When to go fishing on the Oregon Coast

Salmon, steelhead, and sea run cutthroat fishing in Oregon Coastal Rivers is virtually an endless summer of delight. Ooops, that was a surfer movie, I think. And fishing on the Oregon coast isn’t just a summer thing, either. Point is, the time to go fishing on the rivers and estuaries of Oregon is now, Autumn, Winter, Spring, and yes, Summer too.

This virtual year-long fishing season can be problematic for any fly fisher who has significant others who do not fish. Wives, girlfriend, boyfriends, dogs, cats, parakeets, and Iguanas – not to forget so-called friends and work associates – can get relegated to the leftovers, so to speak, if one seriously pursues the fishery opportunities on the Oregon Coast.

Here is how the year in Oregon coastal rivers from the Winchuck to the Necanicum goes.
January – Winter steelhead.
February – Winter steelhead.
March – Winter steelhead.
April – Winter steelhead & spring chinook.
May – Summer steelhead & spring Chinook.
June – Summer steelhead & spring Chinook.
July – Summer steelhead, blueback, & spring chinook.
August – Summer steelhead, blueback, & summer chinook.
September – Summer steelhead, blue back, & summer/fall chinook.
October – summer steelhead, blueback, & fall chinook.
November – fall chinook, winter steelhead.
December – Fall chinook & winter steelhead.

Make sure to note that not all rivers support all species of sea-going salmonids and runs noted above, but with a little gas in the tank, they are all there, somewhere on the Oregon coast.

When is the best time to go fishing on the Oregon Coast?

Pick any of 365 days each year. Somewhere along the coast where some river isn’t closed (check the regulations please), the water isn’t in flood or bone dry. Think about the ocean for those days. There are wonderful opportunities right here close to your home, if you get to know your “local” Oregon coastal waters.

Jay Nicholas
November, 2011

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3 Responses to When to go fishing on the Oregon Coast

  1. Rob R says:

    You naturally left off silvers, since they don’t bite 🙂

  2. Oregon Fly Fishing Blog says:

    Shussssssh. Got me. First year that I have gone fly fishing to target silvers and actually caught some, days in a row. So now, the whole universe has shifted for me, but my brain hasn’t really caught up yet. I’m busy tying bucktails and poppers for the 2012 season. Wanna give it a try? In the ocean? August & September? Maybe? JN

  3. Paul K. says:

    OK JN, having fished for silvers up in Tofino on the fly and being close to Tillamook Bay where I fished for Kings last year……your article made sense to me. In fact, when I was on Tillamook Bay last year I thought man why can’t I catch silvers on a fly here? Then, BAM….I read your article and new that someone had already figured this out. Now, I am planning on tying this myself next month (as well as fishing for Kings).

    Have you been trolling in the prop wash or just “blind casting” around bait, etc.

    I’m interested in your thoughts on this…………..shhhhhhhhhhhhh.

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