martha (wb)

Discussion in 'Stillwater' started by trout_bum23, Mar 31, 2014.

  1. Has anyone fished Martha Lake near Warm Beach lately? I heard there are big browns but I've never been there.
  2. Check the WDFW online planting reports. Go back a few years to see if any were planted between, say 4 years ago and the past year. If there browns were planted, say, three years ago, there's a good chance there are some JTs in there. At least as big as the one in your avatar. Historically, two-handers have been caught.
    That said, it can be tough work finding them. You can spend all day making only one circuit of that lake. Believe me, I've done it a lot of times. On the upside, there is such a variety of structure on that lake, you can learn (the hard way) just about every aspect of stillwater trout fishing that you can hope to. Lord knows I've been schooled many a time there.
  3. Fished Lake Martha once last week and yesterday. One hit and one 11" rainbow each day.
  4. Okay. I decided to do your homework for you. The WDFW planted 2,500 brown and 10,282 cutthroat fingerlings, back in 2011. By now, the surviving browns should be of a very good size. Time to bring your "A-Game" to Martha, if you decide to take on the challenge.

    To be honest, the worst time to fish Martha is right after a planting of new catchable fish. They just get in the way of the big ones. I seriously recommend fishing during the months from October and into January. That's when your odds of catching a big brown is greatest. I won't go into all the details why, but the feedbag is only one of the reasons.

    All that seasonal stuff aside, the browns are there, and they should be of good size. If you aren't catching browns of at least 17", you're doing something wrong.

    BTW, there are obviously cutthroats there. Thing is, they're the hardest ones to catch. They seem to be very specific eaters. What works with rainbows and browns will usually not work with them. I did catch an 18" cutt there, once--but that was more like something between an epiphany and a fluke when it came to my fly choice.

    The thing about Martha that makes the hassle and multi-skunks worthwhile is that it's one of the few lakes where you can score a trifecta of trout. Is true!

    triploidjunkie likes this.
  5. Thanks Dave. Where did you get your info? I checked the past reports and they only said they planted rainbows. The planting plans however indicated they would plant browns, but the report with dates says only bows.
  6. Martha WB has received plants of 2,500 or more browns per year dating back to 2006:

    Plant_13 Plant_12 Plant_11 Plant_10 Plant_09 Plant_08 Plant_07 Plant_06
    2,500 2,500 2,500 2,500 3,000 2,508 3,000 5,000

    Pardon the sloppy graph, excel doesn't paste into here very well (so the 5,000 would be for 2006 and so forth)
    triploidjunkie likes this.
  7. Maybe I am missing something here... why doesn't the DFW website report browns being planted? I've looked several times on:
  8. Looks like they cut the archives short. Statewide section has 2 years of history. Used to be 10 or more. Hoping it's just hidden, they like to do that. Either way I've been recording all the brown trout data onto my own file for years. Never know when they'll pull stuff down. Did the same with all the lake bathymetric maps for the state...would really suck if they ever disappeared online.
    Irafly likes this.
  9. This is a useful site for finding things that aren't on the web any longer.
    Type in the URL and you can look back over a number of years.
    Not a guarantee you'll find what you are looking for but it has helped me in a number of instances find useful info to help my fishing.
    Irafly likes this.

  10. One bow, one trip, one brown today, which isn't quite the trifecta but ok by me. Lots of swallows, one beaver, one eagle, three other fishermen. that's a fun lake for sure, if I knew more about chironomids...
  11. i agree with ceviche, its not the browns that skunk me. its the darn cutthroat. i have landed exactly 2 in all my time fishing there. both were about 6-8 inches. yet they plant a bunch of cutts in that lake ?
    and there is a big lake up the road that gets browns planted in it. but with the wind and power boats i am not sure it would be worth it.
  12. Thanks for all the help everybody. We fished it today and caught a ton of browns and some rainbows on chironomids. The biggest fish landed was maybe 15". There were a lot of fish rising for most of the day.

