PHEASANT HUNTS FOR YOUTH PLANNED
• Registration is now open for the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife’s (ODFW) free pheasant hunts for youth ages 17 and under happening around the state later this month.
Local hunt sites include Ladd Marsh (Sept. 17 and 18) and Baker City (Sept. 24 and 25). ODFW and partners stock pheasants at these special hunts that give youth a head start on regular pheasant seasons, which don’t start until October. Quail and dove may also be hunted. These events are only open to youth who have passed hunter education. Participants need a valid hunting license ($10 for youth 12 to 17, free for age 11 and under). Youth hunters ages 12-17 also need an upland game bird validation ($4). To register, go to www.odfwcalendar.com
• New structure for NE Oregon fall turkey hunting: Three former controlled hunts (Baker, Grande Ronde, Wallowa) have been combined into one first come, first served “Northeast Fall Turkey Hunt” with 450 tags available. The former Blue Mountain controlled hunt is also now first come, first served with 500 tags available. Tags for both these hunts go on sale Sept. 20.
• The Snake River opened for hatchery fall chinook fishing on Sept. 1. The river will be open from the Washington 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. Anglers can also keep an unlimited number of hatchery jack chinook. Chinook jacks are 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,
Steelhead season opened Thursday. A few steelhead are available in the fall however the best fishing is in late winter and early spring. Harvest is limited to three hatchery steelhead per day and must be recorded on the Combined Angling Tag. A Columbia River Basin Endorsement is also required.
THIEF VALLEY RESERVOIR
• The reservoir has been drained completely by the Lower Powder River Irrigation District. ODFW will not restock the reservoir with rainbow trout until spring 2017.
• Steelhead season opened Thursday, although fishing doesn’t generally pick up until later in the month. Harvest is limited to three hatchery steelhead per day and must be recorded on the Combined Angling Tag. A Columbia River Basin Endorsement is also required