|Posted by Phil Hager on October 13, 2017 at 12:30 PM||comments (0)|
Sorry about not keeping this up to date. With moving and all it fell off in importance and I forgot about it. Will try to do better in the future but not fishing as much as I was when I started it so bear with me.
Quick report on last trip to central Oregon the last week in September.
Fished Crane, Lava, Hosmer and the Crooked River. Crane is well disbursed regarding the fish, and very selective on what they will grab. The first day on Lava was great. More than 15 and all over 2 pounds. Found everything in less than 10' of water and did very well with a chenille wooly, black with UV reflecting crystal flash, on a size 10 3XL about 6' deep. 2 days later, according to some other I talked to, nothing was in less than 20' of water and they were hugging the bottom. Hosmer was great with a little brown, with gold wire wrap and brown/tan striped soft hackle. Some nice ones in there. The Crooked I got tired of trying to find the ones bigger than 10" with all of the 6"ers grabbing whatever I used before it got down to the bigger ones. Best I did there was about 14". Left after 2 full days.
Will do a report, weather permitting for the travel, on the Owyhee when I get back. Heaing over for 5 days next week.
|Posted by Phil Hager on June 27, 2014 at 7:30 PM||comments (0)|
Spent the last 2 days up on Merrill Lake because I had heard a number of statements saying it was good fishing. Have to admit that the fishing is productive with some nice Rainbows in the 18" size.
Merrill is a long lake shaped kind of like a pear. The south end is the inlet end and that's the narrowest part. Spent some time looking around there today and, I might be wrong, but it appears that the inflow is more seasonal than full time. There are a couple of areas that could be inflow but I didn't find any flow that was notable in that zone. Did find some Rainbows but no contact with the Browns that are supposed to be there.
As you travel thru the "channel" from the inlet zone to the rest of the lake it slowly widens until you reach the widest zone just north of the single ramp on the lake. From there is slowly begins to narrow down to the wide sweeping curve that is the outlet end of the lake. Watching the shoreline around the entire lake about the only access point is the ramp area. The rest of the lake has heavy brush and tree growth right down into the water, when the lake is full, but there may be some walking strips as it drains down in the summer.
I remembered to grab my thermometer today to check the temp after noticing it felt pretty warm yesterday and noting that the fish were pretty lethargic when one took the fly. From the ramp to the inlet zone I got readings from 63 to 65 degrees at 10 feet deep. (One of those thermo units that show the depth on 1 side and temp on the other. Found that at Bi-Mart a few years ago and testing showed it's pretty accurate.) Don't plan on returning to try it again until later in September when it's had a chance to cool down some. It's a C&R lake and the survival rate drops dramatically when the temp is over 63.
Tried several sizes and colors of nymphs and emergers, some dry flies and some leeches. Most productive was a size 10 3X long medium grey leech tied with a thread weave with Cashmere mixed into it. (You can find it at Sportsman's Warehouse) Had a few hits using a Type 3 line, a couple sub-surface on floating line, but the majority was done on an intermediate about 18" to 30" deep. Part of that could be because of the clouds and rain. Fish tend to travel much closer to the surface under those conditions because they don't see any airborn predators and they don't have to contend with the bright sunshine. Now for a "fishing story".
If you live in the area, or pay much attention to weather around the country, you probably saw some reports on the NW having some heavy rains. Not like the midwest, and all of the flooding there, but some monsoon like dumps from time to time. A couple of those hit while I was out on the lake today and made for some interesting experiences.
The first "bang" I got on a false cast really surprised me. My line was about 15 feet above the water and it was raining hard enough I couldn't see the end of my line. Just about the time I started the backcast, after feeding out some line, I felt a solid, sudden, bang on my line. FIrst thought? Is there a kink now in my line that just hit an eye, or is it something else? Looked at the line, no kinks or knots, no trees or brush closer than a couple hundred feet so it's not that. No idea what happened.
A couple casts later, still raining so hard you can't see 50 feet, and another bang on my line. This time though it happened about half way into the back cast so the fly was traveling towards me. I could barely see the line as it went by but everything appeared to be fine. About the time the fly went past me there was a splash just in front of my pontoon but I didn't see what had caused it. Still no answer on what was causing my line to bang that way but it had me thinking. Real quick I pulled out the thermometer and laid it on top of the pocket on the left side of the pontoon.
A couple more casts and this time the bang happened just as the fly came into view in the heavy rain. As the fly went past me, nearly dragging the water it was so low, I saw a fish let go of the fly and splash into the water. A little recovery effort and I got the cast back out in front of me on the water. As soon as the line hit the surface I set the rod down and grabbed the thermometer to check it out. It answered my question about what was happening.
The lake was setting there about 64 degrees. That a little on the warm side for the cold water fish. In fact their preferred water temp, at least in lakes, is between 52-62 degrees. The O2 level is still acceptable, lots of hatches take place in that range and there is less demand on the fishes body for food because it's warm enough they don't need as much food. The interesting side though was the rain temperature showing on the thermometer. It was showing 51 degrees setting there on the pocket in a small puddle of rainwater.
Apparently what was happening was it was raining cooler water than the lake had and it was raining hard enough that some of the healthier fish were jumping up and swimming in the rain to cool off. I just happened to get the fly to the right place, at the right time, to have them hit the fly that was passing in front of them. Actually did it 3 times before I decided it was time to quit and get off the water before things got worse.
NOTE: Everything up to the fishing story is true. Just thought you might enjoy what can happen when you let your mind wander while kicking around a lake in heavy rain.
|Posted by Phil Hager on June 17, 2014 at 4:40 PM||comments (0)|
June 4, 2014
Tied up at accident Hiway 26 on Warm Springs just as leaving timber and hitting the flats. 18 wheeler of the road and down in a deep draw. Traffic blocked for 30+ minutes then slow travel until starting up hill out of Warm Springs. Got to Chimney Rock about 7:45. Watched the water for a while and saw a couple of decent rises but that’s all. No insects visible. Will fish it tomorrow and try out my little 18’s.
Getting late so going to get some sleep. Probably try right here before breakfast. Reports to follow.
June 5, 2014
Woke a little before 5 this morning, dressed and headed for the water before 6. Figured I’d walk upstream for a while then fish my way back down for breakfast. Started the day with the intermediate sink tip and a little 18, silver ribbed Midge. Not much action for most of the way back down until I got down to the island just below the next campground. I suddenly had a convincing urge that the best place to fish would be the slack waters. Good urge.
Started working the slack water along the far bank and hit several little ones but not landing any. Have to get used to the size 18 barbless again after spending so much time with the bigger ones on the lakes. Waded across to the road side and worked that slack water and hit several nice ones but, again, didn’t land any. But that’s OK with me because of the much higher survival rate of the ones you don’t land.
