November 2022 Fish A Long Report

The big news for this Fish A Long started with a forecast for some very cold weather but fortunately, warmer weather rolled in and Saturday turned out to be quite mild with no wind; it was a perfect November day.

The Saturday morning bite wasn’t hot but we all got fish. We broke for an early lunch, regrouped and headed back out. The afternoon featured decent hatches of Blue Wing Olives & Midges…and the fish were on the bite!

Chris and Tim hit the water below the Beavertail boat ramp and had non-stop, lights out fishing on egg patterns early then midge patterns in the later afternoon. Both agreed it was one of their best “numbers of fish” days ever & they doubled up at least 8 times!

Rich and I ventured downstream around the Macks Canyon area and did well, mostly on midge patterns. Rich hooked a couple monsters we never saw that were either big old salmon or late steelhead (or maybe one of each?).

Some general info. The water temp was 48 degrees and so the morning bites were a little slow. There were no more spawning salmon around Beavertail but still a bunch down by Macks Canyon. We saw a good herd of sheep on the canyon wall plus a lot of deer in the evenings, including a huge buck. The most unusal sight of the weekend was a seal up at Beavertail, hopefully it was chasing a huge school of steelhead upstream but given the catch reports, that wasn’t likely! The drive over the mountain was snowy with a little ice, but overall not too bad.

Thanks to everyone that made it over to the Fish A Long, it was a good time!

October 2022 Fishing Reports

October is a big fly fishing month and so we have a lot of good reports to share. As always, pictures are first with the reports below. Enjoy!

From George Krumm: Naknek was very good for Bob ‘bows!

From Darryl Huff: Warm Springs grows large white fish. I marked it on my net and measured it when I got back to my truck at 21 inches. When it jumped out of the water I had no idea what it was!

From Mike Shiiki: Nathan and I tried out a couple OFC lake/ponds today: Turner lake near Dallas and Highland ponds near Molalla/Oregon City. We only caught 1 trout all day, this 20”+ Nathan landed at Highland ponds but caught A LOT of bluegills, some bass & landed my first Crappie. 

From Phil Hager: Had some great results on the upper N. Fork reservoir a couple weeks ago. Launched at the store ramp and rowed my Hobie pontoon as far up the Clack as possible and found several large gatherings of Rainbows in the 10”-15” range. The best one was coming back down, across from the gated ramp and pilings, when I tangled with a good sized one that was 32” and fat! I think it was a “holdover” from the steelhead spawn last spring. Everything caught was on my size 10, 3X long, Brick colored mohair leech. Sorry, was by myself and couldn’t get a photos. 

From Chris Brehm: A very smokey morning at Crane turned beautiful with some nice Crane Bows caught on Chironomids and Balanced Leeches. Also had a nice late fall day on Diamond Lake with some fat browns on leeches.

From Mike Shiiki: I recently joined Oregon Fishing Club and have been visiting as many of their spots as possible.  The lakes and ponds are great for float tube/canoe fishing as shown by my son Nathan and my nephew.  Also had a lot of fun on the October Beavertail fishalong trip, we were only able to fish Friday, but it was nice to meet some more members – Dave, Brad & John, and also witnessed Darryl’s steelhead landing. 

From Greg O’Brien: My brother and I went to the Klamath River to fish the Keno stretch in Oregon with a guide.  It was 100% streamer fishing mainly with 2-3” heavy sculpin patterns and floating lines.  The flows were low, the float technical with a couple tough areas where we nearly wrapped the raft.  The fishing was tough in the mornings then really turned on from about 1-3 pm then shut down again.  The rainbows here are chunky and fight hard!

From Chris Brehm: Brother Steve and I fished last Thursday along the road above Beavertail. Never made it all the way to Beavertail. Lot’s of Salmon and pretty good fishing using Darryl’s bead methods.

From Darryl Huff: A friend was camping at Beavertail in late October. Went over in the morning and fished a half day with them. Definetely more trout have moved in to the area. Spawning salmon were everywhere and did well for trout in the 12 to 16 inch range on egg patterns. Here’s a couple of my new creations.

From Dave Kilhefner: Hit the Highland Ponds at the OFC with Rich and Kevin. These ponds were recently stocked and we did OK fishing Chironomids. Best bite was in the afternoon but it died promply around 3:30.

