Best place to live for steelhead?

Discussion in 'Steelhead' started by Panhandle, Oct 9, 2007.

  1. rainbow My name is Mark Oberg

    Posts: 1,228
    Renton wa
    Ratings: +77 / 0
    I live In long beach Washington. about as sw as you can get. Just about 15 minutes to oregon. I have a lot of choices here to find steelies. Is awsum year round porkers between salmon and steelhead.
  2. obiwankanobi Active Member

    Posts: 1,309
    Ratings: +98 / 0
    Being a long time native of Idaho, I sure as hell wouldn't move near the Little Salmon for the "war fishing" that occurs every year for steelhead and salmon fishing. That is where cowboy's are fighting each other, saying every slew of racist words to the Indians netting salmon and selling them to tourists for $10 and people are casting above you, via the use of tree stands. It is combat fishing at its finest and I do mean combat. My friend who is a local police dept in Riggins, ID often has to go and examine the aftermath of two drunk fishermen that got into it.
  3. Hal Eckert Member

    Posts: 615
    West GLs
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    Sounds interesting must say have seen a lot of combat steelhead and salmon fishing venues in the last 27 years in the western GLs but nothing like you describe here.


  4. David Prutsman All men are equal before fish

    Posts: 322
    Woodland Park, Colorado
    Ratings: +25 / 0

    They are just trout, people make them more complicated than it really is.

  5. Steelie Mike Active Member

    Posts: 1,600
    Camas, WA
    Ratings: +24 / 0
  6. obiwankanobi Active Member

    Posts: 1,309
    Ratings: +98 / 0
    Pan, since it sounded like you went to the Clearwater Spey Clave and know what the area is about, I really think you would like living in the LC Valley. Locally, you have access to the Clearwater, SF of the Clearwater, Grand Rhonde, Salmon River, NF of the Clearwater and great trout fishing during those non-steelheading times.
  7. SeaRun Fanatic Member

    Posts: 395
    Northwest, WA
    Ratings: +16 / 0
    Olympia, WA. Peninsula rivers, SWW rivers, even NW Oregon are not too far, and its a cool city.:thumb:
  8. Jake Bannon nymphs for steelhead....

    Posts: 667
    puget sound
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    Id choose to live in Forks, be close to a lot of the OP rivers.
  9. tahuyamg tahuyamg

    Posts: 227
    not sure
    Ratings: +8 / 0
    Don't forget YOU to were once a newbie. It's not that complicated. Like others here have already stated it's trout fishing.
  10. Kevin J. Burnham Active Member

    Posts: 2,128
    Ratings: +106 / 0
    Toledo or Castle Rock. Right in the heart !!!
  11. Will Atlas Guest

    Posts: 0
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    I dont think you can really beat portland. Within 25 minutes of both the Sandy and the Clack. Less than an hour to the Kalama, Lewis. 2 and change depending on where you fish the Deschutes, and less than two hours from large swaths of the oregon coast. That being said, if you want a steelhead river in your back yard that's not ridiculously crowded that wont cut it. I havent fished the area ALOT but I feel like SW Washington is not nearly the place it once was for steelheading. The Cowlitz, Kalama, Lewis and others provide the opportunity to catch hatchery winters and summers all though baisically that's it. The wild runs in SWW (particularly the summers) are teetering on the brink of extinction. Only about 300 wild fish were passed over Kalama Falls this year. That's miserable fishing.

    I think the WA coast would be my pick for best overall steelhead opportunity. Followed closely by the oregon coast. On the WA coast there is relatively good winter run fishing still. In the summer there are hatchery brats in almost every river as well as a smattering of wild fish (which dont seem to be doing all that well). Its pretty much year-round steelheading. The oregon coast is a close second. It falls being the WA coast in my opinion for a couple reasons. First the winter fish are smaller on average and they dont run as late into the spring. All those rivers are rain dominated systems which means during the summer they run low and warm. While there are summer fish in a couple rivers down there, conditions can be extremely tough when trying to get them (both on the angler and the fish).

    As far as overall livability though, Forks pretty much blows. It rains like 5 times as much as seattle and it's about as backwater as you get in WA anymore. Not exactly an intellectual mecca if you know what I'm saying. I think the oregon coast is probably at least a little more livable than forks.

    I'm obviously showing my nothern bias here. It seems to me another good choice would be ashland oregon. Right on the banks of the rouge, within striking distance of the N. Umpqua, the Klamath and many other coastal rivers. That's pretty much year-round steelheading at its finest, plus I hear ashland isnt a half bad place to live.

  12. Will Atlas Guest

    Posts: 0
    Ratings: +0 / 0

    Can I ask how long you've been flyfishing for steelhead? Or for that matter, how many fish have you caught lifetime on the fly? You seem to have quite the ego and sense of entitlement about your steelhead fishing. Might expect that from someone who has been fishing for steelhead for 40-50 years. I agree that having crowded rivers is obnoxious, but it sounds like you're a little brittle that you're not catching very many I on to something?