Had a quick breakfast then started working my way on down the river to see what I could find. Tried the little Midge for a while, switched to a tied down orange caddis, a tied down black caddis, GRHE, and several others all wet ones in grey, tan and green. Worked about 2 miles down the river and only had 2 more hits. Worked both the intermediate and floating line and both wet and dry flies to no avail. Getting warm by the time I got back for lunch about 1:30 so took a break and relaxed for a bit.
5 PM headed back up the river, thinking about walking up to Big Bend but decided that was a little further than I wanted to travel in the heat so hit the 2 channel just below the island again. Got several nice ones one but did LDR’s again so no report on size or photos. Got pretty windy so pulled off the water about 7:30.
One real aggravating this evening. Walked down to the deck on the water and was just watching a few swallows flit around and waiting to see if there were any rises. None of those but a bait fisher shows up and asks if I had caught anything there today. Told him no and he said he’d caught about a dozen. Casts out his line, hooks a nice fat 12 or 13 incher, yanks it up on the bank, grabs it with dry hands, stuffs his thumb and finger into it mouth, yanks out the hook and throws it back in the water. I left. Really hate to see that type of action and probably pretty safe to bet he had caught and killed 13 fish with that one added in.
According to a biologist, now working for BLM, a recent electroshocking on the river revealed an approximate count of 7500 fish per mile including Redbands, White Fish and now, I guess, Bass.
Friday June 6, 2014 Deschutes Arm, Wickiup
Hooked up the trailer and ran up to Big Bend but no place to park so pulled out and headed for Sheep Bridge. Got to the campground about 9 and took my time setting up. First thing I noticed was the wind here too. Not too bad but we’ll see how it develops as the day progresses.
Put the pontoon together about 1 and headed up the Deschutes to see if I could get to the stream zone that was so good last year. Fought the wind and current up to the island only to find a buoy marker that shows “Angling Boundary” and “Fish channel restoration”. Have to check later and see how big the zone is and where you can fish the Deschutes between Crane and Wickiup. (Talked to a guy today and learned the “Angling Boundary” sign is to denote where the “no bait” section begins on the Deschutes above Wickiup. Said it was because too many people didn’t understand where the lake ended the river began and were using that as the excuse for using bait in the fly and lure only section. This in part because the lake opens in April but the "flowing" section of the Deschutes arm doesn't open until Memorial Day.)
Floated back down and started working the quiet water. Found lots of green slime growth just about everywhere from the edge of the brush on the upper end down to the bridge abutment. Tried floating, intermediate and Type 3, everything from size 18 Midges to some size 6 for the big browns. Had one bump from what felt like maybe a 6” to actually hooking one about 4” for about 2 seconds. Not only are there lots of slime growth clumps floating around but the algae/plankton bloom is thick enough you could only see about 3 feet into the water.
Gave up about 7 and had some dinner. Tomorrow Hosmer!
Saturday June 7, 2014 Hosmer
Launched a little before 6 this morning and it was nice. The parking lot was empty and nobody else on the water, a few ducks swimming around, clear skies and the sun not quite up and on the water yet. Saw a few rises but they were wide spread and I headed for the upper lake.
From the time I entered the channel, until I reached the upper lake I don’t think I saw more than a dozen fish so I went “exploring” and rowed my way clear into the upper channel. No fish seen after traveling a short distance there so I headed back down to the upper lake to see what I could find there. My “spot” in the upper lake proved to be a good one for Brookies, Atlantics and the Rainbows with three all being fat and healthy.
Using my sinking line, and my DKDC Hosmer Special, I did very well on all three soon enough that it was time to start experimenting with other flies and techniques. By then the sun had been on the water for a short time and the surface action had started so I went to my floating line and a size 16 skinny Caddis pattern in dark brown. First cast and immediate hook up with a Rainbow. They have grown well in a short time because of the food quality available. Fat and very active 13” was the first, of 7 or 8, and really surprised me with the actions it took on hook up. The Brookies and Atlantics had been their usual action style with some solid runs, hard pulls and a few quick turnarounds. The Rainbows were a whole different action with really fast darting from side to side, breaking the water with flashy jumps, quick dives and hard core determination when they were brought in closer and closer. Some great actions that made them a real pleasure to play for a few minutes. As this was happening the wind was increasing, and finally got to the point that I was kicking full time to maintain my position ( it was even dragging my 10 lb chain anchor thru the silt) so I decided to head back to camp and something to eat. I noticed there were more than a few kayakers and paddle boarders in the upper lake by this time.
Got back to the parking lot, pulled off my gear and set it in the rig then waited for about 15 minutes for some people to finish unloading and set up before I could pull out, back in to the ramp and load my pontoon. Lot was completely full and even a few rigs parked along the road above the parking area.
Waited until about 6 and decided to try the Deschutes arm at Wickiup again, above Sheep Bridge, but saw no action because of the cloudy water conditions. I don’t think I could see more than maybe a foot into the water so gave up about 8 and called it a day.
Sunday June 8, 2014
Walked over to the Deschutes arm this morning to see if there was any fish action to note. Glad I did because at the back end of the camp, looking across the river arm to the little island, I saw quite a few rises in the shallow water around the island. Decided I’d fish that area today and see if anybody from the UVFF showed up. Glad I made that decision.
When I rowed over to the little island, and made my first cast, it turned out I was in for a bit of a surprise. I was set up using the intermediate sink tip line and a small, off white with tan hackle wrap at the head, size 16 nymph and it had not settled more than couple of inches when the first hit happened and the fish took off fast and strong. The real surprise came the first time it broke the surface and turned out be about a 17” whitefish. It turned out that this is what had been rising around the island and the little cove just up from it.
For those not familiar with the whitefish it’s a member of the Grayling family and is referred to, at least by many of those I know, as the torpedo fish because of its design. Pretty much shaped like a piece of pipe from the head to the final taper just before the tail. It is known for strong fighting but mostly stays down in the water and runs strong. It is also usually found hugging the bottom and feeds on the initial emerging insects there. These were very aggressive, grabbing the emergers just before, and as they hit, the surface. Made for some very interesting tactics when it came time to play them with the jumping that several of them did between runs.
Caught several, with the biggest just over 19”and fished the area for an hour, or so, before heading up the Deschutes arm to see what I could find. The next area, where I know some Browns to hold, had several people bank fishing so moved above the bridge abutment to see what might be there. The water was beginning to clear and didn’t find anything in the usual holding spots so quit about 1 and went back to camp to get out of the sun.
Went back out in the evening and found the water even clearer than this morning but, because of the rapid change in water clarity, only hit a few more on a size 16 black, flat winged, Caddis style and small green, with hackle wrap collar, before calling it a night. Tomorrow, Davis Lake, before the wind kicks up again.
