experience for hunters than other areas around the state. Although most of the elk in the West Biggs and Maupin units are found on private lands, there are opportunities on public lands within the Deschutes River canyon and on BLM lands where hunting pressure is fairly low.

Fall bear: Bear densities in White River and Hood units are high and early season hunting can be productive as bears are still active as they fatten up for winter hibernation. Focus on areas with ripening berries, clear cuts, and accessible areas near the boundaries of orchards to locate bears. Bears will be most active in the early morning and late evening hours and generally will rest during the heat of the day.

For the White River unit, focus on the west side to find higher bear densities. Bear densities are very low in Maupin and West Biggs units.

Cougar: Most cougars are harvested by hunters targeting other species. Remember to purchase a cougar tag before heading out for other hunts. Cougars can be found in the same areas as deer and elk as they follow them through their migration routes. Also, try using predator calls to draw them in and be patient for them to make their appearance. The season is open all year, unless the zone quota is met in the area you are hunting.

Coyotes: Try calling for them from open fields, meadows, and pastures. The best areas to find them will be near farm grounds on the eastern boundary. Look for them in early morning or evening and pay close attention to wind direction.

White River Wildlife Area

White River Wildlife Area is open for hunting. Please call the White River Wildlife Area Headquarters with any questions 541-544-2126

Deer & elk: Deer and Elk can be found throughout the wildlife area. Focus on the west end of the wildlife area in higher elevations where most of the deer and elk spend the summer months before migrating down to lower elevations.

Fall bear: This time of year, and with cooler weather upon us, bears are often seen during the day as they search for food in preparation for winter. Focus on water sources and food sources such as acorns and left-over berries. Also, you can now harvest two bears in the fall, statewide, with an additional bear tag. Deadline to purchase your first bear tag was Oct. 1.

Coyotes: There are no seasons or bag limits on coyotes. Populations are good throughout the wildlife area. Be aware that bobcats and cougars may respond to predator calls, and separate licensing/tags and season limitations exist for these species.

Cougar: Try using predator calls to increase your odds of success. Here are 10 ways to be a better cougar hunter. Check to make sure the zone you are hunting in hasn’t reached the harvest quota before you hunt by clicking here Cougar quota. White River Wildlife Area is in Zone A. Cougar season is open in the White River Wildlife Area, Jan. 1 – Dec 31 unless the harvest quota has been met. You can purchase an additional cougar tag and harvest two cougars per year. Deadline to purchase your first cougar tag was Oct. 1.

Current road and weather conditions: The roads on the wildlife area are still dry and dusty. Most of the roads are seasonal and travel is allowed only on open roads designated by the green dot. Look for maps with road information at entrances to the wildlife area or click here WRWA Map. The weather forecast is cool with high temperatures in the low 60’s and low temperatures in the 30’s and 40’s with a few scattered showers.

Reminder: Display your required parking permit when visiting the wildlife area. Camping in the wildlife area is only allowed in designated camping areas. Please pack out your trash. Campfires are allowed only in designated campsites. Only street legal vehicles are allowed in the wildlife area, no ATV’s or snowmobiles.

Please continue to follow the state guidelines for the coronavirus pandemic. More COVID19 information can be found at the entrances to the wildlife area.

CENTRAL BIG GAME HUNTING

Big game reports updated monthly
Reports are updated the first week of each month. Sign up for email notification.

OPEN SEASONS

Cougar (Check current harvest numbers.), coyote, black bear

ANNOUNCEMENTS – fire closures, access issues, reminders, etc.

Bear and cougar check-in

The modified check-in procedures adopted in 2019 will continue for the 2021 season.

Hunting and fire season: Know before you go

Early season hunts often take place during the peak of the wildfire season. Experienced hunters know to check for fire closures before their hunt. Bookmark this page – it has links to the most current fire closures and restrictions.

Hunting out of state? Don’t bring CWD home with you

Chronic Wasting Disease has not been found in Oregon yet and we’d like to keep in that way. If you’re hunting big game in a state that has CWD, please follow these precautions.

Please report elk with hoof disease

If you see elk showing signs of elk hoof disease, including lame or limping elk or elk with damaged, injured, missing or deformed hooves, please report it using this online form.

Coyote and wolf ID

Coyote hunters need to take extra care to identify their target as wolves can look like coyotes, especially wolf pups in the mid-summer and fall. Test your ID skills.
Please report any wolf sightings or wolf sign to ODFW using the online reporting system.

DISTRICT UPDATES

PRINEVILLE/OCHOCO WILDLIFE DISTRICT (Maury, Ochoco, Grizzly)

Archery deer: Current conditions are hot and dry. Buck ratios remain at or above management objective.

Archery hunters are reminded that the Maury unit is a controlled deer archery unit and archers must have a controlled entry buck tag to hunt.

Archery elk: With the dry conditions, look for elk near water sources. Elk may be more dispersed as they search for food and water.

Cougar are present throughout the Maury, Ochoco, and Grizzly units. The Maury and Ochoco units are recommended because of their greater amounts of public lands and better accessibility.

Coyotes can offer an exciting hunting challenge. Both the Maury and Ochoco have sizeable areas of public lands that provide hunting opportunities. Hunters should use caution, be properly equipped and prepared for whatever the weather might bring.

DESCHUTES DISTRICT (Upper Deschutes, Paulina, North Wagontire, Northwest Fort Rock, Metolius)

Archery deer: Deer numbers are down and below desired management objective throughout the Deschutes district which includes the Metolius, Upper Deschutes, Paulina and Wagontire wildlife management units. Habitat loss/fragmentation, roadkill, poaching, predation and disease are all playing a part in the reduced population affecting both adults and fawns.

The Deschutes district has been experiencing Adenovirus Hemorrhagic Disease (AHD) losses in mule deer for several years with heavier than usual loss the last couple of years. You can learn more about AHD on the ODFW website. As always weather conditions before and during archery season will have a direct effect on hunting conditions and harvest.

Archery elk: Elk numbers continue to slowly grow in the Deschutes District. Populations are at or near management objective in all units. Favorable winter conditions resulted in good overwinter survival.

Persistent dry conditions in the eastern part of the district will affect elk distribution causing them to key in on areas with available water or irrigated lands. Be sure to check the Oregon Big Game Regulations for the bag limit associated with the unit or area you will be hunting.

Cougar can be found throughout the Deschutes District. Look for cougars wherever there are prey species. Predator calls are the most effective method of locating a cougar.

Coyote: Good numbers of coyotes can be found throughout the Deschutes District. Calling coyotes with distress type calls has been effective for hunters. Calling in the early morning and late afternoon produces the best results. It is important to choose areas with abundant coyote sign and little human activity.

SOUTH CENTRAL BIG GAME HUNTING

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OPEN SEASONS

Cougar (Check current harvest numbers.), coyote, black bear (opens Aug. 1)

ANNOUNCEMENTS – fire closures, new regs to note

Fire access updates

Bootleg and Cougar Peak fires have impacted several upcoming hunts. Hunters are encouraged to update their contact information and email addresses for updates associated with their hunts. Hunters can access the Electronic Licensing System at here.
Hunters can also receive information through signing up for news release updates.
The USDA Forest Service implemented a recreational access closure affecting the Sprague Silver Lake, Interstate and Warner WMUs. Other lands within the Fremont Winema Forest have added restriction in response to Extreme Fire Conditions. Learn more.
BLM restrictions.
Oregon Dept. of Forestry lands restrictions.
Green Diamond Resource Company restrictions.
Hunters are reminded to stay off unimproved roads with dried grasses or vegetation that can ignite a wildfire.

