The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife released its latest statewide Recreation Report on Tuesday, Oct. 25. Here’ the Wallowa County section of the report:
• Common raptors in the open areas of the county are red-tailed hawks, American kestrels, and golden eagles. Occasionally ferruginous, Swainsonís hawks and prairie falcons can also be seen. Look for bald eagles and ospreys perched in the larger trees along Wallowa Lake shore or on power poles near water in the valley.
• Many elk have returned to the Zumwalt Prairie now. Try driving the Zumwalt and Pine Creek Roads and looking carefully at ridge tops. Elk can also be observed regularly along the Powwatka Ridge Road between 18 and 27 miles north of the town of Wallowa. These areas are county roads that run through private property, so please respect the landownerís privacy and remain on the county road and park out of the traffic lanes while watching the elk. Once you find a herd, use binoculars or a spotting scope to observe the animals.
• Canada geese and several species of ducks can also be seen feeding in agricultural fields and along streams around the county or flying into the north end of Wallowa Lake in the evenings to roost. 9/20/16
Brownlee Reservoir: crappie, bass, perch, catfish, bluegill, trout
Fishing for crappie has been good in the Powder River Arm. Average length has been about 9 inches. Smallmouth bass in the 6-9 inch range are very abundant making it hard to find the larger fish. Call the Idaho Power Companyís recording at 1-800-422-3143 to get information on access at recreational sites. | Reservoir level information
Oxbow Reservoir: trout, crappie, bass, catfish
Fishing for trout is good a tributary mouths. Crappie have moved to deeper water and catch rates are much reduced from spring. Smallmouth bass in the 6-9 inch range are very abundant making it hard to find the larger fish. Fishing for channel cats is beginning to pick up.
Hells Canyon Reservoir: trout, crappie, bass, catfish
Fishing for trout is good at tributary mouths. Crappie have moved to deeper water. Smallmouth bass in the 6-9 inch range are very abundant making it hard to find the larger fish. Fishing for channel cats should be good.
Snake River below Hells Canyon Reservoir: trout, steelhead, salmon, bass
The Snake River will open to hatchery fall Chinook fishing on Thursday, Sept. 1. The river will be open from the OR/WA border to the deadline below Hells Canyon Dam and will remain open until Oct. 30, or until a closure is announced. In addition, the reach from Cliff Mountain Rapid (at river mile 246.7) upstream to the deadline at Hells Canyon Dam will be open from Nov. 1-17. The daily bag limit is six hatchery Chinook salmon.
Anglers can also keep an unlimited number of hatchery jack Chinook. Chinook jacks are salmon between 15 and 24-inches long. Anglers cannot continue to angle for jacks once a limit of adults is retained. Wild Chinook salmon and must be released immediately and unharmed. Only barbless hooks may be used on this stretch of the Snake River while fishing for salmon, steelhead and sturgeon, and anglers should consult the 2015 Oregon Sport Fishing Regulations for other rules that may apply.