Copyright 2017 James Marsh
Fly Fishing The Upper and Middle Rogue
Fly fishing the Rogue River provides a highly diversified
fishing experience. You can catch about every species
of Pacific Coast anadromous fish as well as all the major
species of trout in the Rogue River. For that reason, we
have broken the river down into the two parts. This
section covers the headwaters of the Rogue River and
the tailwater called the "Holly Water" section below Lost
Creek Dam. Fly fishing the Rogue River extending from
the Holly Water section to the Pacific Ocean is covered
in this separate Stream section.
The headwaters above Lost Creek Reservoir come
together near the little town of Prospect The North Fork,
which is the main stem of the Rogue River, originates in
the northwest corner of Carter Lake National Park. State
Route 230 follows along the river all the way to
Prospect. The stream is stocked in this section but also
has plenty of wild trout. Getting off the highway to the
less fished areas is the key to fishing the North Fork.
Muir Creek, Copeland Creek, Mill Creek, Crater Creek,
Bybee Creek and National Creek are all beautiful
tributaries of the North Fork of the Rogue River. Most of
these are accessible from logging roads. The trout are
small but wild and ncludes both brook trout and rainbow
trout. National and Copeland Creeks require some
hiking to reach their waters.
The Middle and South Forks of the Rogue River come
together just south of Prospect. Both of these forks
provide good fishing opportunities for small rainbow and
brook trout.; The three forks, which make up the main
stem, flow into the Rogue River arm of Lost Creek
Reservoir. Forest Route #37 and County Road # 992
both cross the Middle and South Forks provide access
in addition to trails that exist in some areas..
The "Holy Water" section of the Rogue is open year-
round for fly fishing only. It's small section of water that's
about a half a mile long between the Lost Creek Dam
and the salmon hatchery diversion dam. The trout are
stocked in the tailwater as fingerlings. They are
protected by the catch and release regulations and
protected from the large anadromous fish. Most of the
rainbows are between 12 and 20 inches but they grow
even larger. Fishing is limited to the banks due to the
The tailwater has a very good aquatic insect population
with caddisflies, mayflies and stoneflies, including the
large salmonflies. Blue-winged Olives hatch about all
year long and even in the middle of the winter. The
water temperature doesn't vary that much since it's a
bottom discharge tailwater.
Access to the Holly Water section is good. There's a
county park on the bank of the stream.
The season is open year-round above Lost Creek Res.
Fly fishing Rouge River after the runoff which normally
ends by mid June can be very good.
Summertime is the best time for fly fishing the Upper
Early Fall is a good time for fly fishing the upper Rogue
The tailwater section and can be fished all Winter long.
|Type of Stream
Rainbow Trout (Wild)
Brook Trout (Wild)
Cutthroat Trout (Native)
Small to Medium
Last Sat. of April through Oct. 31
Year-round on the Holly Water.
There can be special closings.
State of Oregon
National Weather Service
Fly Fishing Gear, Tackle and
Upper Rogue River
Free Shipping Continental U. S.
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Photo Courtesy Steven Lamb
Recommended Tackle & Gear
4, 5 or 6 weight
Dry fly: 9 ft., 5 or 6X Nymphing: 71/2 ft.,
3 or 4X, Streamers 0-2X
Dry fly: 5 or 6X, Nymphing: 3 or 4X,
Best Fly Rods:
Perfect Fly Supreme Four, Superb Five
or Ultimate Six
For 4/5/6 fly line
Fly Floatants and Misc Items:
Floatants, KISS Strike Indicators
Tools & Accessories:
Nippers, forceps, retractors, etc.
|Options For Selecting Flies:
1. Email us (email@example.com)
with the dates you will be fishing this
stream and we will send you a list of our
fly suggestions. Please allow up to 24
hours for a response.
2. Call us 800-594-4726 and we will help
you decide which flies you need.
3. Email us (firstname.lastname@example.org)
with a budget for flies and we will select
them to match the budget and get them to
you in time for your fly fishing trip.
All orders are shipped free in the
U. S. Orders over $50 are shipped via
Recommended Tackle & Gear
Fly Line: (Steelhead/salmon)
7, 8 , 9 or 10 weight for appropriate type
rod, sinking, sinking tip and floating
10#, 12# in 9 to 15 feet lengths
10# and 12#
Best Fly Rods:
Perfect Fly 7, 8, 9 and 10 ft. single hand
For 7 to 10 weight lines
Fly Floatants and Misc Items:
KISS Strike Indicators, Lanyards, etc.
