Fish On!

Out the Door at Point Comfort Lodge

wocus on pelican bay, rocky point, klamath county oregon.  point comfort lodge.  photo by anders tomlinson
Pelican Bay
Summertime fishing will find many anglers in Pelican Bay, a finger jutting off the northwest
end of the main lake. This is a smaller water body fed by several smaller tributaries coming
off the Cascade Mountains, so it stays cooler and clearer in hot weather. The best fishing
here begins in mid-June and holds up through summer.
Within Pelican Bay there are many places to fish. It is suggested that someone new to the
fishery start near the mouths of feeder streams and then explore other parts of the bay.
In the summer months fish also will seek refuge at the Fish Bank area near the mouth of
Pelican Bay, several spring sites (especially within Pelican Bay), and at the mouth of the
Williamson River on the northeast side of Upper Klamath Lake. The latter location can
be good for much of the year, including late season when fish stage for spawning runs.
Before this, in the early spring, Pelican Bay runs very cold and fish tend to be less active.
They can more often be found in the main lake, especially along the shorelines where they
feed on leeches while moving north toward tributaries and springs that provide
better summer conditions.

Upper Klamath National Wildlife Refuge
Recreation Creek, Crystal Creek et. al. ( This entry is in progress. )

fishing boat on upper klamath lake.  pelican butte is in the background.  photo by anders tomlinson
Upper Klamath Lake
This usually is Oregon’s largest lake (except when Malheur eclipses it in wet years).
It stretches almost 25 miles and it’s shallow, rich waters are home to some of the largest
redband rainbow trout in North America, with fish to 20 pounds or better. Bank and boat
angling is popular from fall through spring at the southern end near Klamath Falls and in
the Link River. But much of the lake gets too warm for trout in the summer, when they
retreat to the north end’s cooler water at river inlets, springs and Pelican Bay – or
head up into tributary streams such as the Williamson River. Trolling, bait casting and
fly fishing are all effective here. A long channel joins Upper Klamath Lake to Agency Lake
on the north, which is fed by the Wood River, and these lakes and river systems are
all part of an interconnected fishery.


lake of the woods, klamath county, oreon.  photo by anders tomlinson
Lake of the Woods
Early in the year, stocked rainbow trout are the main quarry of anglers fishing
Lake of the Woods. Warmwater species take over in the spring and fall. Yellow perch offer
great ice action late and early in winter. Amenities on shore include a campground,
day use fee park, two boat ramps, and restrooms.

four mile lake, klamath falls, oregon.  mt. mcloughlin is in the background.  photo by anders tomlinson.
Four Mile Lake
Depending of how much snow is on the ground, Fourmile Lake is usually accessible
by late June. From late June through fall rainbow trout fishing is good. Lakers start
to heat up by mid-summer and finishes the season strong. If you are looking for
huge brook trout, try visiting Fourmile Lake in the fall. Kokanee salmon are
present, but they are fair at best. Mid-summer is the best time to fish for them.
Fishermen will find a variety of fish including rainbow trout,
sockeye salmon, lake trout and brook trout here.


guide eddie miranda jr.  taks fisgherman down the wood river.  pelican butte can be seen in the background.  photo by anders tomlinson.
Wood River
This spring-fed, crystal clear trout stream in the Fort Klamath area flows into Agency Lake,
which itself is connected to the larger Upper Klamath Lake – all together a fishery
that produces some of the biggest native rainbow trout in the United States. It is smaller
than the nearby Williamson, has better brown trout angling and has a lot of great water
and consistent flows appealing to fly anglers. Large rainbow trout usually move into
the Wood in June and stay until fall. The best angling for the biggest rainbows
is often in September and October. In August and September, when the grasshoppers are
out and the stream is clear, dry fly fishing for browns is good. Finding spots to
fish from the bank can be tough, but the Wood River Day Use Area offers both bank
fishing and a launch. Small boats and canoes offer the best access.