Monday June 9, 2014 Davis Lake
Got to Davis bright and early, just a soft breeze out of the west, and was ready to launch when one of the campers came down asking for info on Davis and other local waters. Finally got in the water just before 8 and headed south along the lave rocks. Saw 5 Bass on the way out, holding in the channel to the lake, and they all looked pretty healthy. Would “guestimate” them to be in the 3-5 pound range with their sizes.
Didn’t see any action for maybe 15 minutes and had worked my way out a ways when I heard the first splash back towards the reeds. Looked up and saw a second one break the surface before it turned into a major activity with slurping and rolling over maybe a 250 X 250 foot area. This was out from the reeds about 100 feet and out from the rocks about the same distance. I immediately headed in that direction while changing from my sinking line and a Bass streamer to a floating line. Figured I’d wait until I got in the area and see if I could see what was rising, or at least some shucks, to get an idea on color and size they were chasing. Unfortunately I didn’t get there fast enough and didn’t find anything to give me a clue as to what was happening.
From there I worked my way about halfway down to the eagle ramp before the wind started kicking up so I headed back for the rocks by traveling along the reeds. Did not see a single fish on the way back and pulled out about noon.
Headed back to camp for lunch but stopped by the Davis Creek arm on Wickiup to check that out. The wind was kicking up pretty good there too but did see some worth checking out tomorrow. Lauren, a member of UVFF arrived and set up and we made plans for tomorrow. Wanted to show him some good fishing so decided to hit the Davis Creek arm tomorrow.
Tuesday, June 10, 2014 Davis Creek Arm, Wickiup
Ran over to the Davis Creek arm but didn’t find what I saw yesterday. There had been maybe a dozen Browns hanging in the inflow from the ground feed but this morning it was several schools of whitefish and some of these weren’t small ones. We both saw several that we would figure at 24”, at least.
There was the first group, a couple dozen or so, right in the fast flow. Below that, where it gets a little slower and deeper, was a group of 75-100, circling around in a maybe 40’ wide circle. Travel another 100’ feet down the channel to an even bigger group. The last group, maybe another 25-30, was in the channel just out from the little grass cluster. Some were caught in each group using a small Royal Coachman, a GRHE, a size 18 black & white midge nymph and a couple others that were light in color. It seemed if it was very light in color, or had some white on it, it worked.
Worth the time and effort because I like the way they fight! Tomorrow, Crane at Quinn River.
Wednesday, June 11, 2014 Crane Prairie, Quinn River
Put in at Quinn River this morning. Saw nothing moving until we got out to the cl thru the snags still standing. One guy floating around a couple hundred feet into that channel, appeared to be Chironomiding, hit several nice looking Kokanee but that was all. Tried just about everything I had and touched nothing. Gave up on that area and started working my way towards Cow Camp, exploring more than fishing.
Couple of notes worth making. What had been a major log float, for the last couple of years, is no longer there. It seems that the snags had been standing long enough to lose the soft fiber that helps them float and the log jam is pretty much on the bottom now. Some of the area that was a couple hundred feet wide is as few as two or three logs wide now. All of the cover that had provided the fish is now nearly completely gone and they are out in the open. Should make for some pretty good fishing.
Got about half way to Cow Camp and had rowed and kicked my way over into the shallow water, and some of the downed trees that have brush growing on them, when the rises started. Quit looking long distance and started watching the water around me and was pleasantly surprised by the size of the Cranebows I saw swimming low water and feeding on the hatch. Again, tried several different patterns without much action until I saw a long, slim, translucent green, damsel nymph climbing up my leg. Had 4 that were similar and put one on. That hit the water and lasted about 10 seconds. Really hard hit and instant tangle in sunken logs. Same thing happened to the next 2 and I wanted to save the last one I had so I could tie some more. Very demanding on color and size while I was there. Tried several other Damsel nymphs that I had but got no action on any of them. Next time up I will go back to that spot and see what I find.
Wind was getting fairly strong so finally gave up and headed back over to Quinn ramp and then to camp. Finished the day with a couple hours in the evening on the Deschutes. Water clearing nicely but I think it will be a few more days until the fish adjust to the clarity and become more active.
Thursday, June 12, 2014
Decided to run back up to Hosmer this morning and show Lauren the spot on the upper lake that I’ve found so productive. Good decision.
First, noticed on the way up the channel that there were a few more that had moved up there than there were the other day we were here. Second, by 7 the wind was already kicking up a bit and it had not warmed up as much. A few clouds scudding by and a thin, higher, layer was keeping the sun from getting thru as well. Glad I had worn some polar fleece over my regular clothes this morning. Hands still getting a little stiff from the cold though.
Got into the upper lake area and my first actual cast, after “trolling” the fly getting up there. Made the whole effort worthwhile. Didn’t get a look at the first one, but it was a hard fighter from the hook-up. Had that one on a minute or so before it got off, pulled the line snug and on the second twitch I had another one on. This one was a nice Atlantic about 17”. Had released that one when Lauren finally caught up and my next cast brought in a nice Cranebow at about 2 ½ pounds. Released that one, then remembered my camera in the side pocket, and discussed tactics with Lauren. I’d head up to the upper end of the zone and he’d start at the lower end. As we fished he’d work up the slot and I’d work down. Once set up neither of us moved much for at least an hour because of all of the action. Both of us were using a small, maybe 10 3X long, medium grey leech pattern and hitting all three families of fish. (Brookies, Cranebows, Atlantics)
We worked that area for about 3 hours before we were both cold enough we decided it was time to leave. Wind had picked up enough it was dragging my 10 pound chain anchor thru the silt again and the day had not warmed up much. Hit a few more on the way back down the channel, considered checking out the outlet side but the wind killed that idea, and worked our way back to the ramp, hitting a few small Cranebows in the lower lake. Actually got off the water about 1 again.
Lauren wanted to check the RV service at Lava so we stopped by there to check it out, on the way back to camp. While there we walked down to the dock and I pointed out several good fishing areas to hit the next time he was up, and it wasn’t white capping. Also stopped by Little Lava and pointed out several areas there. Also noted that it’s not a bad little lake to fish when the winds come up and waves start bouncing you around on Lava.
Didn’t fish this evening because of the clouds, some sprinkles and some pretty stout winds. Guess we’ll wait until tomorrow and see what the weather brings before we head out.
Friday June 13, 2014
Guess the day/date says it all. Friday the 13th. Cold, rainy, windy with some real strong gusts. Time to sit in the trailer and tie a few then go over to the camp of a guy I met several years ago here and see who can tell the biggest fish story. Don’t like going out when it’s raining and winds are gusting to 25 or 30 mph. Not comfortable on a pontoon in those conditions.
Went out in the evening when it quieted down and worked from the upper area of the Deschutes arm of the lake, down past the bridge abutment and down to the far end of the campground to take out and wheel back to camp. Sudden pressure change, stormy weather, saw no action what so ever.
Let’s see what tomorrow brings.
