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Weekly Recreation Report: Northwest Zone

November 25, 2014

 Northwest Zone Fishing

2014 Coastal coho and fall Chinook seasons

Now available on the ODFW Website.

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.

Most rivers and streams closed to trout fishing on Oct. 31.


Tahkenitch Lake
Tahkenitch Lake
- Photo by Kathy Munsel-

Trout stocking is complete for the year. Construction activities are complete at Town Lake. The lake is re-filling and should be full soon. The dock will be moved back to its normal position when there is sufficient water to float in back in place.


The wild coho salmon fishery in Siltcoos and Tahkenitch Lakes is producing fair to good results. The lakes are likely past the peak return but should continue to be productive over the next few weeks. Anglers have success either trolling or casting lures such as spinners, spoons, hot shots, mag warts or some type of rattle / wiggle bass plug. Areas to focus on are near the lake outlets or the major tributaries to the lakes.

ALSEA RIVER: Chinook, coho, steelhead

The fall Chinook run is nearing the end but some late arrivals will continue through the next few weeks. Pulses of coho salmon will continue to move through the river but in smaller numbers. Anglers are reminded that the wild coho fishery ends on Nov. 30. Winter steelhead season is approaching with reports of a few steelhead being caught in the lower river.

BIG CREEK: steelhead

Recent rains should bring some early winter steelhead into the system. Fishing will improve over the next few weeks as more fish arrive.
KILCHIS RIVER: Chinook, steelhead

Fall Chinook angling should be fair to good as fresh fish push in after the storms last week. The lower river will provide the best opportunity for a bright fish. The first winter steelhead of the season were caught last week.

NEHALEM RIVER AND NORTH FORK: Chinook, coho, steelhead

Chinook fishing is slowing down as the number of fresh fish is dwindling. Many fish are dark and should be released to spawn. Some early winter steelhead are available in the north fork.

Fishing the Nestucca
Fishing in the Nestucca River
-Photo by Kathy Munsel-

NESTUCCA RIVER AND THREE RIVERS: steelhead, Chinook, coho

Fall Chinook fishing should be good as new fish push in with higher flows this week. Fishing the river with bait-wrapped plugs, drifted or back-bounced baits, or bobber and bait typically will produce fish. Winter steelhead are beginning to show in the catch, especially in Three Rivers.


Fall Chinook fishing is slow as most fish have or are now actively spawning. A small number of new fish should continue to enter the river over the next couple weeks.

SILETZ RIVER: Chinook, coho, steelhead

Fall Chinook fishing is slow as most have moved onto the spawning grounds. Small numbers of chrome fish will continue to move in over the next few weeks. Good numbers of coho are still moving in and should remain productive through the closure date of Nov. 30. Summer steelhead fishing is slow but the first winter steelhead are starting to show in the lower river.

SIUSLAW RIVER: Chinook, coho

The Fall Chinook and wild coho fisheries are slow. Most fall Chinook have moved onto the spawning grounds but some quality coho are still around. Anglers are reminded that the wild coho fishery ends on Nov. 30.


Fishing for fall Chinook is likely to slow down this week as higher flows encourage fish to move through quickly. Trolling herring or spinners near the bottom is the standard technique.

Riverside Park, Clackamas
Trask River
-ODFW photo-

TRASK RIVER: steelhead, Chinook, coho

Fishing for Chinook improved as more fish entered the river this week. Fishing should hold up as long as conditions are good. Bobber and bait, backtrolling plugs, or backbouncing should all produce fish. An early winter steelhead or two has been reported.

WILSON RIVER: Chinook, steelhead

Fishing for fall Chinook picked up as rain brought more fish upriver. Fish should be spread out through the river. Spinners (sizes 4-6) cast from the bank should produce fish as well as bobber and bait set-ups. Bait wrapped plugs or back bouncing from boats can be very effective also. A few early winter steelhead have moved into the river also.

YAQUINA RIVER: Chinook, coho

Fall Chinook fishing is slow as most fish have moved onto the spawning grounds. Small numbers of new fish should continue to move through over the next couple weeks. Coho salmon fishing has slowed down and anglers are reminded that the wild coho season ends on Nov. 30.

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  Northwest Zone Hunting


Use the Oregon Hunting Map to see where to hunt.

See the bird and big game hunting forecasts.

Waiting for some birds
Waiting for some birds
-Photo by Anna Grabhorn-

Second COAST ELK season runs Nov. 22-28. Bulls should be available in good numbers as carryover from last year was above average. Weather conditions will determine hunter success to a large extent.

Duck season goes through Jan. 25, 2015. The overall liberal bag limit with some species restrictions, continue this fall. See the 2014-15 Oregon Game Bird Regulations for details. More migratory ducks are present now than earlier in the fall, and the weather has been generally more conducive to productive hunting. Some of the best hunting occurs during the onset of stormy weather when ducks are moving around a lot.

Forest grouse and mountain quail is likely to be fair as it appears that there was not a strong hatch of young that have survived into the fall. If hunting for grouse, look for ruffed grouse on mid-slopes and along riparian areas, and sooty (blue) grouse are usually found at higher elevations on ridge tops. Mountain quail are most often found in brushy clear-cut areas on south or west facing slopes.

Black Bears should be in good numbers in the northern Oregon coast range, especially in the southern portion of the Trask WMU. With warm weather during the day, bears are most active in forest openings in the early morning and late evening hours. Predator calling, especially during the middle of the day, can be very productive. In general, when scouting for bears look for areas with lots of wild berry crops, such as huckleberries, or abandoned orchards as they are very opportunistic foragers.

Cougar are most effectively taken by using predator calls. However, cougar densities are relatively low on the north coast. Successful hunters, remember you must check in cougar (hide and skull) at an ODFW office within 10 days of harvest and bring them in unfrozen. It’s also a good idea to prop their mouths open with a stick after harvest for easier tissue sampling, teeth collection and tagging. See regulations for details.

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 Northwest Zone Viewing

Migratory waterfowl have been moving into the north coast area in recent weeks, and a wide variety of ducks and geese are now available for viewing in and around north coast estuaries, including the lower Columbia River.

Snow geese, a relatively uncommon species on the north coast, have recently been seen in Tillamook area pastures. More birds should be coming in as storms further north develop.

Great Egret
Great Egret
-Oregon Fish and Wildife-


Substantial numbers of great egrets are now in Tillamook County, where they should be present in farm fields and along estuaries in the county through the winter months. These large white birds are easy to spot as they usually provide a strong contrast to their surroundings, and can often be seen foraging in close proximity to great blue herons.


Jewell Meadows Wildlife Area

Elk viewing has been good at Jewell Meadows Wildlife Area. The breeding season or “rut” is starting to wind down. Some bulls are still with the larger herds and occasional bugling in the evenings is still being heard. With the onset of fall, larger bulls should start to segregate themselves from the herds and hang out in bachelor groups. Elk have been visible most mornings and evenings, depending on the weather. With cooler temperatures, elk are staying out in the fields a little later in the morning and returning a little earlier in the evenings. Good places to look are the Fishhawk Tract along Hwy 202 and the Beneke Tract along Beneke Creek Road.

Visitors are reminded that areas posted as “Wildlife Refuge” are closed to public entry and posted portions of the Beneke Tract are closed to entry during elk seasons. Black-tailed deer hunting only is allowed on portions of the Beneke Tract during the general Western Oregon rifle deer season. Consult the 2014 Big Game Regulations for additional information and exceptions. Wildlife Area Parking Permits are now required on the wildlife area.

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