Last weeks phenomenal catches out of Brookings and in Gold Beach have died with the weather that rolled in this past Wednesday. The cooler weather we saw here in the Rogue Valley dropped the temperature of the Rogue 12 degrees, and slopped up the ocean out of Brookings, scattering the bait. Reports went from boats averaging 2-4 fish a day in Gold Beach, to the entire fleet averaging that many kings. Brookings saw much of the same with reports going from boat limits as fast as 7am, to less than 1 salmon per boat.
Despite the slower fishing, we still gave the coast a shot this past Tuesday and Wednesday. Tuesday we fished out of Gold Beach with guide Bruce Craviotto. Unfortunately the fishing lived up to the recent reports, and we saw/heard about 2 fish for the entire fleet. The ODFW test nets at Huntley Bar estimated that 5,000 kings left the bay on Wednesday with about another 5,000 going by the rest of the week. That bodes well for the Middle Rogue, but makes for terrible fishing in the bay.
Wednesday we fished out of Brookings with fellow Pautzke Pro-staffer Paul LeFebvre. We trolled fresh herring on the down riggers, and fishing a little deeper than the rest of the fleet ended up paying off for us. It didn’t take long for us to find our first salmon of the day, and we ended up going 2-3 on kings and released a nice wild silver.
With temperatures in the Rogue Valley forecast to be in the low 80’s this weekend, and below 90 early next week, Gold Beach will remain slow. It will take a few days above 100 degrees before the river will warm up enough to hold the fish in the bay again. Anglers will have better luck fishing upriver, or venturing to the Middle Rogue in the next couple of weeks.
Brookings will hopefully pick back up, as long as the ocean remains relatively calm. A lot of the salmon have most likely headed south to enter the Klamath and Sacromento Rivers, but as long as there is bait around, there will still be salmon.