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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well, back tonight after a week long juant up to that lake paradise called Okanogan County. Well, let me re-phrase; there are many great lakes up there to dabble the fly-affictionado but this trip I focused on Chopaka since I had the time (err.. vacation).

About the best weather I've experience up there (compared to previous trips hailed with rain, hail, WIND, etc.) EVERY DAY was total blue sky, mid 80's, very light breeze, no gail force stuff to push you to the end and have to flipper it back to camp;-( (float tubers take note). Hey, the breathable waders worked just fine, the water temp was not bad. The only thing that never changes is that rutted road...argh!

Besides the dusty, gear scattering grade from Loomis, the fishing was great. Yes, the Callibaetis are going full swing. It can only get better as fall progresses. It was about the only pattern I used 90% of the time. In fact, my supply of #16 parachutes used up by Wed.(fishslimed flies, breakoffs etc.) Good thing I had the tie kit with me.
My slightly altered Adams is what I refer to it as: microfibbit tail, tan/greyish polydub, white antron wing/post, 1 ginger/1 grizzly hackle, parachute style. The naturals appeared a bit darker bodied, almost dark brown as they dotted the surface for the fish-fest-smorgasbord. Simple easy tie for the field & worked for me, cast up to the cruisers in the reeds. My big hotspots were the 1st "point" south of CG, and also reeds across from CG (by the fence).
Yes, the water level was low due to the dry summer conditions. The handicap dock now ends at a 'beach' not the water. The fish were pretty decent/healthy looking - avg. 16" a few were 18-20". I seem to remember larger fish years past, but maybe they just eluded me.
Some folks appeared to be dregding with the big stuff, buggers/leeches etc. - but I stayed with the dryline the whole time. To me it is just much more fun to sightcast dries a few feet ahead of a cruiser slurping mayflies... brings chills to me I tell ya'...

Left Thurs evening to get a head start back home and split the drive up. Stayed at Black Pine Lake near Twisp last night and fished this morning. Loaded with 10" brookies. What a nice change of pace with great pine forrest scenery to boot.

I saw a post here about a bunch of you guys heading up to Chopaka in October. I hope all goes well on your expedition and that the weather gods bless your timeframe.

-dryfly-
 

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Thanks for the great report. I have been a little concerned about going in october, but the warm weather seems to be staying around. One more week of warm weather before it's starts cooling off will be perfect. How crowded was it over there? The fishing spots you mentioned have always been good for me too. That first point south of the CG is awesome. me and my buddy caught a bunch of nice fish there. You should go back over with the rest of us in October! :THUMBSUP YT
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I'd love to go over again in Oct., but obligations... (I took my 2wk vacation now partially due to moving this week, so at least I got in my Chopaka yearly trip, then back to work).

To answer your question, not crowded at all. I'd say there were a dozen or so folks there, some campers/5th wheels too. I just have tent however. I stayed at one of the covered spots in the DNR camp (mainly for SHADE during the heat of day). There were also some folks down at the BLM camp (past the fence toward the 'big tree').
Of course, I was there mid week, when I left on Thurs. afternoon, saw several more on way up for wkend. I was there three yrs ago on the last open wkend (Oct. 30/31st). To me it was getting cold then, frost on waders in morning sort of thing, and for me at least, the fishing was slower than norm.

Well, again hope you have a nice trip in Oct. I may find some time in mid Oct. to do a few day trips to Lenice/Nunnaly however.
 

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Thanks for the great report Dryfly. I'm planning on going over there for the first time ever this next week. I doubt that I'll have as good a weather as you had, but maybe overcast skies will imporve the mayfly hatch. The Callibaetis I tie have a tan body, but it sounds like I need to go to more of a brown color. I assume that the fishing is probably best in the evening. Were there other times of day that were particularly productive?

:COOK
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Hi,

Here was my routine: as soon as sun started cresting the top of ridge in morning I'd hit the water (~ 8 o'clockish). Work the reeds/shallows till noon/1pm then mid day I'd take a break from heat.
Back to water around 5 to 6 for the evening round till dusk. I'm not saying this is the 'best' way, just what I did when there. The mays were on the water it seemed at all times, so it was hard to pinpoint the actual hatch. Duns floating about most times in mid morning, and saw spinners during the late day hours. The bug count wasn't huge, put they were there.

As for the Callibaetis body color, personally I don't think it is a real big deal - grey, tan, etc. I grabbed one off the water and noted that it seemed darker in coloration to body than I'd seen there before - almost dark mottled brownish grey. Sub-species??

I think the real key is size and presentation. The naturals were rating about a #16. If I made a sloppy cast and the fly or leader hit the water poorly (which I admit happens to me;-) it seemed to turn the fish away as expected. If I used a #14 - too big, etc. Mostly, I was trying to lead ahead of their direction about ~3ft. into their "window" if they were activly just crusing and slurping.

Oh, one more thing - try some hopper patterns also, there were tons of grasshoppers in the CG!

Have fun! You'll really enjoy it there if it's your 1st time.
 
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