Sometimes you get really lucky and hit everything just right.
This Fish a Long was one of those times! Water conditions were very good, the trout
were biting & stacked up thick below schools of spawning salmon. This
weekend, finding spawning salmon was the key and we did this with no trouble.
I arrived and Friday afternoon and found a note waiting for me on Darryl Huff’s windshield that said “Dave, fishing upriver. Bring egg patterns!” Darryl had been having an epic day and ended up landing over 100 trout. To rack up these impressive numbers he started at 8am then fished hard all day. By the time I set up camp there was only about an hour of daylight left but I managed to hook a trout on the very first cast then bring another dozen or so to hand using and egg fly provided by Mitch Moyer, who was featured in Jim Adam’s September Fly Tying article.
It rained pretty hard late Friday night but fortunately stopped before Saturday morning. The rest of the day we had periods of intermittent rain and wind gusts but for the most part the weather and water conditions were good. The trout bite held up but was not as red hot as the day before. Still, we all got fish and Darryl had another good day, bringing an 18.5” fish to hand. My fish story of the day happened using a two fly rig & hooking two fish at the same time. Thanks to luck and heavy tippet both fish made it into the net.
Besides good fishing with good friends, it wouldn’t be a proper CFF Fish A Long without a good lunch! Cheryl provided fresh cooked juicy burgers, homemade macaroni salad and chips. Across the river seven mountain sheep were putting on a show, chasing each other and doing their mating dance. Aided by Paul Brewers Leupold binoculars & spotting scope, it was quite a sight.
After lunch the bite slowed down but we still ground out a few. Cheryl and I stayed Saturday night and enjoyed a nice campfire under starry skies. I had hoped to fish a little more Sunday morning but the White River blew out and the river was out of shape. I’m sure it would have been possible to grind out a few more but after being spoiled the last couple days I was content to drink coffee & pack up camp.
Thanks to everyone for coming and making this a fishing trip to remember!
It has been a club tradition for a number of years to head to the Oregon coast for our November Fish-A-Long where we go after Chum Salmon. It is hoped that by our November 9th outing we will have received enough rain (but hopefully not too much!) to draw these fish into our coastal rivers. The Kilchis River is our normal destination although the Miami River also has a run of chums.If you have some extra time this fall, there are many more opportunities to catch chum salmon in Washington waters.In fact, the WDFW website has a note indicating that Chum salmon are the most abundant wild salmon species in Washington state. Be sure to check out the Washington regulations if you are planning to head up there.
Chum salmon are sometimesregarded as the “ugly stepsister” of all of the species of Pacific salmon.They can be chrome bright while still in the ocean but soon begin to develop characteristic markings as they prepare to enter freshwater.After entering rivers chums are readily identifiable by their characteristic olive green coloration with purplish vertical striping and blotches along their sides.
Chum Salmon– Ocean Phase Chum Salmon– Spawning Male
Chum salmon are sometimes referred to as dog salmon, with research showing two possible origins for that name.One explanation is that name comes from the impressive mouthful of sharp teeth seen in the males as they approach spawning time.A second explanation is that the reference to dog salmon comes from the habit of Native Americans feeding the flesh of the chum salmon to their dogs.Chums are not known for their aerial acrobatics but they fight like bulldogs and are not brought in easily, so don’t go light in selecting your gear.
Impressive Teeth! Be sure to bring a good set of pliers.
This month we will be tying up a fly called The Comet. Don Conway of Seattle is credited with coming up with the design for this fly back in 1934 and It was later popularized by Grant King in the salmon and steelhead rivers of northern California in the 1940’s. While we will be targeting Chum salmon there is no reason to think that it would not be effective for any of the species of Pacific salmon, as well as steelhead.I have also read reports that the Comet is also an effective smallmouth bass pattern.For Chums the fly is normally tied in chartreuse.There is an old saying in regard to chum salmon… “it’s no use if it ain’t chartreuse”, regardless of the specific fly pattern.However, many anglers report that if the chums aren’t responding to chartreuse flies it is time to switch to something that is hot pink.So hopefully, we will have both the time and materials to tie up both chartreuse and pink Comets.And if something happens with the weather and it messes with the Kilchis Fish-A-Long, all is not lost, as these flies can also be used as dandy steelhead patterns.
Join us at the Royal Treatment Fly Shop in West Linn on Wednesday, October 23.Even if you are not planning to attend the Kilchis River fish-a-long the Comet would be a fly to have in various colors in your steelhead, salmon or smallmouth bass fly box. The Comet is not a difficult fly to tie and would be suitable for tyers of all abilities or experience.
We’ll see you at 6 pm !
Gil Henderson (left) and Lane Hoffman (right) with Kilchis River chum salmon.
This months Fish-A-Long will be held Saturday October 19th on the Deschutes
River at Beavertail Campground.
The plan: meet at Beavertail Campground between 8am and 9am. We’ll provide coffee and doughnuts then we hit the river! After morning fishing a hot lunch will be served.
Beavertail campground has ample parking and lots of good fishing water. It’s
located 21 miles north of Maupin on the Lower Deschutes Access Rd. From Maupin
to Shears Falls is paved and the last 10 or so miles to Beavertail is gravel
Gear: 4 to 6wt rods with matching reel & floating lines. Euro nymphing has become very popular but indicator nymphing rigs with small glo- bugs and/or standard nymphs like Pheasant Tails and Hair’s ears work very well too. Swinging for steelhead is a possibility too but reports indicate steelhead fishing has been slow. Bring waders with felt or cleated boots and layered clothing (can be cool in the morning).
