The North Umpqua River features some of the greatest fly fishing in Oregon, maybe the country, possibly the world. Just a few miles east of Roseburg the river is a 33.8 mile fly-fishing only paradise. In the cool waters of this section of the North Umpqua River, you’ll find steelhead and cutthroat trout, coho and Chinook salmon. Each body of water within the Umpqua River Watershed has its own challenges and gifts to anglers. Within the warmer waters of the (main) Umpqua River you’ll find green and white sturgeon, smallmouth bass, striped bass, American shad, non-native bullhead catfish and green sunfish. Closer toward the bay you may find native saltwater perch. Depending on the time of year, you’ll find varieties of anadromous fish that the Pacific Northwest is known for: coho, Chinook salmon, steelhead, and cutthroat trout.
If you’re more of the cast-and-wait type of angler, there’s plenty of mountain lakes and reservoirs that are regularly stocked with trout (usually of the rainbow variety). For a peaceful morning or evening fishing session try Hemlock Lake located 32 miles up Little River Highway. There are no motorized boats allowed on the lake so it’s quiet enough to hear every fish jump.
Lemolo Lake, just 90 minutes east of Roseburg, has plenty of camping for those looking for a fishing-filled weekend or longer trip. Nearby Diamond Lake is also stocked with trout and during the winter months is one of the few places in Oregon to go ice fishing.
Though the Umpqua Valley is known for its steelhead fly fishing, there are options for those looking to cast a wider net (pun intended). From drift boat fishing along the Umpqua River, to lake fishing for trout in the High Cascades, to bank fishing along the North Umpqua — you’re bound to get hooked on the fishing experiences that the Umpqua Watershed has to offer.
Interested in fishing with a guide?
Download a list of local guides and outfitters here.