Bear and cougar check-in

The modified check-in procedures adopted in 2019 will continue for the 2021 season.

Hunting and fire season: Know before you go

Early season hunts often take place during the peak of the wildfire season. Experienced hunters know to check for fire closures before their hunt. Bookmark this page – it has links to the most current fire closures and restrictions.

Hunting out of state? Don’t bring CWD home with you

Chronic Wasting Disease has not been found in Oregon yet and we’d like to keep in that way. If you’re hunting big game in a state that has CWD, please follow these precautions.

Please report elk with hoof disease

If you see elk showing signs of elk hoof disease, including lame or limping elk or elk with damaged, injured, missing or deformed hooves, please report it using this online form.

Coyote and wolf ID

Coyote hunters need to take extra care to identify their target as wolves can look like coyotes, especially wolf pups in the mid-summer and fall. Test your ID skills.
Please report any wolf sightings or wolf sign to ODFW using the online reporting system.

DISTRICT UPDATES

KLAMATH COUNTY

Any Legal Weapon (formerly Rifle) buck deer: Controlled buck season runs Oct. 2 through Oct.13. Keno, Klamath, Sprague and Interstate Units have observed a slight decrease in bucks on the landscape. Fawn numbers were below objectives, which will provide fewer yearling this hunting season. With mild winter conditions, a very high percentage of those fawns to be available for hunter harvest.

Deer concentrations increase as you move toward the southern portion of the Keno and Klamath units. Interstate hunter will be significantly impacted by a series of wildfires this summer. Most available areas are south of Hwy 140. Be sure to check closure information in this unit. Sprague hunters can find deer dispersed throughout the unit. Sun Pass and areas adjacent to Klamath Marsh are a good starting points.

Opening weekend weather was warm and dry. Watch for a low pressure system as this typically increases deer activity providing more opportunities for hunters in the field.

Black bear: Season opens Aug. 1. Hunters have until Oct. 1 to purchase a fall bear tag. Best bear prospects are in the Cascades or in the Interstate UnitBear numbers are increasing in other areas such as the Fort Rock and Klamath Falls Units. Some areas in the Interstate are closed due to recent wildfire activity. Look for food sources, scat, or a good water source to increase chance of success. Hunters can now purchase an additional fall bear tag for all units in Oregon.

Cougar: Populations are healthy and distributed throughout the district in any area with a big game prey base. The majority of harvests happen while hunters are pursuing deer and elk. Predator calling or locating a fresh cougar kill can increase chances of success. Oregon does offer an additional cougar tag good all year throughout the state.

LAKE COUNTY

Deer & elk: With poor winter precipitation and a dry spring, water and forage availability is less robust compared to previous years. Deer populations in Lake County continue to be below management objectives. Hunting prospects should be fair to good in all units with the Silver Lake, Fort Rock & South Warner units above management objectives for buck ratios and the East Interstate & North Warner units slightly below. All units have an okay component of older bucks. However, spring deer fawn ratios averaged 25 across all units and will affect younger age buck availability.

Current weather conditions have been warm and dry. In the absence of significant moisture before or during the hunt, expect deer to be more nocturnal in their movements. Hunters should concentrate within a few miles of springs and riparian areas particularly within past wildfires. Look for fresh sign on roads and trails going between bedding and feeding areas.

The Fort Rock unit offers the best opportunity for elk hunting in Lake District. However, herds are at relatively low densities and cover a lot of country, so hunter success is typically low. The other unit that experiences relatively high harvest for the region and has higher elk numbers is in the Silver Lake unit. Many of these elk are found on private lands in alfalfa fields and landowner permission is necessary to hunt. Generally speaking, Lake County experiences some of the lowest elk harvest in the entire state and hunters should adjust their expectations accordingly.

Fall bear: Best bear prospects are in the Silver Lake & Interstate units. Bears are present throughout the all of county, but at higher densities on forest lands at higher elevations including Winter Rim and Hager Mountain in the Silver Lake unit and Dog Mountain and Quartz Mountain in the Interstate unit.

The best locations to scout would be past wildfires such as the Toolbox and Barry Point fires. Hunters should check berry producing areas, but due to an unusually dry summer the berry crop has been sub-par compared to recent years. Bears may opportunistically find deer and elk carcasses as seasons progress. Old homestead orchards can also provide opportunities.

Cougar: Cougar populations are healthy throughout the district. Predator calls can be an effective cougar hunting method though bobcats and bears may respond to predator calls, and separate licensing and season limitations exist for these species. Hunters should be prepared for predators other than cougar to respond.

Coyote populations are generally strong and hunting is available throughout the district. Be aware that bobcats and cougars may respond to predator calls, and separate licensing and season limitations exist for these species.

SE BIG GAME HUNTING

Big game reports updated monthly
Reports are updated the first week of each month. Sign up for email notification.

OPEN SEASONS

Cougar (Check current harvest numbers.), coyote, black bear

ANNOUNCEMENTS – fire closures, access issues, reminders, etc.

Bear and cougar check-in

The modified check-in procedures adopted in 2019 will continue for the 2021 season.

Hunting and fire season: Know before you go

Early season hunts often take place during the peak of the wildfire season. Experienced hunters know to check for fire closures before their hunt. Bookmark this page – it has links to the most current fire closures and restrictions.

Hunting out of state? Don’t bring CWD home with you

Chronic Wasting Disease has not been found in Oregon yet and we’d like to keep in that way. If you’re hunting big game in a state that has CWD, please follow these precautions.

Please report elk with hoof disease

If you see elk showing signs of elk hoof disease, including lame or limping elk or elk with damaged, injured, missing or deformed hooves, please report it using this online form.

Coyote and wolf ID

Coyote hunters need to take extra care to identify their target as wolves can look like coyotes, especially wolf pups in the mid-summer and fall. Test your ID skills.
Please report any wolf sightings or wolf sign to ODFW using the online reporting system.

DISTRICT UPDATES

HARNEY COUNTY (Silvies, Malheur River, Steens Mt, Juniper, portions of Beatys Butte, Wagontire, and Whitehorse)

Hunters are reminded of four Travel Management Areas in the Harney district. Two in the Silvies Unit (Dairy Creek and Burnt Cabin) and two in the Malheur River Unit (Conroy Cliff and Devine-Rattlesnake). Maps are available at each major entry point of the travel management area both online and at the Hines office. Period of restrictions are Sept. 26-Oct. 10 and Oct. 21-Nov. 11. ODFW biologist will be posting and stocking map boxes this week.

There are several prescribed fires planned for this fall in the Silvies and Malheur River Wildlife Management Units. Fires may be conducted during hunting seasons if favorable burning conditions exist. Areas where prescribed fires may occur will be posted.

Deer – Any Legal Weapon (formerly rifle) season for mule deer closes Oct. 13. Weather for the opening weekend of deer season was warm but a cool front moved in Tuesday evening with scattered showers, which slightly improved the hunting conditions. The access to all road systems was good and hunter activity was normal. Harvested deer appeared to be in good body condition.

Controlled muzzleloader season opens Saturday Oct. 16 in the Silvies, and Malheur River (north). Harney Basin Agricultural doe hunt also opens on Oct. 16.