fishing at daybreak on agency lake, klamath falls, oregon, point comfort lodge.  photo by  jim
Agency Lake
This is a large northern pool of Upper Klamath Lake system separated by a
narrow channel. Like its larger sibling, Agency holds some of Oregon and the U.S.’s
largest redband rainbow trout. Fishing is usually best in the spring, especially near
the mouths of Wood River and Sevenmile Creek. Fishing slows by July, when many fish
have moved into the Wood or sought out cooler water elsewhere. Yellow perch and brown
bullhead catfish can be caught in the lake, especially at the north end. The Wood River
has a nice population of brown trout as well as redsides, so it’s possible one
could be caught in Agency, particularly within the river’s plume.

woman fly fishing on spring creek, colliers logging museum, klamath falls oregon.  photo by anders tomlinson.
Spring Creek
Spring Creek is a beautiful, ice cold stream with some deep holes, and clear water.
Spring Creek runs through Colliers Logging Museum near its confluence with Williamson River.
Fishermen will find a variety of fish including catfish, brown trout and rainbow
trout here. 20 to 23 inch trout are not uncommon. Whether you’re spinning, fly
fishing or baitcasting your chances of getting a bite here are good. So grab your
favorite fly fishing rod and reel, and head out to Spring Creek. To find this fishing
spot enter 42.64153 latitude, and -121.87946 longitude into your GPS device.

williamsom river , klamath county, oregon.  photo by anders tomlinson.
Williamson River
This river north of Klamath Falls boasts one of Oregon’s best opportunities to catch
very large wild rainbow trout in moving water, when the big redbands move up from Upper
Klamath Lake. The best concentration of larger fish is in the river from late June
through fall. They tend to be located in the stretch below Kirk Canyon Falls by
late summer and fall, when fishing often peaks for big fish. Anglers must use artificial
lures and flies, and fly fishing is challenging but popular. Above the falls,
the river flows through the huge Klamath Marsh. Farther upstream, the Williamson is a
spring-fed stream with more typical-sized wild rainbow and brook trout. The Williamson
flows through a lot of private ranch land, but campgrounds, public forests and
road crossings provide some access to good water, including popular spots below
the falls, in Chiloquin and elsewhere. There are brook trout in the upper river
and some brown trout around as well, but the latter are more numerous in the
Wood and Sprague rivers.

sprague river, klamath county, oregon.  photo by anders tomlinson
Sprague River
This long stream, which joins the Williamson River near Chiloquin, is most noted for
its rainbow and brown trout fishing. The lower river has many rainbows to
3 pounds or larger as well as good-sized browns. The forks above Bly contain rainbow,
brown, brook and bull trout. The bulls must be released unharmed. The best trout
fishing is in the late spring and early summer. Largemouth bass are in the
Sprague River Valley reach between the towns of Sprague River and Beatty
and bite best in summer.


klamath river, klamath county, oregon.  photo by anders tomlinson
Klamath River
The Klamath flows just 38 miles in Oregon before crossing the border into California,
but this upper stretch offers a great challenge for some very big rainbow trout.
The most productive stretch is the six miles between Keno Dam and J.C. Boyle Reservoir.
This is heavy water, so wade carefully, but it also contains many trout to 20 inches.
This section is closed from mid-June to early October, due to high water temperatures.
Trout are abundant but run smaller in a five-mile stretch from Boyle Reservoir to
Boyle Power House. Below the Power House, the fish again run larger but water
conditions fluctuate greatly due to releases from the power plant. Late evenings
and early mornings often offer the best flows for fishing here.

medicine lake fishing scene, siskiyou county, california.  photo by anders tomlinson
Medicine Lake
Medicine Lake holds a good number of rainbow and brook trout. Largemouth bass
fishing is slow when the water temperature is at 50 degrees, but Crappie fishing
is sometimes at its best with the water temperature down this low. Although remote,
the lake is very popular for fishing holding a good number of rainbow and brook trout.
Fishermen will find a variety of fish including rainbow trout and brown trout here.
Whether you’re spinning, fly fishing or bait casting your chances of getting a bite
here are good. So grab your favorite fly fishing rod and reel, and head out to Medicine Lake.