The Oregon Seal Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife mobile
 » ODFW Home    » Recreation Report
About Us Fishing Hunting Viewing License/Regs Conservation Living With Wildlife Education
Event Calendar Follow ODFW
Fishing, Hunting, Wildlife Viewing
Central Zone Map

Weekly Recreation Report: Central Zone

November 17, 2015

 Central Zone Fishing

The Deschutes River
Fishing the Deschutes River
-Photo by Charlotte Ganskopp-

Weekend fishing opportunities

  • Recent sampling in Ochoco Reservoir found good numbers of trout up to 16-inches. Lots of smallmouth bass, too.
  • Good numbers of healthy trout showed in a recent sampling at Walton Lake. Most averaged 10 to 12-inches but there were good numbers fish up to 16-inches.

Send us your fishing report

We’d love to hear about your recent fishing experience. Send us your own fishing report through ODFW Fishing Reports -- the information will be forwarded to the local biologist who may use it to update various ODFW resources such as the weekly Recreation Report.


The water remains dirty and low. Recent sampling indicated many trout available in the 10 to 13-inch range.

BEND PINE NURSERY: rainbow trout

Open to fishing all year. Limit 2 fish per day.

BIKINI POND: rainbow trout

The pond will be stocked again in November.

Crane Prairie Rainbow Trout

Crane Prairie Rainbow Trout
-Photo by Jeff Van Blaricum-

CRANE PRAIRIE RESERVOIR: Closed to fishing after Oct. 31.

CRESCENT LAKE: rainbow trout, brown trout, lake trout and kokanee

Open to fishing all year.

CROOKED RIVER BELOW BOWMAN DAM: redband trout, mountain whitefish

Anglers are reporting very low water levels, but fishing has continued to be good. Fish that are being released should not be removed from the water. No bait allowed after Oct. 31.

Flows below Bowman Dam

CULTUS LAKE: rainbow trout, lake trout

Open to fishing all year.

DAVIS LAKE: largemouth bass, redband trout

Open to fishing all year. Restricted to fly-fishing only with barbless hooks.

DESCHUTES RIVER, Mouth to the Pelton Regulating Dam: summer steelhead, fall Chinook, redband trout, whitefish

The best trout fishing is from Warm Springs to Maupin. Good steelhead fishing has been reported from the mouth upstream to South Junction. Anglers should expect good fishing in all areas especially from Maupin to Macks Canyon.

Closed to trout fishing from the northern boundary of the Warm Springs Reservation upstream to the Pelton Regulating Dam.

Fall Chinook fishing has been improving below Sherars Falls and should be good until the end of October.

Anglers who catch a tagged hatchery steelhead with an orange anchor tag, are encouraged to report catch information to ODFW at 541-296-4628. Anglers catching a tagged wild fish should release it immediately without recording any information.

Counts at the Sherars Falls salmon and steelhead trap. The trap is only in operation from July to the end of October.

Lake Billy Chinook to Benham Falls: rainbow trout, brown trout

Open for trout all year. Fishing restricted to artificial flies and lures.

Benham Falls upstream to Wickiup Reservoir: Closed to fishing after Oct. 31.

Wickiup Reservoir upstream to Crane Prairie: rainbow trout, brown trout

Closed to fishing upstream of ODFW markers located near West South Twin boat ramp upstream to Crane Prairie.

Crane Prairie Reservoir upstream to Little Lave Lake: Closed to fishing.

EAST LAKE: Closed to fishing after Oct. 31.

ELK LAKE: brook trout, kokanee, cutthroat trout

Open to fishing all year. Winter road closure information.

Fall River Fisherman

Fall River Fisherman
-Photo by Rick Hargrave-

FALL RIVER: rainbow trout

Fall River below the falls is closed to fishing. Fishing above the falls is open all year. Restricted to fly-fishing only with barbless hooks.

HAYSTACK RESERVOIR: rainbow trout, brown trout, kokanee, largemouth bass, black crappie, bluegill

No recent reports.

