Saturday, June 18, 2011

Long-Winded Update 6-18

Wow, I've been slacking big time on writing this, I apologize. Hopefully this entry will be filled with all kinds of good info to make up for it. The last entry I left you with saying I'd have a summer steelhead report, and fortunately I have 2. One a little better than the other.

We ran down to the Klickitat for a couple days, the water was really high but fishable when we got there, but the first night a little rainstorm rolled through and got all the feeder creeks dumping mud, leaving us with maybe a foot of visability. We gave it a shot anyways and all we had to show for it was one fish hooked for all of a couple headshakes and gone. It wasn't all a waste, it was good to be back on this awesome river and we checked out the different channels, the trees that have been washed out or relocated, and it's a fun river to row at 3500 cfs. We woke day 2 to find the river in the same shape as the day previous, so we packed up and headed back to Eburg. The Yakima was beyond gone, and the only fishable water around was a Yak tributary around Cle Elum(take a stab at that one), so we dumped our boat in and floated the bottom end and out into the Yak, and found plenty of willing cutties and bows, including a couple really nice ones around the 17-18" mark(pictured below). It was a fun float, and was nice to make a decent day of fishing out of nothing.
Now for the better report, we went down a few days ago to our favorite Grays Harbor area river in search of some early summer fish. A few guys have been fishing it, but certainly not even close to the pressure this river gets in the winter. Reports were a fish being caught here and there. The cool thing about this river is it is damn controlled, so it was clear(really clear for that matter) and nice and low. They dump about a quarter to half of the average flow of the winter time in the summer and fall, the lowest I've fished it in winter was 1300 cfs with the average being about 2000, and on this day the river would be at 500. It was pretty neat to see the little winter slots and traveling water that were completely out of water, and with the water being so clear we were able to spot all kinds of cool structure within the deeper pools and runs that will definately come in handy in the winter seasons to come.

As we had predicted on the way down, the fish were either holed up in the bigger tanks, nosed up in riffles and broken water, or tucked up in hard traveling water that provided some cover, though we did roll over one in a glass tailout of pea gravel with no structure or cover in 2 feet of water in the middle of a bright sunny day(wtf was he/she thinking?). Also, longer casts out front and away from the boat with the bobber rigs is also important in these conditions. We found some fish though, got a few to the net and a few got away prematurely. They were all chrome as can be and fought really well, most jumping a few times and peeling off some great runs that their wild bretheren would be proud of, though we did land one wild one. Due to the nature of this river at these flows and the length of float required, we bobber fish mostly. There are a few nice pieces of swing water in the float, but hucking bobbers is a great way to cover all the little slots and buckets under the trees that these fish hold in. Couple shots below.
If something like above interests you, come down and talk to me or give me a call at the shop. I'd be happy to share some info with you or take you fishing down there, it's a really fun way to spend a nice summer day and will only improve as the summer moves along. On a good note, the Yakima is now back in shape and rockin' and rollin' at typical summertime flows. The catching has been pretty good the last few days, think Golden Stones, lots o' caddis, and PMD's and Drakes on the right days. Get after it, the fish haven't seen much in the way of flies the last month or so so you can get to pounding on 'em pretty good.

I'll be holed up in the shop for the next several days, so there won't be any reports from me. It's up to you guys to go make a report and then come tell me so I can fish vicariously through you! Anyways, until next time and thanks for reading as always.


Saturday, June 4, 2011

Opening Day!

Well, it is finally here. The first official day for fishing the local moving water. However, many know that it isn't always easy, as generally we find ourselves fighting high water and snow runoff. This year is no exception. For the most part, the rivers are fairly high and off color, but that is not to say they aren't fishable. Especially if you are after some early summer steelhead, get out there and swing a fly in the high, milky, muddy water. You would be really suprised to find how well their eye sight adjusts and how much more grabby they can be. Step in up to your knees, and if you can see your feet, start fishing. As for tactics, you will be fishing winter style with sink tips and bigger flies like Fish Tacos, MOAL Leeches, Pick Yer Pockets, etc.

The Sky definately has some fish spread throughout, the Skagit is always fun as you can put a spankin' on the dollies and also fish for steelhead, and I certainly would consider giving the Snoqualmie a shot. Yes, I know, they stopped planting smolt 2 years ago, therefore there will be no Snoqualmie hatchery origin fish, but who says that fish always go up the correct river? There have been a few Skykomish fish known to poke their heads up in the Sno, particularly in the early season....

As for the Cedar, our little urban trout stream, it is running a little high at the moment but I am guessing it is pretty clean. Wading can be tricky, but the early bird usually gets the worm, the worm being large trout in this instance. Pack some sculpins, stoneflies, worms, some lead and a bobber and get to work. Just be careful wading.

As for lakes, they are fishing about par for the course. Mostly good reports from all local lakes as well as Eastside desert lakes. The saltwater is certainly worth your time, a nice misty morning with the sun coming up over the horizon and not many people around is good for the soul.

That's all I got, the summer season has officially begun. No restrictions on where you can fish and where you can't (unless you are the two guys who got ticketed for poaching at Reiter Pond yesterday with 4 dead fish on the bank). So we'll say hardly any restrictions just to be fair to those two dudes. Have at it, be safe, and as always we'll be around to help with gear, flies, and point you in the right direction. I will have the first official summer steelhead report of the season next week, stay tuned.