Trip Report Nice day on the Oregon coast

Dashiell Glenn

Active Member
I've been all over the west coast this summer, fishing so much that I haven't had the time or energy to do many trip reports. I just returned from the trip this post is about, and now I'm home for a day or two before I leave for a 5 day backpacking/fly fishing trip that I decided to go on a couple hours ago. I've also done a fair amount of exploring this summer in Montana, Wyoming, Idaho, and California, but those reports will have to wait. I will say that I've been thoroughly enjoying the OMJ doctrine of wandering little blue lines.

Back to Oregon. I ended up joining my family at our cabin on the coast this last week. I'd been in Idaho with a buddy of mine for the two weeks before that, and I was dead tired. But the family trip presented a chance to fish one of my all time favorite creeks, and I wouldn't have to drive myself there. This particular creek is where I took my profile picture, and it holds a special place in my memory. It goes up into the hills for miles, but until this year I hadn't gone up very far from its confluence with the main body.
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It's amazing all the way up. A mixture of typical river cobbles and deep channels carved through what I assume is some kind of bedrock. Small cutthroat occupy every conceivable pocket of holding water, all the way down to the inch deep pools formed when the creek spreads out over wide cobble sections. Bigger resident cutts occupy pools like the one above, and will crush any fly as soon as it hits the surface. The biggest resident cutts I caught were maybe 8 or 9 inches, and fought just as hard as the SRC that were just starting to make their way up the main river. As it always seems to happen, I couldn't take pictures of the biggest fish. I didn't have a net, and they were just too stubborn to cooperate. It was great fun on a 3wt.
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I hiked up above where I have fished before, and hooked a gem on the first cast. A small hippie stomper was the best and only fly of the day.

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There were also some rainbows mixed in higher up on the creek. I'm not sure if they're native or not, but I found their differences in coloration interesting. The first was caught in an open rocky run, along with others like it. I caught the second one much farther up, under a large logjam. It looked like it had been hiding under there for most of its life.
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This was one of the best pools I encountered. The creek split into two long, deep slots cut into the rock. Both held fish, but the deeper of the two was absolutely packed with cutthroat. I could have stepped over the one above without much extra effort, but it was at least 5 feet deep. Standard size from this area was close to this:
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These fish displayed some impressive acrobatics, and pulled hard enough to make my line squeal in the water. This creek isn't hard to access, but it's surrounded by seemingly more attractive options that draw 99% of the attention away. I consider myself lucky to know about it.
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This was my favorite picture of the day. I spotted this cutt while I was stopping to drink some water, and it was positioned close enough to the bank to merit an attempt to sneak up on it. This is only the second time a fish has cooperated with me long enough to get a good picture. I still ended up spooking it, though.

Wildlife was everywhere in this small valley. Kingfishers were chattering everywhere, and eagles circled up above. One unidentified bird walked right up to me while I was messing with my leader and ate a bug off my shoe. It hung out close to me for a while even after I finished with my line and started moving around. It had a similar build to a flicker, except it didn't have the black patch on it's chest and it had orange-ish speckles instead of brown or black. Deer and elk sign was also everywhere I went, but I didn't spot any.

The sighting of the day happened on the long walk back down a reclaimed logging road I was using to return to the fishing mobile. The sun was getting low, and I was tired and hungry enough to forget to make any noise as I walked. As a result, I walked into a small clearing and accidentally startled a large black bear. He was up in a vine maple that had been taken over by blackberries, enjoying a nice evening meal. I felt bad about interrupting him, but I would have scared him no matter what. This was the closest I've ever been to a bear, and it was an amazing experience. Overall, it was a perfect day on the water. I hope you all enjoy the pictures.

Stay safe out there, and tight lines!
 

cabezon

Sculpin Enterprises
Nice report, well told! and illustrated I look forward to summaries of your other summer adventures.
Steve
 

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