HOOD RIVER: summer steelhead, trout

Steelhead fishing on the Hood will be slow through the summer and early fall. Anglers can expect a few fish in November and December.

HOSMER LAKE: brook, rainbow and cutthroat trout, Atlantic salmon

Open to fishing all year. Winter road closure information.

LAKE BILLY CHINOOK: bull, brown and rainbow trout, kokanee, smallmouth bass

Open year-round. Fishing for kokanee has been excellent.

Anglers are reminded there are small numbers of spring Chinook and summer steelhead in Lake Billy Chinook as part of the reintroduction effort. Please release these fish unharmed.

Smallmouth bass
Biggest catch ever!!! Smallmouth Bass,
-Photo by Kao Tzeo-

LAKE SIMTUSTUS: bull trout, rainbow trout, smallmouth bass

No recent reports.

LAURANCE LAKE: Rainbow trout, cutthroat trout

Closed to fishing until May 22, 2016.


Closed to fishing after Oct. 31.

LAVA LAVE (SMALL): rainbow trout, brook trout

Open to fishing all year. Winter road closure information.

LOST LAKE: rainbow trout, brown trout

Lost Lake offers great fishing at one of Oregon’s most scenic lakes.

METOLIUS RIVER: redband trout, bull trout

Mainstem upstream of Allingham Bridge is closed to fishing. Allingham Bridge downstream to mouth open to fishing all year. Catch-and-release for all species, including bull trout. Special fishing regulations apply to the Metolius River.

NORTH TWIN LAKE: rainbow trout

Temporary regulations are in effect for North Twin Lake. Until Nov. 9, there is no bag limit or possession limit, and no size limits. Starting Nov. 9, North Twin Lake will be closed to fishing until at least Dec. 31. Contact Erik Moberly (541) 388-6145 if you have any questions.


Angling is restricted to artificial flies and lures only; two trout per day with an 8-inch minimum length.

OCHOCO RESERVOIR: rainbow trout, black crappie, smallmouth bass

Recent sampling indicated good numbers of trout up to 16-inches long. Excellent numbers of smallmouth bass, especially along the rocky shorelines near the dam.

ODELL CREEK: Closed to fishing after Oct. 31.


Closed to fishing after Oct. 31. All tributaries to Odell Lake are closed to fishing.

PAULINA LAKE: Closed to fishing after Oct. 31.

PINE HOLLOW RESERVOIR: rainbow trout, largemouth bass

Water levels are dropping considerably due to drought conditions, and irrigation demands. We have been getting reports that many of the trout have copepods, which are tiny parasites on their bodies and gills. These are not harmful to humans and the lesions can be removed, but the meat should be thoroughly cooked.

PRINEVILLE RESERVOIR: rainbow trout, largemouth and smallmouth bass, crappie

The water level is low. All boat ramps at the Reservoir are now closed. Crappie and smallmouth bass opportunities are excellent.

PRINEVILLE YOUTH FISHING POND: rainbow trout and largemouth bass

The pond will be stocked this week with rainbow trout.


Anglers should be prepared that low water conditions due to irrigation withdrawals will limit success in Rock Creek reservoir.


Open to fishing all year. Limit is 2 trout per day, 8-inch minimum length. Fishing restricted to juvenile anglers 17-years-old and younger.

SOUTH TWIN LAKE: Closed to fishing after Oct. 31.

Floating & Fishing
Floating & Fishing at Suttle Lake
-Photo by ODFW-

SUTTLE LAKE: brown trout, kokanee

Open to fishing all year.

TAYLOR LAKE (Wasco County): rainbow trout, largemouth bass

Trout fishing will slow down during the summer months, but anglers can find lots of bluegill and largemouth bass.

THREE CREEK LAKE: rainbow trout, brook trout

Open to fishing all year. Check road closure information before driving to lake.

WALTON LAKE: rainbow trout

Recent sampling indicated good numbers of healthy trout. Most trout average 10 to 12 inches long but there are good numbers of trout up to 16-inches long.