Saturday June 14, 2014
The sky is in better shape this morning but still some wind with gusts, but not as bad as yesterday. Decided to go back over to the Davis Creek arm and see how things are there. Might not have as much wind and the fishing was pretty good the other day. Besides Lauren said he had never done whitefish before the other day and enjoyed how strong they fought. Sounded good to me.
Got over to the campground and quite a few people were camping there so we left, ran down the side road and then down to one of the “dispersed” campsites right on the arm. Launched and headed up towards the inlet to see if it was still offering the schools that were there the other day. Not as many, and not as active, but still worth going after. Worked the upper waters for a bit then headed down the arm, past where we had launched, to see what other action we would find. Hit a number of nice, healthy, and decent sized whitefish in addition to some nice Kokanee. If there size now is any indication there should be some good sized ones heading up to the spawning area this fall. Even had something hit hard enough that it popped my 6 pound tippet in just a second or so. What surprised me here was the same grey leech pattern we had used the other day on Hosmer seemed to work best here too. The real surprise was the number of whitefish that hit it, very aggressively, and managed to get it into their mouth on the strike. In the past I’ve usually seem them hooked from the outside, with hooks this size, but they were flat taking these in with no problem. Breezy and cold enough we pulled off about 1 and headed back to camp to clean up and get ready to pull out tomorrow. Glad I came though, despite the winds, rain and cooler than usual weather.
A closing thought
I talked to several people that considered the whitefish to be a “trash” fish and best if thrown up on the bank. In part it had to do that they thought it was a member of the sucker carp family and, because of that, just something that took food from the trout and Kokanee.
First, the whitefish in most of the lakes around central Oregon, are the Mountain Whitefish and is a member of the Grayling family.
Second, they are about the only true, native fish, in those waters. (Going back to before the last ice age.) At one time it was about the only thing in the “local” waters
Third, lots of folks have been told by others, who were told by others, who were told by some old timer that had never tried eating one, that they were foul tasting and bony as hell. None of those I talked to had ever tried eating one, so really didn’t know what they offered, and had always tossed them up on the bank. Next time you catch some, immediately clean and put on ice, like you should all cold water fish, then filet them out for cooking. When you cook it try the usual coating of eggs, flour and seasoning and some hot oil. Believe me when I say you will be pleasantly surprised with the crisp, mild flavor and the firmness of the white meat. It’s as firm and solid, when cooked right, as it is when you catch them and they live, pretty much, on the same diet as the other types in the same waters so they have the same flavor, just milder.
If you have any questions, or want to add info, feel free to join the group. It will notify me if you want to join and I’ll take care of that ASAP.
|Posted by Phil Hager on May 23, 2014 at 11:45 AM||comments (0)|
Ran up yesterday for the NWFF outing day. Bit of a crowd when we got there but plenty of room on the lake for fishing.
Started out by heading "up" the lake tow the lily pad zone. Hit a couple on the way up that were in pretty good shape and maybe 10" in size. Got up to the lily pads and found it to be really a "quiet" area. Headed over towards the far shore and began working "down" towards the dam. Glad I did that. Action started about mid lake with more of them in the 8"-10" range. SOme dark enough to look like post-spawners but still active. Caught maybe a half dozen before getting to the deeper zone just out from the dam. Draw a line from the paved access trail (looks almost like a small ramp) on the day use side over to the far end of the dam and fish mid lake along that line. Very productive area maybe 100' either side of that line.
Tried numerous patterns but found both my Little Black and Little Tan Bogus to be the most productive. Started with the tan and lost count on that including the biggest one of the bunch. Guesstimate? 3 pounds. (Actual? Girth 13" and Length 15" so 13x13x15 divide by 750 and you have the weight. 3.4 lbs)
The photos of the fish show a small one (Most of what was seen) trying to bite off my finger and the bigger one in my stripping basket. Pardon the shot but it's hard to do a photo when you've got a real active one you're trying to get the fly out of, not have it jump out, forgot your net so you doing it all by wet hand and trying to do the photo by yourself. Had me nearly ready to jump off the pontoon myself! (Take a look at the 3 shots in the Trillium lake album in the Photo Gallery on the bar above http://ffpfishingreports.webs.com/apps/photos/album?albumid=15593688 . You can see the "Bogus" flies there that worked so well.)
|Posted by Phil Hager on May 1, 2014 at 9:55 PM||comments (0)|
Nice day today except for the east wind whipping down the lake causing whitecaps. Despite that the fishing was pretty good as long as I kept what I used in the 8'-12' depth range. Watched closely but didn't see anything emerging or flying around except for one that may have been a Dragonfly, far enough away to make it hard to tell, and one caddis that landed on my sunglass lens for about 3 seconds. It was a little black one with translucent copper wings if you want to try and tie some up.
With the wind kicking like it did I cranked on the oars and got out in the backwash zone on the downwind side of the "island" that a few hundred yards straight out from the ramp. Once I got there the action started almost immediately using the reed leech pattern. After 8 or 9 on that I changed over to a medium grey leech pattern but only hit a couple on that. Next up was the skinny, green with hackle wrap, style leech and hit 5 or 6 on that. This all done while traveling back and forth with the winds around the island withh all of the hits taking place in close as the fly came up out of the deeper water towards the shallows.
The wind died down a little, and I had been cussed at long enough, so I decided to try and make it across to the inlet area in the southwest corner. Had good luck there when we did the club outing so thought I'd see how it did today. (I have been cussed at many times for fishing in an area that some think is their own, but never like this. I think I was called things I had never heard before. Voice bellowing at me. Stomping around on the micro beach on the isalnd. Telling me to get the hell out of there or I would suffer the consequences. Didn't see any nests, but that was one mad goose that threatened my every move for over a half hour. Kept waiting for an actual attack!)
No action between the island and the south shore but that changed as soon as I started wind drifting along the dropoff line just out from shore. I had changed to the little red nymph with the red hackle type wing and fishing that on the Type 3 right near the bottom. Made several drifts along that line and hit 2 or 3 on each drift from the delta down to the stumps in the inlet area. It was critical on location though. More than 10 feet out from the dropoff and almost nothing happened. Within 5 feet of the dropoff was where most of it happened. Also found several down around the stumps. Again, nothing of real size but several fat 14"-15"ers. The last one I got ahold of in that area was about 15" and broke water at least 8 times. Great jumper and runner. Wind died down about 1 and so did the fishing. Kind of like it got too quiet all of a sudden for the fish and they stopped all action. Worked my way back over to the ramp area and hit a single 5" along the way. Pulled out about 2.
