Oct. 23, 2007
Salmon fishing has been fair to good on the Smith and Chetco rivers, but not as many fish are being caught as the first day after the big rain. We've been running crabbing trips in Coos Bay, with limits every day. These are nice big Dungeness crab and some nice red rock crab. After a day of crabbing, I cook the catch right at the boat ramp and send customers home with a cooler full of cooked, cleaned crab for the holidays. Call (206) 388-8988 to book your crabbing trip. This is the best crabbing you'll ever experience. Visit the special page for more info. on fall crabbing.

October 1-14, 2007
We have been running saltwater trips out of Brookings for salmon. Fishing has been pretty slow, although the fish we've been catching have been large, up to 40 pounds. One salmon that busted off looked to be in the high 50s or even bigger.

May-September 2007

We are currently fishing in Alaska, in Seward, Cook Inlet and on the Kenai. Book your trips now for October Brookings ocean salmon fishing.
Call (206) 388-8988 or e-mail wildriversfishing@yahoo.com.
Next report in September. See you on the water!
Oct. 30, 2007
Fishing has been good for black and blue rockfish and lingcod. We ran a trip Oct. 29 out of Brookings and caught a few lings and limits of rockfish. On Oct. 30, with hooked five lingcod an kept three limits of rockfish, with a few blacks to 5 pounds. Salmon fishing has slowed on the Chetco, so ocean fishing for lings and rockfish has been the best bet near Brookings. We use light tackle, so hooking a 12- to 20-pound ling on a 7-foot spinning rod is a thrill you won’t soon forget. Red hand-tied shrimp flies combined with a lead jig has been the ticket. Good rockfish and lingcod opportunities will continue through the fall and winter as ocean and weather conditions allow. If you are interested, call (206) 388-8988 to get on the list and be prepared to fish within a few day’s notice, as we check the forecast regularly and then book trips.
Nov. 4, 2007
Saturday and Sunday produced excellent fishing for lingcod and rockfish out of Brookings. We caught limits of rockfish each day and continued to find good numbers of lingcod, including some in the 15- to 20-pound range. The lingcod have moved close to shore to get ready to spawn, and will likely remain in shallow water through February and March, so we have several months of good light-tackle near-shore lingcod and rockfish action ahead. If you are interested in the best fall and winter saltwater action in Oregon, call (206) 388-8988 to get on the list and be prepared to fish within a few day’s notice, as we check the forecast regularly and then book trips.
Nov. 8, 2007
Lingcod fishing continues to be very good out of Brookings. Today we landed four lings and lost another five, including a couple over 20 pounds. We also landed four limits of black rockfish.
The lingcod have been hitting small rockfish hooked with shrimp flies or lead jigs.
The lings are coming in to spawn, so fishing should be good through February or March.
If you are interested in the best fall and winter saltwater action in Oregon, call (206) 388-8988 to get on the list and be prepared to fish within a few day’s notice, as we check the forecast regularly and then book trips.
Dec. 1, 2007
After a few more recent saltwater trips, we are now getting ready to focus on winter steelhead in the Chetco, Rogue and Smith Rivers. Fishing is best from January through early March, so book now for best dates. Call (206) 388-8988 or e-mail wildriversfishing@yahoo.com. We use light tackle and fish from a drift boat or heated jet boat, depending on the river.
Last week my daughter Alexandra joined me for a few days on the ocean during the Thanksgiving holiday. She caught several rockfish and a large cabazon, which was released.
For rockfish, small red and yellow or blue and white shrimp flies dipped in Pautzke Gel Krill have worked best. We also use custom lead jigs. Light Ugly Stik Custom spinning rods are used with 12-pound-test line, so the rockfish put up one heck of a fight when caught in shallow water.
In January, February and March, we offer combo trips with one day steelhead fishing on the Chetco and one day fishing for lings and rockfish in the ocean out of Brookings.
 
Dec. 10, 2007
Steelhead are being caught in the Chetco River, but fishing is only fair at best. We are in the transition time between fall Chinook and winter  steelhead. Fishing for winter steelhead will pick up in early January, as more hatchery fish begin to show up. Fishing for hatchery fish is usually best in the lower river, from Loeb State Park downstream. Most boats take out at Social Security Bar, but we usually fish clear down to Morris Hole and take out at the private launch at the RV park. Wild Rivers Fishing offers fishing and lodging combos. Two nights stay in a cozy riverside cabin and one day’s guided fishing in a drift boat for two customers is only $425. Visit our specials page for more information.
