Best place to live for steelhead?

Discussion in 'Steelhead' started by Panhandle, Oct 9, 2007.

  1. Panhandle

    Panhandle Active Member

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    If you could you choose one place to live in the lower 48 states, where you had year round steelheading (Winter and summer runs), where would you live. I love where I live, but I've been thinking about moving back home (Oregon) so that I can be close to beloved fish. I'm thinking SW Wasington, OP, Southern OR/N. Cali. I'm not interested in Bend, or living in a city agian. What you say?
     
  2. Evan Burck

    Evan Burck Fudge Dragon

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    well i'm no zen piscator, but i'd say sw washington.
     
  3. o mykiss

    o mykiss Active Member

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    If steelheading was the most important factor in choosing a place to live, for me it would be Portland (I know you said you didn't want to live in a city, but I would have to at least until I retired because small towns are incompatible with what I do for a living). Plenty of good steelheading nearby and lots of other good options both east and west in Oregon, not to mention the southwest WA streams.
     
  4. Panhandle

    Panhandle Active Member

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    I grew up in Portland and My wife grew up in Sandy. Not out of the question, but I'd rather not.
     
  5. gbeeman

    gbeeman Active Member

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    I'd move to Hood River if I could afford it!

    GBeeman
     
  6. HauntedByWaters

    HauntedByWaters Active Member

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    That is so easy. Mount Vernon. PERIOD. Wait......

    It will be a lot better too once this new generation of fly angler steelhead newbies realize how hard it really is and that they are wasting their time, for now anyway. I am hoping the numbers of newbies twindle in the near future. Last spring the Skagit and Sauk were a NIGHTMARE!

    I think the problem is all the guys who have never fly fished or even fished at all that are starting out steelheading. They need to ease into fly fishing with a species a little bit less bizarre and complicated and quite spooking every fish for miles. Don't go for the glory so fast people!

    Oh and QUIT FOLLOWING ME! Sorry for the rant but I may need to rephrase my answer:

    Up until 3 years ago, it was Mount Vernon.........Now I am not so sure.
     
  7. Flyborg

    Flyborg Active Member

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    There's lots of really small towns close to Portland. Woodland and Kalama are both right on the I-5 corridor but have that small town feel. When I used to live in Woodland, I was in the apartments right across from the "Hole-in-the-Wall" on the Lewis and got my first steelhead there.
     
  8. inland

    inland Active Member

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    Adam,

    SW Washington. The local rivers aren't the greatest (anymore) but there are plenty of them to keep you occupied until an extended trip comes up. SW puts you right smack in the middle of everything. The OP, Puget Sound, Oregon Coast, Southern Oregon, and all the inland Columbia tribs (even back to Ideeho). Plenty of smaller towns to choose from well away from the large metro areas.

    William
     
  9. o mykiss

    o mykiss Active Member

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    Actually, now that I think about it, I may agree with Inland, because WA has no income tax and OR does. Of course, our sales tax is astronomical, but unless you spend every dime you make, you will probably come out ahead living in WA. I would certainly give that some thought.
     
  10. Evan Burck

    Evan Burck Fudge Dragon

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    and by that, i meant SE washington.
     
  11. Salmo_g

    Salmo_g Well-Known Member

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    SW WA for steelheading day in and day out. You could fish productive water more days per year with less miles driven than anywhere I can think of. In fact I think you could lay out all the river data in a spreadsheet and then develop an algorthym to pinpoint the exact most efficient spot to live, using average weather and water conditions and average steelhead return rates.
     
  12. David Dalan

    David Dalan 69°19'15.35" N 18°44'22.74" E

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    Right here.

    Within 2 hours drive I can catch a Steelhead 12 months a year (if it's legal to do so). Not that all 12 are super productive and if I were planning my "dream 12 month" season, I'd travel far and wide. But for sheer numbers and potential size, SE WA really can't be beat.

    Oh, and there are WAY fewer anglers (sure its crowded at times) than anywhere else I can think of.

    I used to like to vist the 34lb summer run mounted in an old pharmacy "near by". Made me weak in the knees just seeing it...:)
     
  13. zipmyfly

    zipmyfly New Member

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    Look into any town near Little Salmon River or Little Soul River, Idaho. I saw a show on Reel Outdoors, Comcast and it looked great.
     
  14. chromeseeker

    chromeseeker Where's the Bucket?

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    Adam,

    I do live in SW WA and it is pretty sweet (as you know) as far as steeheading venues/logistics.

    But I tell ya, take a look at the Roseburg area. You've got the N. Umpqua down there for some great summer/winter steelie fishing and the S. Umpqua has some massive winter fish in it. So, you've got pretty much year-round fishing in the Roseburg area. Add on some coastal streams nearby with more shots at big, wild winter fish and the big "D" for a little longer drive and possibly the Rogue, and you are loving life.

    Woodland/Kalama are not bad choices if you are planning on moving down to my neck of the woods. Still relatively quiet towns, but maybe not for long. And if you did move back down here, you'd be welcome with open arms. You've been very helpful to me with info on the streams where you live and I'd like to have chance to return the favor someday.

    So, I'd go with SWW#1 and Roseburg 1A.

    CS (AKA, BFR, AKA Joe B.)
     
  15. rick matney

    rick matney Active Member

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    Don't even worry about it. SE WA is not all it's cracked up to be. It's glorified trout fishing and the steel is not year round. They don't fight, you can catch them on tiny trout nymphs,and there is no winter coastal runs. All in all it's closer to trout fishing than actual steelhead, although you can put up some pretty impressive numbers....of hatchery fish.