This is a very nice time to fish the Deschutes River for trout –
they’re usually hungry and can be concentrated below schools of spawning
salmon, making for excellent fishing. This is also a great fish along
to make an overnight trip and we will probably have a few overnight campers in
Please email Paul at email@example.com
if you plan to attend so we can get a head count for the food.
John Wall of The Portland Fly Shop will be our Oct 15th speaker. He will be accompanied by Chris Matthews of Semper Fli Guide service and together they will be presenting info about our local fly fishing opportunities.
It will be an informative presentation you won’t want to miss!
It seems this year we can only dream of catching a nice bright Steelhead, but a few are out there even if the run in the Deschutes is not up to past years. Anyway the Trout are still about and we can enjoy the fall days stalking them.
The club has been moving right along with interesting speakers and fun outings to some new venues. Things will keep on being fun as we begin the fall of 2019.
The speaker in September was Garth Wyatt, PGE biologist, who recapped the efforts to restore the Chinook, Coho, and Steelhead runs to the Clackamas River basin. Good progress has been made which will bode well for the fishery in the future.
Next we have John Wall from Portland Fly Fishing Shop to discuss local fishing opportunities. Join us to listen to this guides thoughts.
The fish-a-long this month will be on the Deschutes where we can pursue Steelhead and Trout. Of course good food and company included. Stay tuned for more information. Also, the fish-a-long for November will be on the Kilchis River for Chum Salmon. This is an annual event and is usually a lot of fun, but is also weather dependent. Again more information to follow.
As you saw on the site we have a joint meeting with the Fly Fishing Club of Oregon. The speaker location is downtown so leave early to avoid traffic. It will be well worth the trip.
Remember our sponsors are they are the lifeblood of the club. Stop by their shops and let them know your appreciate their support. Better yet buy something or book a outing with them.
From Darryl Huff: My favorite words are still “dad, can we go fishing”!!! Some pictures from Father & Son days on the Deschutes.
From Jim Behrend: Pat and I went to Crane Prairie Reservoir and caught a few large rainbows and some Kokanee salmon. We went with a guide from Fly and Field in Bend which of course was very helpful. Then we went to the Wilson this week and had a good day fishing for sea run cutthroat. Caught a couple in 16-18 inch range and a bunch of smaller ones.
From Richard Harvey: While waiting for the silvers to show up in the Clackamas River the evening caddis hatches have been producing some pretty rainbows.
From Phil Hager: Ran over to central Oregon for 12 days and just got home.
Hosmer Lake: Fish are moving down from the upper lake and results have slowed down a bit, but very active during heavy rain squalls. Lots of Brookies, some RB’s and some Cutts on my little black & grey TnMC Nymph.
Lava Lake: Real slow, only hit a half dozen RB’s there. Water very cloudy on north end clearer on south end. (Reversal on “normal” conditions.)
Crane Prairie: Cow Camp and Cultus River area the water was clear and cold. 5 nice ones was all and all on the Brick Leech pattern. TU guys that went to Rocky Point said the water looked like split pea soup and in short order hit 12 and landed 7. All in the 18″ to 22″ size range.
Fall River: Seemed dependent on weather. Cloudy and rain, very active. Sun out, pretty quiet. Caught Browns, White fish and Rainbows below the falls, lots of various sized RB’s in the camp zone.
Crooked River: Very cloudy water. Like I told a friend from Prineville that stopped by, “lots in the 15″ range and several 24″, if you line up enough of the 4″-6″ size I’m catching!”. Most of those on my grey TnDH emerger.
John Day at Lepage: Lost count on Small mouth bass that ranged from 5″ to about 12″ in size. Most of those on the Brick leech. Planned a 2nd day there but there were stout winds coming out of the west and decided to head home.
From Jacob Noteboom & Mark Bachmann of The Fly Fishing Shop:
The Deschutes River has especially been afflicted by White River run-off in the lower 50-miles for nearly the whole month of September. However, we all know that luck favors the angler who has a fly in the water. The best anglers got steelhead regularly with floating lines and small flies when the visibility was 2-feet or better. The last half of the month was far better than the first part. This probably had more to do with fish movement than watercolor.
was good month for trout fishing on the whole lower 100-miles of the Deschutes.
Hatches have been prolific. Mayfly,
midge & caddis have provided an evening smorgasbord. As usual the majority of fish were hooked were
within 10 feet of the bank.
The Lakes on Mt. Hood have all been stocked for the season including some “trophy trout” (18 inches or so). Harriet Lake had improvements done to its docks and accessibility from the bank has nearly doubled. If you haven’t been up there since the docks went in, head up and check it out! Timothy Lake fishes very well this time of year as pressure decreases. The boat at the dam remains open. Callibaetis mayflies hatch well into October and fish can be very active on the surface, especially with a light drizzle of rain coming down.
We are starting to see more and more Coho and Chinook making their returns to the Columbia tributaries. With recent freshets of rain hitting our systems, the rivers will begin to rise and dirty temporarily, and these bright silver bullets will shoot upstream at a surprising rate. The fish will come in small waves at first, so expect spotty numbers and slow days with intermittent action until there are enough fish in the system for the fishing to be consistent. Pink wiggly flies on twitched swings are the ticket. We will see if the predictions of a strong Coho run will come into fruition soon enough, hopefully.
From Dave Kilhefner: After the Coffenbury Lake fish a long Cheryl and I stayed in Waldport and fished for Silvers out in the Columbia River by Hammond. We had a great time on the water but unfortunately there were no fish around so we didn’t get any. Also, we didn’t see anyone else getting any either and the ODFW fish checkers said very few fish were caught.
On the good side, the Clackamas River has good numbers of silver salmon right now and fish are being caught.