Lingcod and rockfish action has been good when the weather cooperates. We offer full-day and half-day trips. Call (206) 388-8988 or e-mail
wildriversfishing@yahoo.com to book a trip.
Dec. 25, 2007
Merry Christmas! The Chetco has been high for about a week now, but had dropped to 6,100 cfs today and if we don't get hammered by heavy rains later this week, should be in prime shape for the weekend. The Chetco and Smith are both getting a really good return of early winter steelhead. Tha's a great sign for January and February, the peak of the season. The return at Rowdy Creek Hatchery, a tributary of the Smith River, is on pace to set a new record! Book your trips now for 2008!
I want to thank everybody who fished with me this year, both in Oregon and Alaska. We will be fishing steelhead and winter lingcod through March, briefly fish spring Chinook on the Rogue and Columbia rivers in April, and then head up to Alaska.
Call (206) 388-8988 or e-mail
wildriversfishing@yahoo.com to book a trip.
Dec. 31, 2007
Steelhead fishing has been good after the most recent series of storms. We hooked two fish today drifting from Loeb to Social Security and missed a few more bites. Best of all, we saw several fish rolling as they moved upstream. I had some trips scheduled for this weekend, but now it looks like another big storm is coming. Fishing should be really good next week as the river falls again. Book your winter steelhead trips now. The peak season will fill up fast.
Call (206) 388-8988 or e-mail
wildriversfishing@yahoo.com to book a trip.
Jan. 3, 2008
The Chetco is on the rise and more rain is expected into the weekend, but the first two days of the new year produced great fishing, with most boats getting at least one fish per angler, and many limiting. The steelhead are running big to start the season, with lots in the 12-pound range, a few over 15 and some fish over 20 pounds already. Expect really good fishing next week when the Chetco begins to drop again. There is a link above where you can keep an eye on the current Chetco River levels. Check out our specials page for a great lodging and fishing package to enjoy what is turning out to be a great season on the Chetco.
Call (206) 388-8988 or e-mail
wildriversfishing@yahoo.com to book a trip.
Jan. 21, 2008
The Chetco has been fishing good for the past week. The above photos are from Jan. 21. Despite the crowds, we enjoyed some success side-drifting small roe clusters and Puff Balls. Many of the boats went fishless today, (we were one of the lucky ones), but most got into fish over the weekend. Fishing will get even better in February during the peak season. Hatchery fish are running about 8 pounds right now, but some fish to 20 pounds have been caught this season.
We are working with other guides to make sure we can get seats for anyone who wants to fish this season, but book your trip today for the best peak season dates.
Check out our specials page for a great lodging and fishing package to enjoy what is turning out to be a great season on the Chetco.
Call (206) 388-8988 or e-mail
wildriversfishing@yahoo.com to book a trip.
It's also time to start thinking about Alaska, Halibut trips run $195 per person May 1-June 14, then the price increases after June 15 during the peak season. We specialize in lunker halibut. The limit is two halibut a day. Call or email to book your 2008 halibut trips.
Jan. 23, 2008
We fished the ocean today out of Brookings for winter rockfish and lingcod. We landed six lingcod and lost two more and got a bucket of rockfish. The ocean was nice and flat, but the drift was pretty strong, so we got right next to the rocks and kelpbeds and fished the shallow reefs. Small shrimp flies and Buzz Bombs worked best. This is light tackle saltwater fishing at its best. Lingcod fishing will continue to be good all winter when the ocean allows us to get out. Add your name to our call list for winter rockfish and lingcod tips by calling or emailing.
Call (206) 388-8988 or e-mail
wildriversfishing@yahoo.com to book a trip.
Jan. 25, 2008
The latest storm has kept us off the ocean the last few days, but the rain will help improve steelhead fishing on the Chetco. We'll be at the Eugene boat and outdoors show Feb. 1-3, with a booth and seminars on crabbing, ocean fishing and Alaska fishing. We'll also be at the Roseburg and Medford shows.
Add your name to our call list for winter rockfish and lingcod tips by calling or emailing. Call (206) 388-8988 or e-mail
wildriversfishing@yahoo.com to book a trip.
