CHETCO RIVER



March 23, 2014    Headlines
Winter Steelies

Rivers Drop Out, Rain on the Way
The Smith had dropped to 7.5 feet and is crystal clear here on Sunday 3-23. The fishing has been tough with guides seeing 1 to 3 fish a mix of blue back and downers. It is getting late in the season and most of the fresh adults have already made it into our Northern rivers.
A series of smaller systems is expected to impact the North Coast beginning late Monday and lasting into Thursday. These first three systems are expected to bring showers and light rain. Beginning late Friday and into Saturday a much stronger system is expected to impact the Oregon border area with heavy rain and quickly rising main stem rivers. The forecast may change but as of this writing the weather models are in agreement that this will bring significant rains to far Northern Cal next weekend.
The Chetco is seeing light pressure and those still fishing are seeing lots of runbacks in the lower river. This next push of water will likely increase the numbers of post spawn fish but I would suspect that by next weekend most rivers will return to high and muddy.
The Mad is green and running at 6.4 feet. Bankies are seeing a few down-runner hatchery fish with a few bright late season natives around to keep things interesting. Work roe and a Fish Pill in the Deeper holes and slots.
The South Fork Eel has dropped out as well with the Miranda gauge showing just 7.8 feet or 520cfs. Guides have dropped down to the main stem but with Tony Sepulveda on vacation we don't have a current report. I would expect that most are still seeing 5+ fish per day working plugs and roe from the Forks to Stafford.
The Eel, Mad, Van Duzen, Redwood Creek and Mattole close to fishing on March 31st. The Smith is open through April and the Klamath and Trinity are open year round.


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River Levels:     Chetco River Flow Data


Be sure to check out the Oregon Fish and Game regulations before you go. Regulations vary on every river and you need to pay attention to bait and hook restrictions. Due to winter closures on HWYs 101 & 299 we recommend you check Caltrans road conditions as well prior to your drive.

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