Thanks to all of you who offered me tips on fishing Chopoka. You helped make my first trip to the lake a very successful one. I will return next year. For those of you who live west of the Cascades and have not had the pleasure of fishing Chopaka you should be forewarned that making a trip to the lake is a fairly major undertaking. From where I live on Hood Canal it took about two days to get to the lake. OK, I exaggerate – it just seemed like two days. Actually it took about 7 hours with stops (and at my age you have to stop). Another way to measure the distance is that it was an 8 to 10 radio station trip (depending on your reception and taste). The last 10 miles to the lake is on a gravel road that has an initial gradient of about 35 degrees followed by a bouncy, steep descent into the lake. I arrived at the lake around 2 pm on Friday, October 4. I set up camp (only about half the total campsites were occupied) and was on the water by 3 pm. It was sunny with a moderate breeze that died by 4:30. I flippered my pontoon south dragging a brown wooly worm. I planned on switching to a carey special as Roper had suggested to me in an earlier post. The brown wooly elicited a few hits so I decided to tie on a sparkly green wooly worm just before 4 pm. I immediately landed a nice chunky 14 to 15 inch rainbow. Within 5 minutes I had a second rainbow in my net. About 4:15 I was curious to see if I could get any action using dry flies. I tried an orange stimulater followed by a Joe's Hopper. No action on either fly. By this time I was all the way to the south end of the lake. I put the sparkly green wooly back on and landed three more nice healthy rainbows on my way back up the lake. By this point I knew I was going to have a very good trip. I started fishing the next day (October 5) at 8:30. It was quite cool and overcast when I began fishing and stayed that way all day. Within the first 5 minutes I had another nice rainbow in the net. Then, for the next hour, it closed down. I switched to a black and green wooly and ended up with two more nice fish. As I was heading back into camp I hooked a broad-shouldered rainbow of around 17 inches that immediately flew into the air about a foot and snapped off my black and green wooly on his way back into the water. I got out of the pontoon, took care of business brought on by one too many cups of coffee, pinched myself to be sure I wasn't just dreaming about catching nice fat rainbows and then headed out again. Although there wasn't much surface activity I remained curious about using a dry fly. I tied on a parachute adams and was lucky enough to entice yet another fish to my net. I missed one other fish with the adams before changing back to a wooly. At about this point in the day my right foot felt awfully cool. I flippered back to camp and, much to my disgust, found out I had a leak somewhere in my right foot. After much searching I couldn't find where the wader was leaking. I resorted to a plastic bag around my foot in hopes that my foot would stay dry. Yeah, fat chance of that working. I fished with a wet right foot. October 7 was my last day at Chopaka. Because of my wader leak I only fished in the morning. I was lucky enough to land another rainbow using a parachute adams and one more fish using a black wooly. The pictures below are of Chopaka and a few of the lovely fish that consented to be caught. Note that no fish were harmed during the making of this great trip. In summary, I had a great trip and was able to catch quite a few 14 to 17 inch rainbows. Green wooly buggers and black/green woolys worked best for me. I didn't even try a carey – maybe next year. I concentrated on the southern shallower part of the lake on both the east and west sides as well as the middle section of the lake. One last non-fishing related point: I've lived in Washington for many years and like many other western Washington folk I know that our state produces a lot of apples (in addition to grapes, wheat, corn, etc). However, I had no appreciation of the scale of apple production until this trip. Driving from Oroville south to Wenatchee I swear there are more apple orchards than there are republicans in Utah. It is an unbroken orchard for miles and miles and miles. If you haven't been to Chopaka, make plans to go. If you have been, make plans to return. It is a great fishery.