Salmon fishing boats in Coos Bay at sunset

Fishing in Coos Bay: Fishing Report, Charter Fishing, and More

Regardless of the season, visitors of The Mill Casino Hotel & RV Park are drawn to our area for much more than the thrilling games, fine dining, and enjoyable events. In fact, what draws our guests back time and time again is the year-round opportunities to fish in the picturesque waters of Coos Bay, Oregon.

Whether you’re in it for the thrill of the catch or looking to spend some peaceful moments casting your fishing line in the deep sea’s blue waters, Coos Bay is the destination you’ve been looking for.

Unlock the secrets to mastering the art of fishing in this area with the following essential breakdown of everything you need to know.

What You Need for Fishing on the Coos Bay

First and foremost, any anglers over the age of 12 years old must obtain an Oregon fishing license from the Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife, regardless of whether you’re fishing off a boat or on the beach. A separate shellfish license is required for crabbing, clamming, and gathering mussels.

These licenses can be purchased on a daily or annual basis, with prices varying for children, seniors, and nonresidents. Licenses can either be bought online or by visiting a local licensed vendor.

Aside from the proper Oregon fishing or shellfish license, you’ll need the proper bait and gear to make for a successful fishing trip. Gear is available for either purchase or rent in many places such as BiMart-Coos Bay, Big 5 Sporting Goods, and Bites on Tackle.

Native Fish of Coos Bay

Whether you’re cruising along the bay in a fishing boat or angling from the shore, Coos Bay is home to an ample population of fish. Depending on closures and the regulations imposed each season, you’ll have the chance to catch and keep the following species:

Salmon

  • Most Commonly Found Species: Chinook and Coho
  • Habitat: Fresh and Salt Water
  • Appearance:
    • Chinook: Chinook can be identified by black spots on back, silver sides, red belly and fins, black gumline.
    • Coho: Coho can be identified by dark green backs and heads, red sides, white gumline
  • Best season to fish them: August-November

Halibut

  • Most Commonly Found Species: Pacific Halibut
  • Habitat: Salt Water
  • Appearance: Pacific Halibut can be identified by muted greyish-brown colors, a flat body, and the unique characteristic of swimming sideways.
  • Best season to fish them: May-September

Rainbow Trout

  • Habitat: Fresh Water
  • Appearance: Rainbow Trout can be identified by their olive color and speckled body with a red stripe along the side, and white tips on fins.
  • Best season to fish them: August-November

Steelhead Trout & Winter Steelhead

  • Habitat: Fresh and Salt Water
  • Appearance: Steelhead Trout can be identified by their olive color, speckled body, and a red stripe along the side. These are the same fish species as Rainbow Trout but with a different lifestyle.
  • Best season to fish them: August-March

Cutthroat Trout

  • Habitat: Fresh Water
  • Appearance: Steelhead Trout looks similar to rainbow trout, but has red or orange on the underside of the jaw, and no white tips on the fins.
  • Best season to fish them: August-November

Lingcod

  • Habitat: Salt Water
  • Appearance: Lingcod can be identified by their spotted grey/brown (sometimes green), elongated body, and their large mouth with sharp teeth.
  • Best season to fish them: Year-round

Rockfish

  • Most Commonly Found Species: Black, Blue, Deacon, China, Quillback, Copper, Canary, Vermilion
  • Habitat: Salt Water
  • Best season to fish them: Year-round

Albacore Tuna

  • Habitat: Salt Water
  • Appearance: Albacore Tuna can be identified by their blue/silver back, sides, and belly, and their long side fin.
  • Best season to fish them: July-September

Largemouth Bass

  • Habitat: Fresh Water
  • Appearance: Largemouth Bass can be identified by the green on their back and sides, their white belly, a dark stripe along their side, and their large mouth.
  • Best season to fish them: April-August

Surf Perch

  • Habitat: Salt Water
  • Appearance: Surf Perch can be identified by their silver/brass colored body, and the red/brown vertical lines on their body.
  • Best season to fish them: April-July

Salmon fishing boats in Coos Bay at sunset.

In addition to these species, you can also try your hand at crabbing and collecting other varieties of shellfish. The Oregon Coast boasts top-notch crabbing and clamming opportunities, and Coos Bay is no exception. Don’t forget to bring a cooler, so you can be sure to keep your gatherings fresh.

Coos Bay Fishing Report

Report from Fishing Booker

Charter Fishing Near Coos Bay, Oregon

If deep-sea fishing in Coos Bay, Oregon is what you’re after, consider one of our area’s fishing charters to take you out. Although timeframes and prices may vary, you can expect to spend 8-12 hours on your excursion with average prices ranging from $200-$600.

Even though equipment is usually provided, you should be prepared to bring your own lunch and obtain your own fishing license for certain species (such as salmon). With so many options to choose from, you’re bound to find an experience that is exactly to your liking.

Ideal Fishing Locations in Coos Bay

  • Tenmile Lake: Located 30 mins from Mill Casino. Best quality lake for Largemouth Bass; perch or trout can also be caught here.
  • Empire Lakes: Located 10 mins from Mill Casino. These lakes are stocked a couple times a year with trophy sized trout.
  • Coos Bay: Located 14 mins from Mill Casino. Salmon swim up the bay to spawn from about August/September – early November.
  • Point Adams Jetty or Cape Arago State Park: Piers, rocks, and jetties in these locations allow you to bottom fish without requiring a boat.
  • West Form of the Millicoma River or North Fork of the Coquille River: Best area to find outstanding Winter Steelhead.
  • Pacific Ocean: Albacore Tuna swim in the summer currents about 30 miles offshore. At times, Dorado and Bluefin can be found among them.
  • Horsfall Beach: Year-round surf perch fishing is available with a generous bag limit of 15 fish per day.

Make Your Accommodations Today

Those who love to fish opt to lodge at The Mill Casino Hotel & RV Park due to our close proximity to the water. In fact, our property touches the shoreline of Coos Bay, right between its North Bend Upper Range and Ferndale Lower Range.

This makes us the perfect fishing haven for folks looking to make a catch. We also offer a convenient and exciting fishing experience with our Stay & Play package in partnership with PacificPond Charters. This package combines the best of both worlds, treating you to a 4 hour rockfish excursion for up to five people and a one night stay in two double queen rooms at The Mill Casino.

The Mill Casino is a fisherman’s paradise, and we take pride in being the perfect home base to explore the best fishing spots in the Coos Bay area. With accommodations that include 203 rooms and 102 RV parking spaces, you can tailor your trip exactly as you wish. After an exhilarating day on the water, unwind and try your luck at our casino or indulge in mouth-watering dishes at our on-site restaurants. For more information, call us today at 800-953-4800.

Get ready to cast your line, create memories, and immerse yourself in all of the wonders that Coos Bay has to offer. Your next fishing adventure awaits!