Elk – Controlled muzzleloader season opens Saturday Oct. 16 in the High Desert hunt area. Elk populations remain at or above management objectives, but bull ratios remain low especially in the Silvies WMU. First rifle bull season in the Silvies, and N. Malheur River WMUs, and either sex rifle season in the High Desert Hunt Area open Oct. 27. Hunter success has been low during first bull season the past few years. If cooler weather and precipitation continue through the rest of October, hunters may be more successful. Bighorn sheep: Sheep hunters should contact district biologist for specifics about their hunt areas.

Fall bear: Bear populations in Harney County are generally low. While no formal surveys are done for bear in this area, bear populations appear to be stable.

Cougar hunting is open year around. Populations are healthy and distributed throughout the district in any area with a big game prey base.

Coyote populations are good throughout Harney County. Be aware that bobcats and cougars also may respond to predator calls, and there are separate licensing and season limitations for these species.

MALHEUR COUNTY (Whitehorse, Owyhee and Beulah Units)

Archery deer: Deer herds experienced minimal over-winter mortality.

Archery elk: Most elk are found on the forested portion of the district in the Malheur National Forest.

Antelope: Water is abundant on the landscape this year and this in turn has antelope somewhat scattered across the units. In addition, archery antelope is also open and continues through Sept. 5.

Bighorn sheep: First season is open and continues through Sept. 14. Second season opens Sept. 15 and remains open through Oct. 14.

Fall bear: Most bears are found on the forested portion of the district.

Cougar: Populations are healthy and distributed throughout the district in any area with a big game prey base.

Coyote: Hunting is available throughout the district. Reproduction this year appears to be good which should enhance calling opportunities. Be aware that bobcats and cougars may respond to predator calls, and separate licensing and season limitations exist for these species.

Ground squirrels are becoming more active on warmer days. Be sure to obtain permission when entering private lands.

NE BIG GAME HUNTING

Big game reports updated monthly
Reports are updated the first week of each month. Sign up for email notification.

OPEN SEASONS

Cougar (Check current harvest numbers.), coyote, black bear

ANNOUNCEMENTS

Bear and cougar check-in

The modified check-in procedures adopted in 2019 will continue for the 2021 season.

Hunting and fire season: Know before you go

Early season hunts often take place during the peak of the wildfire season. Experienced hunters know to check for fire closures before their hunt. Bookmark this page – it has links to the most current fire closures and restrictions.

Hunting out of state? Don’t bring CWD home with you

Chronic Wasting Disease has not been found in Oregon yet and we’d like to keep in that way. If you’re hunting big game in a state that has CWD, please follow these precautions.

Please report elk with hoof disease

If you see elk showing signs of elk hoof disease, including lame or limping elk or elk with damaged, injured, missing or deformed hooves, please report it using this online form.

Coyote and wolf ID

Coyote hunters need to take extra care to identify their target as wolves can look like coyotes, especially wolf pups in the mid-summer and fall. Test your ID skills.
Please report any wolf sightings or wolf sign to ODFW using the online reporting system.

DISTRICT UPDATES

BAKER DISTRICT (Sumpter, Keating, Pine Creek, Lookout Mt.)

Archery deer: Deer numbers are still down from the hard winter of 2017 in Baker County. This year’s fawn survival was good and buck ratios are near management objective. If weather conditions stay hot and dry deer activity will be limited to early and late in the day, and stalking conditions may be difficult.

Archery elk: Elk numbers are stable to increasing throughout the county. Hunters should find elk around water and cool moist northern aspects. The continuation of warm temperatures will limit animal activity to early morning and late evening. Remember to check the regulations for the area you will be hunting.

Cougar: Can be found throughout Baker County but hunters should target areas with high concentrations of deer and elk. Setting up on a fresh kill or using distress calls can all be productive techniques.

Coyote: Numbers are good throughout the district. Try calling in early morning and late afternoon. Remember to ask for permission before hunting on private properties.

GRANT DISTRICT (Murderers Creek, Northside, Desolation)

Archery deer: The spring fawn ratio was a little low this spring, so hunters might expect less success this year than in the past.

Expect warm, dry conditions for the archery opener, so focus water sources and wetter, cooler north slopes.

Archery elk: Hunting prospects are average for the district. Elk hunters should focus on areas with no open roads as elk tend to move away from traveled roads during hunting seasons.

Cougar: Cougar are well-distributed in our forested areas. Calling with distress calls or cougar vocalizations can be effective. However, locating a fresh, naturally made kill has the best chance of success.

Coyote: Numbers are good in most of the district. Coyotes may respond to distress calls. Try calling in the early morning and late evening.

HEPPNER DISTRICT (Heppner, Fossil, East Biggs, southern Columbia Basin)

Archery deer: Unless conditions change, early season hunters will want to focus on areas of good forage and water.

Archery elk: Calf ratios decreased from last year, so hunters may have a hard time finding spike bulls. However, there are still good numbers of older age class bulls throughout the forest.

Cougar: Cougar are well-distributed in our forested areas. Calling with distress calls or cougar vocalizations can be effective. However, locating a fresh, naturally made kill has the best chance of success.

Coyote: The population is healthy with good numbers of coyotes available for those who wish to pursue them. Watch wind direction to help prevent giving away your location. Calling with game distress calls can be very successful.

UMATILLA DISTRICT (Walla Walla, Mt. Emily, Ukiah, eastern portion of Heppner, northern Columbia Basin)

Archery deer: Mule deer survival rates were good considering the harsh winter we experienced here in Umatilla County.

Archery elk: Overwinter survival was good with calf ratios remaining low but stable, ranging from 16 to 18 calves in all three units. Both spike and branch bull hunters should expect good potential for this year’s hunts throughout the district.

Fall bear: Getting a spring bear tag in the Umatilla District is not easy, so the fall general season is your chance to hunt bear here. Bears are high up early in the season and will pull down slowly. Look in hawthorn and elderberry concentrations to find them; early on they will be on edges of clearings and clear-cuts near berry crops in high country.

Cougar: Well-distributed in forested areas of the Walla Walla, Mt. Emily, and Ukiah units. Hunters will have best success by finding a fresh naturally made kill and hunting near it, or by using predator calls. Some success has come from following tracks until the cougar is located.

Coyote: Numerous throughout the county and hunters should have good success calling. Remember to ask permission before hunting on private lands.

Columbia Basin Wildlife Areas (Willow Cr WA, Coyote Springs WA, Irrigon WA, Power City WA)

Big game hunting is permitted except at Coyote Springs WA. Use of rifles and handguns are prohibited at all times except Willow Cr WA. Dove season is open from Sept. 1 through 30, then opens back up Nov. 15, the daily bag limit is 15 doves. The youth pheasant hunt at the Irrigon Wildlife Area on happened on Sept. 25, some kids showed up but there are still many roosters to be had after the hunt. All other quail, chucker and pheasant seasons open Oct. 9. Please review the regulations for shot and weapon restrictions. Please be mindful of our neighbors and respect the safety zones.

Bridge Cr Wildlife Area

The Wildlife area is open to all hunting. Vehicle access is restricted to one access road from FS road 52. Camping is permitted within 300 ft of the access road. No fires permitted. Ruffed and blue grouse season is open until Jan. 31. Grouse can often be found near water mid-morning.

UNION COUNTY

Rifle deer: District-wide deer numbers and buck ratios are similar to previous years. Deer distribution has been altered by the drought conditions and hunters should focus more on brushy areas of the landscape.

Rifle elk: Elk numbers are stable throughout Union County. Although elk are not generally water-limited in this district, they may be more concentrated near water sources than in other years. Mount Emily unit continues to provide a trophy quality hunting opportunity.

