Discussion in 'Steelhead' started by Josh Brower, Oct 11, 2009.
Deja Vu all over again!
My report is 12 degrees this morning, ice in the guides, plenty of cold fingers, a very pretty sunrise, and no fish. Hope this helps.
Thanks Pete. definitely more helpful than the other posts.
Josh, the Methow and Wenatchee have been very slow. Might as well stay home and fish a closer river. You will probably still get skunked, because that's steelheading but you'll still have money in your pocket.
I've fished it the last 2 days. It is pretty tough right now. There are certainly fish in the river and fish being caught, but it is not great fishing right now. We fished some of our known spots this morning and got a couple of fish and then floated from Carlton down about 4-5 miles. We only talked to one fisherman on the float who had hooked a fish. We did better today overall, but got almost all of our fish out of known spots where we have hooked fish on dozens of previous days. If you don't have a lot of river knowledge, you're going to find it pretty tough.
Yesterday was really tough. We got just a couple of fish between us and we know the river very well and fish it a lot.
The river is super low, so there just aren't that many good spots. We had trouble finding fishable water on our floats and in most cases these holes already had people in them.
PM me if you want more specific information.
Also, watch the weather reports. We were out at first light yesterday and it was well below freezing. This morning we didn't bother going out before 9:00.
I'm in Wenatchee tonight and planning on fishing said river tomorrow.
A lot of the other guys are right though, it can change from day to day. We usually don't see weather this cold until November and I generally find that once the fish get acclimated to the colder temps the bite can turn back on. Also, some more water in the river may help. I just wouldn't get the idea that because the run is so strong you are going to get into the fish. Getting skunked is a very real possibility, especially if you have limited experience on the river.
Leland nailed it - when I ask for a report it's more about how many fishermen I'll encounter than how many fish.
Josh - there are plenty of fish in every Columbia trib open right now to justify fishing for them. From the Deschutes to Methow. Choose whichever you want to explore (and pay the $$$ to get to) - you'll have as good a chance as everyone else.
C'mon your from snohomish, $100 in gas...driving an rv? Just joking.
There ARE fish in the river, just look at what's coming up the Columbia. However, I do agree with the water level discussion. Hit it, drive it, and have some flies. The fish are in, but you have to learn the runs with the highest concetration. I've heard plenty of folks whine, but if you put in the time and find the runs, you'll find the fish. I found a few yesterday on a river near the Methow right next to the road. Don't be afraid to do your own prospecting up there right now; I did and it sure is more rewarding than waiting for a "sure shot." Also, consider the Wenatchee, it's a lot closer and there are quite a few steelhead in there.
Have fun, it's always worth your time.
BTW, don't think that you need to have some secret hole in order to catch them. I think all but one of our 6-7 fish today came out of holes that are either on the road, or at least within sight of the road. If there are a lot of fish in the hole and they are left alone for an hour or so, they'll bite again. I've stayed in a single hole all day and caught fish throughout the day. Just be methodical in how you work through the hole and hit all of the spots. Change your flies often. As I posted previously, I caught one UNDER one of the bridges at roughly noon. Definitely not a "secret" hole. The one fisherman we talked to that had hooked up was also fishing a roadside hole when he hooked up.
Don't know about the methow, but the wenatchee is rther hit and miss due to the low water they are stacked in the columbia all fish I have hooked thus far have been native along with 2 coho these fish when they move are doing it at night so hit the pockets all the way up. :beer2: if ya don't drive ya won't ever lern where thewy are go get em
Hey Josh, if you can only afford to go one time this season I would wait until one of two things happens. A rise in the water level should trigger more fish to move into the system. Try to be there within a few days after this happens. Of course this is not secret knowledge so expect some company. Be courteous and fish confidently when it's your turn in the run.
The other thing - When the desire to fish becomes overwhelming, go. You can catch fish there in low water. The fish don't know it's low water. How could they? They've been gone for a long time. Concentrate on water with walking speed current where you can't quite make out the bottom, but be sure to let the fly swing in as far as practical, especially in low light conditions like morning and evening.
Josh, ok here's the straight up. Fishing sucks right now, water temp 42 degrees night time temps upper teens low 20's. Talk to over 25 anglers yesterday only one fish reported to hand.
Now then when I see reports of 7fish days it makes me wonder. I'm hoping those catches are acuring after the angler was inverviewed by WDFW or those were hook ups but not landed fish. I would hate to think anglers are not being truthfull when asked questions that are important to keep the fishery going.
I saw a fish checker AND game warden the first day, but have not seen one in the 6 days since...
The Wenatchee is also slow. We need some rain to bring in some fresh fish. The fish that are in the system are seeing stuff thrown at them all day every day and are getting a bit dour. I've primarily fished the lower river and there are guys in most every decent drift all day long. I've heard they guys who are nymphing are still picking up a few. Despite epic runs, it's still steelheading...hit and miss.
Another thing, don't think about releasing a hatchery fish and report none caught to any WDFW because there are wildlife officers watching the river activities from afar with binoculars. You never know. Also, if you did release a hatchery fish and say it was a wild during an interview with an officer you are only counting against (for no good reason) the total number of allowable wild fish caught during the emergency steelhead open season.
Seems very obvious, but just reminding everyone to play it honest out there.
Oh and fishing according to my buddy was VERY slow and VERY cold and VERY crowded. One fish for him the whole weekend and he is an accomplished steelheader fishing good holding water I put him on top of. He still had fun though which is the true aforementioned steelheader’s spirit.
The great thing about steelheading... you never know what's going to happen. IMO, some successful steelhead trips I took, I didn't actually connect with a fish, but they did, in fact, make me a better angler.