Charleston is well known as a small town with beautiful views of the marina and excellent fishing. The best way to experience fishing in the area is going out with one of the three charter companies.

Captain John Blanchard at Sharky’s Charters


Captain John Blanchard single handedly runs Sharky’s Charters. John started as a commercial fisherman but decided to switch to guiding and has lead charters for four years now. He is the only captain, and takes out smaller groups of 4-6, which is a great way to get more valuable one-on-one instruction. When asked what his favorite part of being a guide was, he said that he likes meeting people and forming friendships with his customers, who frequently return for fishing trips. He also loves sharing his passion with others and remarked “If you do what you love, you don’t work a day in your life”.

Captain Kurt Smith at Betty Kay’s Charters


Captain Kurt Smith is one of the two captains at Betty Kay’s Charters and has about 18 years of experience. He will be taking over as owner of the company in the upcoming months. Kurt takes pride in his charter company’s commitment to customer service and making sure that every customer has a fun trip and great experience. He thinks that the value provided by hiring a guide is immeasurable, as they have all the “local insight” and know where the fish are better that any visitor could figure out on their own. Betty Kay’s is able to accommodate larger groups and more people depending on trips, fitting about 20 passengers on a boat.

One of the universal factor of fishing charters is they are entirely weather dependent. If the ocean is too rough or winds are too strong, they must cancel charter trips for that day, so it is important to be flexible when hiring. If you or someone you know is interested in fishing in the Charleston area, try giving one of the local charter companies a call!

If you are looking for the best way to experience food on the Southern Oregon Coast, look no further than the Wild Rivers Coast Food Trail. The mission of the Wild Rivers Coast Food Trail is to advertise businesses from farms to craft breweries that produce, source or cook local foods. It is open for visitor participation year-round and includes a number of establishments along the Southern Oregon Coast broken into different categories. The trail started as just a farm trail from Bandon to Port Orford. Now, just three years later, the food trail has grown to 40 participating businesses spanning from Reedsport to Brookings.

Following the food trail provides visitors with some of the most rewarding food-related experiences along the wild rivers coast. Seeing the logo in an establishment ensures guests that all the food they are receiving is local, fresh and sustainable. It is an easy way to identify delicious places to stop for a beer, food or produce.

In addition, South Coast Tours offers guided van tours along the food trail, allowing you to get the most out of your adventure. They can accommodate you and your party to help you experience the best the trail has to offer, as well as give additional insight that only locals can provide.

For more information, go to the WRC food trail website at

Wild Rivers Coast Food Trail Logo

Gold Beach is a small town on the Southern Oregon Coast, sitting where the Rouge River meets the Pacific Ocean. It has excellent biking, bird watching and world-class fishing.

Five Star Charters is an ocean and river fishing charter based in Gold Beach. Mark Lottis, owner of Five Star, has been chartering since the early 70s and opened the business in 2003. It is family owned and operated by Mark, his wife, and son. They offer both river and ocean trips and fish for halibut, ground fish, and salmon, depending on season. About 85% of their customers are returners, proving that they provide great fishing and customer service. Something that makes Five Star Charters special is that they have boats and equipment for specifically fishing ling cod. Their location with the Rouge reef makes it a perfect place for ling cod, as well as other ground fish and salmon. Mark believes a lot of the value in hiring a charter comes from having the most recent knowledge of where the fish are, as well as the convenience of not having to invest in all the fishing equipment. In addition, customers are able to focus on fishing rather than being concerned with navigation or boat maintenance.

For more information about Five Star Charters, visit their website at


Mark Lottis, owner of Five Star, standing in front of their fish cleaning station.