Gear restrictions extended on Chetco, Winchuck rivers

GOLD BEACH, Ore – Chetco and Winchuck angling gear restrictions are extended through 11:59 p.m., Nov. 15 due to low water levels. The gear restriction extension is also a conservative approach to help lower harvest levels of older aged chinook salmon.

Angling is restricted to fly fishing (must include a strike indicator) or bobber fishing in both rivers. The Chetco restriction applies from River Mile 2.2 to Nook Creek, and from the mouth to Wheeler Creek in the Winchuck River.

Based on historical flow regimes, gear restrictions are typically in place Sept. 1 – Nov. 3 each year to eliminate snagging. As in 2018, this year is an exception with abnormally low flows and no significant October rains. With rain forecasted beginning this week, the gear restriction will lift at 12:01 a.m. Nov. 16.

ODFW biologists expect good numbers of chinook to return to the Chetco and some are already holding in the lower river. Maintaining a fishing opportunity for Chetco bank anglers is important and this is also a good time of year to harvest returning hatchery fish.