WICKIUP RESERVOIR: kokanee, brown trout, rainbow trout, largemouth bass

Closed to fishing after Oct. 31. Closed upstream of ODFW markers located near West South Twin boat ramp.

Back to the top

  Central Zone Hunting

Black Bear
Black Bear
-Oregon Fish and Wildlife-


2015 Big Game Hunting Forecast

Know before you go!

Hunters will face fire restrictions and some closures and they need to know what those are before they go. More info. Some good resources for fire information: InciWeb, National Forest webpages, Oregon Dept Forestry

Wolves and coyotes can look alike

Most wolves in the state today are in northeast Oregon but a few have dispersed further west and south. Wolves are protected by state and/or federal law and it is unlawful to shoot them. Coyote hunters need to take extra care to identify their target as wolves can look like coyotes, especially wolf pups in the mid-summer and fall. Please report any wolf sightings or wolf sign to ODFW using the online reporting system.

Use the Oregon Hunting Map to see where to hunt.


Please be aware of fire restrictions and closures in the area. Consult appropriate land management agency for details.

Cougar are present throughout the Maury, Ochoco, and Grizzly units. The Maury and Ochoco units are recommended because of their greater amounts of public lands and better accessibility. Remember cougars must be checked in at an ODFW office within 10 days of harvest. Please consult the synopsis for all required parts and be sure to call first to make an appointment.

Coyotes can offer an exciting challenge. Both the Maury and Ochoco have sizeable areas of public lands that provide hunting opportunities. Hunters should use caution, be properly equipped and prepared for whatever the weather might bring.


Black Bear: Bear season is August 1-Nov. 30th. Bears can be found by glassing open areas Look for areas with fresh bear sign and good forage conditions. Remember that all harvested bears must be checked in to an ODFW office, unfrozen within 10 days of harvest. Placing a stick in the mouth of harvested bear is encouraged for easier tooth extraction.

Coyotes: There are good numbers of coyotes in Hood River, Wasco and Sherman Counties. Those wishing to pursue will find the best success near agricultural lands. Be sure to ask permission to hunt private lands.

Cougar: Cougars can be found in the same areas as deer and elk as they follow them through their migration routes. Calling with fawn in distress can be effective this time of year. Cougars have large home ranges so remember to be patient and persistent. Hunters are required to check-in the unfrozen hide and skull, with proof of sex attached to an ODFW office within 10 days. Hunters are also required to provide the reproductive tract of harvested female cougars. See pg. 42 of the regulations for details.

Upland birds: Early indications are that upland birds have been difficult to find for hunters. Recent rains and green up may help increase success. Public land hunting opportunities can be found in the Deschutes and John Day river canyons. Hunters looking for areas to hunt are encouraged to explore the UCAP properties in the Sherman and Wasco counties.

Hunters are reminded to check on access prior to entering the field.


A parking permit is now required to use/park on the White River Wildlife Area along with other ODFW wildlife areas. Camping is allowed only in designated areas.

Road Closures: Beginning Dec. 30, green-dot seasonal roads will be closed to all motorized vehicles. These closures help prevent road damage and protect wintering wildlife. Walk-in access is still permitted once the roads are closed. The green-dot seasonal roads will reopen Apr. 1st.

Fire Closures: All land on the Wildlife Area is open to hunting at this time as long as all rules and regulations of Oregon Department of Forestry are met. Check the Oregon Department of Forestry Web site for rules and required firefighting equipment that must be carried in all vehicles. Be careful not to park vehicles in tall grass or brush and remember that ATV’s are not allowed on the Wildlife Area.

Black Bear: Aug. 1 – Nov. 30: Black bears can be found on the Wildlife Area but most of them live a little higher in the mountains. Don’t forget to scan hillsides and meadows for grazing bears in the morning and evening hunts. Remember that all harvested bears must be checked in to an ODFW office, unfrozen within 10 days of harvest. Placing a stick in the mouth of harvested bear is encouraged for easier tooth extraction. Read the “Other Regulations section” on page 23 of the “Big Game Regulations” for more information.

