Discussion in 'Saltwater' started by Bob Triggs, Feb 13, 2018.
Is the snakey appearance the best way to identify post spawn fish? Any other indicators to look for?
Darker colors, visible orange slash, tattered lower tail fin or nip marks on fins.
I am stating the obvious here, but this fishery is unlike anything else that I know of. South Sound SRC is a year round fishery that never blows out and is only unfishable on terribly windy days or very sunny days. The life histories and various ages of the fish basically guarantee good fishing year round more or less. It is a purely wild trout fishery that is remarkably healthy. I mean, anyone who experiences the insane lightning in a bottle that it can be at times can attest to the numbers.
Fly anglers police themselves. In my elitist view that I share with at least a few people around here, we are doing our part. Plus, many of us turn to other fisheries in the later Spring and Summer. At least I do.
One problem is that you can stay entirely within the regulations while still hurting SRC. For example, I know of one gear guy that fishes a particular beach on what I am assuming is a daily basis. The dude does not look like he works. He drifts soft plastics and I doubt his C and R practices are refined. I bet he has a substantial effect on the local population, but that's one small inlet and he's the only instance of questionable practice that I can really point to.
As has been noted, the lack of public shore keeps the populations safe for the most part. For the amount that bad is done, I think the shelter provided by the vast private amount of private land makes up for it.
Just out of curiosity, what makes you think this gentleman does not handle SRC properly? Is he poaching, using barbed hooks, letting the fish flop around on the beach prior to release or is it because he chooses to fish conventional tackle?
"Drifts soft plastics"
Interesting. That's a technique I've never witnessed before. Would be curious what kind of setup he's using for that.
It is entirely possible to travel to a few well known eastern Washington "Quality Lakes" way early or way late in the day and witness such tactics....
The dude told me point blank that cutts nearly swallow the hook on account of the nature of the soft plastic, fishes from the shore, surely does not wet his hands before grabbing the fish, and I sure have not seen a nice rubber landing net.
My point is generally that people can stay within the regulations while still finding a way to nearly ensure a high post catch mortality.
Drifting a soft plastic is not the hardest thing to conceptualize: throw soft plastic out in current and let it drift? Excuse me if I am somehow misusing a technical term?
But hey, I only care about the fishery. That's all.
Keep in mind there are significant differences between the spawn timing of early- and late-entry cutthroat. Late-entry cutthroat are more common in the small south Sound and Hood Canal streams draining directly into salt water, where early-entry cutthroat which are predominant, where larger rivers enter the salt (as in the north Sound). Early-entry cutthroat may enter their natal streams as early as July but not begin spawning activities February. The peak spawning month is March though some will not spawn until as late as June, by which time some may have spawned and returned to salt water as early as April.
Probably because their smaller natal streams will not have sufficiently high flows until much later when swollen by fall and winter's rains, late-entry cutthroat will continue to feed in salt water well into winter. The result is the almost-year-round salt water cutthroat fishery in the south Sound and Hood Canal.
Not saying it's anything technical or hard to conceptualize, but as a guy who hasn't bass fished or anything like that I have zero experience with such things beyond throwing swim baits for lingcod and albacore, and I'm guessing that's a different setup. Are these things weighted? Bobber?
Not arguing whether or not the guy is causing harm... From what you described it sounds like he's definitely not handling himself as well as he could in the name of the fishery. My interest is simple.... If I see someone fishing gear and catching a bunch of fish, I want to take a look at the setup if possible and see if theres something I could learn from it or maybe come up with a new fly pattern or technique... That's all.
I got you NC. I am not sure. Did not see his setup too clearly. Just know he was using some soft plastic product.
With plastic worms becoming so popular on the steelhead rivers these days it wouldn't surprise me if someone was using them in the salt. I could see something like a WFO worm drifted under a float being pretty darn effective for cutthroat. I don't know how the hook is oriented in those outfits, so its definitely possibly it would result in more deep hooked fish.
That is crazy you even mention that man.... there is a sweet little estuary I used to fish a lot in the fall since my buddy had a beach house nearby and one evening I found a guy tossing worms and bobbers on a bait casting rod as if fishing for large mouth on a Kentucky bass pond... as I approached to inquire I literally stumbled across a massive trout in the grass nearby and I can say with all honesty it was one of the beefiest cutthroat trout I have ever seen.... never mind it being a SRC man.... as it turns out the guy was out of season anyway as the river had a "no bait in tidewater" rule at that time.... it was the one and only time in my life I had to call ODFW on someone.... I always wondered why more gear guys didn't try soft worms for SRC in tidewater although I am glad they don't at least on my home waters.... side note.... before the bait ban guys would troll worms behind canoes and apparently limit out in like 20 minutes back when you could keep 6 or more in a day.... ST
Ok, same as any other trout. Not sure why I thought it might be different for SRC.
This is where my mind went immediately as well. I think it’s time time up some Puget Sound Worms and float them under and indicator . Tough to beat that grab on a stripped fly. Watching an indicator disappear is exciting in its own way though...
There I am just minding my business, staring at the paint on my walls, and then somebody has to mention indicators in the salt thread.
Hey @Nick Clayton can you even catch SRC under an indicator in the salt?
Nope, it can't be done