Coastal cutthroat


Hey everyone I was wondering if anyone had any advice about the cutthroat fishery on most of the coastal rivers (Wilson, Nestucca, Trask, etc.)? I have heard a lot about it but never really targeted them.


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Spinners and spoons seem to work well. I have mainly fished tidewater from a kayak in recent years and look for structure like log jams cut banks etc.

Casting Call

Active member
Hi Grant. Kelchis river campground is found at the end of the road three miles up from hwy 101. Lots of bank spots with picnic tables. Tony


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I have not done it in a while (about 7 or 8 years) but I used to fish for SRC's a ton in the summer in the Wilson. Mostly I flyfished for them using a triple caddis fly setup. Stimulator on top, emerger in the middle and larva on the bottom.

When I did spin fish for them I mostly used the smallest Rebel minnow plug (1" or 1.5") in a trout pattern. I also sometimes used the smallest Rapala (2") in a trout color. Those plugs were great and also resulted in a lot of SRCs and the occasional steelhead.

The best areas for me were in the whitewater near the heads of pools or in pockets in whitewater. I did not catch much in areas where I could easily make out bottom details due to the smooth surface.


Now is the time for SRC's (also known as Bluebacks). A sea-run cousin of the resident strain of cutties.

If you're swinging flies the Borden Special is literally a legend on our coastal streams. Developed decades ago by fellow Oregonian Bob Borden who primarily targeted the Alsea; but other nearby streams as well.

If you're using spinning tackle then get yourself some small brown Rooster Tails, with gold blades. The SRC's belly's are full of tiny crawdad fry this time of the year. And the Rooster's look like crawdads in the water. Especially if you use 'em more like a jig than speedily retrieving them.

When you catch one look at the deep blue coloration, along their spine. And you'll quickly know why they have the nickname Bluebacks. If you're interested in their historical mystique look for a copy of the classic "Fishing the Sea-Run Cutthroat Trout", by Les Johnson. First published in 1971. Or this other book by Les:



@Grant22 if you live near Albany you can get some Borden Specials from Mitch @ Two Rivers Fly shop downtown on First. He ties a bunch every year. There are a couple of old times that buy dozes of them every season. A testament that they WORK!