Everyone, we’ve decided to cancel the Fish A Long this weekend.
Lane Hoffman drove down to the coast recently and reports the water is very low and there were very few fish. Also, the 10 day forecast shows dry weather conditions persisting thru the weekend.
For those that want to get in some good Chum action, last year there were
reports of very good Chum fishing the two days prior to the Nov 15th
closure. Unfortunately we can’t schedule a mid-week fish a long to take
advantage of this.
Some other local options: -Thursday Nov 7th is the Beer & Cheer event with Simon Gawesworth. It’s at the Tap & Table on Ankeny and starts at 6pm.
-Several of the Oregon Fishing Club Ponds have recently been stocked with
trout including the ones we fish the most; Rainier and Highland Lakes.
-The Deschutes River is still fishing well for trout.
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!
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 firstname.lastname@example.org
if you plan to attend so we can get a head count for the food.
Coffenbury Lake was a brand new location for us. After doing
the basic internet research, Cheryl and I decided to turn this Fish A Long into
a little mini vacation and booked a nearby VRBO for the weekend. We arrived the
night before and checked out the lake and the picnic area. We liked what we saw
plus got to see an Elk feeding by the lake.
On Saturday we arrived
at Coffenbury Lake around 7am. First light was about 6:30 am and some local
anglers were already fishing. It was raining during the night but luckily it stopped
in the morning and for weather we had high clouds, little wind and mild
temperatures; perfect conditions. The water was 66 degrees with about 3 feet of
visibility. According to the locals the water level was way down and the usual
water depth on this day was 5 or 6 feet with a weedy bottom.
We learned the lake had been stocked on Wednesday and that
the early morning bite was best. Unfortunately for us fly fishers the “hot fly”
was garlic powerbait; the bait anglers did pretty well catching 17-19” stocked
We hooked a few trout on flies but for the most part, small
perch made up most of the fly caught fish. Sometimes a team effort helped. In
the morning I was changing flies when unknown to me a fish started rising
behind me; Cheryl called out and pointed emphatically to turn around so I did
and then threw my fly into the last rise ring and was rewarded with a strong
strike. It was a good fish and I fought it for a while before the hook pulled
out. That would be my only trout of the day.
Coffenbury also has a large population of small perch. Their
constant strikes kept things interesting, plus they helped a couple folks
finish their 2019 Fly Fishing Challenge.
The sun came out for lunch and we enjoyed fantastic food:
homemade spaghetti, ceasar salad and garlic bread.
After lunch we fished for another hour or two. A few more
trout were hooked and lots of small perch. When the sun came out, the ambiance
of the lake changed from quiet dawn anglers to young families & the cries
of children enjoying a nice day on the lake. While the trout catching could
have been a little better, all in all it was a good time. Thanks to everyone
Coffenbury Lake, located in Fort Stevens State Park by Warrenton, will be the location for the September 21st Fish-a-long. The lake contains rainbow & cutthroat trout along with warm water fish. Coffenbury was recommended by CFF speaker Jeff Morgan plus it’s due to be stocked with 500 trophy rainbow trout right before the fish-a-long.
This is a new location for us. Given the number of new float tubes at the Round Lake fish-a-long this summer, I wanted to schedule one more lake trip this year.
Those planning to attend, please RSVP to Dave@kbi-ins.com by Sept 17th so we know how much food to bring.
What: Cutthroat & Rainbow Trout and Warmwater Fish.
Were: North Boat Ramp at Coffenbury Lake in Fort Stevens State Park
When: Saturday, September
21. Meet at the boat ramp area between 8am and 9am. I will probably be there a
little earlier to catch the first light bite.
Equipment: There are two fishing docks but the lake is best fished from a float tube or small boat & 4-6wt rods . The lake is not deep so a floating line is all you’ll need but if you prefer an intermediate line that will work too. The weather should be OK but rain is always a possibility.
Flies: Standard lake patterns.
Food Provided: Coffee & donuts for
breakfast and CFF executive chef Cheryl will make us something good for lunch.
Directions: It’s an easy 2hr drive from Portland with paved roads the whole way. Drive to Ft Stevens Park then stay on Peter Iredale Rd to the boat ramp. There is a $5 day use fee.
This year’s Round Lake Fish a long was very well attended
and a lot of fun. A big Thank You for everyone who made the long drive to make
this event a success.
Several of us decided to drive over Friday afternoon and
camp and it was a lot of fun. John Warren’s wife Linda made a pot of beef stew
and everyone else pitched in for a tasty pot-luck dinner. The weather was clear
and Dave brought his spotting scope and we were able to check out Jupiter’s
Moons in the southern sky.
On Saturday everyone rolled in between 8 and 9am and we
enjoyed a light breakfast of hot coffee, donuts and lemon bars before hitting
Fishing at the lake was tougher than expected. One big surprise was a couple of otters had taken up residence. Otters are great fun to watch but if you’re a fisherman it’s both a good and bad sign; they know the fishing is good but they put a big dent in the fish population!
David Mullins was one of the first anglers on the lake and did well for a while on Simi-Seal Leeches that he tied at Jim Adam’s fly tying class in March. Green and brown were his best colors.
Another thing that made the fishing a little tough was the usually plentiful Callebaetis hatch wasn’t really happening. However, there were still enough of these bugs around to fake you out; they were like a small “decoy hatch” and lots of trout were jumping but it was hard to figure out what they were taking.