If you want to see a couple photos of the area take a look in the Photo Gallery at the Coldwater shots. Coldwater 1 is looking up the lake with the island just left of center. Coldwater 2 is St Helens from the island. Coldwater 3 views the walkways and the southwest inlet zone. Coldwater 4 is a shot of 1 of the fish. (Hard to shoot in a pontoon in the wind by yourself!) Coldwater 5 shows the flies that were most productive. (Tried several others but no action.)
|Posted by Phil Hager on April 27, 2014 at 10:25 PM||comments (0)|
First, sorry about not doing more listings but will try to do better this year.
Sat. Apr. 26. NWFF Club Outing
Got there about 10. First thing I noticed was my rig thermo was showing 36 and the lake was showing whitecaps blowing towards the dam. Group decided to change locations from the open area ramp over to the campground cove area and see if the wind quieted down.
Over the next few hours, until lunch, the wind in the cove area seemed to be a little on the confused side as did the weather. Went thru too many to count 180's by the wind and the conditions did just about as many changes. One minute it was snowing, then a brief break in the clouds and sun, then back to cloudy with snow showers, rain mist and more sun breaks.
Saw several of the others doing okay on the catching and did pretty well myself. Started with a Type 3 sinking and a light grey leech pattern. Size 10 3X long using a 3 thread weave, loose, main with cashmere blended in. Hits on that varied from about 5' deep to just above the bottom in 15 foot deep water. After a 10 or 12 decided to change both pattern adn line and see what happened so went to a charcoal grey leech, same size and material, on my Airflo 30' intermediate sink tip. Hit nothing for about 20 minutes so changed back to the Type 3, went deeper and started picking up more. Hit about a 10 on that before I changed to the rust leech of the same material. Action started immediately on that one and caught a dozen more before breaking for lunch at 1.
Most of the fish I hit were 10 - 12 inchers with one about 7 and the last one about 15". That was a nice healthy little guy. Didn't touch another on my way back to the ramp for lunch and was the last one of the day. Started snowing pretty hard following lunch and decided I was cold enough and had some things I had to take care of so headed back home. Most of the members there went back out after lunch but haven't heard how they did in the afternoon.
All in all not a bad day. Caught many more than I expected, for opening weekend and cold water, but nothing very big. Fun day.
|Posted by Phil Hager on July 9, 2013 at 9:00 PM||comments (4)|
Timothy lake research reports
Sunday June 30, Timothy lake
Bit of a delay in getting a site for the trailer so didn't get on the water until maybe 4. Since I chose the Oak Fork campground, and it was only a few hundred feet to launch, I went off to have fun there. Little jumpers spread out around the arm but nothing of any size making any of the splashes. Short row up to the flowing water and went serious about fishing as soon as I could row the pontoon no further up the flow.
Watching the water close as I made my way to the flowing water, and watching the little jumpers around me, I saw nothing in the form of a hatch. I did notice lots of small debris that looked a lot like a small Caddis and began to wonder if that was what the little jumpers were splashing. Put on the intermediate sink tip, dug into the wet fly box and tied on a small Caddis (16) about the same color. 2 casts and 2 fish about 13" total combined length.
From there I zigzagged my out to the point (1/2 mile maybe) along the NE shore trying floating dries, submerged dries, intermediate dries and wets and full sinking (Type3) with both. Hit a dozen or so more but nothing over 10" and most 6-8". Got back to shore about 9:30. (More on the why later.)
Worth the effort? Not for the fish but it is a nice area and the sunset was outstanding.
Monday July 1, North Arm
Thunder woke me about 4 along with the sounds of a light rain mixed in. Went out to check it out and saw the most beautiful sunrise red I have ever seen. Grabbed the camera and headed down to the water but it was all greyed out be the time I got it. Did get one a few minutes later (Look at photo page) but not nearly as brilliant or magnificent. Figured with the threat of a lightning storm I 'd run home real quick and pick up some supplies I had left behind. Got back to the North Arm about 10.
Launched, despite the strong wind blowing down the arm channel, and immediately headed up stream/ up wind. Went clear above the old beaver site, in the channel, until I got into water shallow enough I couldn't get a decent bite with the oars. Never saw a single fish in the usual holding areas, when the lake is warm, around the islands or above the isalands. Finally hit a few Rainbows a few hundred feet below the last island in the main channel. Also saw some decent Brookies but couldn't get there attention on anything I tried. (Also having problems holding against the shifting gusting winds.) Worked my way all the way down the arm until it spreads out into the lake. Dropped my thermometer to 10' depth and figured out why I had caught much. Temp at 10' showed 69 in the area where it opens out into the lake. In all honesty I only caught 9 fish down the whole arm and that was about the same number as the biggest in size. Gave up fighting the wind and headed back to camp about 4.
When I got back to camp I got to talking with an old PGE employee that about all you find in here anymore are the spring planters and they come in the 4-8" size range. He said he had tried for years to get them to do a decent sized late fall planting to produce more carryovers but nobody figured it was worth anything since it closes with the snow and it had never been done.
Maybe I'll come back in mid-fall and see if maybe there is a better count on the North Arm. I've seen much better action there before but not much showing in results, or on the depth/fish finder today.
Tuesday July 2, south end (dam area) on Timothy
I'll start todays report with an aggravating circumstance! It's called the wind!
The wind had been northerly, full time, since I get here Sunday morning. With that in mind it made good sense, at least to me, to head for the downwind end of the lake, fight the winds and row up the lake against the wind as far as I could, then drift back to the launch point with the wind. I even have a sea anchor I use on the pontoon. Unfortunately Mother Nature has a warped sense of humor.
After fighting the wind, clear up to DInger creek cove, the wind decided to reverse direction and push me further up the lake.Figured why fight it, grabbed the Type 3 and started "wind trolling". for another 1/4 mile or so. After fishing that distance, using one of my Little Black Bogus patterns and catching a dozen or so, I started experimenting with something I had tied last night. Worked so good I even named it. It's called the Timothy Lake WD (Wha's Dat?) By that time I realized how far I would have to row back and got serious about doing some rowing. More catching on the way back but not nearly as heavy earlier.
Most of the fish were in that same recent plant size range and all were Rainbows. 2nd day and still no Cutt's or Brookies and not expecting any action at this time from the Kokanee.Got back to the dam and decided to run down and check out the Oak Grove fork of the Clackamas and see if the tips regarding Cutt's had been true. Think I'll wait until I'm fishing with someone before traversing that stream area. A little on the risky side for solo travel. Tomorrow, Badger Lake.
Wednesday July 3, Badger Lake
Beautiful morning and sunrise and almost no wind, at least not yet, and it's a warm morning about 50. Looks like it might be a nice coolday on Badger. Headed there about 5.
As I recall (good memory) the lake sets down in a deep ravine and can be a bit of a challenge getting there. Couple of people even said that I shouldn't go in with a 2 wheel drive, especially since I don't have a winch. Well, I'll try and, if it gets too tough, I'll just drop my plan, turn around and find someplace else to fish. Not a problem though in getting there. There are a couple of places, like rolling down the long, steep, narrow road into the lake that you hope you don't meet somebody going the other direction, but not a bad road. (Talked to a person at the dam that said he had been going there for several years and it appeared they had made some road improvements since last year.)