Feb. 6, 2008
The Chetco is running at 4,000 cfs, with good color. Lots of steelhead are spread throughout the river. We got our fish yesterday above Loeb on Puff Balls and egg clusters. Call (206) 388-8988 or e-mail wildriversfishing@yahoo.com to book a trip.
Feb. 9, 2008
After a few days of really good fishing, the Chetco was slow yesterday and today. Most boats finished with one fish or zeros. The fish that are being caught are all cookie-cutter 8-pounders. The river is crowded, mainly because the Smith has been so slow this month. We'll be at the Roseburg sports show this upcoming weekend. Call (206) 388-8988 or e-mail wildriversfishing@yahoo.com to book a trip. It's time to start booking Alaska trophy halibut trips. Call or e-mail for details.
March 1, 2008
Steelhead fishing is winding down on the Chetco and Smith rivers. There has been some very good fishing, however, on the Middle Rogue out of Grants Pass. Kirk of Outdoor Adventures landed three steelhead on the Chetco yesterday and three the day before, so there are still some nice fish around. We've been on the road for much of February at the sports shows in Eugene, Roseburg and Medford. Thanks to everybody who stopped by the booth and attended the seminars Capt. Randy and I put on on Alaska halibut, Coos Bay crabbing, Oregon rockfish, salmon trolling and pheasant hunting. We leave to Alaska in late March to get ready for Seward halibut. Check out our new video. Book your Alaska halibut and salmon combo trips today. Peak season dates from mid-June through mid-Sept. are going fast. We will be using new Penn rods and reels this season.
March 8, 2008
Today we took a day off of getting ready for Alaska and fished for surfperch off the south jetty in Brookings. Perch fishing is picking up every day. We used Berkley Gulp! Alive Shrimp and size 4 Eagle Claw hooks.  Books for dates for Alaska halibut and salmon tips now! It's also not too early to think about October trophy salmon out of Brookings. I am one of the few guides licensed to take passengers into the ocean out of Brookings. The October season features the best chance in Oregon to catch a 50-plus-pound salmon and the fishery only lasts for two weeks, so seats go very fast. This season is the first two weeks of October. I've already book some of the dates, so let me know if you want to fish before all the dates are filled.
Call (206) 388-8988 or e-mail
wildriversfishing@yahoo.com to book a trip. Also ask about Columbia River spring Chinook trips (the best season in years in 2008!) and red hot Astoria sturgeon, where limits are very common. Kirk of Outdoor Adventures also is book Sacramento River fly fishing trips and Shasta Lake landlocked Chinook salmon trips.
March 10, 2008
There was a great article in The Oregonian over the weekend about Oregon's governor's plan to create several marine reserves on the coast. We oppose the marine reserves because ODFW already is doing a great job managing and protecting our marine resources. Click here to read the article.
March 24, 2008
I hope everyone had a great Easter. I've taken the last week off, spending time with my daughter before I head to Alaska the end of this week. After the Great Alaska Sportsmen's Show in Anchorage, I'll be getting boats in the water, spooling reels, etc., as we get ready for some early king trips out of Seward and then start running halibut trips. We will be using Penn's new Torque halibut reels this season, along with the Penn International 975LD reels for salmon fishing. Most of the other boats still use the economy reels. A few steelhead are still being caught on the Chetco. This summer's bleak outlook for ocean salmon fishing in Oregon is actually good news for the rivers, as less ocean pressure, mainly less commercial fishing pressure off California, will result in bigger runs back to the Rogue, Chetco, Smith and Klamath rivers. We will begin running trophy Oregon salmon fishing trips Oct. 1. Call (206) 388-8988 or e-mail wildriversfishing@yahoo.com to book a trip.
March 30, 2008
I'm on my way to Alaska! Only five days driving time from Bookings. I'll be posting some photos from the trip up here and on my new blog on www.fishfrontiers.com. Speaking of Fish Frontiers, this is the hottest new Web site for blogs, how-to videos, articles, message boards and forums. I'm one of several guides and captains with blogs, along with Bill Herzog, Joel Shangle, Rob Endsley, John Keizer and others.