Ruffed Grouse
Ruffed Grouse
-Oregon Fish and Wildlife-

Blue & Ruffed Grouse Sept. 1 – Jan. 31, 2016 Daily Bag Limit: 3, Possession Limit 9: Grouse can occasionally be found on the Wildlife Area but mostly on the Western boundary. They are found in more abundance at higher elevations in the Cascade Mountains. The regulations state that a feathered head or wing must be left attached to all game birds while in the field or traveling home.

Note: ODFW is collecting information on grouse and mountain quail populations throughout the state. The wings and tails from hunter-harvested grouse and mountain quail provide us with information on the status of these populations. Wing Barrels and sacks to put wings/tails in will be placed at several entrances throughout the Wildlife Area. Thank you for your help collecting this information.

Mountain Quail Sept. 1 – Jan. 31, 2016: Daily Bag Limit 10, Possession Limit 30:
Like grouse, mountain quail can occasionally be found on the Wildlife Area but most birds are found at higher elevations on Forest Service lands. Note: ODFW is collecting information on grouse and mountain quail populations throughout the state. The wings and tails from hunter-harvested grouse and mountain quail provide us with information on the status of these populations. Wing Barrels and sacks to put wings/tails in will be placed at several entrances throughout the Wildlife Area.

Eurasian Collared Doves are UNPROTECTED with no season or bag limit restrictions. Hunters only need a hunting license to harvest these birds. Often found in urban areas, make sure you are outside city limits when discharging a weapon.

Vehicle Access: New rules took affect that prohibit all recreational ATV use on the Wildlife Area, also camping is only allowed in designated camping areas. A parking permit is now required to use/park on the White River Wildlife Area along with other ODFW wildlife areas.

Cougar is all year or until zone mortality quotas have been met. Cougar can be found on White River Wildlife Area but are seldom seen. The annual migration of deer from higher in the Cascades will entice cougars to follow. Use weather to your advantage; look for tracks in snow, mud, and dirt. There are many coyotes prowling about this year. Try calling for them from open fields, meadows, and pastures. The best areas to find them will be near farm grounds on the eastern boundary.

Back to the top

 Central Zone Wildlife Viewing


Red-tailed, rough-legged and ferruginous hawks, northern harriers, American kestrels, prairie falcons and golden eagles can be found throughout Crook County and are usually associated more closely with open/agricultural areas. Bald eagles and osprey can be found associated with water bodies. Northern goshawks can be located throughout the Ochoco National Forest.

Prineville Reservoir Wildlife Area

The Prineville Reservoir Wildlife Area offers walk-in access to view a wide variety of wildlife, including deer, coyotes, otter, beaver, raptors, shorebirds and waterfowl. Maps of the wildlife area are available at the Prineville ODFW office, at Prineville Reservoir State Park office and the ODFW website. 6/30/15

Deschutes County

As of this update, the most easily accessible Cascade Mountain lakes remain open. However, conditions can change quickly, so make sure you know the current weather conditions if you are planning a wildlife viewing trip to the high country. Bird species most recently observed at Wickiup Lake and the surrounding area include surf scoter, greater and lesser scaup, canvasback and redhead ducks, common/red-throated/Pacific loons, American widgeon, eared grebe, Canada geese, semipalmated plover, least sandpiper, Wilson’s snipe, greater yellow legs, Bonaparte’s/ herring/ California and ring-billed gulls, northern shrike, gray jay, ruby crowned kinglet, yellow rumped warbler, golden-crowned/white-crowned/savannah and fox sparrows, horned larks, American pipit, and Oregon junco’s.

Elk Lake
Elk Lake
-Photo by Jessica Sall-

Beyond Wickiup Lake, other excellent high elevation wildlife viewing locations include Davis Lake, Elk Lake, Sparks Lake, and Crane Prairie Reservoir. Productive lower elevation viewing sites include Smith Rock State Park at Terrebonne, and along the many miles of the Deschutes River hiking trails.