Thanks to everyone that submitted reports!

October 2022 Fish A Long Report

This fish a long report could be summed up on one sentence: lots of whitefish but not many trout! Still, we had some great highlights. A good number of us camped out, enjoying nice weather while it rained on the west side. It was possible to have campfires and with clear nights and a dark moon the stars were nothing short of spectacular. While trout fishing was a little slow, several nice trout were caught and Darryl even landed a steelhead.

The water conditions featured prime 54 degree water temps, stable flows and good clarity. On Sunday the White River threw a little color at us but not enough to dampen our confidence.

For the most part the wind stayed down until the afternoons, but by then most of us had flogged the water enough and it was time to relax, enjoy happy hour & snacks before dinner around the fire.

The road had been freshly graded all the way to Beavertail but it was rough going further downstream. And of course, the word was the fishing was better 7 miles downstream at Mac’s Canyon.

On the drive home it was good to see a layer of fresh snow on Mt Hood.

Thanks to everyone for coming! Next month our fish a long will be on November 12th. We will try to hit the Kilchis River for Chum Salmon but if the water conditions are poor (like they have been the last 5 years!) we will come back to Beavertail as everyone enjoys this location this time of year.

CFF September 2022 Fishing Reports

September had some big wildfires in Oregon but we had some good fishing too! As always, the pictures are first with the member reports below.

From Chris Gardiner: Spent 3 days on the Metolious with a couple fishing buddies. There were a ton of hatches going on, including Green Drakes and October Caddis. Caught a fair amount of decent sized Whitefish and a few healthy Redsides. We definitely put in the work to get the hook-ups. Lots of hiking and crawling in and out of the river. My buddy flew his drone for a few minutes just for fun. Pretty cool view of the Met from above.

From John Silkey: Did my first float of the Deschutes where I was behind the oars. Drifted a slow two nights from Buckhollow to Mack’s with a friend from AZ. He was targeting trout, I was after Steelhead. Neither of us did much of anything, yet it was still a gorgeous journey. The one trout we pulled in was on my spey rod (gobbled up a redneck revenge.) Didn’t see a lot of bug activity on top of or under the water. Reports from other anglers echoed our slow performance but did hear of at least 2 steelhead landed on that stretch.

From George Krumm: Pretty much all I did this month was hover fish for salmon. Fishing was good! Spent a lot of days in Drano lake and at the mouth of the Klickitat. One evening in Drano Marcus and I caught 17 kings!

From Chris Brehm: Fished three days on the lower Umpqua for Coho & only netted two. (No Pics) Lots of jumpers but few biters. My friend went back the following week and did well.

Tried to fish East Lake but the water was too low to get my boat in, so I Fished Paulina Lake twice and caught mostly small Rainbows on Baetis Nymphs plus a nice Brown on a Beetle.

Finished the month with two days at Diamond Lake. Fishing was slow overall but got a few very nice Browns on Leech Patterns, and my very first Tiger Trout on a Chironomid.

From Darryl Huff: did well on steelhead in the lower Deschutes, including my biggest hatchery steelhead to date; it weighted 16lbs.

From Dave Kilhefner: Inspired by a report from Chris Gardiner (see the June reports) I hit northern Idaho and had some good fishing for West Slope Cutthroat & Whitefish on the St Joe River by Calder.

Thanks to everyone for providing these reports!

CFF August 2022 Fishing Reports

In spite of the hot, dry weather August was another good month to get out on the water. As always, pictures first with the reports below.

From Darryl Huff: My son and I did well on the Lower Deschutes re-opener.

From Timothy McSweeney: I spent the last week of August road tripping and backpacking around the state. Fishing was never the priority but a lot of fishing happened. I first hiked about 30 miles on the Elkhorn Crest trail in the Blue Mountains where a lot of brookies were caught (and eaten). 

During one of the 12 mile days I came across some mountain goat hair and separately–a feather. So I decided to try to tie a fly lakeside with materials at hand and catch a fish, landing a brookie on the 3rd cast. The fly wasn’t pretty and it only lasted one fish, but it was a fun experiment. Then camped for a couple days on the John Day catching bass, and then met up with my family for some rock hopping and stocked keepers on Quartzville Creek.

