Mount St. Helens area fishing

Hi there. I'm heading to Helens this weekend to do some hiking with the little lady and I'd really like to do some fishing. Has anybody had any experiences in the area, preferably streams. I read something recently about one of the larger lakes doing well. Any help would be appreciated.



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I'm not familiar with the stream fishing, but there are a number of good lakes in the area. You will need a boat or float tube to fish them effectively. Try searching the archives for posts on Merrill, Coldwater, and Castle. I have fished Merrill and Coldwater. Both have some nice fish. Merrill is fly only and has rainbow, cutthroat and brown trout. The browns can get pretty big. The Hex hatch is the talk this time of year, but unfortunately it comes off at dusk and the fish seem to wait for it. Daytime fishing can be slow. Coldwater lake has selective regulations and has rainbow and cutthroat of pretty good size. Both lakes are self sustaining. Sinking lines with attractor flies like woolly buggers or carey specials will probably be most consistant this time of year (except when they're keying on a hatch). Two weeks ago I did pretty well with damsel nymph imitations on Coldwater. The scenery up there in the blast zone is pretty cool even if you don't end up fishing much.
If you're on the south side of St. Helens try the N.F. of the Lewis River above Swift Reservoir. I fished there around 2 Sunday afternoon probably the worst time of day. Yet in only one hour of fishing I hooked eight fish and landed five of them. The smallest was around 12 inches and the largest was over 18 biggest stream trout I've landed not counting Rocky Ford. Then a bunch of people showed up at the park where I was fishing and started throwing rocks in the water so I called it a day.
I like to fish from the bridge at Eagle Cliff downstream it is only about aa 1/4 mile of river there before the water turns to lake but there are a ton of fish in there. When going downstream I use my sinking line with a woolley bugger and fish it on a swing like steelheading and the fish just nail it. Then on the way back up I switch to floating line and a nymph and indicator. Good luck.
Upper Toutle river is a nice river to get some fast action on the dries at this time. The trout is small, but the action can be nonstop.