Yep, still fish over in North Idaho

Discussion in 'Trip Reports with Pics' started by ribka, Aug 15, 2011.

  1. Matthew LeBret Active Member

    Posts: 753
    clarkston, wa
    Ratings: +83 / 0
    I was up there a few weeks ago and all the tribs below washington were stacked with bows. I didnt hook any over 11' but its the most I have ever seen up there. The farther you go up the NF they start to disappear. So im sure that over time they will be up there :( On a side note this year I seen more bulls then years before. The biggest I hooked on was 21' but my In-law hooked the "He ate my cutty" and we had it around 27-30' using the arm measurement method. I Love that water :thumb:
  2. Richard Olmstead BigDog

    Posts: 2,494
    Seattle, WA
    Ratings: +792 / 0
    Thanks for the pics!

    When I not only recognize the region and the river, but the specific pools/stretches where those photos were taken, it makes me think I ought to branch out a bit and explore some new water, but somehow, I keep getting drawn back.

    The rainbows have always been there. They are the now-landlocked descendants of a once plentiful steelhead run in that river. They are quite numerous but always small (my largest in 10 years of fishing there is ca. 12 inches) in the faster, rockier runs; places where the larger cutts don't hang out, and places fishermen pass by, because they usually hold fewer, smaller fish. As I understand it, they don't interbreed with the native westslopes, because they have evolved together in the same system and have there has been selection to avoid interbreeding (similar to rainbows and coastal cutts where they co-occur in native ranges). If rainbows from hatchery stock originating in California (like most of the world's hatchery rainbows were), then hybridization would be a problem there, but I have never seen evidence of a cuttbow in that fishery.

    If you are there at the right time of year, and willing to change up your tactics for each species, you can get the one-day salmonid slam of westslope cutthroat, rainbow, whitefish, bull trout, and kokanee in that stream. I've caught them all, but it's hard for me to fish nymphs or streamers on a stream where the trout will rise so willingly to dry flies!

    I'll add a couple pics to keep the saliva fresh...

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  3. ribka Active Member

    Posts: 1,433
    E WA
    Ratings: +169 / 0
    Thanks for the info.

    Caught some huge whitefish, a few smaller bulls on this trip tip as I always do but have yet to pick up any rb's or Kokanee in these rivers.
  4. Richard Olmstead BigDog

    Posts: 2,494
    Seattle, WA
    Ratings: +792 / 0
    By mid-September there usually are pods of kokanee moving up the river as far as the forks and above. A smallish, bright red bugger will draw strikes, even though they are not feeding. They can be fun, because you can see the pod and your fly and see when a fish breaks away from the pod to pursue your fly.

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