The most successful dry fly was discovered by Kevin Rodgers, who had good success along the far shaded shoreline by casting a Black Flying Ant close to sunken logs close to the bank and the overhanging fir trees. There were also lots of Blue Damsels flying and a few club members had some action fishing those, plus its fun to watch trout jumping a foot or more out of the water trying to snag one!
Round Lake is one of the few high lakes that have brown
trout along with the usually more plentiful brook trout. One this day, most of
the catch were brown trout about 12” long and we only caught a couple brook
trout. Usually, it’s the other way around.
Cheryl Kilhefner put together a tasty deli sandwich style
lunch and Paul Brewer helped her pack it up to the lake, where we all enjoyed
good food and good company on this very fine day.
Another great fish a long is in the books! Last weekend we
traveled to the Justesen Ranch Lakes located by Grass Valley. The weather was
very nice and the fishing was good and the company even better. Everyone had a
very good time.
We stayed in a nice farm house and had a hearty dinner of
Sloppy Joes and Ceasar Salad provided by Cheryl Kilhefner. We also had a great
apple cake for desert provided by John Warren’s wife Linda. A big thank you to
everyone that chipped in with food, snacks and spirits!
The fishing was a mix of hot action at times mixed with
periods of selective trout when a different kind of bug started hatching,
giving us all a riddle to figure out…or not!
On Sunday the fish went selective on us and while they were
jumping everywhere, we could not buy a strike! On this day Trux Dole earned top
honors for staying with it and finding the hot fly: a blue damsel dry pattern
that the fish absolutely hammered.
For subsurface patterns, most of the time the hot fly was a
Red Snow Cone Chironomid fished about six feet under and indictor. When that
stopped working casting and stripping green damsel nymphs drew strikes. Green
Devils and Callebaetis nymphs also worked well.
This weekend the water temperature was in the mid 60’s producing good damselfly and mayfly activity. And as always, Chironomids were a stillwater staple. Some of the lakes have very clear water and have better dry fly/hatch matching opportunities. Other lakes have a higher nutrient load and while the water isn’t as clear, they have better subsurface fishing as the fish are not as picky. One of the best things is Justesen Ranch offers many lakes to choose from so there is no shortage of water to explore.
We had a great day at Hagg Lake last Saturday. The weather
was good with mild temperatures, no rain and very little wind.
About 12 people joined the Fish-a-long including a new
member Sue Deering. Sue was first on the water and did well casting & also trolling
green/black woolly bugger on intermediate line, which was the best fly fishing
tactic this day.
The Simi Seal Leech, featured at our March Fly Tying night,
was a good pattern too.
Fishing was interesting and everyone had lots of strikes but relatively few hookups. Short strikes, lots of them, were the norm this day. The trout that were caught were about 12 inches long and fought stubbornly. We heard from some other local fly anglers that trout to 18” were possible.
The water was a pea green in color but it was clearer than it looked with 5’ to 6’ of clarity. The temperature was 55 degrees. There were no visible hatches. Those of us with fish finders noted the almost all fish were about 9 feet deep.
Hagg Lake has a good population bass and we hoped to catch some, but the water was a little too chilly for good bass activity. Common wisdom says Smallmouth’s like water temps around 65 degrees and Largemouth’s closer to 70.
This is a good place for float tubing and kayaking. There is
really not enough room to fly cast from the bank. Also, the banks are clay and
a little slippery.
The parks are nice and we were able to set up a good place
for lunch, which was Taco’s with ingredients provided by Cheryl. We had a ton
of food and everyone enjoyed seconds. Thanks again for everyone that came to
make this fish-a-long another successful event!
This month’s Fish-A-Long will
be this Saturday at Henry Hagg Lake, located near Forest Grove. Hagg Lake was
stocked April 1st with 7,000 legal rainbows and 400 trophies. Beside trout,
good size Largemouth and Smallmouth Bass are available. This is a new location
for us and we are looking forward to exploring new water!
What: Rainbow trout and bass
Were: Henry Hagg Lake near Forest
When: Meet at the Sain Creek picnic
area at 8:30 AM. There is $7 day use fee.
Equipment: Best fished with a float tube
and standard lake patterns. The weather should be OK but rain is always a
possibility this time of year.
Lunch: Coffee, donuts and Lunch will be
Directions: About an hour’s drive west of
Portland: you can take either Hwy 26 to North Plains then head south on Hwy 47
past Forest Grove to Scoggins Valley Rd then on to the lake. There are several
alternate scenic routes on Mapquest. Once at the lake, pay at the fee booth for
your day pass then go left drive across the dam then follow West Shore Drive to
Sain Creek Picnic Area.
If possible send me a text or
email so I know who will be there. Paul 503-635-3156 or email@example.com
This years Crooked River Fish-a-long was very well attended with 14 members; thanks to everyone that made the trip, it was a great outing with everyone getting fish!
Saturday’s weather was cloudy and the temperature was warmer than it appeared as the hills still had a bit of snow hanging on. Paul warmed us up with hot coffee, donuts and a campfire and then later we had Cheryl’s homemade Sloppy Joes and Coleslaw beside a refreshed fire.
The water was low and clear. The flow out of Bowman Dam was 85 cubic feet per second and the water temperature 39-40 degrees. We all went for the deeper water spots and found a fair number of willing whitefish schooled up in the shallows. The “hot fly” was anything small and dark. Euro nymphing tactics accounted for most of the action but several members did well with small wet flies.
While most of the fish were in the 8” range we did get a few bigger ones, with some whitefish pushing 15” long and trout to 14”.
After the fish-a-long several members continued on to the Owyhee River with Lane Hoffman. A report of this trip will be in March Fishing Reports due out soon.