Grande Ronde (Drift boat, pontoon or wade?)

Discussion in 'Watercraft' started by Angler 77, Sep 10, 2005.

  1. Angler 77

    Angler 77 AKA Scott Jones

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    I'm hoping to make a first trip to the Grande Ronde and try my luck for some Eastside steelhead. I'll be heading over in mid-October. I'm curious if you experienced guys would suggest I hook up the drift boat, float in the pontoon or simply wade.

    Any advice is appreciated.

    Thanks
     
  2. TWD

    TWD Travis

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    pontoon or db, grab a shuttle from the diner or hook up with a river buddy

    you might want to call the diner and see if the fish are "in". What are you thinking for lodging? Have slept in my car several times ... easier than a tent in the rain

    cheers
     
  3. southpaw22

    southpaw22 member

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    watch out, its combat fishing with the locals. you can do it in a drifter for sure. bogans is the place for dinner, shuttles, and reports. peace
     
  4. Angler 77

    Angler 77 AKA Scott Jones

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    I hadn't put any thought into lodging yet. So "combat fishing" huh. Hoodsport hatchery in mid chum run being a 10 and an un-named creek flowing into a hike in alpine lake being a 1, where does the Grande Ronde fit in this scale of fishing company? I don't mind other fisherman as long as I don't feel ashamed to be around them if you know what I mean. I can't imagine it's a snagfest or is it?
     
  5. southpaw22

    southpaw22 member

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    i think it feels like huddle. you got guys everywhere, at least thats my take on it. you might have to check it out yourself.
     
  6. gearhead

    gearhead Active Member

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    four! Quality company.
     
  7. D3Smartie

    D3Smartie Active Member

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    pontoon boat.
     
  8. TWD

    TWD Travis

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    strangely enough I have never encountered any pressure in three trips. You can walk down river from Boggan's or up river via car for miles. I haven't fished the snake confluence which i understand is quite busy.

    the drive into boggan's is a very twisting mountain grade so you might want to plan it for daylight on a first try. Just take the 60 switchbacks slowly and you should find any problems

    I have a raft and will likely make the trip if not heading up to Skeena. Any interest in people getting together and saving some gas money? I would prefer a weekend trip ....leave friday, some back sunday fishing on sat/sun. last weekend before halloween?

    cheers
     
  9. Angler 77

    Angler 77 AKA Scott Jones

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    Thanks for the input guys. :thumb:
     
  10. Jake Smulkowski

    Jake Smulkowski Throwing hoppers into baetis falls

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    509-256-3372

    Yummy milkshakes too.
     
  11. Terrydav

    Terrydav New Member

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    Combat fishing?? Maybe at the mouth, but not up from Boggans to Wildcat. You will find folks in runs as you drive up/down the road, but turn the next corner and what do you know, an open run.

    I would leave the drift boat at home (just my call) and depending on the river level bring the pontoon. However, if its low enough you can find some tail-outs to cross. I've made the trip annually for the last three years and I have had no need for anything but wading. This is a great river that can produce fish if you now what your looking for and can set-up the fly with a good presentation.

    My only other advise is to purchase an Oregon license to complement your Washington FL, so you aren't limited by an imaginary jurisdictional line. Don't let anyone tell you that the only fish are found below Boggans, its not true.

    Have fun and skate away. :thumb:

    Terry D.
     
  12. ssickle1

    ssickle1 Slow and Low

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    You will beat the hell out of your DB. I take a raft. Also worth note is running the Narrows (if your going to the confluence). We ran it last year at 950 and drug the raft several times, lined the first narrow and ran the rest.

    Happy trails.
     
  13. Angler 77

    Angler 77 AKA Scott Jones

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    Alright sounds like dragging the drift boat isn't the way to go. Have any of you guys done an extended float and camp from 129 down to the mouth? I think that might be a cool way to spend a few days, perhaps really cool depending on the weather.
     
  14. Salmo_g

    Salmo_g Active Member

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    77,

    I've floated from Boggans to Heller Bar on the Snake many times, but not in the last several years. It's a wonderful trip, and I'd highly recommend it, except for two things. Over the years, almost every piece of private land over that 26 river miles is posted, so no camping there. And the remaining public land seems to be staked out by guides/outfitters who set up season-long camps, using all the other good campsites. You could still camp on public land - there's quite a bit. However, you won't have solitude, and it won't be a prime site for either camping or fishing, but it's doable.

    As for what water craft, I think one would scrape many, many rocks at 700 cfs in a drift boat. I don't really even like to fish it at less than 700. I guess it just came up over 500 this weekend. It will probably come up more when the Oregon irrigators end their seasonal diversions. You can float it at any flow in a pontoon or small raft. I'd rate this as the best multi-day float trip in WA state for scenery, wildlife, fishing, and relative solitude.

    Sincerely,

    Salmo g.
     
  15. ssickle1

    ssickle1 Slow and Low

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    I think it's the only multi day in Washington. Boggans to Heller bar is fun. Be careful passing empty camps because when you hit the private stuff you are out of luck.

    Try the John Day for a better experience