Fishing forecast guide | Steelhead prospects are gaining strength on the Kalama and Lewis Rivers

Fishing forecast guide |  Steelhead prospects are gaining strength on the Kalama and Lewis Rivers

As February begins, the chances of catching some fish in our area also increase. In this week’s report, I dive into the latest updates, from Silver Lake crappie exploration to the potential for excellent opportunities.

For those of you who love to fish the Willamette in Oregon, the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife has announced that two rod checks will be in effect again for spring Chinook and steelhead in the lower Willamette starting March 1 and above the Cascades starting From May 1.


We begin a new round of oyster digging appointments on coastal beaches, which began on Tuesday. During the last dig, the results were excellent for most people.

People read too…

The first morning excavations are scheduled for the second week of March. This is my personal favorite time to go to the clam place, as I like to get two trips in one.

The surf fishing for perch is good based on the only report I’ve had in the Beards Hollow area. Make sure to wear neoprene gloves this time of year.

Downstream crabs are fair and should improve as rain decreases and excess snow melts, which causes less than ideal salinity for downstream crabs.

Snag Lake, also called Radar Hill Ponds, received 25 steelhead transplants on Jan. 19 and has an open season year-round. Snag Lake is approximately 1,100 feet in elevation and is stocked with 10-inch rainbow trout, with some cutthroat species also available.

Subscriber Sean sent me a report on Tokeland crabs at the docks: “We came to Twin Harbors on Saturday evening, and put four bowls on the Tokeland dock about 6 a.m. (We were) checking them about four times a day and leaving them wet.” Overnight, I have five crabs to show for it, which is actually a little better than most of the crabs I talked to yesterday and today.”

Toledo and Castle Rock

Crappie fishing at Silver Lake is excellent. My friend Keith and I spent last Friday fishing the canals. We caught and released about 50 crappie between us and there were a few small yellow perch in the mix.

Tacoma Power’s website reported the following action on the Cowlitz River last week. Tacoma Power employees recovered 148 adult winter-run steelhead, one adult coho, and one adult spring Chinook over five days of operations at the Cowlitz salmon hatchery.


Reports indicate that sea lions are arriving in Toledo. Since there are no steelhead and salmon, I assume they are looking for an impending smelt. However, Cowlitz is falling into good shape and steelhead reports should improve in the coming weeks. It will take longer to clean the lower Toutle River, as this river is still somewhat brown.

Commercial fishermen are in the thick of things in Colombia and doing well. Hopefully we’ll get a chance to dive in ourselves very soon.

The water level in Riffe Lake is rising. Mossyrock Park is the only boat launch open at this time. The pier will not be usable until water levels stabilize. The lake currently has an elevation of 738 feet. The Riffe offers good fishing for coho salmon and landlocked Chinook salmon, as well as the occasional large brown trout.

Nathan at Sportsman’s Warehouse in Kelso runs fishing seminars. A kokanee fishing seminar was scheduled for 6 p.m. Thursday and is scheduled to focus on Lake Merwin. The featured presenter is set to be local guide John Kaiser to go over the equipment, demonstrations and techniques of catching kokanee locally.

Other seminars are at 6pm on February 20 on fishing and at 6pm on February 27 featuring “fish finder” Ed Chen.

Lake Mayfield continues to have very good trout fishing. One fisherman I heard from said the ticket was a watermelon dodger and a small pink shrimp spinner. A reminder that if using bait to catch trout, you must keep legal sized fish. Game wardens will issue tickets for non-compliance.

Kalama Woodland

On Wednesday, the Kalama River was bustling with activity, its waters showing excellent flow and color. During my observations, I counted a total of eight pontoon boats sailing from the beginner area downstream. After speaking with a boater at Modro Bridge around 10am, I learned that he had just started his fishing expedition.

During conversations with other fishermen, one diver felt a momentary thrill when his line suddenly snapped, but was disappointed by a bite from a speeding car. Fortunately, there have been no encounters with sea lions, providing a positive outlook for the river’s immediate future. With the Kalama River looking perfect for next weekend, I expect fishing activity to be heavy.

In addition to people already catching a few of these steelhead, Cress Lake has picked up panfish and trout on sunny days this past week.

I stopped in Calama on my way home and checked out the Louis Rasmussen Day Use Park and Marina Area. The only fisherman I spoke to was not so lucky.

The Lewis River is finally in fishing mode. On Sunday, the North Fork was a perfect steelhead green, and it’s even better as of Wednesday. The Lewis tributaries have been the most impressive of all the local tributaries, and this trend continues.

Horseshoe Lake last received about 40 steelhead transplants on January 11.

La Center and Ridgefield

Crappie fishing is supposedly on the rise in the river lake, although I haven’t heard any reports.

Fishing at Mud Lake in early spring provides unique local opportunities for anglers looking for a variety of warm water species. If you’re not familiar with Mud Lake, there is only a small parking area and a half-mile trail to the lake. It’s a good place to kayak, but you may need a dolly to move your vessel to the water.

Klineline Pond received a stocking on January 22 of 2,500 rainbow trout. Battleground Lake also received a boosted stock of 2,500 rainbows on the same day.

Ian Carter is an experienced outdoor writer based in Southwest Washington with a lifelong fishing adventure. Carter uses his childhood knowledge of angling in Welsh tidal pools to sailing commercial fishing boats in the United States to produce regular fishing forecasts for The Guide, a website launched in 1998 that reports on fishing in Oregon and parts of Washington. Free reports like this one are available at or people can become one of 800 paid subscribers for more detailed guides.

(Tags for translation)Ichthyology

You may also like...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *