Big Trout Local Waters

Irafly

Indi Ira
WFF Supporter
In most places around our country and or our planet for that matter, a 20" trout is a nice trout. Granted I know about those places like Jurassic lake or some of these other waters where the locals are only impressed with fish in the double digit pounds, but as I said for the most part a 20" trout is a nice trout. That's why I'm continually amazed that there are waters right here in Washington where you can catch 20" trout on a regular basis when the fisheries are open and yet time after time I'll hit those waters and not another soul will be present. These are not secret waters or private waters, these are absolutely public with launches.

Once I reveal a bit more about the nature of one of these places, some of you can already guess, the rationalizers and the justifiers will start to climb out of the woodwork and attempt to explain how these trout are inferior or not to their liking or blah, blah, blah. Others will chime in about the distance or difficulty visiting these fisheries. I know of at least one member that will attempt to talk about the ethics of targeting such trout in the Summer time. Others, simply have it on their bucket list to target, don't know about the fisheries or are too intimidated by the fisheries to even attempt to try to catch them.

I once fished this particular lake and described the experience as a debacle, but on this particular jaunt out there early last week, the fates rolled the dice another direction. Other than pushing into me on the way out through the channel to reach the main lake and then pushing back into me on my way back in, the "W" remained quite reasonable and friendly throughout the day. I did not find fish where I had found them in the past, but a tip from another member led me further down the lake where I did finally find some fish right on an abrupt depth change from 12' down to 30' of water. The fished seemed to be hanging right on that wall and I found them trolling slowly with my type 7 (surprisingly, my type 5 never once found love on this trip). As I mentioned before, the friendly W worked me perfectly along this wall and on about 10 straight trips trolling down wind this 50 yard section resulted in a fish. Nothing grabbed as I worked the boat up stream. At one point I thought I had dialed in where the fish were holding exactly and I attempted to anchor up and fish the section with an indicator, but with no luck. I pulled anchor and trolled again, but the current changed and after a few more attempts in this section, I started heading further down the lake.

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I hadn't explored this end of the lake much, so I decided to zig zag my troll and map out more of what the depths were. Over the 50' zones I sped up and slowed down when the water shallowed up into the 30' zones. While doing this, I found an area that dropped from 18' down to about 35' fairly quickly and I marked a fish (I hadn't marked many so any little bleep caused a positive rise in blood pressure), I slowed down and when I thought my fly was in that area I hooked up and as I did the screen on my depth finder lit up as well. While I fought the fish I kept marking more and more fish in this 33' to 36' zone. I landed the fish and maneuvered to anchor up on the fish blips. Then the lights went out for the next couple of hours. Not every cast, but the fish were simply there. The fish were hanging out in about 18' of water and I caught fish either on my type 7 with about a 30 second count down, or on my indicator rig. They took a variety of bugs, but they seemed to key in mostly on a black squirrel tail micro leech on the type 7 and an orange head dirty olive micro leech under the indicator. The fish were aggressive enough, that I rarely missed a take under while I was working the type 7. Even with the consistent action for fish from 17" up to one brute at almost 24" and several fish in the 20+" range, I never did end up with a double.
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Once I didn't end up with a fish after a 10 minute wait, I decided to call it a day and head back to the launch, fearful that the "W" might change its mind at any moment. On the troll back in, I zig zagged a bit more and managed to hook another 10 or so, but all the fish were in the far part of the lake, with nothing landed closer to the launch. Did I have to work to find them? Yes. Would I have been satisfied with this day had I been up in BC or in Montana? Hell yes!

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bakerite

Active Member
I had a similar experience on a Lahontan water that is almost in Canada last August. I fished that lake three times that year and never saw another fisherman.
 

Buzzy

Active Member
Awesome! And to think I stood you up because my wife and I had to work on that Soap Lake girls farm (at least the raspberries and blueberries we brought home were good).

One of the things I appreciate the most in this post is your hunting method; go search. Ten minute rule (I thought it used to be 15 minutes) - far too often I get hung up trying that "one spot" that has been a producer before. Obviously fish move, and it appears they move quite some distance. Will we ever understand why? No, but where? Yes - well maybe, if you hunt. Way to go (did you remember to tie your boat down to the trailer when pulling out?) Ira!!
 

Salmo_g

WFF Supporter
Never caught a Lahontan. I was going to try it this spring, but we heard that the road had a washout or something so we didn't check it out. I never think about fishing that side of the state in the summer heat. Maybe there's a shady side of the lake Ira knows about.
 

Irafly

Indi Ira
WFF Supporter
Never caught a Lahontan. I was going to try it this spring, but we heard that the road had a washout or something so we didn't check it out. I never think about fishing that side of the state in the summer heat. Maybe there's a shady side of the lake Ira knows about.

Road was rough, but manageable. No shade, but the temp was only in the upper 80s and the wind kept the temp nice.
 

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