Tools & Accessories:
Nippers, forceps, retractors, etc.
The middle and upper sections of
the river are turning out some
good catches of trout. The middle
has some Chinook salmon and
steelhead of which some of both
are being caught. There are still
some hatches taking place.
Stream levels are fine in all
sections. Be sure to click the
above link to the Rogue River
fishing report. It provides stream
level and condition information as
well as recommended flies.
10/16/15 Not much change inthe conditions took place last week or is predicted to take place
this week. Trout fishing remains very good with October Caddis at the peak of their hatch.
More summer steelhead will move into the middle and upper river when we get some rain,
meantime, trout fishing is excellent.
10/23/15 Trout fishing continues to be very good. Blue-winged olives and October Caddis are
hatching. Summer Steelhead numbers are low and fishing only fair. The rain we should get this
week may change that and bring in more fish. There is a chance almost every day for the next
week. The low clear water also hurts the opportunity to fool them.
10/31/15 The Middle Rouge has been producing a good number of steelhead. The all fly goes
to artificial Nov. 1. The upper Rogue is still producing a good number of fish. Egg flies are
mostly being used by swinging and nymphing both should produce as well or better.
11/07/15 Hatches are reduced to mostly Blue-winged olive species and Midges. The upper
river trout fishing is good. A few steelhead are being caught in the middle and upper river. Egg
flies like our Veiled Beadhead Egg steelhead fly is working good. the is rain in the forecast
every day for the next week.
11/14/15 The water temperature is about 46 degrees and the hatches reduced to Midges and
a few Blue-winged olives. The is rain and snow in the forecast about every day for the next
tweek. The Brown Sculpin streamer has been hot and a big fish fly.
11/28/05 Decent numbers of summer run steelhead and coho salmon are being caught on the
fly from the Ferry Boat Ramp to the Cole River hatchery off limit water. The water is in the mid
forties and steelhead nymph like the Green sedge are working good. A few anglers are
catching trout using midges and BWO nymphs.
12/05/15 There is a good chance of rain every day for the next seven days. It is going to be a
little warmer than last week. You should be able to catch trout or steelhead. The numbers of
returns to the Cole River hatchery and fish being caught in the upper river are very good.
12/11/15 As you probably already know, the river is blown out. That is slang for very high and
off color. It is going to take a few days to clear up. The area is under a Winter storm warning
right now, with snow in the forecast every day but one out of the next seven days.
12/19/15 As you probably know, there's a winter storm warning in effect today and tomorrow.
There will be heavy snow and snow continuing all week. There is little chance you can fish for
the next few days, or at least have a reasonable opportunity. Fishing will be good when this is
01/26/15 The river is flowing at 2370 cfs. Fishing is normally best at 2,000 or lower. There is a
lot of steelhead in the river thanks to the high water levels, We have added a link below to the
USGS site at at Cole M Fish hatchery. Keep up with the latest information by clicking the above
linked Rogue River fishing report.
01/02/16 Stream levels and flows are back at normal for this time of the season. Lots of fish
are in the system brought in by the higher water. Anglers have just started to catch some good
numbers again. Nymphing and swinging are both working.
01/09/16 The steelhead are doing pretty good from Grants Pass downstream in the middle
river. Nymphing with an indicator and swinging streamers and Spey flies is both working. The
water temperature is in good shape at about 40 degrees and the flows okay but keep a check
01/16/16 Conditions have been pretty good with a few fish being caught. There is a lot of rain
and rain/snow in the forecast, so you will have to keep a close check on them. It is much
warmer and that is going to help the "catching".
01/23/16 The weather temperature wise, isn't that bad and fishing would be good if the stream
wasn't very high. There is a lot more rain in the forecast for this week, so we don't think the
situation will likely change but you should keep checking the stream levels.
02/06/16 The upper part of the river but below the reservior, is producing some hatchery and
wild steelhead. The middle section is producing a few steelhead now that the levels are down.
Trout are also being caught in the middle section.
02/13/16 Fly fishing for steelhead has been very good but the river is on the way up. You will
have to keep a check on the water levels for the coming week with more rain in the forecast.
