Fishing report for 5/11/2013

Shawn West

Active Member
I have waited over six months for a chance to get into some decent smallie action. The weatherman promised some calmer wind conditions for the Gorge. Based on this information, I planned to start out the day in the Dalles, and work my way back west as the wind conditions changed.

A friend of mine suggested I try fish the Columbia on the Washington side at the boat ramp next to the Dalles Dam. I am always looking for new water to explore. I especially wanted to try the waters on the other side of the train tracks at Spearfish Lake. I put in my pontoon at 6AM. I started off my day fishing one of my go to flies. The Arizona Simiseal Leech was back in my arsenal. I had not used this fly all of last year. It was not long before I landed my first smallie of the year.
Not too surprising to me, I missed a lot of strikes as well as having more LDR's than I would like to admit. I switched over to my other go to fly; a Polar Fibre Clouser. I managed to get into a pod of slightly larger b ass. None were monsters, but they ranged from 2 - 3 pounds.
[/url]This is a 2.5 pounder. All of the females I caught were full of eggs.

This was the largest bass at 3 pounds.

I worked my way east hoping to fish the other side of Spearfish Lake. I never did make it that for. The wind started to pick up. I was expecting it to get worse any minute. I fished back to the launch. I caught a hand full of fish on my return trip. I decided to pack my gear up and get a bit to eat. It was 11AM. BTW, the water temperature was 54 degrees.

After lunch, I decided to try my luck at Spearfish. The wind was picking up, but there were no whitecaps. The SS Leech was the ticket here. I landed five small bass with the first ten casts. I had a couple of first happen to me on this trip to Spearfish. First, I hooked into a fish that took me to the backing twice. After a thirty minute tour of the lake, I landed my first carp on a fly rod. I did not get a photo, but at least I landed the beast. I definitely needed a larger net. The second first for me was landing my first walleye on a fly. I have put a LOT of hours on this lake over the past three years, that was the first time I heard of any walleye being caught here. I am not surprised they would be there, the lake is attached to the Columbia by a culvert.

I was only on the water for about three hours. The wind did calm down after about the first hour. Hind sight being 20/20, I should have stayed and fished the Dalles area longer. Unfortunately, I headed west expecting calmer winds. I never did find and calmer waters.

One thing I did do was see if there was any access to Ashes Lake. There is a primitive boat on the east side of the lake, but it is now fenced off. This is a tragic discovery for me. I usually fish this lake until the weeds take over. I will have to find a new place to fish for smallies closer to Vancouver.

All in all, I had a great day on the water. I can not wait to hit the water again soon.