Suiattle? Downey?

Nailknot

Active Member
#4
What is the best access road for the Suiattle? I've never fished it, but guessing it's similar to the Cascade and White Chuck?

The Suiattle was very high and colored where it meets the Sauk on Saturday.

/NK
 

Old Man

Just an Old Man
#5
I might be old---but I'm good.

I just seems that I get around. I have fished all of those places that you have mentioned. To get to Downey Creek You have to go up the Suattle river road. After you leave Darington headed north, you will cross the first bridge and instead of staying on the main road and turning just go straight ahead that is the road that you need. Just stay on that road and it will take you where you want to go and then some. You also have Buck Creek there and a few other ones.

Bacon creek has a road that follows it darn near all the way up. But if you plan on fishing these places. You will proably find them on the high side. If you need more info please holler. Jim
 

Nailknot

Active Member
#6
Thanks for the tips Jim! I've driven up the river road a ways and it seemed to get away from the river- how far along before you can access it? Is there another road on the south side? I'm guessing the Char population is strong like in the other Sauk tribs, how about summer run Steel? Any light you can shine from your wisdom appreciated :THUMBSUP

See you on the river!

/Rob
 

Old Man

Just an Old Man
#7
I might be old---but I'm good.

There is another road on the south side but you have access by going thru Darrington. I found it by just driving different places and looking at my map. You get on that road by taking that road to the left after you pass the Forest Rangers place. It goes past the saw mill,crosses the river on a skinny bridge. Just stay on that road for a few miles and you will come to a tee, go to the left and just follow the beaten path. Or the better traveled road. You will end up by the river or at least I have. Also there is a small creek that you will pass over(Dan Creek). I've heard there are a few fish in it also,but I've never tried it. Jim :THUMBSUP

P/S As I was thinking as I was reading another post is that I'm going up to the Stilly today to try my hand at the river. If I get thru soon enough I will check out the Suattle and see how it's flowing and let you know what it's color is. Jim S.
 

Preston

Active Member
#8
Keep in mind that although the Suiattle is open to fishing for Dolly Varden (probably actually Bull Trout in the Suiattle), its tributaries are not.
 

Old Man

Just an Old Man
#9
I might be old---but I'm good.

Well I see that my giving directions sucks. To get to the South side of the Suiattle,you have to turn to the right on the Sauk Parire rd. Before the Ranger Station. everything else holds true. At least I hope it does. HA HA :DUNNO

As for the river. It is really in good shape. Nice green color and shallower areas it is clear. Was going to fish it but after all that driving I got lazy. Went up as far as Buck Creek campground. Buck creek is really high and boiling.

Spent about 2 1/2 hours on the N/fork Stilly throwing some flies around got nice and tired. Saw no fish.

Jim S. :BIGSMILE
 

Nailknot

Active Member
#11
Dollies tend to go up very high and into the upper tribs during summer pre spawn. I agree that many or most Skagit/Sauk "dollies" may be Bull Trout. Although it seems that the population of both is very healthy on that river based on my incidental catch and release. To bad we can't say the same for wild Steelhead. In any case they provide fine, and legal, sport in the Suiattle, Cascade and White Chuck (where the state record is from). Watch the regs and have a great time I say!

Hey Jim- what are you catching up on the Suiattle and care to share any spots?
 

Old Man

Just an Old Man
#12
I might be old---but I'm good.

Like I said in the previous post. I have only fished there once. A couple of years ago when I went up there and found it clear so I tossed a spinner around but caught nothing. I have not tried fly fishing it yet.

Going there is just about as far as going to the upper Yakima. But the drive is nicer. If this weather keeps up that river will go to hell as the snow melt will hit in full force. I've seen it flow like wet cement in the middle of summer.

I'd go back today but don't want to drive that far so I'm going to stay closer to home. I think I will see how the S/fork Stilly looks like. Will try up high as the clay slide down by Gold Basin Camp ground will be really milking. Jim S.
 

Preston

Active Member
#13
As I understand it, the latest research indicates that the mainstem populations, both resident and anadromous, of the Skagit/Sauk drainage (including, of course the Suiattle) consist almost entirely of Bull Trout. The Dolly Varden populations seem to be restricted to the very upper reaches and to areas above impassable barriers. I'm not absolutely certain of this, but I think Downey Creek falls into the latter category. I fished it many years ago and got the impression that the lower part of the creek is a long series of waterfalls and cataracts before the angle eases off where the steep switchbacks end and the trail returns to streamside.

There is a note on page 56 of the WDFW 2002 regulations stating "ALL FRESHWATER AREAS are CLOSED to fishing for SALMON, DOLLY VARDEN/BULL TROUT and GRASS CARP unless listed as open." I interpret this to mean that targeting any of these species, except where the regulations specifically allow it, is illegal. This would certainly be the case for Downey Creek; when I fished it (that was before there were any restrictions on taking Dollies) that's all we caught. I would have thought there would have been at least a few cutthroat, but not so.

Many people seem to ignore this regulation, particularly where salmon are concerned. There were a number of very surprised people who received citations for targeting pink and chum salmon on the North Fork of the Stilly last year. And, of course, last year's ban on weighted flies on the Stilly was intended to prevent targeting (as well as snagging) chinook salmon.
 

Old Man

Just an Old Man
#14
I might be old---but I'm good.

Well at least I see two people that read these regs. I don't target Dollies but if I catch one it will sure go back into the water. I go out there for the fun of catching fish as I'm sure that most of these people on this site do, and then they(fish) go right back in.

After reading the Regs on the Suiattle river they say that you can keep Dollies/Bull trout. And if you catch them in the "tribs" and are not allowed to keep them then you have to release them. But due to not knowing whats out there you never know what you are going to catch.

We can read the regs but they contain some double talk. But between you and me I think that most people that are aware of the laws for fishing and some choose to ignore them. I think that is why I like fly fishing. You only seem to find friendly people doing this type of fishing.

Well I'll get off my soap box now and I think that I hear a river calling me. S/Fork here I come. Jim S. :BIGSMILE :BIGSMILE