If you want some great fishing action now, the spring Chinook season on the Columbia has been excellent, one of the best runs in years, with more than a quarter million salmon coming back. E-mail me and I'll put you in touch with some great guides there. Kirk of Outdoor Adventures also is catching landlocked salmon on Shasta Lake and running fly fishing trips for native rainbows on the Sac. His clients caught several salmon yesterday.
There are still seats available for Alaska halibut and salmon. Two halibut per day and six salmon per day limits!
This summer's bleak outlook for ocean salmon fishing in Oregon is actually good news for the rivers, as less ocean pressure, mainly less commercial fishing pressure off California, will result in bigger runs back to the Rogue, Chetco, Smith and Klamath rivers. We will begin running trophy Oregon salmon fishing trips Oct. 1. Call (206) 388-8988 or e-mail wildriversfishing@yahoo.com to book a trip.
April 5, 2008
The drive to Alaska was smooth, with clear weather, then today it snowed 8 inches in Anchorage. The Great Alaska Sportsman's Show has been great. Seats for halibut and salmon out of Seward are filling fast. We have a weekday special for full-day halibut trips for $150 per person weekdays in May. The average size of halibut can be really good in May. With all the snow in Seward, plans to run a few trips in April appear unlikely, but we'll be busy May 1 through Sept. With the restricted salmon seasons in Oregon and California this summer, Alaska is your best choice to fill your freezer with salmon and halibut fillets. Use that tax rebate check to enjoy the fishing adventure of a lifetime in Seward this year. Call (206) 388-8988 or e-mail wildriversfishing@yahoo.com to book a trip.
April 15, 2008
We finally got a break from the cold, snowy weather here in Alaska and are closer to getting the boats in the water. Halibut trips will start the first of May and we can keep trophy lingcod beginning July 1. The first silver salmon usually show up in late June or early July.
As you may have heard, the ocean salmon seasons have been restricted this summer, but we'll still have the trophy Chinook season in October out of Brookings. With no commercial of recreational fishing in California, where some years up to 800,000 salmon are caught, we should see big returns to the Chetco, Rogue, Smith and Klamath rivers. The Klamath will have one of its biggest returns in decades, according to biologists' pre-season forecasts. Guide Randy Wells, who also runs a charter boat here in Seward, Alaska, has been doing well fro steelhead on the Middle Rogue in recent days. Call if you'd like to get a trip in before he heads north. Randy is pictured to the left with one of the bright steelies he caught last week.
Dates are filling fast for trophy salmon in Oregon in October and November. Call (206) 388-8988 or e-mail
wildriversfishing@yahoo.com to book a trip.
April 28, 2008
The first halibut trip of the season out of Seward was a big success today, with eight limits of halibut (two fish a person), including the fish shown at the left caught by Johnny of Auburn, Wash., and Pablo of California. Catching fresh halibut is a rare treat in April. If you want to catch a big Alaskan halibut this year, call now to reserve your spot for the best dates. We can put together a great combo trip for you, when you can catch salmon, halibut and trophy lingcod all in the same day.
There are still a few spots open for the October trophy salmon season out of Brookings on the southern Oregon coast available. The big fall Chinook headed back to the Chetco River stack up in the ocean in early October waiting for the first rain of the season. I am one of the few guides also licensed to take passengers across the bar onto the ocean to catch these trophy fish. We also have some seats available for Coos Bay and Tillamook Bay fall salmon and crabbing combos from mid-October to late November. We will be in Alaska until mid-September, then back in Oregon for fall salmon fishing.
Call (206) 388-8988 or e-mail
wildriversfishing@yahoo.com to book a trip. Large groups are welcome, as I work with a few other very good and experienced guides to make your Oregon or Alaska dream fishing trip come true.
May 2, 2008
Rough weather today forced most of the boats to stay in port today. The few that did venture into the Gulf backed off and returned to teh harbor. We had a different game plane. Knowing the seas would be too rough offshore to fish for halibut today, we pulled out the electric reels and decided to fish the deep water in the bay. Ressurection Bay is almost always fishable, even during storms, but the water is deep, with many spots over 900 feet. There are also far fewer halibut than offshore. We checked out a high spot, only 540 feet deep (that's twice as deep as we normally fish in the Gulf of Alaska!) and soaked herring and salmon chunks in hopes of catching some halibut. Aside from the halibut, like the one being held in the photo to the left by Steven of Wisconsin, we landed a fish box full of Pacific cod, like the one I'm holding on the far left. Pacific cod are seldom targeted by sport fishermen, despite their excellent meat and good taste. We soaked our baits in Pautzke Nectar, which created a better scent trail in the slow current of the bay. The storm is expected to ease by Wednesday, when we'll be back offshore fishing shallower water. We will be in Alaska until mid-September, then back in Oregon for fall salmon fishing. Call (206) 388-8988 or e-mail wildriversfishing@yahoo.com to book a trip.
