As we say often, but it's worth repeating, we are so grateful that the Upper Rogue River is fishable year-round.
Right now our guides are fishing for summer steelhead and trout on the Rogue using a variety of techniques including fly fishing (mostly nymphing from the boat), side-drifting, and running plugs. All fishing methods appropriate for anglers of all skill levels. Over the past month, Our guides have had success fishing all sections of the upper river but, most recently, the very top of the river, just below the hatchery, has been best.
The sunny, dry days have made for pleasant fishing conditions, but also for cold night time temperatures and low, crsytal clear water. A bit of rain, predicted for the end of the week, will give the river a bit of color and will increase the river temperature, which should encourage fish migration. ODFW reports the 2018 steelhead run is healthy and the increase in river level from a good rain should also encourage steelhead to move upstream from lower sections of the Rogue.
For avid fly fishers our very own fly guide, Johnny Montana has provided some insider information. Here is his current Rogue River fly fishing report:
Steelhead have consistently been biting flies, though the cold water has been impacting the bite from time to time despite there being plenty of fish in the system. The last two hours of daylight have been the most consistent hours, and I observed a lot more fish moving up river at this time.
#4 Ugly bugs and stone fly patterns in dark colors with orange and black bead heads have produced the majority of fish lately.
#8 caddis emergers in chartreuse, orange, and red have also been consistent producers in both shallow buckets and deep holes.
A red snow cone, however, in #6-10 has been the most consistent dropper over the past week, but this could change soon.
With the water being low, clear, and cold. I have been using 10 lbs fluorocarbon to my first bug and 8 lbs to my droppers.
Do not neglect split shot to put flies directly in front of the fishes' faces. 1 foot in the water column could be the difference between a mediocre and stellar day.
All in all, hug the bottom, go for thinner profiles in fly selections, and do not be afraid to start going smaller with your droppers. #10 and #12 caddis and mayfly patterns can produce a lot of hookups this time of year. Just be ready to lose a few.
Cheers and tight lines. - Johnny
As the crew in the Rogue Valley cover the steelhead trips on the Upper Rogue, Charlie and I are waiting for salmon season to open here on the Elk and Sixes near Port Orford. Rain is forcast for the Thanksgiving holiday which should be enough to increase the river level so that we can drift fish the entire length of the rivers. The mouths of the rivers are open and salmon are stacking up in the lower holes eagerly waiting to head upstream.
For our most recent catch keep an eye on our Photos page a live feed from Instagram.