Not having been there for over 30 years it seemed like a really long time to make the 12 miles in from 46. Coming out it was actually about an hour clear out to 26 and I drove about the same speed both directions. By the way, if you want a truly majestic view of Mt. Hood take 46 until you come up a long steep hill. Stop in the middle and look back, it's definitely worth the drive to see that view.
When I got to Badger the wind had picked up and, of course, was blowing down the lake towards the dam, where you launch, with some small rollers, whitecaps and spray. With that drive I don't care, I'm launching, fighting the wind and waves and rowing my way up to the other end of the lake to try it out. Did a little "trolling" with the Type 3 on the way up but no action. At the upper end of the lake I switched over to the AF intermediate sink trip and decided to try my Timothy WD and was immediately glad I did. Quite a few, unclipped, 6-10"ers up there.
When I first got on the water there was a Midge hatch taking place so heavy that it was slmost like a fog in the wind quiet areas. Despite this hatch the fish didn't seem to be particularly selective in what they went after as long as it was between 6" and 18" below the surface. That action slowed down considerably when the hatch ended, about 10:30, and the fish became much more discriminatory in their selections but I still managed to hit a half dozen or so in the 12"-14" range after that. Fat, healthy, hard running jumpers that provided a good show and even a little excitement. Even had a couple surprising hits, with one that popped the knot at the fly, and both yanked enough line to burp the reel before getting off.
Now, some questions I expect to be asked so here are the answers:
Was it worth the long drive in? For me, YES! loved the beauty of driving thru the timber zones, despite all of the dead timber, and the view of Mt. Hood along the way. The solitude on the lake, with no one else on the water, no motors or other sounds, and the challenge of the fish, it's worth it.
Would I go back in? Tougher question and I'll have to think about that. My understanding is the lake suffers a major draw down by the fall so maybe this was the best time. I may run up there one more time, like early September, just to see how it looks and, if enough water, do a little comparative fishing, but no trailers are allowed into the lake so it would be tent camping. If I went back up I'd like to stay a couple of nights, but not sure tenting would be the way for me and my back to travel.
Thursday July 4, Clear Lake
Windy and a little on the cool side this morning. My outside thermo shows 41. Spent a little time deciding on what I would try today and decided on Clear Lake, since it's just up the road. Bad choice for 2 reasons.
Ran up to the upper end of the north arm and found only a few campers in the launch area (Should have known there was a reason.) and a few more spread along the shore in both directions, but not many. The wind was a different matter though with shallow waves white capping by 6:30 and blowing straight up the lake. Launched anyway and headed for the snags, where I've found lots of fish in the past, before putting a line in the water and a sea anchor out to slow me down. Nothing there so began zigzagging back and forth clear down to the point about a 1/4 mile below the launch point. Took several temp readings and found a consistent 70 at 10' depth. Tried lots of different patterns, sizes and depths and may have had 2 soft hits in that entire area. Gave up and headed over to the cove where a creek feeds in and I've usually found crowds of fish gathered.
After launching in that cove, and covering quite a bit of water, I finally had a hit. Decided to check water temp here too and found it the same 69-70 I had found above. Gave up and pulled out figuring I could go down by the dam and see if the water was cooler there. Pulled into the ramp/day use area an talked to a guy just pulling his boat out. He said he had caught 4 on bait but only one of them didn't feel like a wad of plant hanging on the end of the line. Temp was the same down here too, hovering about 70. Gave up and went to do a little exploring in other areas since it was also the same winds on Timothy.
I would not recommend you take the time to try Clear before the fall cool down and see what the fish conditions are then. The water is too warm now for much success regarding catch and release.
Friday July 5 Oak Fork below Timothy
Thought I'd run on down the Oak Fork today to where it joins the Clacakamas and see what it offers between there and Harriett. That's the problem with long term retirement, you tend to forget about "long weekends" for those that work. Everyplace where you could pull off the road, and not try to climb down a couple hundred feet, was crowded with people camping and/or picnicing and/or fishing.
If somebody else is crazy enough to crawl the area with me I'll consider fishing the upper reaches below Timothy and the area below Harriett, but not by myself. There are some holes you can see from above, but getting there may be another matter and definitely not one to try alone.
Saturday July 6th, Timothy Oak Fork
Ran down to Rhododendron this morning, for a breakfast for the Lion's club fund raiser, and decided to stop by Trillium on the way back and see how it's doing. I know it's a put and take lake but I have bumped into a few decent "carry overs" in the past so thought it might be worthwhile. Got the last marked parking spot in the upper lot when I got there. Forgot the "extended" weekend again!
Got to talking to a couple of guys in the parking lot and one said a camper had told him the ODFW was up with a stocking truck earlier in the week but had cancelled the delivery because of water temp. Walked down and stuck my arm in the water, up to the elbow, and was duly impressed with how warm it was. No sense in even launching so back to camp and do a little more time on Timothy.
Launched at the upper end of the Oak Fork camp ground and headed down the arm and out into the lake. No wind to speak of so no problem. Tried all 3 lines and worked everything from the surface to bumping the bottom at 40 feet on the depth finder. Nothing! Nada! Nyet! Arimasen! Every place I checked I was showing the same 69-70 degrees at 10' depth and reading very little on the finder below me. I had rowed past the center line of where North Arm feeds in to the lake, gave up on the hazard to the fish and headed back into Oak Fork expecting to find cooler water there. Dumb thought! Clackamas Lake is only about 3 feet deep and is where that feed comes from Showing 71 degrees in the flowing water at the head of the arm!
I will be, pleasantly but totally, surprised if there are no algae problems or major fish kills in August, if that late, if this keeps up. Only place left to fish is the North Arm and that's getting too warm half way down to the lake.
Sunday July 7th, North Arm Timothy
Figured I'd do a little more studying the North Arm this morning and found the wind blowing up from the lake. I thought "This is good! I can row half way down the arm and wind drift fish my way back up to the islands!"
Worked my way down to the last cove in the arm, the one covered in larger rocks on the east side, dragging an off white nymph on a Type 3 all the way down there. Not a single bump the whole distance. Was trying to decide what to try next when about a size 6, long, bright yellow Hexagenia landed on my pontoon for a second. He bounced off that onto the water and wind bounced about 30' before something grabbed him. First sizable splash I've seen for a couple of days.
About as close as I could get to that was a yellow bodied, pale orange hackle wrapped, nearly white elk hair Caddis. Tried it on the surface for about 20 minutes, casting in every direction on the compass, but saw no action. Changed over to the intermediate sink tip and did the same rotation casting again with no response. Went to the Type 3 and the action began. Turned on my depth finder and found that I was in about 19' of water and everything that went by was about 3' feet off the bottom. Looking for the cooler water I guess.
