ODFW Recreation Report
March 12, 2020
Highlights from this week’s Recreation Report:
Register now for April turkey hunting clinics
There are clinics for both youth and adults. At all of them, participants will learn about scouting, calling and camouflage, and get some hands-on coaching in archery and shotgun skills. These popular clinics fill fast, so register soon.
- Youth Turkey Hunting Clinics, April 4 at White River Wildlife Area near Tygh Valley and at Denman Wildlife Area at Central Point.
- Adult Turkey Hunting Clinics, April 10 and 11 (sign up for one) at EE Wilson Wildlife Area near Monmouth.
Best bets for the weekend fishing
There’s a cold front in the forecast, but hardy anglers will still find plenty of opportunities this weekend. Here are just a few options, check the zone reports for more.
- Bottomfish fishing along the coast has been great – the ocean has been calm (even kayakers have gotten out), there’s plenty of baitfish in the water, and near limits of rockfish and lingcod have been reported.
- This is a good time of year to target kokanee on Wallowa Lake.
- Steelhead fishing has been good in the Wallowa River. Flows should remain fishing-friendly over the next week or so.
- Fishing in lakes, reservoirs, and ponds can be fabulous immediately after ice-off. Holdover trout are hungry and willing to bite. With the onset of warmer spring temperatures, many waterbodies already are ice-free – see Warm Springs, Pole Creek, Krumbo, Holbrook, Priday, Spaulding and Big Rock reservoirs and Mud Lake — and fishing should be good.
- The lower reaches of the Chewaucan upstream of Paisley are now reachable and fish have been rising in the evenings.
- On the Crooked River, fishing for trout and whitefish has been excellent lately.
- On Lake Billy Chinook, fishing for bull trout and kokanee has been good to great in the Metolius and Crooked River arms.
- Anglers have been catching some nice trout in Ochoco and Prineville reservoirs.
- There is winter steelhead distributed throughout the Coos, Coquille, Rogue and Umpqua systems. Low water levels make fishing challenging – look for fish congregating in deeper pools, and switch to lighter lines and tackle.
- Garrison Lake and Empire Lakes are scheduled to be stocked with trophy trout the week of March 9.
- The first spring Chinook of the season has been caught in the lower Willamette.
- Several waterbodies in the Willamette Valley are scheduled to be stocked this week: Cottage Grove Pond, Blue River Reservoir, Dexter Reservoir, Junction City Pond, Alton Baker Canoe Canal, Cottage Grove Reservoir, Hills Creek Reservoir, and East Freeway Lake.
Only two months left to apply for your 2020 big game hunt
Talk about planning in advance! But applying early helps you avoid the last-minute rush and crosses one more thing off your to-do list. Technically, you have until May 15, but why wait? There are several ways to apply.
Add a Premium Hunt application to your shopping cart
You could draw an additional deer, elk or pronghorn tag
Premium Hunts are your chance to draw a second tag in addition to your controlled or general season tag. The application deadline is May 15, but you don’t have to wait ‘til then to apply.