This last week Southern Oregon finally received the rain, and bump up in river levels, that we’ve been waiting on for over a month. Outflows from Lost Creek Dam are sitting right around 3300 which is perfect for fishing between the Hatchery and Rogue Elk boat ramp. With most of the winter steelhead being kegged up in the middle river, this jump in flows should have been exactly what was needed to make them shoot up stream.
However, fishing has been much slower than expected on the Upper Rogue. During what is normally the prime time, anglers have been scratching out a couple steelhead a day. There’s still fish to be caught, just not in the numbers that are expected for the middle of April.
On Tuesday we floated from the Hatchery to Rogue Elk boat ramp expecting to get into a handful of feisty winter steelhead. Things started out just as expected. One of our rods with a Mag Lip 3.5 plug doubled over within 10 minutes of sitting in the first hole of the day. That was followed up with another fish coming to the boat in the second hole.
After the great start, things took a turn the opposite way. We fished through a lot of water that would normally always produce at least one steelhead, but didn’t touch a thing. It could have been a change in the weather, or the fish just aren’t there. Over the next week or two we’ll find out if the fish are actually on their way, or this years run is a bust.