    Attached Files:

    Irafly and troutpocket like this.
  13. Hey what part of the lake where you fishing

  14. The picture should offer some help, if you've been to the lake before. Somewhere along the southern shore, for starters. But I've found myself having better overall luck elsewhere in the past. Then again, I've never been much of a chironomid angler.

    BTW, finally back home! Just waiting for some personal business to clear before I start dragging out the fishing gear. Cousin in town, taxes, etc...

    --Dave E.

  15. For cutts, try a brown micro leech--kind of like a micro-bugger thing. Size 14, 2x or 3x shank hook. I made a few, once, from Rhode Island Red hen hackle, and all it caught were cutts. Not big ones, but a good number of them. The big cutts were caught on a small, black, soft hackle thing I tied. Size 16 or 18? I just happened to toss it at some rises and got lucky.

    --Dave E.
  16. Ah Marta Lake. Did you know that one time a group of people thought that the boat launch was a road and they drove into the lake. Not to sure if they all survived, but it was a funny read at the time. It happened at night.

    It was a few years ago. It's all hazy now as it happened over 20 years or so ago
  17. fished it a few days ago, and things were very slow. some mids coming off now & then. water is much warmer now. did not see much in the way off activity (rises, boils) . landed one about 12-14" on the indicator. talked to the Game Warden (2nd time this year). Nice fellow. thanked him again for checking the area. he confirmed fishing had been slow last few days. planters dont seem to be doing much. hope they all didnt get eaten by cormorants.
  18. My son and I fished Martha on Sunday (4/13). Due to time constraints we fished in the middle of the day from about 11 to 2:30. Stayed on the south side and started at a spot towards the east that my fish finder marked a lot of fish about half way down and at the bottom. Rigged up deep chironomid rigs for both of us and got no takes. Changed fly color and depth and still nothing even though my finder was constantly showing fish. I switched to a leech pattern on full sinking line and still nothing. Saw some other people landing fish on terminal tackle trolling. Decided to move west to spot based on the background in the photo of the brown earlier in this thread. Set up chironomids off bottom, but nothing after about 15 minutes and was just about to call it a day when my indicator disappeared. My rod immediately was bent in half, very strong fish. After fighting for a couple of minutes, I stupidly tried to force him to the surface. I thought he was coming up and suddenly my fly came shooting out of the water, pulled it out of his mouth. I like to think it was a huge brown. Put my fly back out and after a little bit got a 12-14 inch brown. My first brown since I was in high school (23 years ago) on Merrill Lake. I had switched my son to same color fly after the first fish I hooked, but he didn't have any luck on his side of the boat so I switched sides if the boat with him and I ended up getting what looked like a rainbow on that came straight out of the water after my indicator went down and continued to go airborne until he spit the hook. My son never got a hit even though we had the same flies set to the same depth. We had to leave so I could get some stuff done around the house.

    Thanks for the picture of the brown. The two previous times I have been there I concentrated our time around the undeveloped shore on the north side with no success using various methods.

    The lure of catching a brown is the main reason I fish Martha, now I need to keep going back to get my son to land one.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  19. After you leave the boat launch, go towards the middle and when you hit 25-27 feet of water you'll start marking big fish on the bottom. I was there Monday the 14th in the morning. I caught a few smaller ones by the undeveloped side but it was takedown after takedown in the spot I just mentioned. Try a size 12 shiny brown with a gold bead. Chromers size 14 worked too. I was fishing about 25' under an indicator in 27' water. Caught about 20 before noon but nothing over 15" so I headed to pass :)

  20. That happened to me once before at Martha. It's like you've been playing the fish for a couple of minutes, rod all bent over--9ft 6wt, even--and then you get to wondering if you've been playing it too easy because you're no closer to bringing the fish in than when you started. Start to apply pressure and you lose out. I was over at the south east end of the lake at the time. Shallow water and my fly also popped out of the water. Like, wtf?!

    The weird part was that something with a broad back porpoised at the surface about 15 feet away. I couldn't tell if it was a very large brown or an otter. Since I didn't see it come up again, I found myself only slightly doubting that it might have been an otter. Still ain't sure.

    Good you got at least a taste with the fight. Call it a LDR.


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