Tony’s Fishing Report
Local lakes: High winds kept most anglers off our local lakes last week. As conditions change, there are always good opportunities for trout and bass anglers along the South Coast. The first bass tournament of the year on Tenmile Lakes is scheduled on Saturday, Feb. 18. The Frostbite Tenmile Open bass tournament attracts anglers from around the state to test their skills under tough fishing conditions. Every year, some impressive bass are taken out of Tenmile Lakes during this event. Anglers interested in fishing the tournament can get more info by going to www.emeraldbassclub.com.
Local rivers: I’d like to thank local angler Scott Williams for emailing us a few pictures of the 37-inch, 22-pound winter steelhead he caught back on Jan. 8. Scott caught his steelhead in extremely low and clear conditions on a custom hand-tied fly.
River conditions last week on the South Coast went from low and clear to flood stage on many rivers due to a series of winter storms. By the first part of this week, levels were dropping a bit and a few winter steelhead were taken on the upper portions of the Coos and Coquille watersheds. With more rain in the forecast, look for river levels to remain high and fishing to be slow. The next break in the weather should have steelhead anglers hustling to the river banks to take advantage of the large numbers of fish in the system.
Joe from The Bite’s On tackle shop in Empire told me that hundreds of winter steelhead have been returning to the Allegany fish hatchery on the upper Coos system. The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife is trucking some of these fish back down river to just above the forks of Coos River because of the sheer volume of fish and the fact that these fish have been showing up early.
Prior to the stormy weather last week, ODFW was reporting good sturgeon fishing on the Umpqua River just below the U.S. Highway 101 bridge. January is typically a good month for catching large sturgeon on the South Coast.
Area shellfish: Crabbing has been very slow on the South Coast after last week’s storms. Even Coos Bay has been high and muddy from all the fresh water run-off. Look for crabbing to continue to be slow until we get a break in the weather. (Tony Roszkowski has owned and operated Port O’ Call — TonysCrabShack.com — on the Bandon waterfront since 1989. Many South Coast anglers rely on his fish and shellfish reports. Hear more from Tony on ‘Oregon Outdoors’ Thursdays on KWRO 630 AM.)
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