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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok, I understand I'm a little ahead of myself, but I'm planning trips for this summer. I'm looking for a long arduous hike to find some moving water that very few people ever get to see. I've been looking into the Pasayten Wilderness (that large roadless area up in Okanogan) and happened to glance over the lost river (Methow Tributary).

I tried to find some information about it, but that info seems to be mysteriously non-existent. I understand that the river isn't open until quite a few miles in because of the Methow ESA closures, but it looks like it's open up in the gorge, and further up into the headwaters. It also doesn't look like there's a trail up in there, though there's a trail near the headwaters that reaches cougar lake and travels further into the Pasayten drainage. A little bit of exploring up in the Pasayten sounds like a lot of fun.

From a fishing perspective, the Lost River intrigues me. I'm not necessarily looking for fishing info, but I'm wondering if anyone has any info on the river or the area, in general. Specifically, I'm wondering how accessible the river is, and if the river gradient is conducive to sustaining trout populations.
 

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Long, long ago I did a spring chinook spawning survey on the Lost River. Met my first timber rattlesnake on the hike in. Encountered a hippie skinny-dipping in a deep pool who directed me to the only chinook carcass I saw during the entire survey. Don't know if the hippie was just hiking there or living in the woods there. The river also hosts rainbow trout (steelhead) and bull trout I'm told, but I never saw either. I expect the river sustains fish populations, but I don't know how productive it is.

Sg
 

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Encountered a hippie skinny-dipping in a deep pool ...
OK, I need a little more information ... was this hippie a male hippie or a female hippie?

Once, when I was in college, I came upon THREE female hippies skinny-dipping in a deep hole on a little brook trout stream in West Virginia ... one of my very favorite fishing memories ...
 

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card shark
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The upper lost river gets pretty low during late summer, by mid-september it's a series of holes seprated by not much more than braided trickles, at least when I was there a few years ago. Although legal to target bull trout in the upper river, low water habitat minimizes the availability of the fishery. With a below average snow pack year ahead, you might consider a trek along the Paysayten River instead.
 

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I think the Lost R is closed to fishing below the wilderness boundary. It is beautiful water and I have seen some bulls and big bows in the gin clear pools. If you hike In approx 2 mi there is a nice camp where a trip comes in across a bridge. It's still a ways from the wilderness boundary. You could bushwack in low water, but when I went there in mid sept the water was COLD and I never made it to the boundary. I think the tribs might be legal but check the regs. Yes, there are rattlers.
 

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aka Dave Hoover
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OK, I need a little more information ... was this hippie a male hippie or a female hippie?

Once, when I was in college, I came upon THREE female hippies skinny-dipping in a deep hole on a little brook trout stream in West Virginia ... one of my very favorite fishing memories ...
Ahh that's where your fondness for brook trout fishing originated. Who knew?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I read 'em. The lower half or so of the gorge is closed to fishing. It's open above Monument Cr.

That's wild that it gets so low. I might have to take my trek elsewhere if I would just be harassing bull trout in puddles. Thanks for the info.
 

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nymphing beads with a spey pole.
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I did a hike in there two summers ago. the project was to get in there and hook and line bull trout for PIT tagging purposes, scale samples, and DNA clips. We hiked in from the Chewuch up 8 mile Creek and over Billy goat pass, and down the Drake creek trail dumping you out on the lost. This was in Sept. and the Lost river was definitely lost, there was one pool at the bottom of Drake creek and no other water in sight. We we hiked and fished our way up river a few miles to Rampart Creek. We found water a 1/2 to mile up and it continued as far up as we went. The fishing was ok if you like small bulls, and Im talking like 8" fish. We never tagged anything over 12" for sure. The water is just sterile up there. the next day we hiked down through the gorge and continued hiking and hiked some more, probably 4 miles or so,, never found water. But the gorge is rediculous. I would love to see it with raging water during spring runoff. I have also done the Spring Chinook spawning ground survey on the lost as well, from Eureka Creek down to the mouth. a few springer redds and carcs but never saw a fish rise, or anything. dead water. Good luck It is really cool country if you decide to go, we busted a few mountain goats off a hillside one day.
 
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