From Chris Brehm: Fished Buoy 10 three times with only a few to bring home but released a lot of Tules.  Good trout fishing at Wikiup but there was a huge Baetis hatch and the fish were  gorged so most were caught on spoons. One day chasing commercial Tuna out of Ilwaco. Two of us caught over 60 Albacore on hand lines.

From Mike Shiiki: fished Timothy Lake with my Son and Dave Kilhefner. Beautiful day on the water and we caught some nice fish too.

From Dave Kilhefner: Lane Hoffman and I made a trip to the Green River in Wyoming, stopping at the Owyhee along the way. Fishing was a little tough but all the fish were quality.

From Dave Kilhefner: Managed to get out for Smallmouth Bass on the Willamette River out of Hebb Park.

From Ron Buchard: Stopped by and met up with some club members for lunch in West Linn. We had a nice visit and it was good to see old friends!

Thanks to everyone for providing these reports!

CFF July 2022 Fishing Reports

Apologies for falling behind getting the clubs fishing reports posted. Here’s our reports from July. Lots of us got out on the water and had good times. As always, pictures first with the reports below.

From John Silkey: Started July with a trip back to the S. Fork of the Snake – took my wife along and she landed her first fish ever! We had two great days each netting the S. Fork slam both days, plus tons of Whitefish. 

Also spent 4 days exploring the Metolius between Camp Sherman and Lower Bridge – tried everything in my bag (including breaking my rod) and never got so much as a look. Thankfully that river is beautiful just to look at. 

From George Krumm: I had good success landing Columbia River Chinook and steelhead on plugs. 

From Mike Shiiki: Timothy Lake has been fun! My friend Dave Geiter and I were in our float tubes and landed a few rainbows between 9-11am, but between 11:30-3pm we did well trolling olive/orange, and black/red half-wit leeches, intermediate sink lines in and near the channel that runs near the North Arm Campground.

We’ve also started hitting the Molalla River again.  You can get way up stream and find some great runs, holes and lots of little trout, plus some decent sized white fish, and occasional larger trout (ie over 8″). It’s a great little escape!

From Timothy McSweeney: Spent a week on the Metolius fishing for bulls and had a great time!

From Bob Beswick: Fished only a few hours at Crane Prairie until the wind came up. They were eating damsel nymphs just below the surface.

From Chris Brehm: A week or so before the fishalong, I went with my wife and friends to Hosmer.  Beetle patterns produced some gorgeous trout. A few days later, beetles worked again at East Lake. (A friend’s son with his first fly caught rainbow.) Just before the fish along I landed a few nice “Cranebows” on balanced Leech patterns.

From Dave Kihefner: George Coutts and I fishout out of Pacific City with Connect Outfitters. Salmon fishing was slow but we have a great time with the Rockfish and George got a nice Lingcod.

From Dave Kilhefner: Jim Bennett & I got out on the Willamette River out of Hebb Park for some Smallmouth Bass & had a surprise Channel Catfish. Woolly Buggers and Clouser minnows worked well.

From Dave Kilhefner: Rich Harvey and I hit the lower Trask and Nestucca Rivers for cutthroat trout. Mostly we caught small 6” to 8” residents but got a few larger ones in the 14” range.

Thanks to everyone for providing these reports. Hope you all are having a good summer!

September 24th Fish A Long Report

The Trask River is just a fun river to fish! It’s shallow & slow enough for easy wading. The fishy spots, basically the deep & shady water, is easy to see and cast to. When the strike comes its solid and leaves no doubt.

We fished at the OFC property on the lower river not far from tidewater. We need some rain to bring in the main push of sea runs but we managed to get a few in the 14” range along with the smaller resident cutthroat. Mike brought his float tube and did well in the pond, catching several 18” plus rainbows trolling leeches.

We had perfect weather all weekend long and several of us camped at the Trask River County Park. It’s a very nice campground located upstream above the mile 11 marker. We went all out on the food this weekend with bbq brauts for lunch and New York steaks for dinner. The fire ban was lifted so we had a nice campfire at night. It was a real good time!

The next fish a long is October 22nd at Beavertail Campground on the Deschutes River. Hope to see you there.

July 2022 Fish A Long Report

It’s not every day, year or even decade that you get a 26” rainbow on a dry fly, but last weekend the stars aligned and that’s what happened on Hosmer Lake. It’s a catch to remember and making it happen was a team effort, which I’ll explain at the end of this report.