02/20/16 Anglers continued to catch decent numbers of steelhead but it is currently raining
and will continue through tomorrow. You will just have to watch the levels, but they are okay at
02/27/16 Steelhead and trout are being caught in the upper Rogue. The levels are currently
down and the water is clear, but it headed back up with rain in the forecast everyday. The
good levels probably won't last very long.
03/12/16 Steelhead have been caught in the middle and upper Rogue river when the water is
down low enough to fish but it has been high for several days and it very high now. There is
more rain in the forecast and it is likely to be high for a few more days. I wish we could give a
03/19/16 There have been a few steelhead caught between Big Butte Creek and the hatchery
deadline. There have been a few trout caught above the lake. The stream levels are still high
and there's a chance of rain or snow every day for the next week but one.
03/26/16 The river is still high in all sections but it can be fished, depending on the exact
location. Winter steelhead are still be caught. Trout fishing would be good if the levels would
subside. Several hatches are underway. March Browns and Skwala stoneflies have started
04/02/16 Winter steelhead fishing has been good and should continue to be good. The stream
levels are down and the water clear. The weather forecast looks great for the coming week with
little chance of rain.
04/16/16 Fishing for trout was closed April 1 below Lost Creek reservoir. You can fish for trout
above the reservoir and conditions are currently pretty good. Several insects have started
hatching. Winter steelhead fishing has been good as long as the stream levels were not too
04/23/16 As you probably know, fishing for trout is closed until May 22, on all waters below the
Lost Creek Reservoir. The steelhead are mostly spawned and gone back to sea. There may
be a few left but one would do better on other streams.
05/07/16 The steelhead season is over for all practical purposes. There could be some drop
backs still in the middle section. Trout fishing season is open above the lake and closed until
May 22, in the middle Rogue.
05/14/16 The steelhead season is over and it is another week before the season for trout
opens in the middle river. It is open now above the lake. It should be good from the start in the
middle section. Keep up with the latest by clicking our Fishing Report link above.
05/21/16 The trout season opens tomorrow and the conditions are currently very good. Lots of
insects are hatching and we are expecting anglers to catch a lot of trout.
05/28/16 The trout season got off to a good start with our customers catching a lot of trout the
past six days. Several insects are hatching and nymphs and dry fly fishing is good.
06/04/16 Our customers are reporting that they are catching good numbers of trout in the
upper Rogue and above the lake. Lots of insects, mostly caddisflies, but some Little Yellow
stoneflies are hatching.
06/18/16 The flows from Lost Creek Reservior are down and that stretch of river is producing
some trout. The stocked trout above the lake are also being caught in good numbers. A few
summer run steelhead were caught last week, but they just started coming in.
05/25/16 There are summer steelhead in the middle river and some are being caught. Summer
steelhead are also being caught in the upper river. Trout fishing is good in the middle and
upper river as well. Release all wild trout.
06/03/16 Two good reports from customers catching summer run steelhead in the middle river.
They are also being caught in the upper river and more fish should be arriving each day. Trout
fishing is good in the upper river and above Lost Creek Reservoir.. The stream levels are on
the low side.
07/30/16 The summer steelhead are doing okay with the low water levels. Some stocked trout
are being caught. The middle river is turning out some hatchery steelhead fish. The upper
Rogue is better for them. Trout fishing above Lost Creek is doing very well, with okay levels,
cooler weather and some hatches taking place.
08/06/16 Customers are catching summer steelhead in decent numbers in the upper river.
Some Chinook are also being caught. Trout fishing is good in the upper Rogue. Trout fishing is
very good above Lost Creek Reservoir.
08/13/16 You can catch summer runs in the middle and upper Rogue. We think the upper
section is better right now. It is going to be hot again this week, so you may want to fish early
mornings and late in the day near dark. Trout fishing is also good in both sections. Early
morning fishing with sculpin streamers is effective.
08/20/16 The summer run steelhead are still being caught in the middle and upper rogue.
Trout fishing is good as well. It will be a very hot week and we recommend fishing early
mornings and the last two hours of the day for the best results.
08/27/16 The summer runs have slowed down some but should pick back up with the cooler
weather forecast. Some releases from Lost Creek has also helped. Trout fishing above and
below the lake is very good. We think the overall outlook for steelhead this coming week is
09/16/16 We received two good reports of summer fish caught this past week. Trout fishing
continues to be very good. The cooler weather may result in more fish coming upstream. Flows
are running 1790 cfs, which is good.