Fall bear: Bear harvest has been consistent over the past several years. Berry and fruit crops may not be as heavy as years past, but look for bears in the creek bottoms and valleys, feeding on hawthorn berries and other fruits. Road closure areas within the Catherine Creek and Starkey units will provide good walk-in access to bear habitat.

Cougars: Common in Union County. Focus on game rich areas with long ridgelines or saddles that cats typically travel. Setting up downwind of a deer or elk killed by a cougar can be productive.

Coyote: Numbers are high throughout the district. Try calling in early morning and late afternoon. Remember to ask for permission before hunting on private properties.

Ladd Marsh Wildlife Area

All lands north and east of Foothill Road are open to hunting weekends, Wednesdays and all federal holidays. Please refer to Big Game and Game Bird regulations for season dates and additional regulations.
Hunting equipment is limited to short range (shotgun, archery or muzzleloader) equipment only. Rifles and handguns are prohibited at all times.
The Glass Hill portion of the wildlife area is open seven days a week April 1 through Jan. 31. Please refer to the ODFW big game and game bird regulations for season dates.
The wildlife Area is closed from 10 p.m. to 4 a.m. In addition, there is no camping on the wildlife area. Violators will be asked to leave and or will be issued citations.
Please call the Ladd Marsh Wildlife Area with any questions 541 963 4954.
WALLOWA COUNTY (Wenaha, Sled Springs, Chesnimnus, Snake River, Minam, Imnaha)

Controlled deer and elk: Mule deer numbers are still well below management objective, though recruitment continues to be high. White-tailed deer numbers are good in all units. White-tailed bucks are nocturnal, but patient hunters often have success stand hunting between bedding and feeding areas.

Elk numbers are doing well in all units and hunters should have good opportunities, though dry conditions have made groups harder to find in familiar areas from seasons prior. Hunters may choose to utilize springs and wallows.

With cooler temperatures and snow at higher elevations afoot, watch for deer and elk to move down to lower elevations.

Travel management areas and/or road closures are in effect in the Sled Springs, Chesnimnus, and Snake River units. Hancock private lands in the Sled Springs and Wenaha units are open to public entry for overnight use as of September 20. Contact the Hancock Forest Management information line at 541-962-2184 for current information and/or restrictions.

Black bear: Good berry crops were observed in several areas this summer and hunters can look forward to a good season. Look for bears at lower elevations in drainages and open meadows near edge habitat.

Cougar: Populations are moderate throughout Wallowa County. Most lions are taken incidental to other hunting. However, calling with fawn bleat, or locating a cougar kill and waiting for a cat to return are often successful techniques. Please remember to check in your harvest at your local district office to help with population estimates.

Coyote: Good numbers of coyotes can be found throughout Wallowa County. Calling coyotes with rabbit distress type calls has been effective for hunters. It is important to choose areas with abundant coyote sign and little human activity.

GAME BIRD HUNTING

WESTERN OREGON

Game bird reports updated monthly
Reports are updated the first week of each month. Sign up for email notification.

CURRENTLY OPEN: forest grouse and mourning dove in Zone 2 only

OPENING SOON: Chukar, Hungarian partridge, rooster pheasant, quail, and general fall turkey (in select units) all open Oct. 9. Duck season in Zone 1 opens Oct. 16.

ANNOUNCEMENTS:
Hunt by Reservation

The ODFW Hunt by Reservation Program brings hunters and landowners together to provide quality hunting experiences on private land. By making a reservation online, hunters receive a permit to hunt select private lands on dates pre-selected by landowners.

2021-22 game bird hunting forecast

The 2021-22 Oregon game bird seasons look promising with pheasant, quail and chukar numbers steady in the east, forest grouse holding the line in the west. However, duck populations and habitat conditions are not as promising.

Grouse hunters: Turn in wings and tails

Data gathered from wings and tails helps ODFW biologists look at population productivity and set seasons.

2021-22 legal shooting hours

Legal shooting hours for game bird and Northwest Permit Goose during the 2021-22 hunting seasons – find them online.

Hunting and fire danger

Experienced hunters know to check for fire closures before their early season hunts. Make sure to carry water or fire extinguisher, as well as a shovel and axe/polaski while traveling in remote desert country. Bookmark this page – it has links to the most current fire closures and restrictions.

UPLAND BIRD OVERVIEW
October brings the opening of all remaining upland game bird seasons statewide. Westside big game hunters should be prepared to encounter forest grouse and mountain quail in either the Coast or Cascade ranges, particularly in the morning and evening. While some excellent forest grouse habitat was lost to fire last year, these birds can be found throughout Oregon’s forests and likely benefit from moderate forest disturbances.
Hunters looking for adventure can locate mountain quail coveys near steep and brushy habitat by listening for their distinctive high-pitched crow, and looking for sign such as footprints and droppings along roadsides. They tend to be concentrated in the southwest part of the state, but can be found in pockets throughout the Coast range and west slope of the Cascades. Scout old burns or timber sales that have grown back to brush at mid- to high elevations.
While California quail are more densely populated in eastern Oregon, they can be found in brushy valley bottoms, often near water sources, throughout western Oregon. Hunters should work the margins of drainages with the help of a good dog or two, and be selective with shots so birds aren’t lost in the brambles.
Hunters can continue to pursue stocked pheasants on four western Oregon wildlife areas through early to late October (see Page 16 of the Game Bird Regulations for exact dates and locations). Fee pheasant hunts require a hunting license, upland game bird validation, and a $17 Western Oregon fee pheasant permit. Wild pheasants remain elusive in western Oregon and largely persist on private land.
Fall wild turkey season opens on Oct. 9 and runs through Jan 31. A map of open units can be found on page 18 of the Game Bird Regulations. Hunters can harvest no more than 2 fall turkeys of either sex, of which only 1 may be from eastern Oregon. Wild turkey populations continue to be very strong throughout most of their range. As fall turns into winter, the family groups will begin grouping up into larger flocks. Most fall turkeys will be found on private land, so hunters are reminded to seek permission prior to hunting.

MIGRATORY BIRD OVERVIEW

October is the month when the regular waterfowl seasons kick off in Oregon. For regulatory purposes, western Oregon is divided into different zones for goose and duck hunting. All of western Oregon is in Duck Zone 1, and the season opens on Oct. 16. Western Oregon is composed of three different goose hunting zones, the South Coast Zone (opened Oct. 2), the Southwest Zone (opens Oct. 16) and the Northwest Permit Zone (opens Oct. 23).

Widespread drought across the continent has affected waterfowl populations and habitats this past year. Hunters should be prepared for a smaller fall flight of ducks originating from the Canadian prairies, though more northerly habitats were less affected by the drought, and production from those areas should buoy hunter success. Locally, breeding duck populations were down this spring and production was likely below average. However, the greatest driver of hunter success in western Oregon is habitat and weather. Coastal hunters should expect to see good number of early migrating ducks such as wigeon, green-winged teal and pintail. Recent rains may have also started to flood small seasonal wetlands, providing some extra opportunity on opening weekend throughout the region.

Goose populations are faring better, and we expect a large flight of snow geese from Wrangel Island, Russia this year. Large number of these geese are now wintering at Sauvie Island, with recent wintering counts exceeding 25,000. While cackling and Taverner’s geese remain abundant wintering birds in northwest Oregon, their populations have been coming down in recent years. While hunting success should still be good, hunters should expect to see fewer geese then they did over the past 10-years.