Most of us arrived Thursday evening for a dinner of BBQ Chicken cooked by Lane & Laura. It was a little too late to do any fishing so we took a walk along the Fall River, which was just up the road.

Friday we hit Hosmer Lake and the weather was perfect. The fishing was good too but you had to be on your toes, all day the fish kept shifting gears. They’d go on and off the bite, hatches changed plus there were lots of short strikes. We caught brookies, rainbows and a few cutthroat. Damsel nymphs were the best subsurface pattern. With good numbers of callibaetis mayflies hatching you’d think that would be the fly to use but this day the fish preferred ants or dry damsels. That took a while to figure out but it paid off with my biggest dry fly trout ever, a fat & hard fighting 26” rainbow.

After a long sunny day on Hosmer it was great to get back to Chris’ place and down a few cold ones before inhaling some top notch BBQ Burgers cooked by Chris. Mmmm!

Saturday we hit East Lake and Chris’ brother Steve joined us. Again, the fishing was pretty good but you had to work for your fish. We tried for the numerous cruisers in the morning and while it was fun to cast to them, mostly they ignored your flies. Getting a follow & rejection was a small victory. Most of the fish we caught on East were rainbows but there were some small brookies mixed in and even a Kokanee. Damsel nymphs on an intermediate line worked OK but most strikes didn’t stick and strangely, most of the fish taken this way were small. Steve had this great beetle pattern and he brought enough for everyone. Today, we mostly pounded the banks with beetles. It worked good, got the bigger fish plus its just a fun way to fish.

It was a hot day on East so after chugging a few cold ones we had a delicious dinner of Flank Steak provided by Laura, then washed it down with “the good stuff” provided by Lane. We finished the eveing with a game of scrabble while flicking beetles off the table. Theres a lot of beetles so it’s no wonder that fly works so well.

Sunday we enjoyed a delicious pancake breakfast cooked by Chris. After we were stuffed to the gills with good food we went to Crane Prairie Reservoir, putting in at Quinn River launch. It was another sunny, mostly windless day. The preferred strategy on Crane is to suspend balanced leeches under an indicator in the channel. Laura got a takedown about 5 seconds after we started fishing but it didn’t stick. We all had a few strikes that didn’t stick! Lane landed a nice fish on a damsel nymph fished on an intermediate line. Since we had to drive home we wrapped it up early and got on the road.

This fish a long was really a team effort, both in terms of catching nice fish, eating good food and having a great time. Naturally I’d like to say I got that big rainbow on a dry because I’m such a good angler and luck didn’t have anything to do with it, but the truth is I couldn’t have done it without my CFF team. Chris put together a top notch fish a long and got us down there. Then he put me in the right spot on Hosmer Lake. Finally, I never would have had any dry damsel patterns in my fly box if Trux Dole hadn’t figured out that trout get focused on flying damsels & sometimes ignore other good hatches when the damsels are out in force, which he did several years ago at the Justesen Ranch fish a long.

Special thanks Chris for putting this together and to everyone that came and made this a fish a long to remember!

More Cool Pics:

CFF June 2022 Fishing Reports

Just like May, the June water levels and weather were a little crazy but June was still a great fishing month. Lots of us got out on the water and had good times. As always, pictures first with the reports below.

From Ian Porteous: Landed a big Spring Chinook on lower Neverending on the Sandy River. I was pleasanty shocked! Also managed to hook and lose a nice summer steelhead a week later on the lower Sandy.

From John Silkey: Spent a weekend out at Crooked River Ranch and got a few days in on the middle Deshutes in the canyon. Few fish but a gorgeous setting with no one around. The pattern was the same each day – hook an 8 inch rainbow on a beaded prince at the end of deep runs on one of the first few drifts, then nothing else the rest of the time on that run.  Even found a whitefish. Still well worth the hike down to the water (and back up!) 

From Trux Dole: Attempted an afternoon of Shad near Pinnacle Rock but the water still very high.  We tried bank fishing to no avail while gearheads anchored 40 yards offshore were slaying them. Managed to land a couple once we piled back into the small boat, but we were the Shad clowns as two of the three of us broke our rod tips trying to land fish, we had a broken net, then my buddy hooked a sturgeon (unlandable) and then we forgot to pull in the stringer before heading back and lost all the fish!