10/01/16 The steelhead fishing is about over but there are still some fish in the river below the
hatchery. Trout fishing has been excellent in the middle and above Lost Creek Reservoir. The
cooler weather has the fish active and feeding good. There are Blue-winged olive, Mahogany
duns and October caddis hatching.
10/08/16 Trout fishing continues to be very good both in the tailwater and above the lake.
There are several hatches taking place and our customers have been catching good numbers
of fish. The stream levels and weather forecast looks good for this coming week.
11/23/16 The stream ran high this past week and we received only one report. It is clear now,
but will most likely rain every day for the coming week. Trout fishing is excellent when you can
catch the stream levels low enough to fish. There are lots of hatches going on and the cloud
cover really helps.
12/24/17 The river levels are still high but not too high to fish. The "catching" has slowed down
but both trout and steelhead are being caught. The steelhead are headed for the Cole Creek
01/14/17 The river is down a lot but still high and dingy. There is some rain forecast from
Tuesday through next Friday. There are a few steelhead being caught by the few fishing but
this should improve as the water drops and clears. Steelhead nymphs, like our Spotted Sedge
larva and Giant Black stonefly nymphs will work.
01/21/17 There are some steelhead and coho being caught. The river levels are still high at
Grants Pass but falling. High at Raygold but falling. It is currently snowing but ending
Wednesday, and other than stain in the water, that is good. It should help get the levels down.
01/28/17 The Middle and upper section is currently in good shape. There may still be some
stain in places, but anglers should begin to catch steelhead. Swinging and nymphing both
should work. There are plenty of steelhead in both sections of the river.
02/11/17 The river is high and muddy in both sections. You might try from Big Butte Creek to
Cole Rivers Hatchery. It is always clearer. You can only watch the stream levels and fish as
soon as they get low enough again. Our customers were catching a lot of steelhead before the
02/25/17 The flows at the hatchery are 2680 cfs at 3.68 foot, or still very high. All you can do is
continue to watch the stream levels and fish when it drops down low enough and clear enough.
Swinging flies should work when it is still a little high. The water is also muddy.
03/17/17 Steelhead were being caught in the upper river prior to the high water levels. Grants
pass is flowing at 7390 cfs at 5.34 ft. There is rain in the forecast about every other day and
may not be as heavy. You will just have to keep a close check on the levels. The fish are there.
It is just a matter of being able to fish.
04/23/17 The stream levels are still high, to high to wade but boat and bank anglers are
catching a few drop back steelhead and some Springers,or Chinook salmon, in the middle
section. Few if any, have reached the upper section. There is a chance of rain one day this
coming week, otherwise clear for the next seven days.
05/21/17 The river re-opens to trout fishing on Monday 22nd, or tomorrow. The stream levels
are still a little high but should be dropping down soon. There is no rain in the forecast for the
next five days. Conditions should be good this coming weekend. Be sure to check the upper
and middle Rogue fishing report by clicking the above link.
06/09/17 The summer steelhead are now up to the Cole Creek hatchery and being caught in
several locations. Some springers are being caught. A lot of trout are being caught in all
sections, including above Lost Creek Reservoir. There are lots of aquatic insects hatching.
The discharges and stream levels are good.
06/24/17 Summer runs are being caught in good numbers as well as lots of trout. Trout are
coming from the Trophy section and above the reservoir. There are lots of aquatic insects
hatching including Pale Morning duns, Golden and Little Yellow stonflies, and two species of
07/01/17 Conditions remain good with a lot of trout and summer run steelhead being caught.
The Trophy section is turning out some good catches of trout. The section above the Lost
Creek Reservoir is producing plenty of trout as well.
07/15/17 The middle and upper Rogue are in good shape with decent numbers of summer
runs and trout being caught. Stream levels have been fine and should continue to be in good
shape. Trout fishing above the reservoir is very good.
07/22/17 More good reports of catches in the middle and upper rogue. Summer runs have
been consistent. Stream levels have been good in all sections. Trout are being caught in good
numbers above the reservoir.
08/05/17 The hot weather isn't going to have much effect on the river or trout. It will the anglers
fishing. Fish early and late in the day. Summer Runs are being caught.
08/12/17 There are few anglers fishing the upper and middle Rogue but those that are, are
catching good numbers of trout and summer runs. Trout are being caught in good numbers
above Lost Creek Reservoir as well. There are still some very good hatches going on in spite
of the heat. There is rain forecast everyday this coming week and the cloud cover and rain
clearing the air will help.