The Summer heat is finally showing up, and this weekend will be our first chance at hitting the century mark this year. That’s going to make the afternoon bite tough, so you’ll want to hit it either early or late. The other option is to head toward the mountains to escape the valley heat.
Salmon & Steelhead
Upper Rogue – Most of the effort has moved down below Dodge Bridge, since that stretch opened to the retention of wild salmon last Sunday. With the hatchery run of springers mostly over, this is the best bet for anglers to catch something for the BBQ. The fish are in excellent shape still, and some larger fish are starting to show up. Both back bouncing roe, and sardine wrapped KwikFish are producing fish. The early summer steelhead are making a great showing through out the entire stretch, and can make for a great evening trip. Spoons and spinners have been best for the steelhead, but flies under a bobber are also a good bet. As of July 2nd 6,190 springers and 422 summer steelhead have returned to the collection pond at the hatchery.
Middle Rogue – With the rising temperatures, fishing has slowed down quite a bit on the middle section of the Rogue. A few summer steelhead are being caught by fly fishermen and those tossing hardware, while salmon are mainly being caught at places like Hayes Falls, and Rainie Falls.
Lower Rogue – The bay fishery could get it’s start after this weekend. When the lower river hits 70 degrees the fish start to hold in the bay, and with temperatures nearing 100 degrees in the valley, we could see it hit that mark. Predictions for the fall run are looking extremely good this year, and the fishing will kick off any time now.
Diamond Lake – Trout fishing has picked up a bit at Diamond Lake, but things are still slower than normal. Usually anglers would be experiencing 50+ fish days, but currently boats are struggling to find limits. Trolling seems to be outproducing still fishing with small needlefish or wooly buggers doing best. With the fly hatches largely over the trout are starting to key in on the leeches and snails, which makes the wooly bugger the perfect imitation. For still fishers dough baits have been ok, but it may be time to switch to night crawlers with a marshmallow to imitate the leeches. The $1000 tag fished is still swimming somewhere in the lake as well, and if caught, it needs to be turned into the resort to be claimed.
Howard Prairie and Applegate Lake are also good bets to escape the valley heat. The trout have been on the bite at both lakes with trolling and still fishing both producing fish. Limits of legal size fish are the norm with a few 18″+ fish in the mix.
The bass fishing has pretty much died off around the valley, except for the early morning and evening frog bite. However, the smallmouth fishing has really turned on in the higher lakes. Lost Creek Lake, Howard Prairie, and Applegate Lake have all been producing great catches of some large smallies. The main stem of the Umpqua is another good bet if you’re willing to make the drive.