Fishing in the Rogue Bay and on the Klamath River has been fair this week, with some really good days and others that have been more miss than hit, but both rivers have been fairly productive overall throughout the week.
Meanwhile, winds on Friday chased sportfishermen off the ocean and conditions are likely to remain rough through the weekend. Prior to the winds, a few salmon were caught on both sides of the boarder but the best bite — other than the always strong bottomfishing — has been thresher shark once again this week. Anglers have been catching the sharks in close to shore, likely due to unusually warm water, all the way from Crescent City to Gold Beach.
On the ocean
It has been another really good week for anglers targeting thresher shark, with lots of catches reported all along the coast from Gold Beach to Crescent City.
Meanwhile bottomfishing has remained productive on both sides of the border with fairly easy limits of black snappers and a mix of some nice sized lingcod. Anglers up in Brookings are also reporting lots of California halibut are being caught while bottomfishing throughout the week. Bottomfishermen in Oregon should be aware that all cabazon will be off limits starting today.
A few salmon have also been caught in both Oregon and California this week, though sportfishermen in Oregon are reporting that is has been a tough bite all week long. In California anglers seem to have been able to narrow down the search for salmon, and have been having luck targeting them in about 200 feet of water. Previously, anglers targeting salmon south of the border have been reporting that is has been difficult to find salmon schooling up out of Crescent City, though they have been out there for some time.
Pacific halibut fishing has also remained slow out of Oregon throughout the week, although late July and early August have provided some of the most productive Pacific halibut fishing of the season, according to the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife’s catch estimates. The ODFW has estimated 1,360 pounds of the 3,234 pounds caught since May were hauled in between July 30 and Aug. 12.
There are still an estimated 5,748 pounds of Pacific halibut left on the Southern Oregon Coast’s quota for the season, or 64 percent of the total quota.
In California anglers were having some decent luck catching Pacific halibut early in the week before the last planned in-season closure of the year went into effect on Thursday. Several halibut were reportedly caught out of Crescent City, including some really big fish.
According to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, anglers caught an estimated 4,146 pounds of halibut during the August opening for a total of 18,146 pounds so far this season. The halibut season is scheduled to reopen in California on Sept. 1, and remain open through the end of October or until the states quota of 30,940 is met.
A few steelhead shot through the lower Klamath River last week and anglers are reportedly catching some half-pounders (juvenile steelhead) on the upper river, but most of the fish being caught this week seem to be salmon once again.
Jim Bansemer of Gold River Fishing Guides said the salmon bite on the lower river has been up and down a little bit through the week.
“It has been a little spotty this week,” Bansemer said. “We had a good day (on Thursday), but it was really slow on Tuesday. We also had a good day on Monday. It looked like everyone that was out there caught at least one on Monday.”
Although the bite has been hit or miss, Bansemer said he thinks there have been a good amount of salmon in the river all week long.
“I think they are in the river, but the bite just turns on,” Bansemer said. “Whoever is out there when the bite comes on is going to get the fish. I think the tide play a little factor too — on the low tide you can see the fish starting to thin and then you can catch one. I think they have been in there the whole time though.”
Up on the Rogue River anglers were catching lots of salmon early in the week according to Fishing Guide Andy Martin of Wild Rivers Fishing, but the catching has slowed back down to about a fish per rod — similar to the end of last week.
Joe Martin of Rogue Coast Sport Fishing said there have been a lot of guides targeting salmon in the area thoughout the week, and that will likely continue with high winds keeping anglers off of the ocean.
Fishing contacts: Gold River Guides at 541-611-0398 or 541-661-2165 and goldriverguides.com; Jim Mitchell of Gotcha Hooked Fish Trips at 464-8482; Joe Martin of Rogue Coast Sport Fishing at 541-425-7210; Andy Martin of Wild Rivers Fishing at 206-388-8988; Chetco Outdoor Store at 541-469-9151; Englund Marine Supply Company at 464-32306.
Reach Michael Zogg at firstname.lastname@example.org .