From Garrett Lesko: Here’s a bunch of photos from my June fishing trips: Three Creeks Lake, the South Jetty in Newport, South Twin Lake and the Lower Deschutes. 

From Phil Bartsch: Took my granddaughter, Pippa, fishing today for her first time. She caught 2 trout on the Clackamas at McIver Park. I’d say she was hooked for life.

From Jim Adams: I took advantage of the heads up about how well Harriet Lake was fishing. Knowing that I wasn’t going to be able to attend the club’s fish-a-long I went up a few days early with my brother Steve and the fishing was off the charts. Fishing from pontoon boats using intermediate sink lines we each netted 30 to 40 fish . It was a good day to experiment testing different patterns and I can honestly say that I couldn’t find a leech pattern that didn’t work. A new pattern for me that was very productive was an olive Landon Mayer mini leech tied on a jig hook. My friend Wes and I went back up to Harriet later in the week and it was a another 30-40 fish day, again mostly on leech patterns. Wes tried a gaudy 3-inch articulated pattern that had barbell eyes and legs and it was hammered by fish until it finally came apart. The following week I took another friend that is new to fly fishing up to Harriet. The fishing was not quite as good as the previous week but Jack was very happy after netting about 15 fish up to 17 inches on his first time stillwater fly fishing.

From Darryl Huff: Landed a nice Spring Chinook bead fishing on the Sandy. Made it out to Harriet Lake with Mike Shiiki, who has been doing very well there. The fishing had slowed down compared to the prior weeks, but we still caught quite a few on balanced leeches and large dry flies. Late afternoon they were refusing the large dries but during the last hour of light the fish committed vigorously & we had some great dry fly fishing. The Yellow Sally was my top producer. 

From Chris Brehm: Fished three days in Central Oregon. One day with just a few on Crane , then a windy day on East Lake landing a mix of Browns, Rainbows, and a gorgeous little Brookie on Nymphs and buggers. Third day was on Hosmer where I got some great action on  Purple Haze dries. Fish were in great shape and fought hard. Finished the month at Pelican Bay on Upper Klamath Lake. Fished hard all day trying everything sub surface with no luck. In the evening saw a few swirling up near the springs so in desperation I put on an Elk Hair Caddis and got the only fish of the day, a very fat 22” Redband.  Sorry about the poor photo but I can blame my brother for that. 

From Wayne Hughes: Put in some time chasing Tiger Muskie. I was told by a Local that the Month of June is not normally a good time to find biters. He was not quite correct with three straight of casting oversized flys resulting in only one follow. I am guessing we saw about 8-9 total fish in both Merwin & Mayfield. Managed  to land some bass and trout but overall it was tough fishing. I have been told July and August are better months; hope its really true! In June the water temp was cold in both lakes so hopefully the warmer summer temps will make the Tigers more aggressive.

From Chris Gardiner: Not local but if anyone ever found themselves in the Spokane area about an hour or so East you can drive up along the North Fork of the Couer D’Alene river in Idaho. It’s a beautiful river and the road has a ton of easy public access spots to fish. I had a free pass on Father’s Day weekend and did pretty fair on West Slope Cutthroat. They were pretty good fighters and didn’t let up, even in the net!

From Jim Bennett: First “big” bass of the season and a large mouth at that. Weighted in at 1.9 lbs. Caught near Hebb Park. Not on a fly unfortunately. Still trying to figure that one out. 

From Greg O’Brien: I’ve been doing hardly any fishing lately due to studying for by board exam coming up next week and I got COVID too, finally. That wiped me out for a few days.  

A friend a I floated Warm Springs to Trout Creek with my cataraft for a day of mainly trout Spey style fishing.  He went deep with his 4 wt using sculpins and T tips while I stayed more toward the top with a 3 wt, Scandi head and soft hackles.  I got one nice trout with a hard mid-swing grab near Warm Springs, then fishing was real slow as we went down through the Mecca stretch.  We had a tribal permit too, so could fish both sides once below Dry Creek.  We saw lots of back anglers and many rafts and guide drift boats were on the river too.  

I switch up to a dry dropper and had a couple small trout or smolts slash at a Yellow Sally dry and hooked a couple on a little rainbow warrior dropper.  Overall a slow but beautiful day.  One of the guid/client boats we saw often took out in front of us and said they only hooked 3 trout during the day, so not just slow for us.  Anyway, can’t wait to go back!  

