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Another Flyfisherman
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Isnt that a suprise! I just got back from the Peninsula. Fished the Hoh - quite an intersting piece of water. There was about 3 to 4 feet of visibility. I dont know if all the flooding changed the river or what - but there sure were alot of gravel bars that could be waded too. There were a few drift boats that came past me, and a couple pontoons. One Guy on a pontoon said he had caught 2 fish. He wasnt fly fishin though. Then out of boredom - I drove to the forks of the Callawah. Water was very clear and looked really good - I stood on the bridge and peered in the water, but didnt see any fish. Didnt see anyone fishing that river either. I didnt fish it, but it looked good. Bogy was still dirty. I wanted to look at the Sol Duc - but dont know where it was and when the rain started blasting down - I kinda lost the motivation.

Are there any river trout on the west side of the Cascades besides the Yak?? This slow fishin is driving me nuts. Thats trip number 5 with NOTHING!! I havent been skunked this bad in all my years of flyfishing!! Of course I wasnt chasing steelhead either.

Hopefully someone else had a better day than me. :beer1

J
 

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Your experience seems to be the rule, not the exception. So don't take this personally. You're good and had the river been good, you would have caught something.
All this is very discouraging and most distressing. I don't think anyone knows why but this may be the sorriest steelhead season ever. My guess is that ocean conditions stink. Cyclical? Global warming? Something unknown?
Anybody's guess, I guess. I'll go with global warming seeing as how I have been in shirt sleeves this past week and no snow yet. Polluters say I'm full of it. Maybe so, but I'd still like to rain on their parade anyway.
If we all stop fishing and no one posts, then we'll never know if things have changed.
Thanks for your report on the Westside. I have been feeling guilty for not going over there. You have made me feel a little better but I wish you hadn't.:bawling
 

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Another Flyfisherman
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
LMAO! Glad I could help Boblawless. I just finished reading your "steelhead fort" story in the articles section of the site - Definately brought a smile after a grim day of fishing. It was either that, or the cold Henry Weinhards in my hand, or both. :thumb
 

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I know how you feel, Winter steelheading is tough. Keep fishing hard and you will be rewarded when you least expect it. I have only hooked one Steelhead this year so far and I consider myself lucky. Try messing around with different patterns to make it interesting. I always start off with a few old faithfuls but then turn to some FBN"s to see how they swimm in the water etc.

You have to believe in Steelhead.


Better luck to you--oh yeah, drinking allot helps.
:beer1 :dunno :beer1 :beer1 :beer1 :beer1 :beer1 :beer1
 

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I have only been fishing when I cant physically resist the urge anymore lately....Usually I fish whenever it is possible. Haven't caught much of anything but a few cutts and whitefish..
Drinking :beer1 and tying are the cure for sure. Also, been reading Duncan's, "The River Why" to keep myself busy...great book.
Anyway, I keep reading that unfavorable ocean conditions are likely to blame for the poor steelhead returns. However, when the puget sound chum run reached 3 million fish, I read that it could be attributed to favorable ocean conditions. I'm confused, which is it?
 

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Mother Nature's Son
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One thing that is often hard to keep in mind with steelheading is that you may fish all day, the next day, or weeks (sometimes) without a hook-up. I'll have to admit there are days that I wonder if a labotomy would be appropriate. Then what happens is you hook one...and then its over, you can't get the damn things out of your mind.

If you're looking to hook into some fish, the Cowlitz still has good cutthroat fishing. Sometimes its good to not get to focused on the steelhead fishing and break it up with a few hook-ups.

Sounds like the Hoh was in perfect shape. Some of the best fishing can be had when the visibility is 4-5 feet. This allows you to get your fly down to the fish without spooking them. Low clear flows are often much harder to catch fish in. As for the gravel bars on the Hoh, they appear when the water recedes. Sometimes they can be covered overnight when the river swells.

Skinny
 

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Just an Old Man
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The thrill is not in the kill---But to let them go.

Couldn't find the Sol Duc. If you would of stayed on 101 for about one more mile you would of crossed it. As I've never fished over there and by looking at my maps I would venture to say that the Hiway follows the river for about 20 or more miles.

If you want to fish the OP here is a good book on it. Fly Fishing the Olympic Peninsula By Doug Rose. It covers a lot of rivers and other areas on the OP.

Jim
 

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I know what you mean. I keep on fishing even though there are no fish. I feel like I should stand up in front of a crowd and say, "I'm Matt and I'm a Flyfisherman." Then everyone would respond with, "Hi Matt." But I don't seem to have any finacial trouble related to fishing expeditures and since I take my kids, when there not in school, I'm not really neglecting them. My wife actually pities me when the rains come and the rivers are filling up with mud. She just shakes her head, in a caring fashion, as I sit in the corner rocking back and forth, quivering.

Matt

"Everyday that you wake up and decide not to go fishing...is one less day you'll go fishing." Forrest Maxwell
 

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>Anyway, I keep reading that unfavorable ocean
>conditions are likely to blame for the poor steelhead
>returns.

Only the winter steelhead runs seem to be poor...summer runs have been doing well.

>However, when the puget sound chum run reached
>3 million fish, I read that it could be attributed to
>favorable ocean conditions. I'm confused, which is
>it?

Simply put, the ocean is a dynamic environment. Each salmonid species occupies a different salt water niche characterized by specific feeding preferences, migration patterns, range of water depths and time of entry into the salt. Although not much is known about the life history of steelhead in the salt, winter and summer run fish probably occupy different niches. So it is not too surprising that you can have a good chum or summer steelhead run while also having a poor winter steelhead return.

I think I heard that the commercial fisheries left the chums alone this year, leading to the large return. The run itself may not have been exceptional...just fewer fish being intercepted by nets. It is worth noting that fishing pressure from the commercial fleets is lowest during the troubled winter steelhead run, so this is not the cause of the low returns.

-Crock
 
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