Felt like Ichiro on the Cowlitz

Discussion in 'Steelhead' started by rivlak, Apr 4, 2014.

  1. rivlak Always an Adventure

    Posts: 53
    Renton, WA.
    Ratings: +18 / 0
    Is there any Steelhead in the Cowlitz right now? Who knows, but yesterday Mike Sturza and the Lost Creek Fly Shop in Onalaska, WA. took this rookie out to learn how to Spey Cast and try for some Steel. The results: 4 for 6!!!! There were fish rolling around us, tailing around us, jumping around us all day. Of course that was yesterday. I finally got to be part of the expression, "You should of been here on Thursday!!!" Mike put a Beulah Spey Rod in my hand and worked with me all day. You want a guide that knows the Cowlitz? He is your man. There is no clock watching, no time table. He is there to work to the best of his ability to find you a steelhead. The water has been holding at 8000cfs. We were using purple in the morning and then some blue and black combo in the late afternoon. 4 for 6?? It felt like a typical Ichiro day of hitting. 2014-04-03 Bright Steelhead on the Cowlitz.JPG 2014-04-03 Steelhead w Spey Hanging.JPG
  2. CLO Royal Wulff Pack

    Posts: 877
    PT/EDMNDS/TWSP
    Ratings: +424 / 0
  3. Ed Call Mumbling Moderator

    Posts: 17,535
    Kitsap Peninsula
    Ratings: +1,505 / 9
    Damn fine report and name dropping a gent known well to work his tail off so you can tail a nice fish. Congratulations!
  4. Klickrolf Active Member

    Posts: 600
    Klickitat, Washington
    Ratings: +166 / 0
    Those are nice & bright chomers. Congrats and welcome to the spey addiction...you Sir, are most likely hooked!
    Any spring chinook around?
  5. rivlak Always an Adventure

    Posts: 53
    Renton, WA.
    Ratings: +18 / 0
    No Spring Chinook. Mike Sturza says when the Springers
    Are in full force on the Columbia, the Cowlitz becomes less crowded.
  6. HauntedByWaters Active Member

    Posts: 2,750
    Bellingham
    Ratings: +105 / 0
    Glad you had a good day like that at the beginning of your steelhead fishing life.

    Now you know how easy it can be and know that fish bite when they are there. Now you have confidence and know how easy it really can be.

    Too many rookies get frustrated, have no confidence, and try too much dumb crap IMO. You just graduated beyond that.

    Cheers!
    Alexander and Lex like this.
  7. rivlak Always an Adventure

    Posts: 53
    Renton, WA.
    Ratings: +18 / 0
    Thanks for the inspiring words. I noticed you are from Bellingham. Graduated from WWU a few decades ago before I got into fly fishing. How is the quest for steel in the neighboring areas?
  8. freestoneangler Not to be confused with Freestone

    Posts: 4,138
    Edgewood, WA
    Ratings: +791 / 1
    Yup, you are living proof that hatchery fish do not take a fly...fess up, you were swinging live sand shrimp right? The one I hooked a couple weeks ago was yet another aberration. rofl1.gif Thanks for sharing and providing Mike's contact... sounds like another good option to Steve Buckner.
  9. Peter Pancho Active Member

    Posts: 1,748
    Gig Harbor,WA
    Ratings: +8 / 0
    aah, the good ol' days on the Cow..what is the limit this year?
  10. _WW_ Fishes with Wolves

    Posts: 1,936
    Skagit River
    Ratings: +672 / 0
    You've alluded to this a couple of times. Where did you here such foolishness?
    Was it from the same guy that said they don't fight?

    A hatchery fish doesn't know it's a hatchery fish...:)
    Lost Creek Flies likes this.
  11. Achilles Member

    Posts: 129
    Washington
    Ratings: +24 / 0
    Yes, store up that confidence... And by dumb crap he means indicator fishing. J/k, but not really.

  12. plaegreid Saved by the buoyancy of citrus

    Posts: 614
    Renton, WA
    Ratings: +753 / 0
    Sweet trip report!
    Is the Cow pretty much a boaters river?
  13. rivlak Always an Adventure

    Posts: 53
    Renton, WA.
    Ratings: +18 / 0
    there is some bank fishing where you can swing a fly above and below the blue Creek Boat Launch. The best way is to use a pontoon or boat to move down the river to good swing water.
    plaegreid likes this.
  14. John Hicks Owner and operator of Sea Run Pursuits

    Posts: 2,137
    Olympia
    Ratings: +182 / 1
    There is very limited access for bank anglers on the Cowlitz. It is usually at the launches. That being said, the river is a great river to float, and I think it gets a bad rep as being too crowded. Truth be told, if you move one or two runs up or down from either blue creed or barrier, you are very likely to find yourself alone. The sleds stick to a few runs that are good gear water. This leaves the majority of the good swing runs all to us lowly fly guys.

    This really is one of my favorite fisheries throughout the summer. Lots of steelhead, lots of water and close to home. This is without even mentioning the fact that September through November are great times to catch both steelhead and sea run cutthroat.
    plaegreid likes this.
  15. Jordan Simpson Active Member

    Posts: 788
    Tsawwassen, BC
    Ratings: +54 / 1
    Congrats on the speyed steelhead!
    If only I could get one now this season before the rivers blow out. I can catch them on herring when I'm looking for springs but I'll be damned if I can get a tug while actually looking for them.

    As you're probably well aware now, the tug is the drug!

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