Fall Chinook Salmon Fishing
on the Coquille, Coos
& Umpqua Rivers
August 15 through
$400 for two people, $175 for each additional person
24' North River
Videos: Early fall salmon fishing on the Umpqua River:
COQUILLE RIVER FALL CHINOOK:
Chinook fishing on the Coquille River begins in late July. The
Coquille River has an early run of Chinook and a few of these fish
will stay in the lower tidal areas through July and mid August. The
river has a tidal reach of forty-four miles. If there is an early
warm-up in the river from lack of late spring rain, these early fish
will stay in the
ocean tidal mix till they have the urge to migrate upstream to spawn
in late August and early September.
The run can be pictured as on a bell curve. It continues to
improve with larger numbers of fish through August and reaching its
peak around the third week of September. Large numbers of Chinook
are usually harvested through the third
of October. By the middle of November the river is unfishable due to
heavy river runoff. The Coquille River has four main forks, the
South Fork, the North Fork, the East Fork, and the Middle Fork. With
this available spawning habitat the ODFW estimates the adult run at
on a good year.
are three main zones that are fished for these fall Chinook. The
first is the lower tidal zone. This is the area that I fish
predominantly. In this area the fish are on the day's tide or are in
the process of acclimating from the ocean to the fresh river water.
The method of fishing is trolling with cut plug herring. At high
tide the salmon are on an increased bite activity due to the cooling
of the water temperature from the incoming ocean tide. The fish are
most active at high slack tide.
next is the mid river zone. This area is from Riverton to above the
town of Coquille. This area usually has large numbers of fish
stacking up from the beginning of September and stays good till the
river goes out of shape in early November. The predominate method of
fishing here is troll fishing with spinners or kwickfish. The water
is usually fresh and the fish are a few days from the ocean and
don't bite herring as well as in the lower river.
The third is the upper tidal
zone. This area is around the Arago boat ramp to above Myrtle Point.
These fish are staging for the first rain and are easy targets for
bobber and egg fishing. Most of these fish will show spawning colors
and will have to be sorted for quality