Columbia Salmon

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by RadBrad, Aug 12, 2002.

  1. RadBrad

    RadBrad New Member

    Feb 26, 2003
    Likes Received:
    Seattle, WA, USA.
    What-ever always means yes! Any one ever try for the salmon on the columbia near Wells dam? I tried a few times now with no luck, maybe I need some advice. I am using a full sinking line with almost any salmon fly you could think of trying. We were bank fishing in fairly fast moving water, kings were jumping every where, even tried on a few cruzing the shore, still no luck. Its hard to leave when you see so many fish as big as your leg. We caught a few last year with egss, but no luck this year with flies (my cousin is still trying the eggs). Can any one offer some advise. Thanks in advance, Brad
  2. Steve Buckner

    Steve Buckner Mother Nature's Son

    Nov 19, 2003
    Likes Received:
    Toledo, Wa. on the banks of the Cowlitz
    Home Page:
    I've not fished at the Wells dam but have fished quite a bit for chinook in a number of rivers in Oregon, Washington, Canada and Alaska so hopefully these same techniques will work for you.

    Generally I've found that chinook like to hold in the deep troughs behind gravel bars in fairly fast running water when given the chance. They hang out right on the bottom. The fish that you see rising/rolling are not usually the ones that you should be targeting but they are a good indicator of where the fish are. If you're finding the fish right below the dam, you might try down stream where the water has more flow so that you can properly present your fly.

    I use an 800 grain head to get my fly down well before it is in the strike zone when the water is really fast and/or deep. If the water isn't quite so fast I'll use a sink tip (type 3 or 4). Once the fly is in the strike zone, at about 45 degrees below your position, start and maintain a SLOW retrieve. The take usually feels more like you've just snagged a rock and just when you're about to think about breaking your line off, the "rock" starts to move.

    As for flies, I've used various flies from wooly buggers to egg-sucking leeches. The fish are usually not too picky but the trick is getting your fly down to the level. You should feel your fly kind of ticking along the ground from time to time.

    I'd like to hear how you do.