Drifted with the wind back up the channel and hit a couple dozen Rainbows in the 12-14" range that appeared healthy and well fed with a fast recovery if kept in the water while removing the hook. That action lasted until I reached the upper end of the last big cove before it spreads out into a much wider, shallower area. After that it was a few in the 6" size. Gave up tired of the wind and went back to camp for some dinner.
Thought I'd try to tie something along the line of the Hexagenia but didn't have the materials with me.
Monday July 8th, North Arm
Today is the last day on this trip but I went back over to the North Arm to do a little more research on fish and their locations. This was a good/bad day for me.
Ran down the arm to the rocky points and started fishing again. Played with some Rainbows but still not Cutt's or Brookies. Found the fish working near the bottom again and it seemed to be a "one hit" day. If you got a hit, and missed it, on the first cast that is all the action you would see on that fly in that area. Kept changing flies until I got tired of that and decided I'd head back up to the cooler water and see what I could find in Brookies.
Got into the upper area and first heard splashes from jumpers bigger than I had been hearing before. Closed in on the sound and spotted Brookies cruising and splashing over a narrow zone. Worked my way close enough to see them but still far enough away to not disturb them. Worked everything from size 18 to size 12 and white to black and found the same results there as below: 1 hit flies! Good afternoon though and worth the effort until the idiots arrived.
Don't want to sound political, or mad, or frustrated, but this is worth mentioning and, hopefully, it will spread out to those that really need to hear it.
I am setting, anchored, in my pontoon and obviously working a section of the upper channel. Along comes an idiot in about a 24' pontoon, 4 or 5 teenagers on board and 40 horse motor, cruising up the channel. Does he go around me, and where I'm fishing? No! he passes within 25 feet of me and I have to do a double handed fast strip to keep my line from getting run over. I stop fishing, take a break, watch an Osprey do a little fishing and allow the water/fish to recover from this before beginning again. Not 5 minutes later here comes an idiot with shallow V hull and a jet outboard right up the middle of the same channel and running within a few feet of my line before I can get it recovered. The worst part of all of this actually has 2 parts:
The first part is the water out behind me is in the 5-7' depth range and neither boat is using more than 15" of water, if that, so they could have passed a decent distance behind me, not right thru the middle of the area I've been fishing for the past hour or so. The second part is the idiot in the big pontoon comes back down, travelling entirely in the shallower water, anchors behind me and the kids all start jumping into the water and swimming around. I left, but about the time I reached the launch point here comes the other guy in a straight line, outside the channel. I think courtesy should be included in the licensing test for boat operators licenses.
if you want a concise description on where the Brookies hang out drop me an email and I'll send you a detailed description of what you're looking for.
One more thing to keep in mind, in case you're not familiar with it: Don't expect survival of C&R if the water temp is above 65. I don't even fish above 63, most of the time.
The cold water fish starts to slow down at 62 because of the drop in oxygen. At 67 they become very lethargic and at about 72 they start to die off. Keep this in mind and do buy a thermometer (I found my depth/temp one at BiMart for $10) so you can keep uo to date on water temps.
|Posted by Phil Hager on June 27, 2013 at 10:10 AM||comments (0)|
I'll be heading up to Timothy this Sunday and hope to find a camp slot at Oak Fork campground. (Nothing available for the full stay in the reservation slots. Have to do a "FCFS" slot instead.) Plan on staying there thru Sunday, July 8th and working the entire lake. Watch this report for updates on the where's, when's, which flies and how they were applied.
|Posted by Phil Hager on June 16, 2013 at 10:15 AM||comments (0)|
Start with WINDY, add in waters warmer than usual, add in some rain and you have the basics of last weeks fishing trip. Now for the specifics.
Sunday 6/9 Woke up early and headed out. Arrived Sheep Bridge, Deschutes arm Wickiup about 10:30. 3 others campers and 2 left. Met Bill and Charles, the other campers that stayed, later. Hit the water a little after noon and fished to about 7:30. Rowed up to the edge of the brush and couldn't get any higher. Lake down about 15 boards on the abuttment. Tried just about everything I had with me from floating line to Type 3. Played with a couple of 6" Rainbows but that was all from the brush to the bridge. Saw 3 jumpers. Water temp about 61 degrees at 5' depth.
Monday 6/10 Hit Hosmer about 7. Water about 60 on lower lake. Saw no surface action. Worked my way out along the reeds on the east side and saw nothing. Another guy working the middle of the lower section and saw him catching nothing. Got out to the corner of the reeds ( my check point on activity) and watched for a few and saw nothibg swimming by. Usually that indicates they are up in the channel and upper lake. Headed up there to see what I could find.
Lower end of the channel, up to the in/out junction saw a few in the plant growth zone but maybe 10% of the usual number. From the junction to the upper lake counted maybe 15 fish the entire distance. Expecting a major crowd in the upper area but only found a few at each of the wider zones on the gravelly bottom areas and saw 3 or 4 rises off to the side. Wound up landing 8 Atlantics and 5 Brookies in upper lake in about 2 1/2 hours. Gave up arguing with wind and headed back down. Found nothing in outlet channel. Got into lower lake and traveled west side along reeds. Lost count on 5"-6" Rainbows. Left the water about 2. Went back to camp, had something to eat and played around in Deschutes arm for a bit. No action there.
Tuesday 6/11 On Davis lake about 6:30 at the lava ramp. Light breeze blowing down the lake, towards the lava rocks, so figured I'd row up to the inlet and wind drift my way back down to launch. More trout upper lake and more bass lower lake. Pulled in to Eagle ramp and hit the vortex there. Couple of about 9" bass. Wind came up and was bringing on the whitecaps and calling for constant oar work to hold my position. Gave up and drifted back down to the lava rocks and pulled out. Shared infow with a guide from Cabela's. He said he had talked to several that said the fishing was best up the Davis Creek arm on Wickiup.
Went over to Crane, Quinn River, to check it out there about 9:30. Not bad at ramp but strong wind with kicker gusts out towards the snags. Gave up after about an hour. Nothing bumped me there but water was about 64 at 5' depth.Talked to some others at the ramp and all said they were having the best luck over by Cow Camp. Several commented on Kokanee being active there and hitting quite a few. Gave up on rowing there from Quinn due to strong winds. Back to camp, had some lunch and headed over to check out the Deschutes around Pringle Falls. Running full. Chatted with local resident for a bit then ran over to Fall River to look things over. Got back to camp and heard hissing sound from pontoon bladder. Now only choice is kicker. Not nearly as much fun to travel distance in that.