  13. Tim Lockhart Working late at The Office

    Posts: 1,898
    Mill Creek, WA
    Ratings: +222 / 0
    OK girls, let’s break it up. Subject is ‘Best Places to Live for Steelies,’ not ‘Pick on Buehler.’ To swim upstream a bit, Buehler is not the first to touch on that subject (and won’t be the last). Smart enough guy, if he’s pissed for BEING FOLLOWED, I’d say he was probably followed (newsflash I know). I’d be pissed too. And who’s to say he hasn’t spent more time helping newbies than most of us…that wouldn’t surprise me either. Point is, I bet Buehler has some pretty frustrating stories to back his comments…and an occasional rant is good on this site. Would hate to see it get boring.
  14. Mark Bové Chasin tail

    Posts: 520
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    Terrice BC. I know its out of the country but if steelhead are truely the most important thing in your existance. Then move to this Mecca of steelheading. Terrice has all five species of salmon. Steelhead every day of the year, and not to mention the most beautiful area in the world. Buy a cheap sled, a raft, and live the dream.
  15. Old Man Just an Old Man

    Posts: 21,146
    Dillon, Mt
    Ratings: +1,412 / 0
    Why anybody would want to live in western Washington is beyond me. There are easier fish to catch out there than the wiley steelhead. It is said it is the fish of a 1,000 casts. So why waste your time on them.

    I lived in the shadow of the "S" rivers and have bided my time in them. But I guess that it is just me as I got tired of fishing in the rain all the time and have opted for a drier climate. Montana.

  16. HauntedByWaters Active Member

    Posts: 2,723
    Ratings: +70 / 0
    To those dear poor souls who were offended by my rant,

    It is true, it was a rant. I am can be a bit of an arse. It had to do with the nature of the post. It brought the words “realty” and “steelhead” too close together in my mind.

    And to clarify:

    I have been followed MANY times. It happens A LOT these days and than I get low holed by someone who has brand new gear who can barely cast. It pisses me off.

    I have introduced more people and gotten more people into their first steelhead than most. In fact all those who know me, know I am the guy to go fishing with if you want a steelhead and I help teach the Western Wash. University fly fishing class.

    I am all about getting people into fishing because I think it benefits the fish in the long run. Catching them makes people see them as less of a resource and more of something magical and worth fighting for.

    Truthfully I am only 25. I caught my first steelhead when I was a kid. It wasn’t on fly gear. I have been fly fishing for them since I was 7 and caught my first on a fly when I was 14. I used to fish around 200 days a year around here until I grew up.

    So anyway, I am bent out of shape at what I am seeing. Only someone who used to fish 200 days a year on these S Rivers could see it:

    I used to go the OP and be the odd fly fisherman for steelhead. I know I wasn’t the first obviously but there were a lot less chasing steelhead out there. Now I see more fly fishermen than gear guys on some days. The same goes for the S Rivers. Fly guys used to be the odd balls chasing steelhead and now they are more common. This is all great for the sport me thinks but it also means that limited fly water that holds steelhead is even more difficult to get to undisturbed than ever before.

    Top it all off with the fact that most of these new guys I run into ARE the ones that are snooty and full of themselves and it bends me out of shape.

    Used to be the arse holes on the river were guys snagging fish and now it is the guys wearing gore-tex EVERYTHING who walk the walk and talk the talk.

    I run into guys from time to time who start naming every steelhead fly in the Kaufmann’s catalogue just to try and sound like they know what they are talking about. They usually say they caught a steelhead that morning like it is no thing…..Yeah….right……

    Now in defense of most of the people here; I think most of us on this forum are great people and NOT the people I am talking about. There is a lot of good knowledge and a lot of bad knowledge passed around but people here are respectful.

    However, anyone who thinks that “steelhead are just trout” makes me worried. That is the dumbest thing anyone could say about steelhead IMO. Steelhead are a hell of a *%*ckin lot more than just trout to me…….and maybe that is why I am bent out of shape at the popularity of steelhead fly fishing in my area and how difficult it is to catch a steelhead these days, all by myself or with a brother on an S River.

    Good luck to you, Jason
  17. Matt Burke Active Member

    Posts: 3,640
    Ratings: +55 / 0
    My kids reside here with their mother. When they're 18, I will move with OR at number two. Ruling out the lower 48, I'd like to die in AK.
  18. Hillbilly Redneck wishin i was fishin

    Posts: 398
    Whitehorse Mt.
    Ratings: +53 / 0
    Why anybody would want to live any place other than Darrington is beyond me. It's a fishing and intellectual Mecca:)
  19. KerryS Ignored Member

    Posts: 6,540
    Sedro Woolley, WA, USA.
    Ratings: +1,541 / 0
    I would agree but I live in Skidrow Woolley. Just like Darrington except we got us a Starbucks, I think.
  20. Zen Piscator Supporting wild steelhead, gravel to gravel.

    Posts: 3,076
    Missoula, MT
    Ratings: +12 / 0
    No votes for Northern Cali/Southern Oregon?

    Rouge (big numbers)
    Trinity (big numbers)

    Only problem I could see is too many people but there are summer and winter steelhead + salmon and great trout fishing (fall river, hot and hat creek, lower and upper sac, williamson)