Discussion in 'Steelhead' started by Jaybird28, Nov 14, 2012.
Annual trip to Grayland State Park for holiday. Is there any metalhead options within reach???
Or salmon for that matter
A little early for most of the steelhead options down there. plenty of salmon and cutthroat. Look in the regs and find a piece of water in that area that is open and cast something bright and shinny. also there may be some early hatchery steelhead in the willapa.
How much drive time is "within reach?"
Under an hour preferrably
Depends on the weather really...
I would say check out the Willapa Bay tribs over the Grays Harbor ones. It's a haul to get to any steelie water from there though (close to the bays is mostly tidal water for quite a ways up). There might be some late salmon action going on too on some of the closer rivers.
Within one hour gives you the North R., Smith Ck, and Willapa R. None are very fly fishing friendly, to the extent that I have tried. But the timing could be good if this coming high water drops the rivers into shape next weekend.
I agree with this comment, except that there is some fly water to be found, and that its still too early for the hatchery winter runs around here. The Wynoochee and maybe the Humptulips see hatchery fish sooner than most of the other streams out here do. Nothing out here usually arrives as early as the fabled Calawah hatchery run up on the OP. We usually see the hatchery winter runs begin to show up in early/mid Dec. Of course, there's always the chance of an early maverick.
Rivers are going to be high, maybe dropping into shape by the weekend. Wannafish's idea of late salmon is one I'm trying to ignore, myself, since I need to heal my casting arm, and those hard-fighting salmon just set that back. I know where there may be some late wild and hatchery Coho and maybe some Cutthroat and Chum, but I went lake fishing with my 3 and 4 wt rods yesterday. Mainly trolled buggers with the 4 wt. and practiced stripping in the trout with my casting arm. I am trying to avoid fishing for big fish. Otherwise i would have been hunting for those big late-run wild Coho. I think I blew my chance. I should have sacrificed the arm.
So Jaybird, are you set on fishing for only steelhead, or are salmon and cutts OK? The Willapa and Naselle hatcheries get Coho returning late into the season, and there's always some wild ones in the mix, as well as some searun cutts. I'd probably head upstream and fish the Willapa somewhere below the hatchery. As far as particular spots, my lips are sealed, any more. I have a hard time finding uncrowded and unfished water myself these days, when fishing on foot.
Its only 45 minutes drive from Grayland to Black Creek on the Wynoochee, and the Humptulips hatchery at Stevens Creek is just an hour or so away. I can make it to Shafer State Park on the E Fork Satsop in one hour.