Mourning dove hunters need to remember that the season is currently closed in Zone 1. For the first time, the season will reopen on Nov. 15 for a 30-day, late-fall hunt period in all of western Oregon.

ALL DISTRICTS

Eurasian collared doves: These birds have no protections in Oregon, so there are no closed seasons and no limits to their harvest. Target Eurasian collared doves around agricultural areas where food sources are abundant. Be sure of your identification before you hunt these birds which are larger and lighter than mourning doves with a distinctive band around the back of the neck. Identify this species and its habitat
DISTRICT UPDATES
NORTH AND MID-COAST DISTRICTS
Waterfowl: Duck season opens Oct. 16 and Northwest Permit goose season on Oct. 23. Local birds were very productive and should provide good opportunities in the early season until fall migrants from further north arrive. Waterfowl movements are tied to tidal movement in coastal estuaries, with birds tending to feed inland as they follow the incoming tide and then gathering in large rafts out on open bays as the tides recedes. Rough weather will also move birds off the open bays and into sloughs and more sheltered areas.

Forest grouse season on the north coast opened Sept. 1 and includes sooty (blue) and ruffed grouse. While both species are associated with conifer forests, sooty grouse occupy the higher elevations of the coast range, especially ridge tops, while ruffed grouse are most commonly seen at mid to lower elevations of forest habitats, including riparian areas.

Mountain quail season runs concurrently with the forest grouse season on the north coast, and hunting is likely to be very good due to dry conditions during the nesting season. These birds are most commonly found in brushy clear-cuts, especially those with a south-facing aspect. Numerous coveys of quail have been seen this September throughout the mid coast area. Try hunting gated roads in our TMA access areas in brushy clear cuts and young timber stands.

WILLAMETTE DISTRICT
Mourning dove: The season reopens Nov. 15.

Grouse: Anecdotally, observations of grouse by hunters in the area have been limited. Collections of grouse wings at collection barrels across the district have indicated more success in the cascades than the coast range, but effort and hunter knowledge or willingness to supply wings can play a factor in productivity of barrels.

Look for grouse along densely vegetated forest roads and roads near riparian areas. Forest edge habitat, such as those areas found where clear cuts meet mature forest stands can be great locations to focus for grouse.
Quail: Despite reports of large numbers of quail during the early season, hunter observation reports have decreased. Hunters will find more success at finding quail targeting sunny breaks in the wet weather.
Turkey: Populations of wild turkey in the northern Willamette region are limited, with the few groups that exist predominantly on agriculture lands outside of McMinnville. There is the small possibility of encountering one in the foothills above the agriculture lands.
Waterfowl: For hunters interested in floating the Columbia and the Willamette Greenway this is definitely a fun alternative to avoid crowds, but can be challenging to determine access. On the Columbia River, island ownership is highly varied, and hunters are encouraged to directly contact the landowners to determine if hunting is allowed. Details on hunting along the Willamette Greenway can be found in Oregon Administrative Rule Division 10 section 736-010-0055 (8).
Fern Ridge Wildlife Area

The Fee Pheasant Hunt continues through Sunday, Oct. 10. The statewide pheasant season continues through Dec. 31, but no fee pheasant tag is required and no additional birds will be released on the wildlife area.

The Fisher Butte, Royal Amazon, West, East, and South Coyote units will close to all public access beginning Monday, Oct. 11. The closure provides a short duration waterfowl refuge so hunters wanting to continue pursuing upland birds will need to hunt other units. Please see the Oregon Game Bird Regulations, page 35, for all access information.

The ongoing drought has resulted in extremely dry conditions and low water levels in Fern Ridge Reservoir. The wildlife area has almost no stored water and no water pumping capability. Hunters should expect poor hunting conditions on the wildlife area for the beginning of waterfowl season and conditions will only improve with rainfall. If you are planning a trip to hunt waterfowl, you can call our office for the latest conditions.

Reminder that only non-toxic shot is allowed on the wildlife area. Hunters must carry with them and complete a daily hunting permit. Permits are free and available at most wildlife area access points. Be sure to display your parking permit when visiting.

Fern Ridge Wildlife Area Headquarters: (541) 935-2591.

Sauvie Island Wildlife Area
Waterfowl hunting on Sauvie Island Wildlife Area should be slightly below average this year with waterfowl populations at a fair level but a lack of water due to the drought conditions. The best hunting is usually during colder weather when birds are pushed south from Alaska and Canada.
The wildlife area’s crop production was mediocre this year because of the lack of summer rains. All hunt units will have some flooded areas on opening day of duck season. Ongoing work on wetland and food resources on the wildlife area will continue to improve hunting in future years.
As in past seasons, the Northwest Permit Goose Season will be open this year on the Wildlife Area, but only for white geese (Ross and snow). Dark goose (Canada, cackling, and white-fronted) hunting will remain closed on the Wildlife Area during the Permit season.
If you are new to waterfowl hunting on Sauvie Island, see our Beginners Guide to Waterfowl Hunting on Sauvie Island Wildlife Area.
Special youth waterfowl hunts for hunters age 17 and younger Oct. 30, Nov. 14, Dec. 11 and 28 and Jan. 15, 2022. See the Game Bird Regulations for details.

SOUTHWEST AREA GAME BIRD HUNTING

COOS COUNTY

Mourning dove: The season reopens Nov. 15.

Grouse: Grouse populations are relatively abundant in Coos County presently. Over the past few years conditions have been good for grouse to survive the winter and pull off successful nests. Brood surveys done by OLDFW staff indicate grouse nesting was successful so birds will be available for good hunting. Grouse hunters on the coast are often frustrated by the fact that birds don’t seem to concentrate in specific habitats like they do in dryer parts of the state. Generally western Oregon hunters find their best success hunting along roads where clover and other green forage grows. For legal and safety reasons, hunting roads that are closed to motor vehicle access are best.

Quail: Quail populations coastal Oregon are faring quite well these days, as are grouse. There are two species of quail available in Oregon for harvest, California quail and mountain quail. Both are available for harvest in Coos County. California Quail are usually found in lower elevation and near agricultural fields while mountain quail are generally found above 1000 ft. elevation. Mountain quail generally prefer young clear cuts, particularly those with rocky outcroppings nearby. Hunters find both of these species are enjoyable to hunt. Mountain quail in particular are often found on public land or timber company land open to public access. Hunting these birds will beat a hunter and dog up as much as any chukar hunt, if you’re into that.

Turkey, Fall Season: Turkey numbers have been increasing in Coos County for the past several years. Birds are now well distributed around most agricultural lands in the county and due to their increasing numbers they seem to be increasing their range. Occasionally they can now be found near clear cuts some distance from agricultural lands. Hunters should walk roads looking for tracks and feathers to locate flocks of birds. When birds are located using techniques like busting up flocks with a bird dog then sitting and calling them back in for a shot works well in the fall.

Waterfowl: Duck and goose abundance in Coos County is relatively low at this writing but migrants are beginning to arrive. As is normally the case, early arriving migratory ducks and geese are generally found in the lower portions of bays and estuaries. These birds tend to congregate in October and early November in the saltwater portion of bays and estuaries to feed on eel grass and other saltwater vegetation prior to the arrival of fall rains. Once rain begins and inundation of inland valleys occurs later in the fall these birds will redistribute inland. Often some of the best hunting takes place in this early part of the fall because many coastal bays and estuaries offer areas to hunt that are publicly accessible.