May 27, 2008
This week we finally got some more nice weather and some really big fish for the first time this season. Yesterday we fished east out of Seward and hauled in three big halibut over 100 pounds. The fish were taken on whole herring soaked in Pautzke Nectar combined with pieces of Berkley Gulp! Cut Bait. The big halibut are finally starting to show up.  Late last week we were one of 30 boats to participate in the second big fish tournament for U.S. solidiers who served in Iraq and Afghanistan. We fished seven soldiers and had a blast. We also were the first boat to return to the harbor with our limit. If you want to fish for fall Chinook or winter steelhead this fall and winter in Southern Oregon and Northern California, now is the time to call to book the best dates. Call (206) 388-8988 or e-mail www.wildriversfishing.com.
May 20, 2008
We had rough weather for several days and were not able to get out of the bay, but still caught plenty of fish, focusing on the deeper water of Resurrection Bay and catching halibut and Pacific cod. The bite is slower in the bay, but cod are plentiful and there are some halibut. We got seven nice halibut one day and have been averaging about 30 cod per day. These are true cod and are great eating, especially for fish and chips.
May 15, 2008
After hit-and-miss fishing for the first part of the month, we finally found the “chicken” size halibut, those tasty smaller fish in the 10- to 20-pound range. We’ve been catching limits. Still no sign of big fish. We boated over 50 halibut several days in a row, keeping the bigger chickens and enjoyed some of the hottest fish-after-fish action you can ever experience for halibut.. If you want to fish for fall Chinook or winter steelhead this fall and winter in Southern Oregon and Northern California, now is the time to call to book the best dates. Call (206) 388-8988 or e-mail www.wildriversfishing.com.
June 30, 2008
Fishing for trophy halibut was on fire in June out of Seward. We pulled the shot gun out over 20 times, since we used a a whole box (25) of shotgun shells. Most of the shooters were over 100 pounds. We caught limits of halibut (2 per person) everyday we got out of the bay in June, and got one of the best grades of fish of any charter in Seward. The first salmon showed up late in the month. There is still time to book an Alaskan dream trip this summer, as well as salmon and steelhead trips back in Oregon this fall and winter.. If you want to fish for fall Chinook or winter steelhead this fall and winter in Southern Oregon and Northern California, now is the time to call to book the best dates. Call (206) 388-8988 or e-mail wildriversfishing@yahoo.com.
July 9, 2008
We continued to catch lots of big halibut in July, as well as increased numbers of coho salmon. The fish seem to be running bigger than normal this summer, with fat silvers over 12 pounds already being caught after we limit out on halibut. These salmon will weigh in the high teens by late August. I took a brief break from fishing to be with my daughter for her surgey but will be back in Seward by the end of the week. The dates for the October ocean salmon season out of Brookings are Oct. 1-4. These dates won't last long so book now. Because of the more restricted seasons in October, I will be booking for Tillamook Bay trophy salmon the rest of the month and will begin fishing the Chetco in early November. During the ocean coho season out of Brookings there have been a lot of Chinook being caught, so the outlook for this fall is good, better than expected. To book the ultimate Oregon or Alaska fishing trip, call (206) 388-8988 or e-mail wildriversfishing@yahoo.com.
Sept. 4, 2008
Halibut and salmon fishing is coming to a close in Seward because of stormy weather, but when the seas lay down, we are still catching limits. Here is a photo of a barndoor halibut from last week caught on stacked herring and a group from Michigan and Wisc. with part of their limits of silvers. Dates are beginning to fill for Chetco River salmon, Brookings salmon and Rogue fall steelhead. It's not too early to set aside prime dates for winter steelhead in January and February. We also are planning on spending a week in Tillamook Bay, so call today to book your Tillamook salmon trip if you've never experienced that exceptional fishery.
