North Coast fishing report

The Guides Forecast
The Guides Forecast
Steelheaders on the north coast had great fishing last week, with broodstock fish starting to show up on north coast streams. Rivers are cresting at the time of this writing, with smaller streams coming into shape by Saturday, larger systems by Sunday. Action should be good when flows subside.

Smaller stream, early season steelhead should be on the spawn right now, fisheries on the NF Nehalem, Necanicum and Klaskanine Rivers, as well as Big and Gnat Creeks have peaked and will start fading quickly from here. There should be one last chance at fresh fish by Saturday if hydrological models are accurate.

Winter weather kept most anglers home last week, but conditions improve this weekend and into next week.

A small window of opportunity may exist over the weekend for those wishing to recreate in the coastal estuaries or even the ocean. Estuaries are currently inundated with freshwater so crabbing will likely be challenging.

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The Guides Forecast
The Guides Forecast
North coast anglers got on the water earlier this week, but were fairly disappointed with results, given the time of year and what should be available. By mid-week, water levels had bumped again, shutting down any semblance of a bite that should have excited anglers. Water conditions on the bigger streams should improve by the weekend however, making for some good opportunity.

Small stream systems are rapidly on their way out, as early returning steelhead are now in full spawn and not that excited to bite, let alone make for good table fare this time of year. The NF Nehalem reported continued high water on Thursday, but as we previously mentioned, most quality fish are gone by now. The Necanicum and Klaskanine Rivers, along with Big and Gnat Creek also fall into this category.

Broodstock steelhead are on the menu from now until the middle of April, it’s shaping up to be a good year. Look for the Wilson and Nestucca to produce the best results, the Siletz and Alsea a distant second.

The ocean swell looks to remain big through the weekend, but long-range forecasts are calling for a calming period after the weekend. That’s like predicting the next winning lotto ticket, however, so take that for what it’s worth…

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The Guides Forecast
The Guides Forecast
North Coast steelheaders found fair action for broodstock fish on the Wilson and Nestucca systems. Water conditions have been ideal for most of the week, but on the shoulder part of the season, good action doesn't last long period

The Wilson and Nestucca Rivers will become the primary targets for winter and spring steelhead anglers. Broodstock fish, that make up the bulk of the hatchery opportunities on these systems, are just now coming into peak season. Both systems produced fair results this week but the best action only lasted a day or two after the last high water event late last week. Saturday and Sunday produced the best results on the Wilson, Sunday and Monday on the Nestucca.

Pro guide Rob Gerlitz (503-812-4950) reported having about a dozen opportunities on Saturday, landing 6, with three being wild along with three broodstock hatchery fish for the home pack. He took his son out, age 5, on Monday, catching him his first steelhead which clearly made an impression. (See photo above).

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The Guides Forecast
The Guides Forecast
Steelhead anglers on the north coast have been challenged by low, clear water conditions, just as we enter peak steelhead season. A weather change would be most welcome, there’s a lot more steelhead to come.

The Wilson and Nestucca systems will remain prime targets for those seeking a take-home option for broodstock (hatchery) steelhead) but other larger systems, such as the Nehalem and Siletz are fishing decent for wild steelhead, with little other competition on most days.

Smaller, early season streams are very low and clear, harboring spawned out steelhead for the most part. These systems, such as the NF Nehalem, Necanicum and Highway 30 systems will provide sporting biters, just poor table fare for the most part.

Estuary crabbing remains fair with a calm ocean providing the best opportunities for sport crabbers. An east wind influence has finally provided a window of opportunity for bottomfishers to take advantage of.

A great set of razor clam tides will grace north coast beaches this weekend. A calm surf will contribute to robust digs.

See the full report and forecast for Members right here.
 
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