Annette Langenstein, Staff
Published in the September 15, 2016 edition
I spoke with Cooper Hedgecock, owner of Indigenous
fishing charter company operating out of Coos Bay. Cooper has been
running guide trips in Oregon for three years, but has many years of
experience fishing in Alaska.
“I ran fishing trips in Alaska for
years,” said Cooper. “I started fishing at age 12,
worked as a
deckhand, a dockhand, and up the chain of command. At age 18
I got my
captain’s license and started running a charter boat, which I
17 seasons. I came back to Coos Bay because this is my home
hey, we’ve got a heck of a fishery here!”
Cooper Hedgecock with his catch of the day.
Adventures operates year-round, depending on the available
fish. “Once I get a call from a client, I figure out a date
we’ll be fishing for,” said Cooper.
“I’ll fish for smallmouth bass on
the Umpqua River from June until the middle of August, but once the
salmon start running I switch over to that fishing.”
Being the sole proprietor and fisherman at his
keeps Cooper busy. “Lately I’ve been taking lots of
out-of-state folks fishing, but my clientele really varies,”
explained. “I definitely take a lot of women fishing, but
retired people, father and son trips, you name it.
real mixed bag of people who want to go
sport that everyone can do!”
Indigenous Adventures is solely a river and bay
enterprise; they don’t go out into the ocean. “We
of rivers right here that I fish from,” said Cooper.
up the Coos River for salmon, but I’ll also fish the
Umpqua, Coquille, Elk and Sixes rivers. Right now I’m
for chinook in the Coos River and the bay. As the season goes
in late September I’ll fish the upper rivers with roe
A fishing trip usually takes about eight hours,
Cooper will stay out later if fishing is slow that day.
really varies with each trip,” he said. “I have no
staying out later so that my clients can catch some fish. I
have no problem referring them to other fishermen if my schedule is too
When you go on a fishing excursion with Indigenous
Adventures, you don’t have to worry about cleaning your catch
bringing your own gear. “I can even give you
your catch,” said Cooper. “I’ll
let you know
what to wear for the trip, what the licensing requirements are, what
personal supplies to take…and I always provide all the gear,
bait, equipment, etc.”
Cooper said that he offers both drift and jet boat
guided fishing trips, with either fly fishing or conventional rod and
reel, and will take clients from beginners to advanced
“I often get last-minute calls from people who have come out
the coast and want to add to the Oregon experience,” said
If you’re looking for a fishing
adventure on one
of our beautiful rivers or in the bay, give Indigenous Adventures a
call at 541-537-0256.
“The best part of my job is meeting new
introducing them to the great fishing we have on the southern Oregon
coast,” Cooper finished.
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