Coquille Valley Wildlife Area

Conditions in Southwest Oregon have been very dry so far this year, as in the rest of the Pacific Northwest. As a result, surface water on Coquille Valley Wildlife Area is at a minimum. Also, migratory waterfowl are only beginning to arrive in the area presently. Hunters wanting to hunt Coquille Valley Wildlife Area for waterfowl should direct their attention to the channels in the Winter Lake Unit for ducks. The ducks that are on the Wildlife Area will be feeding around the edges of the channels where water floods vegetation at high tide. Resident Canada geese can also be found using portions of the Wildlife Area where mowing has been done to improve habitat.

Access to Coquille Valley Wildlife Area is only allowed through the access point located along North Bank Lane. A free permit is required daily to access the Wildlife Area whether for hunting or other purposes. Those permits are available at the access point. The Wildlife Area is managed in two tracts: Beaver Slough and Winter Lake. Beaver Slough Tract is open seven days a week throughout the year and Winter lake Tract is open Wednesdays, Saturdays, Sundays and all Federal and State holidays between Sept. 1 and Jan. 31. The tract is open seven days a week outside of these dates.

DOUGLAS COUNTY

No recent report.

JACKSON, JOSEPHINE, CURRY COUNTIES

When heading out to hunt in October, remember that some areas here in southwest Oregon are at a fire danger level of Moderate, which may impose restrictions based on the land you are hunting on. Please consult a Forest Service map for details on the forest boundary. Visit the MyODFW.com website for more information.

Mourning dove season reopens Nov. 15.

Grouse season opened Sept. 1 statewide. The daily bag limit is three birds of each species (blue and ruffed). More grouse were observed this year on upland brood surveys in the Rogue Watershed. Driving less used dirt roads in the late evening can be an effective way to find grouse.

Quail season opens Sept. 1 in western Oregon. The daily bag limit is 10 quail (in aggregate with both mountain and California quail). Quail numbers increased again this year on ODFW upland brood surveys. Driving old dirt roads in the late afternoon and evening is usually a good way to locate groups. For more information refer to the Oregon Game Bird Regulations.

Ring-necked pheasants: Opens Oct. 9. The Denman Wildlife Area will have stocked 1,200 birds of the prior three weeks for the youth hunt as well as the fee hunt. Many of these birds have not been harvested and will be available to shoot starting Oct. 9.

Fall turkey season opens Oct. 9. The fall turkey season allows hunters with a fall turkey tag to harvest one bird of either sex in WMUs within Jackson, Josephine and Curry counties. Turkey numbers are extremely high in southern Oregon which should make for a good fall hunting season. Successful hunters can purchase an additional fall turkey tag for a chance at a second bird.

Waterfowl: Canada geese are abundant in the Rogue Valley which can make for good hunting. Focus hunting efforts during nasty weather events for your best chance at taking home some waterfowl. Windy and rainy mornings seem to be the best.

EASTERN OREGON

Game bird reports updated monthly
Reports are updated the first week of each month. Sign up for email notification.

CURRENTLY OPEN: forest grouse and mourning dove in Zone 2 only

OPENING SOON: Chukar, Hungarian partridge, rooster pheasant, quail, duck, Wilson’s snipe and general fall turkey (in select units) all open Oct. 9.
ANNOUNCEMENTS:
Malheur NWR opens to bird hunting Oct. 9
Beginning this year, this National Wildlife Refuge will open the Buena Vista hunt area to game bird hunting on Oct. 9, to correspond with ODFW established season openers.
However, the NWR also reports the South Malheur Lake Unit will not open to waterfowl hunting this year due to drought conditions.
Find more information on game bird hunting on the Malheur NWR.
2021-22 game bird hunting forecast

The 2021-22 Oregon game bird seasons look promising with pheasant, quail and chukar numbers steady in the east, forest grouse holding the line in the west. However, duck populations and habitat conditions are not as promising.

Grouse hunters: Turn in wings and tails

Data gathered from wings and tails helps ODFW biologists look at population productivity and set seasons.

2021-22 legal shooting hours

Legal shooting hours for game bird and Northwest Permit Goose during the 2021-22 hunting seasons – find them online.

Hunting and fire danger

Experienced hunters know to check for fire closures before their early season hunts. Make sure to carry water or fire extinguisher, as well as a shovel and axe/polaski while traveling in remote desert country. Bookmark this page – it has links to the most current fire closures and restrictions.

UPLAND BIRD OVERVIEW

This week several bird seasons open in Oregon, including rooster pheasant, chukar and gray (Hungarian) partridge, and California and mountain quail. Fall turkey opens in select eastern Oregon counties (see the map on page 18 of the Game Bird Regulations).

While production effort was generally down this year, hunters should find good carryover for most upland birds this fall.

Rooster pheasant are most abundant through the agricultural lands and margins of the Mid-Columbia, Columbia Basin and Malheur districts. The Grande Ronde Valley is also known to hold pheasants. After cropland harvest, pheasants will move to permanent cover, including emergent wetland edges, irrigation ditches, fence rows, and other thick and weedy habitat. Some National Wildlife Refuges have good pheasant hunting opportunities (see pages 41-42 in the Game Bird Regulations). Other access agreements such as the Heppner Regulated Hunt Area, Upland Cooperative Access Program, and Open Fields. A link to these resources and other helpful tips can be found here.

Chukar hunters should be able to find plenty of birds, even with a decline in production this year. Best bets include the open bluffs associated with the lower Deschutes River basin, the John Day River, the Malheur River and the Snake River. Chukar are widespread throughout Oregon’s high desert and are largely available on public BLM land. Gray (Hungarian) partridge remain rare as always, but can be found in agricultural margins of the Columbia Basin or lower elevation mixed sage in southeastern Oregon.

California quail are holding strong in eastern Oregon. Hunters will find these birds at lower elevations, nearly always associated with early successional (weedy and brushy) cover and near a permanent water source. Openings for dust bathing are also an important component of California quail habitat. Hunters in eastern Oregon may include 2 mountain quail as part of their overall 10-quail bag limit. Mountain quail can be found at higher elevations, typically on steep, brushy slopes associated with riparian areas. Hunters are asked to submit one wing from each mountain quail harvested to the nearest wing barrel or contact their nearest ODFW office for dropoff instructions.

Wild turkey populations remain strong through much of eastern Oregon. Hunters are reminded that only certain units are open to fall turkey hunting (see page 18 in the Game Bird Regulations). An eastern Oregon fall turkey tag is required. The season limit is 1 fall turkey in eastern Oregon. Additional harvest opportunity may be available through emergency hunts, particularly in Grant County. More information can be found here.

Forest grouse harvest usually peaks as big game hunters take to the field. Look for dusky (blue) grouse at high elevation ridge tops among mixed conifer forests. Ruffed grouse are more often found along riparian draws with good vegetative cover. The strongest reports for eastern Oregon forest grouse are coming from the northeastern corner of the state this year.

MIGRATORY BIRD OVERVIEW

October is the month when the regular waterfowl seasons kick off in Oregon. For regulatory purposes, eastern Oregon is divided into different zones for waterfowl hunting. The counties bordering the Columbia River are included within the Zone 1 duck season and the Mid-Columbia goose season. In these areas, the waterfowl season opens on Oct. 16, except that white geese and white-fronted geese may not be taken until Nov. 9. The balance of eastern Oregon counties is included within the Zone 2 duck season and the High Desert and Blue Mountains Zone Goose season. In these areas, the waterfowl season opens on Oct. 9.