Wednesday 6/12 Windy at 5 AM so decided to go check out the Davis Creek arm. Launched early down at the lower end of the arm and found water at 64-65 degrees as deep as 15'. Pulled out and went back up the arm to the "spring hole" just below the big curve. Kicked out and found 64 degrees there too at 15' depth. Starting to wonder if thermometer is working properly. Pulled out and went up to Davis Lake campground, turned right at driveway edge of pavement and went down to 3rd dirt road to left and drove down to the deeper cove. Walked back up the bank and launched just below Davis Creek. Water temp at 10' showing 53. Thermometer works fine. lake is really warm for this early.
Kicked up to little island area between the inflows and started working the deeper area outside the island with a submerged (16) orange Caddis with darker brown wing. Several nice Brookies 16"-22" in that area. Drifted down and worked the area to the first corner and caught a few more but nothing after the first corner. Worked my way down to the cove at the rig and took out there. Campers at Davis Creek motored by on their way further down but I didn't want to fight the wind and pulled out. I think most of the boats I had seen traveling up, and the campers, must have all been working in the junction area where it spreads out to the grasslands.Went back to camp, had a bite, and went on over to fish Fall River.
Fall River. Parked between the headwater and campground and fished from the headwaters down to the bridge. Only saw one fish, about 14", just above the bridge but nothing else. Drove on down to the last turnout and checked that area. No fish at the hole above the last house on the stream. Went on down to the tubes and walked up from the tubes to the second big bend. Saw a few 6" but nowhere near the usual count. Walked back down and work from the tubes to maybe a half mile below the falls. Small groups of 4" - 7" fish but that was all I saw.
Thursday 6/13 Maybe it was the 13 but headed out early for East lake. Cloudy day with rain expected, and maybe snow above 5'000' so hoped to get in a few hours before the wind got too strong. Showed 31 degrees with whitecaps already on the water at 6:30 AM. Walked down to end of East Lake Campground ramp to check it out. Forgot winter gear and my ears were burning cold by the time I got to the end of the ramp. Not going out in that temp, with that wind, without my polar fleece headgear, in my kicker. Back to camp. Rain started before I got back. Wind kicking things up on Deschutes arm. Good day to take a break and tie some flies. Rained off and on most of the day. High temp at camp 47.
Friday 6/14 Out bright and early again. Headed over to USFS ramp at store on Crane considering kicking across to Cow Camp and working the cooler water there. Looked and decided I didn't want to kick that far. Headed up to Lava lake to see how things were there.
Light southwest wind when I got there. Launched kicker at end of dock because ramp parking lots was full and more parked wherever they could find a place to park. Lots of boats on lake at 9:30. Launched and headed up east shore for some aras that have always been productive. Hit 2 about 6" on my way across and hoped that would be indicative of a productive day. (Maybe I should have kicked across to Cow Camp at Crane, it would have been shorter.) Kicked all the way around the lake, working both deeper and shallower, and had no hits on anything. Saw nothing caught by anyone until I reached the short, rocky shore zone on west side of lake. Saw 2, about 12", caught there and had a couple of bumps. Finally got into some decent sizes and numbers at the south end by the first chub trap over from the docks.
Fishing that area stay out at least 50' from the reeds because there are crowds of little ones, maybe 4", in near the reeds. Zigzagged the area between the trap and a line from the "No Wake" marked by the dock to the 2nd trap.Using a 16, grey modified Pheasant tail on Type 3 worked best in that area. Saw a few rises but had no action working sub-surface like I had at 4-5' down. Hit more than a dozen in that area with the biggest landed at 17". Wind not as badd as the rest of the week, Sun was out all day. Best number of catches for the day. Not a bad way to end the week. Home Saturday 6/15
|Posted by Phil Hager on June 6, 2013 at 9:00 AM||comments (0)|
Headed out early and set up camp at the Riverside campground on the Clackamas. Really good looking hole at the lower end where I was camped. Tried that a couple of times but no action.
Sunday afternoon ran up the Collawash River, past the Bagby junction, bear left at the junction, and up to about FS road 6340, then worked my way back down. Talked to another fly fisher at the Hot Springs arm confluence, a couple more at other good looking holes and runs on the way back down, and found that I wasn't the only one seeing no action whatsoever. Checked out the hole below the camp and saw nothing.
Monday: Ran up to the Olallie area early, got there about 6, and started at the bigger side lake, Monon, a short hop south of Olallie. Spent several hours there, covering a good portion of the lake, and saw nothing. No action, no sightings and no fish rising. Wind came up and decided to head for the smaller lakes and see what was happening there.
Stopped by the north end of Olallie, just about across from the south end of campground by the store, and zig zagged back and forth across the lake until reaching the dock at the store. Tried everything from size 18 nymphs in tan, grey, brown, green and black to big streamers, from sub-surface (no surface action by fish) to bouncing the bottom. Gave up with no action after a couple of hours and moved on down to Head lake. (That's the first little one below Olallie on west side of road.)
Saw 2 rises while unloading at Head and hoped that was an indication of better results. Kicked the length and width of the lake and finally hooked into 2 about 5" in size. Figured that must be the entire population in the water when I got there, gave up and headed back down the road. Stopped at First lake, saw a couple of little rises, but didn't launch because I didn't fell like carrying the pontoon that far to put in.
Tuesday: Hit Harriet first thing in the morning. Must have been recently planted because I caught too many to count that were in the 8"-10" range and all Rainbows. Did catch one Brown about 16" right at the first log laying in the water just down from the dock over on the far bank. Caught the most on a bright orange, size 10 3X long, leech pattern. Everything caught using a Type 3 sinking line. Went back to camp around 1 to check out a propane problem on the trailer. Hit a couple more holes on the Clackamas late in the day. Nothing there.
Wednesday: Hit Olallie early, hopefully to get some time in before the winds came up again, and launched at the south end, Peninsula ramp, and worked my way up the east shore to the north end. 1 other working the water when I got there. He had worked the shore from mid-point west side, around the north end and we met about mid-point east side. He was working dry line and had seen nothing by then.
I changed lines from an intermediate to a type 3, depending on whether I was in the shallows or the deeper water, zig-zagged in and out from the shore on the way up and back, saw no fish actions anywhere and saw no line actions anywhere. Water clear enough to see the bottom fairly deep but saw no swimmers. Back down near the south end actually saw 3 rises and worked that area for a while, trying both wet and dry of various sizes and colors, but got no hits. Worked my way back down to the last peninsula, where I've found large schools in the past, and worked the south end cove. Again saw no action whatsoever in that area. Gave up and decided to head home. Just as I was leaving ran into an ODFW stocking truck on its way in to stock the lake. Although I had hoped to get into some carryovers it appears that most of what you get there is the "put and takes". Road in pretty bad condition and probably won't go back knowing that most of what you get there are "stockers", not carryovers.
Guess I really got spoiled living in Central Oregon for 20 years. Heading over there Sunday and will be at Sheep Bridge, if space is available when I get there. Should still be some good, fat and feisty, Rainbow and Brown time there.