To book the ultimate Oregon or Alaska fishing trip, call (206) 388-8988 or e-mail
wildriversfishing@yahoo.com.
Aug. 20, 2008
Sorry for the lack of reports. I've been on the water nearly everday for the past two months. Silver salmon fishing has been good out of Seward. While many boats are struggling, we are catching limits just about every day. You can keep six coho in the bay and three outside. We've also been running combo trips for halibut and salmon and doing very good. My last trip of 2008 in Alaska is Sept. 14. Oregon salmon trips begin Oct. 1. I'm  now booking Chetco Bay trophy king salmon, Chetco River fall Chinook, Tillamook Bay salmon and Smith River salmon, along with Coos and Tillamook Bay crabbing trips. Call today for the best dates. Look for our updated photo gallery in the next few weeks. To book the ultimate Oregon or Alaska fishing trip, call (206) 388-8988 or e-mail wildriversfishing@yahoo.com.
Oct. 1, 2008
The Brookings trophy salmon season opened today, with good catches for a few boats and slow fishing for others. We enjoyed a couple of hook ups trolling plug-cut herring close to the mouth of the Chetco River. The season runs though Saturday, but with stormy weather moving in, may be extended for the following weekend as well. We hooked one large silver on the Rogue Bay last week and spent a few days fishing the Middle Rogue near Grants Pass before it closed at the end of September. The drive home from Alaska took a little longer than I planned, but I'm glad to be back home.
To book the ultimate Oregon or Alaska fishing trip, call (206) 388-8988 or e-mail
wildriversfishing@yahoo.com.
Sept. 9, 2008
We ran our final Alaska trip of 2008 yesterday. The season was great, with fantastic halibut fishing and great coho fishing offshore. Pictured is an angler with his first Alaska coho caught in the bay, and me with a bonus coho taken during our last offshore halibut trip. There are still seats available for Brookings trophy ocean salmon fishing in early October and seats for Tillamook Bay in mid-October before we focus on Chetco River hawgs in November.
To book the ultimate Oregon or Alaska fishing trip, call (206) 388-8988 or e-mail
wildriversfishing@yahoo.com.
Oct. 6, 2008
The Brookings trophy ocean salmon season will open again for one day on Saturday. I wish the season was longer but I guess that will leave more salmon to catch (and spawn) once the Chetco opens on Nov. 1. We'll be on the water Saturday hoping to hook into one of those 50-plus-pounders that makes the Brookings October ocean season so special. I spent a few days last week on the Middle Rogue fishing for steelhead and fished the upper Klamath in Northern California on Sunday. As you can see from the photo on the left, there were plenty of boats on the river. Fishing was fair. This is one of the best places anywhere to back-bounce for fall kings. It's not too early to book those prime January and February winter steelhead dates for the Chetco River.
To book the ultimate Oregon or Alaska fishing trip, call (206) 388-8988 or e-mail
wildriversfishing@yahoo.com.
Oct. 18, 2008
Salmon fishing has been good at the mouth of the Smith River and should be really good once we get some rain. The Chetco is closed until Nov. 1. Right now the best salmon fishing has been on the upper Klamath near Yreka, Calif. There are lots of fish in the deeper pools. At the hatchery, the counts nearly doubled from 2,500 to 5,000 in just a couple days, so lots of fish are showing up right now. These fish are more than 100 miles from the ocean, so they are dark, but they are great biters and excellent fighters. Some of the best catch-and-release salmon fishing on the West Coast. 20-fish days are not unheard of. We've also spent a few mornings chasing pheasants at Denman Wildlife Area near Medford. Book your Chetco River fall salmon and winter steelhead trips today before all the best dates are gone. To book the ultimate Oregon or Alaska fishing trip, call (206) 388-8988 or e-mail wildriversfishing@yahoo.com.
Fishing Report Archive
[Chetco River Levels] [Smith River Levels]
[Brookings Offshore Forecast] [Brookings Jetty Web Cam]
[Brookings Tide Table] [Chetco River Map]
$425
2 nights lodging in riverside cabin, 1 day guided drift boat fishing trip on Chetco River for 2 people
Chetco Steelhead Lodging and Fishing Combo
Oregon Salmon and Steelhead Fishing, Alaska Salmon and Halibut Fishing
Chetco, Rogue, Smith River Salmon and Steelhead Fishing at its best!