Eastern Oregon waterfowl hunters should be prepared to encounter dry habitat conditions this year, as widespread drought in eastern Oregon has reduced the amount of wetland habitat on the landscape. This is especially true in southcentral and southeast Oregon. Many wetlands and marshes in this region are dry, though the popular Department’s popular Summer Lake Wildlife Area and Miller Island Unit of the Klamath Wildlife Area have good wetland conditions. In contrast, some areas are exceptionally dry and will provide reduced or no waterfowl hunting opportunity this season. These areas include:
Warner Valley – All lakes and wetlands are nearly dry, including Hart, Crump, and Flagstaff Lakes.
Goose Lake Valley – Goose Lake is dry.
Harney Basin – Very dry, with Malheur Lake at a level which does not support waterfowl hunting, so the South Malheur Lake Hunt unit is closed. The Buena Vista Hunt until will have limited wetland habitat available.
Klamath Basin – Very dry, with Lower Klamath and Tule Lake NWRs just across the border in California, have very little to no wetland habitat. Upper Klamath Lake will provide some hunting opportunities, though the wetland units on the north end of the lake (Wood River Wetlands and the Barnes and Agency Lake units of Upper Klamath NWR) are essentially dry.

If you are unsure if your favorite hunting area has water, be sure to call ahead or make a scouting trip and be prepared to go to Plan B.

Waterfowl hunting in the Columbia Basin and along the Snake River will be less affected by the drought, as many of the birds in this area are associated with the large river systems.

The drought will also impact hunter success this season, as hunters should expect to see fewer locally produced mallards and gadwall in the bag. Additionally, the drought this year is also affecting much of the Canadian prairies, where significant portions of our wintering waterfowl originate. Similarly, hunters should expect a reduced fall flight from these areas. However, habitats further north in Alaska and northwest Canada fared better, and duck populations form these areas should be in good shape.

Goose populations are faring better, though local Canada goose production was down this year. However, arctic nesting geese fared better, and we expect a large flight of snow geese from Wrangel Island, Russia this year. Large number of these geese are now wintering in Morrow and Umatilla counties, with recent wintering counts exceeding 150,000. Hunters should note that the opening day for these geese is delayed this year, until Nov. 9, to allow for a new late season hunt in Feb.

Although the mourning dove season remains open in Zone 2, most mourning doves have already migrated to wintering areas and hunting for mourning doves is usually very slow during October. In Zone 1, the mourning dove season is closed during October, though it will open in mid-November for 30 days.

ALL DISTRICTS

Eurasian collared doves: These birds have no protections in Oregon, so there are no closed seasons or limits to their harvest. A hunting license is required on public land. Focus around agricultural areas where food sources are abundant. Be sure of your identification before you hunt these birds which are larger and lighter than mourning doves with a distinctive band around the back of the neck. Identify this species and its habitat.

DISTRICT UPDATES

COLUMBIA AREA (White River, Hood, West Biggs, and Maupin Units)

Mourning dove: The season is currently closed in Zone 1.

Forest grouse and mountain quail: Sooty (blue) grouse can be found in forested portions of the White River and Hood units. They seem to be more heavily concentrated in the Hood unit and in the western portion of the White River unit. Targeting breaks of major ridges is a good strategy for finding sooty grouse.

Ruffed grouse are found at lower elevations that sooty grouse. Targeting riparian areas in these units is usually your best bet. Additionally ruffed grouse can also be found near elderberry or other mast producing trees.

Mountain quail can be found but at low densities throughout these units associated with heavy cover and riparian areas. Areas that have burned or been recently clear-cut are good places to start your search.

Turkey: The Biggs WMU can offers limited public land turkey hunting options. Both the Deschutes and John Day river canyons have limited amounts of turkey. Check side canyons that have oaks or other large trees that can serve as roosting areas.

Chukar, hun, pheasant: The chukar hatch in the Deschutes and John Day river canyons was a little above average in 2021 and there was good hold over form the excellent hatch in 2020. This should give hunters a similar number of birds on the landscape this season as they saw in 2020. In early season finding water sources will be key to getting into birds. Both canyons offer BLM and state lands to hunt, but be sure to know boundaries. Pheasant and Hungarian partridge numbers were average compared to previous years. Heavy cover between agricultural fields and places with a water source are good places to look. These birds are typically found more on private property in this district so be sure to ask permission before accessing private land. ODFW’s Upland Cooperative Access Program offers several hunt by permission properties within the district. Call The Dalles field office for a map of these properties (541) 296-4628.

Waterfowl: In this district waterfowl hunting opportunities are primarily found on along the Columbia River. Biologists have noticed more waterfowl concentrating along the river earlier than in previous years so there should be opportunity for good early season shooting. If you do hunt the Columbia, be sure to know legal access points and avoid trespassing across railroads or other private property.

White River Wildlife Area

Fall turkey: There is NO FALL TURKEY HUNT in the White River unit. The White River Wildlife Management Unit is CLOSED to fall turkey hunting, to allow population numbers to recover and provide more opportunity during the popular spring season. (White River WMU is the most popular destination to spring turkey hunt in Oregon.)

Current road and weather conditions: The roads on the wildlife area are still dry and dusty. Most of the roads are seasonal and travel is allowed only on open roads designated by the green dot. Look for maps with road information at entrances to the wildlife area or click here WRWA Map. The weather forecast is cool with high temperatures in the low 60s and low temperatures in the 30s and 40s with a few scattered showers.

Reminder: Display your required parking permit when visiting the wildlife area. Camping in the wildlife area is only allowed in designated camping areas. Please pack out your trash. Campfires are allowed only in designated campsites. Only street legal vehicles are allowed in the wildlife area, no ATVs or snowmobiles.

Please continue to follow the state guidelines for the coronavirus pandemic. More COVID19 information can be found at the entrances to the wildlife area.

SOUTH CENTRAL AREA

KLAMATH COUNTY
Quail (mountain and California): Season opens on Oct. 9 for Klamath County even though season opened on Sept. 1 in western Oregon. Daily bag limit is 10 Quail/day of which only 2 can be mountain Quail in eastern Oregon. The Keno Unit is only unit with substantial mountain quail abundance. California quail are distributed throughout the county, typically at lower elevations with a good shrub component.
Mourning dove: Season opens Sept. 1 and continues through Oct. 30. Best prospects are near agricultural areas and water, though most mourning doves have migrated to wintering areas by now.
Forest grouse: Season opens Sept. 1 and continues through Jan. 31. Best prospects are in the Cascade Mountains for both blue and ruffed grouse, although there are fair numbers of blue grouse in forested habitat in eastern Klamath County. Hunters are asked to provide a wing and tail from each grouse harvested and drop them off at the Klamath District Office on Miller Island Road. A self-service collection barrel with bags is located at the front door of the office.
Klamath Wildlife Area
Miller Island Unit:

The Miller Island Unit is located 6 miles south and west of Klamath Falls. Miller Island Unit is closed to all access from 10 p.m. until 4 a.m.
Discharging firearms is prohibited except during authorized game bird hunting seasons or by special permit.
Oct. 1 – Dec. 31: Open to public use Mondays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays.
Open to game bird hunting Oct. 9 and 10 and every following Monday, Wednesday and Saturday during authorized game bird seasons.
All other days are closed to all entry, except public roads, parking areas, boat ramp, designated birding trail and designated dog training area.
Upland game bird shooting hours begin at 10 a.m.
Oct. 24, all of Miller Island Unit is open to youth hunters only on a first-come basis
Overnight camping is not allowed on the Miller Island Unit.

