If you’re at all familiar with the Rogue River in Oregon, then you’re probably eager to target all those salmon you’ve heard about. From the delicious spring and fall chinooks to the fall cohos, the Rogue really does have a tremendous salmon fishery. Before going out and planning a trip, however, you might be wondering whether the Rogue River is open for fishing. 

First of all, thank you for asking yourself that question. Concerning yourself with the rules and regulations is the mark of a responsible angler. By respecting the rules we respect each other, giving the fisheries managers the ability to protect this vital natural resource. 

As it happens, the vast majority of the Rogue River is currently open for fishing. That means you can break out your tackle and head out for a day on the water without breaking any rules. 

There is, however, one major exception. The tributaries of the Rogue River that are located below the Lost Creek Dam, are currently closed to fishing. In these areas, you are not allowed to wet a line. Do not make the mistake of thinking that catch and release is okay. All fishing of any sort is prohibited, and if you take a single cast you’ll be at risk of facing the consequences. 

Even in those portions of the Rogue River system that are open to fishing, make sure you follow all other rules and regulations. When it comes to trout, remember that you can only keep hatchery-raised fish. All native trout must be released. You also need to have gear restrictions in mind. When targeting salmon, you can only have two single, barbless hooks affixed to a line. With all types of fishing, you cannot put a weight more than six feet above the lowest hook on your rig. 

Don’t forget about statewide regulations as well. Anglers aged twelve and older need an Oregon Fishing License. You also need to pay attention to bag limits and annual possession limits. Any fish you keep should be of legal size. Never think you can get away with taking an illegal fish. Even if you’re not caught, your integrity as an angler will be seriously compromised. 

Fishing the Rogue River is a marvelous experience. Since its open, there’s nothing stopping you from taking the fishing trip of your life. Follow the rules, be smart, and you’re bound to have an incredible time. 

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