I forgot that early June before another water spike I fished for Shad on the WA side below Bonneville.  I went with Spey rod since I was standing right at the willows.  5 wt Spey with T11 worked well.  I got a half dozen or so fun Shad in an hour or two before it started pouring rain.

From Dave Kilhefner: In early June I hit Harriet a couple times and did really well. Tried to do some Shad fishing but the water was pretty high, getting up into the parking lot at Clackamette Park so mostly I hit the OFC ponds instead. The fish were picky but after seeing a bunch of damsels flying around I tied on a damsel nymph and managed to land a pretty nice trout. Wrapped up the month by getting COVID and was really sick for 5 days but thankfully now I’m fine.

Thanks to everyone for providing these reports!

June 2022 Fish A Long Report & Presidents Message

This month the Presidents Message will be combined with June Fish A Long report. The two mesh together pretty well as it’s been nearly impossible to pick decent fish a long locations in 2022 with all the colder weather & high water making for unpredictable fishing. For instance, this month we were supposed to go for Shad at Bonneville but very high water put the kibosh on that. So when Mike Shiiki texted a couple weeks ago to say he’d made it down to Lake Harriet and not only was the “catching” on fire but there were lots of big fish too, it was a huge relief to finally have a “can’t miss” spot for the fish a long.

Unfortunately, I probably jinxed the weather by buying that extra box of donuts for all the people that were going to show up to catch a bunch of big trout last Saturday. The forecast was for heavy rain and on Friday we did have what could be described as a raingear test, but on Saturday the weather was pretty nice with a mix of low then high clouds and a few sprinkles from 8am to 2:30 pm.

With the high gas prices I’ve been trying to camp out and get in an extra day of fishing whenever possible & made a plan with Rich Harvey to fish Lake Harriet Friday afternoon. The forecast was for wet weather but the road from Rhododendron the Timothy Lake was dry: it turned out to be a good sign that didn’t last. By mid afternoon the rain arrived. Fortunately we caught a fair number of trout from 11” to 18”  plus Rich got the Lake Harriet trifecta, landing a cutthroat, numerous rainbows and a brown.

On weekends like this my outdoor clothing motto of “don’t buy if it’s not quick dry” really paid off and I was able to quickly dry out and get comfortable after enduring a good downpour out in my float tube.

While the campground at Harriet wasn’t full it was “fully reserved” so we drove a couple miles up the road and truck camped at Shellrock Creek camp & we were the only ones there. The rain let up at dusk and we built a nice fire and enjoyed a cold one and a cigar, but it was drippy under the trees. Then it started raining harder and harder so a little before 10 we went to bed. It was for the most part a restfull night but around 2 am driving rain woke me as it sounded like I was in a car wash ( I slept in the cab of my truck). Fortunately it didn’t last.

Saturday dawned rain free but the creek was high and flowing hard. I made the short drive to Harriet and met Dave Doble in the parking lot. Dave got geared up & started fishing while Rich and I BSed until 9:45 but no one else showed, so we got geared up and out on the lake then started catching fish right away. Better still, we had the lake to ourselves, I guess the weather forecast kept folks away. Then the clouds lifted and it got pretty nice out!

Rich stayed by the boat ramp area and I could see he was doing very well. Dave was stationed by the catwalk and he was doing well too. I kicked down around the corner and there wasn’t another soul in sight and the fish were cooperative. It doesn’t get any better!

We compared notes at the end of the day and there was really no “hot fly” as Rich was using a sparkly minnow looking fly, Dave did well on a #12 black woolly bugger and I tried various leech patterns and they all worked; the key on this day was to just get something in the water. Lots of strikes were soft and came on the drop. I missed many of them but connected with several dozen too!

Most fish were the 11-13” planters but we all landed a handful the larger rainbows up to 18” plus a brown or two. The lake was 48 degrees & the water was very clear on Friday but got colored up a bit on Saturday.

Weather was pretty nice in the morning but it got windy and rainy around 2pm so we decided to pack up and head home, otherwise we might have stayed another day and kept wearing out flies!

This month we’ll have a regular meeting at High Rocks on Tuesday, June 21st. Social hour starts at 6pm and the presentation starts at 7pm. The “first beer free” rule will still apply. Hope to see you there!