Although duck production in the region was poor this summer, duck hunting should be good at Miller Island this season as habitat conditions on the wildlife area are good, with many area wetlands flooded. However, conditions in other areas of the Klamath Basin are dry and this should concentrate migrant waterfowl in the areas with available habitat, such as Miller Island. Hunters are reminded that waterfowl hunting on opening day is by advanced controlled hunt permit, and the drawing as already occurred. After opening weekend, the wildlife area follows the Monday, Wednesday, Saturday schedule.

Gorr Island Unit:

Gorr Island is located four miles south of the Miller Island Unit in the Klamath River, accessible only by boat. Gorr Island is open daily with no permit required during authorized seasons.

Shoalwater Bay Unit and Sesti Tgawaals Unit:

Shoalwater Bay and Sesti Tgawaals are both located on the west side of Upper Klamath Lake approximately 10 miles to the north and west of Klamath Falls. Shoalwater Bay and Sesti Tgawaals Units are both open for hunting daily with no permit required during authorized seasons.

Hunting Information Miller Island Unit:

Weekly and summarized harvest statistics for the Miller Island Unit can be found at Hunting Statistics.

If you have any questions, please contact Klamath Wildlife Area at (541) 883-5732.

LAKE COUNTY

Mourning dove season continues until Oct. 30, though most birds will have migrated to wintering areas by now. Hunters should focus around agricultural areas and forest openings where food sources are abundant. Hunters are reminded to ask permission to hunt private lands. Identify this species and its habitat.

Blue and ruffed grouse season continues until Jan. 31. Daily bag limit is 3 birds of each species with a possession limit of 9 birds of each species. The best areas for blue grouse are along ridge tops in more open forest habitats such as Winter Rim and Hager Mountain. While there are very few ruffed grouse in Lake County they are generally found along riparian areas. The blue grouse in Lake County have fared better than average this year with strong brood survival and plenty of opportunities.
Summer Lake Wildlife Area
Please remember to make sure youth hunters meet all the requirements listed on page 26 of the 2021–22 Oregon Game Bird Regulations. Summer Lake no longer has a point-of-sale license agent and cellular service for electronic licensing is sometimes spotty.

All hunters will need to obtain and have a daily hunting permit in their possession while in the field. Free daily hunting permits will be available by self-serve. Check out is mandatory and can be accomplished by filling out and dropping the “B” portion of the permit off in check-out boxes found at major access areas.

Traditional areas are open and posted refuges are closed to all hunting. Please be aware that North part of Bullgate Refuge will once again be closed to all hunting. River Ranch, Windbreak and Gold Dike hunt areas are now filling. We are estimating that 60 percent of these areas will have water by the opening of waterfowl season. All other areas have excellent water and habitat conditions.

Maps are available in the Headquarters lobby area or online.

Non-toxic shot is required for all game bird hunting and posted refuges are closed to hunting. Please see gamebird regulations page 38 for detailed wildlife are regulations.

The weekly waterfowl survey on October 6 found about 60,000 ducks and 9,000 snow geese on the area.

Summer Lake Wildlife Area harvest statistics and weekly bird counts can be found on the MyODFW website.

Please contact Summer Lake Wildlife Area at (541) 943-3152 for additional information.

SOUTHEAST AREA

HARNEY COUNTY

Upland game bird season opens on Oct. 9. Chukar populations have recovered since the harsh winter of 2017 and have increased slightly since last year. Chukar hunting is expected to be good in both the northern and southern portions of the county. Quail are typically scarce on public lands in Harney County, however surveys on public lands suggested good quail production. Pheasant hunting opportunities are limited in Harney County and occur primarily on Malheur National Wildlife Refuge.

Upland bird seasons on Malheur National Wildlife Refuge now follow state season dates and open on Oct. 9. Check out the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge website for pheasant and qual hunt areas open to the public.

Waterfowl season opens Oct. 9 as well. Due to extreme drought conditions waterfowl hunting in Harney County will be extremely limited this year. Both the North and South Malheur Lake Hunt Zones on Malheur National Wildlife Refuge will be closed to waterfowl hunting due to low lake levels; however the Buena Vista Hunt Zone will be open, starting Oct. 9 this season. Check out the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge website for detailed maps.

The best waterfowl opportunity in the County will be for Canada geese on private lands, hunters are remined to get permission from the landowner before hunting private lands.

Mourning dove season opens Sept. 1 and continues through Oct. 30. Mourning dove concentrations are often associated with recent fires or near grain fields. Dove numbers typically decline rapidly soon after the season opens.

Blue and ruffed grouse season opens Sept. 1 and runs through Jan. 31. Forest grouse can be found in the northern end of the County near the Malheur National Forest. Early in the season look for blue grouse along ridge tops in brushy areas near forested edges. Ruffed grouse prefer dense riparian habitats or aspen stands.

MALHEUR COUNTY

No recent report.

Mourning dove season opens Sept. 1 and continues through Oct. 30, though most mourning doves have now migrated to wintering areas.

Blue and ruffed grouse season opens Sept. 1 and runs through Jan. 31, 2020. Most grouse hunting occurs on the Malheur National Forest portions of the district.
NORTHEAST AREA
BAKER COUNTY

No recent report.

GRANT COUNTY

No recent report.

UMATILLA COUNTY
Columbia Basin Wildlife Areas (Willow Cr, Coyote Springs, Irrigon, Power City)
Water is starting to rise at Irrigon WA and ducks are beginning to use the ponds. Quail and pheasant open on Oct. 9 and Duck season opens Oct. 16. Please review the Regulations for shot and weapon restrictions.
UNION COUNTY
Ladd Marsh Wildlife Area

Ladd Marsh is open Wednesday, Saturday, Sunday and federal holidays Aug. 1 through Jan. 31.
Waterfowl: WATER… It’s drastically different than last year. We have major portions of the wildlife area that are completely dry! We are just starting to get a little bit of irrigation water moving our way but it will take a long time to charge the ground before we have anything resembling a marsh. Give us a call for updated water reports and directions to the few places still holding water.
Upland: Upland birds enjoyed the dry summer and actually had a great year of production. We are seeing large broods and an array of bird sizes around the area. Some are coloring up nicely but others are still very hard to distinguish. We are very hopeful for a banner year of pheasant hunting on Ladd Marsh this year!
Please call the Ladd Marsh Wildlife Area with any questions 541-963-4954.
WALLOWA COUNTY
Mourning dove: Season opened on Sept. 1 and continues through Oct. 30.

Blue and ruffed grouse: Blue grouse numbers are similar to last year but down overall, so hunters can expect to search a little harder to find birds. Look to high ridges and dense timber. Ruffed grouse numbers are up since last year, but with drought conditions through the summer, hunting is expected to be fair to good, concentrated in riparian areas. A good dog will be an asset for ruffed grouse in thick cover.

Chukar: Chukar numbers are doing well, with brood surveys up compared to last year. Hunters should expect to do well chasing chukars.

Pheasant, quail, and partridge: Most hunting will occur on private land. Be sure to get permission before entering any private lands.

Turkey: Turkey populations are still doing well with a good number of birds and successful broods, similar to last season. Turkey can be found throughout the county except in high elevations. Some patience on the stand while calling will help to produce birds.

Waterfowl: Duck season in the county gets better as the season progresses. As temperatures cool and the north-country gets weather, more ducks and geese will move into the area.

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