Most of our summer birds have left for warmer climes, however, year round resident birds, such as California quail, house finches, and pine siskins are still plentiful. Other species, such as robins and red-tailed hawks have migratory “shifts” meaning that individuals present during the spring and summer migrate south, while other individuals that summer north of Oregon move here to overwinter.

Small mammals, such as chipmunks and squirrels can be observed conducting their pre-winter food gathering, but their activities, especially at higher elevations, will be curtailed as temperatures drop. Reptiles are now sequestered in underground winter quarters that protect them from freezing conditions. And although amphibians can be active at colder temperatures, they will be much harder to find until next spring. We’ll know spring is back when the chirrups of tree frogs can be heard once again. 10/26/15

Wasco and Sherman counties

The Lower Deschutes River provides ample wildlife viewing opportunities. California bighorn sheep are frequently observed in the canyon and can provide fantastic viewing all times of the year. The best spot to view sheep is from the BLM access road just downstream and across the river from Sherar’s Falls (along Hwy 216). Look for movement and the white rump patches of bighorns and remember patience and good optics is key to seeing wildlife.

Many different raptor species can be seen in the Deschutes River Canyon this time of year including Red-tailed Hawks, Northern Harriers, American Kestrels, Prairie Falcons, Peregrine Falcons and Golden Eagles. A large variety of songbird species can be viewed in riparian areas along the river.

It is best to go birding in the early morning hours before it gets too hot for birds to be very active. Some common species seen include Bullock’s Oriole, Lazuli Bunting, Mourning Dove, Violet-green Swallow, and Cliff Swallow. 6/9/15.

White River Wildlife Area

There are many different animals on White River Wildlife Area ranging from Deer and Elk to coyotes, bears, and the occasional cougar. Some of these animals are much harder to find than others. Deer can be spotted in open fields and meadows early in the morning or in the evenings. Remember when driving around the Wildlife Area or rural roads to be watching carefully for deer along the edges ready to jump out in front of you. There are many deer mortalities every year from vehicle collisions. Not only is it bad for the deer but can cause serious injuries or be fatal to the driver and passengers.

Bull Elk Grazing
-Oregon Fish and Wildlife-

The best time to view elk is also in the morning and evenings. They are very wary animals and don’t like hanging around when people are nearby. With upcoming hunting seasons their habits will change making them even more difficult to locate.

It is also possible to see bald and golden eagles on the Wildlife Area. Other raptors such as red-tailed hawks and rough-legged hawks are common sights. American kestrels and northern harriers are also easily seen hunting for food.

Lewis’s woodpeckers, pileated woodpeckers, flickers, western meadowlarks, Steller’s jays, scrub jays, gray jays, Townsend’s solitaire, horned larks, golden-crowed kinglets, and robins are all at home on the Wildlife Area. Be on the lookout for migratory birds, as they are beginning to show up on the wildlife area. There have also been lots of magpies spotted flying around this year.

Look on ponds, lakes and streams to see a variety of ducks and geese, as well as western grebes, coots, and mergansers. 11/16/2015

Back to the top

Zones: Northwest | Southwest | Willamette | Central | Southeast | Northeast | Snake | Columbia | Marine

Facebook Twitter RSS feed YouTube E-mail Sign Up

About Us | Fishing | Hunting | Wildlife Viewing | License / Regs | Conservation | Living with Wildlife | ODFW Outdoors

ODFW Home | Driving Directions | Employee Directory | Social Media | | File Formats

4034 Fairview Industrial Drive SE   ::   Salem, OR 97302   ::    Main Phone (503) 947-6000 or (800) 720-ODFW [6339]

Do you have a question or comment for ODFW? Contact ODFW's Public Service Representative at:
Do you want to enter your opinion about a specific issue into the public record? Contact

   © ODFW. All rights reserved. This page was last updated: 11/18/2015 8:52 AM