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Slainte
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I just got back from the Oroville area and checked on a few local lakes.
First of all, Sidley and Molson are still frozen solid to the shore. I'll be back next weekend and we'll see if they open up a little.
Here's the sad news, Ell is very low, and the shore is a tangle of weeds. Pass this and Long (up the road) up unless you're into killing fish. They will have a hard time this summer as it is, if there are any fish left.
Blue and it's southern neighbor Wannacutt are also lower, but both are deep and will still yeild fish, I'm sure.
Spectacle and the other lower chain lakes seem all right.
It's kind of spooky to see how little water is in the area, and how little snow fell this winter. Spring fishing may be our window this year. Time will tell.

I'm pumped for the outings coming up in the next few weeks. I'll try to get info to pwoens so he's up to speed. Sorry Mac, there's no Best Western, but there is the Blue Top and Ala Cozy, beauties they are!!! NOT! I'll be in the F150 cabin...
:thumb

Roper,

Good things come to those who wade...
 
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IveofIone
Roper,
Thanks for the update.Winter over here in the 'far east' was very light with very little snowpack. It does not bode well for late summer fishing. My goal is to hit the ground running and fish my brains out early in the season. Holding out for better weather may not be a good stategy this spring. Last year I went to Sidley and got skunked but moved on down to Molson and just hammered the fish. Go figure.
Also last year one of our little special regs lakes all but dried up in the summer and was unfishable. Needless to say it won't be making a comeback any time soon. Ive
 

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Following Ive, I fished Sidley in late July this summer. I didn't get skunked, I actually cought 5-6 fish that morning. 12-15" was size of the fish I landed. I understand that's the the norm out there. Why fish Sidley? Because every fish JUMPS. That's the rule out there, and the fish abide..

Roper, sorry but I didn't make it to Tonasket this weekend to say "hi." I was to busy having fun at Omak Lake, which I feel is Washington state's equivalent of the Metolius when rated on the "funky-factor scale." That place is really funky! Clear blue water and big fish basically appearing out of nowhere.. Every fish you catch is a hog. I think that as of this weekend, larger fish were caught at Nicholson Beech (aka Beer Can Beech) when compared to Cow Pie Beach. Though these fish are huge, I did not find that throwing Size 2 and 4 streamers (big fish-big fly approach) was very effective. Black leeches in Size 6 and 8 2x long tied with some flash seemed to work best for me regardless of cloudy or sunny conditions this weekend. Short choppy retrieves were not effective at all. Fishing INTO the shoreline was not an effective tactic. Counting the fly down to the sandy bottom and making long smooth 2 foot pulls with pauses seemed to be more in-line with the fish's liking. It was odd to see NO aquatic vegetation what-so-ever. The beaches have about the same look and consistency as kitty litter (Cow Pie Beach actually had poo in the sand, just like a real litter box!), and somehow some midges have found away to hatch in it. Aside from that, its all about minnows. I actually captured a pea-mouthed chub minnow. For all you tyers, it was 2.5", was DARK olive with black splotches, had a fat distended belly of .5" (AKA big thorax, in tyer terminology), lateral fins that flared out to the side like a sculpin, and they scamper and freak-out like polly-wogs do as they move about the shoreline. This is the basic "hatch." How funky is that?

The Rules:
I learned the second day that Nicholson Beach is now open for camping and it has been opened early this year as they are pleased about the article and want to attract sportsmen and their money. Whatever you do, don't go out there without your Colville Tribal fishing permit! I was checked each day by the tribal police for my permit. The Wal-Mart in Omak didn't have any and it seemed the only place to get them was Cascade Outfitters which is on the same street in Omak as the Wal-Mart. Also, this is the rez, and from what I understand drinking is not allowed. Keep that in mind because since this is the rez, its a different country, and I HAVE NO IDEA WHAT THE WILL DO TO PUNISH YOU FOR NON-COMPLIANCE! Considering all this, don't bring beer. Also, right now is the Catch and Release season.

If you can make a long cast, you will do well.

There is so much lake (the thing's about the size of Lake Sammamish) that you can always get away from the "crowd" of 8 people that you're sharing the lake with just by moving down the lake a little. I hope you got the sarcasm in that last statement, because on my way back to Yakima tonight I passed Lenore and saw 13 guys within 10" of each other in the north end. Omak Lake is a better option.

Oh, look for sandy slicks with a sprinkling of boulders.

Sparse

Streams are made for the wise man to contemplate and fools to pass by.
(Sir Izaak Walton)
 

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Wanted to add my 2 cents to Sparse's comments. I met up with him in the parking lot at the end of the day on Saturday. I have to agree that it is a great lake to fish. I wanted to try the lake after seeing the article about Omak L ake in the Northwest Fly Fishing magizine winter issue. Both my wife and I agree that the photo's in the article do not do the lake any justice.

We purchased three day permits at the Cascade Outfitters. The original owner was very helpfull with directions, and advise. We purchased some of his recommended flies (wooley buggers, leaches, muddlers and cronomids) and all of them worked. Used a 16' boat to get around this 8 mile long lake. We fished all areas of the lake except "beer can beach". Smallest fish was about 14" and the largest 21". All were footballs, with some in full spawning collors.

I can't wait to get back over there to try it again.

Lastcall
 
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