Local lakes: The onset of warmer weather and water temperatures has created some excellent conditions for catching recently stocked rainbow trout. Last week, anglers reported good catches of legal-size trout out on Bradley Lake. Trolling a Wedding Ring spinner tipped with a nightcrawler in a circular pattern on Bradley works great. Anglers flyfishing the cove near the 12th Street boat launch on Garrison Lake reported hooking some nice trophy size trout last weekend. Boaters out on the main body of the lake struggled to find fish.
This week, ODFW is scheduled to release trophy-size trout in Johnson Mill Pond (50), Garrison Lake (200), Bradley Lake (200), Upper and Lower Empire Lakes (400 each) and Powers Pond (150).
Look for anglers to start hooking holdover rainbow trout out on Tenmile Lakes in the weeks to come. This time of year holdover trout can measure between 18-19 inches.
Also look for the largemouth bass and other warm water species to begin to turn on with the spring weather and longer days.
Local rivers: Anglers winter steelhead fishing the lower Rogue River are still reporting decent numbers of fish taken from Lobster Creek up to the Agness area. Boaters on anchor are rigging a rod with an anchovie while steelhead fishing with the hope of hooking an early spring Chinook. Bank anglers are also fishing both a Spin Glo and a Brad's Cut Plug bait for a shot at both species.
Both the Elk and Sixes rivers were low last weekend. I would like to thank Craig Paulson for taking me and my grandson, Race, on a drift trip down the upper end of Sixes River last Saturday. The river was low, but we managed to get Race into two nice steelhead.
Winter steelhead fishing was good on the south fork of the Coquille River last weekend. Drift boaters reported catching fish above and below Haines boat launch.
Steelhead returns should continue through March in the Coquille and Coos river basins, but numbers typically begin to drop off as the moth progresses.
Anglers reported a fresh batch of winter steelhead on Tenmile Creek over the weekend. The run tends to be a month later than other Coos County rivers, so hatchery fish may be available through March and into April. Anglers are still reporting good numbers of winter steelhead in the mainstem, north and south Umpqua Rivers. Still no reports of spring salmon on the Umpqua to date.
Pacific Ocean and beaches: Rough ocean conditions kept most sport boats in port last week. A few boats got out of the Port of Coos Bay on Saturday, but struggled to limit out on rockfish. Jetty fishing in Winchester Bay at the triangle and south jetty has been productive for rockfish and perch. When conditions have been favorable, anglers are catching rockfish and ling cod from the Coos Bay north jetty and by boat near the Cribbs.
Surf perch fishing has been decent on the beaches near Coos Bay and Bandon. One angler caught a bucket of perch fishing live sand shrimp from the Bandon South Jetty last week.
Area shellfish: Crabbers down on Weber's Pier in Bandon reported slow crabbing last weekend. Lots of small Dungeness crab, but little to no keeper-size crab. Dock crabbing in Charleston has been decent. The majority of the crab taken have been red rock with a few nice Dungeness mixed in. Boaters out on the lower bay are reporting better numbers of Dungeness crab taken.