Skip to main content
Original Issue


C—clear water; SH—slightly high; FG—fishing good; FF—fishing fair; FP—fishing poor; OG—outlook good; OF—outlook fair; OVG—outlook very good.

BLUEFISH: LOUISIANA: They're swarming around the oil rigs off Grand Isle, and OVG through January.

FLORIDA: Blues in 1-to 2-pound class are abundant in Gulf off Sarasota and are feeding enthusiastically on No. 2 spoons trolled at medium speed; OG through next week.

STEELHEAD TROUT: CALIFORNIA: North coastal streams high and muddy hut dropping and should be fishable by Jan. 15 except for Eel, lower Klamath, Trinity and Russian rivers which may be out until SC Feb. 28. OF/G for upper Klamath, Gualala, Garcia and upper Sacramento by Jan. 10 if no major storms mean while. 170,000 adult steelhead lost at Cedar Creek Station in Mendocino County through flood action, but spy says no permanent damage to spawning grounds except in Trinity River watershed.

OREGON: As coastal streams fall, steelheading improves, thanks to cold weather that prevented fast runoffs in most major streams along coast. OF/G for Nehalem, Trask, Wilson and Nestucca in north section; Sixes, Elk, Illinois and Chetco in south, Rogue River still high but falling and clearing, may have good fishing now. Smaller streams along coast stiff with fish, and light-tackle anglers having field day with fly rods and single eggs. In general OG, but ground is saturated at press time, and one more big storm could foul up fishing in all coastal streams.

WASHINGTON: Cold weather all last week brought most streams to fishable condition and OVG if no rains in last few days. Best bets are Grays, upper Cowlitz near Pack wood. Quinault, Skagit, Green around Flaming Geyser and Puyallup rivers; best recent fish were 22-pounder from Green River. 20-pounder from Humptulips; cherry bobbers, roe and hot-rod spoons are favored lures, and OVG, weather permitting. (Top-secret hotspot: hole in north fork of Nooksack River, 1/8th mile downstream from Kendall hatchery.)

BRITISH COLUMBIA: Sharp thaw just before Christmas raised and roiled smaller streams but colder weather has restored most of them to fine fishing condition. Best bets are Qualicums, Cowichan and Veddar rivers, and OG/VG in general through next fortnight.

PERCH: FLORIDA: Crappie (speckled perch) busted out all over central Florida last week, and limits (25) are the rule in Lake Panasoffkee (near Bushnell) and Little Harris (at Howey).

NEW YORK: FG through 4 to 5 inches of ice on Lake Chautauqua, especially off Victoria and Chautauqua, and OG if cold continues.

STRIPED BASS: SOUTH CAROLINA: Trolled bucktails and deep-running wobblers producing well in front of Santee Dam on upper Santee-Cooper Lakes; cut shad on bottom and deep-fished needlefish continue to produce stripers averaging 10 pounds from lower lake and the diversion canal; OF.

CALIFORNIA: No permanent flood damage to Delta fishery, says spy, but OP through Jan. 15.

NEW JERSEY: SC Dec. 31 after best striper season in many years, as fish move into wintering grounds in Mullica, Toms and Great Egg Harbor rivers, Barnegat Bay and other waters where they are now protected against netting and snatching; SO March 1.

PICKEREL: FLORIDA: State's Game and Fresh Water Fish Commission trying to popularize the eastern chain pickerel so that bass anglers can diversify; the species is common in many lakes and rivers where weed beds provide food and shelter.