Nov 7, 2013

November Fishing Report

Current Fishing Report For November 2013:

Wow, I can't even believe that I'm saying that right now...November! Really?! Already?! Well it's true it's November, the wood stoves are heating up, folks are starting to talk and dream of winter steelhead just around the corner but hold on! Falls not over yet...there are still some nice fish to be caught. Between Coho and summer steelhead a guy can keep himself/herself busy until the winters show up. The following is an updated fishing report.

Mr Steelie and Ms. Method

Hood River:

Well, I'll start by saying there are a TON of Chinook spawning near the mouth of the Hood. So many so that it's difficult to swing up a steelhead because a dusty chinook will grab your fly in order to protect it's family. Just like me...if you came into my house and I felt threatened, I'm takin you down! You get the picture. Since we've had a record return of chinook this fall season, the Hood has gotten her fair share. Keep in mind the Hood is not open for keeping chinook.

At this point in their cycle I don't intentionally target these amazing fish. It would be like yanking an old man dying of leprosy off of his death bed, wrestling with him for 10 minutes and then let him go to try to swim back to his bed...something about that just doesn't seem right to me.

That said, there are a few steelhead in the system. In the past couple of weeks there have been a number of steelhead hooked.

On another note, as I sit here in the Gorge Fly Shop trying to be poetic and give you all an entertaining fishing report, the rivers are on the rise, and the weather says more rain to come! Just a few days ago on the 4th it was at 600cfs, and today (Thursday Nov, 7th) it's at 1030cfs and rising...

As any Steelheader knows, when the rivers are low, we pray for rain to get the fish moving, then we get the rain and things pick up, then we get too much rain and the rivers blow out. That hasn't happened yet, the rivers are still holding, but for how long?

All in all the Hood has some steelhead in it but it kinda feels like we're in between seasons. IOW...we can still hook a steelhead once in awhile while we're waiting for the winters to show up...we will get a few early winter steelhead late Nov and Dec and if your lucky enough to hook one of them, you'll be in for a ride! This is also a great time to sit down at the vise and get your soldiers ready for battle for the upcoming months...

The Deschutes River:

After a strong fairly steady season on the "D" it seems to have slowed down a bit. Crowds have thinned out (part of the reason we haven't had too many folks come in with reports of catching fish). BUT, fish are still there, if you put forth a little effort you still have a great shot at hooking some fish. Here's the deal...there are guides still guiding it, that should hopefully give you an indication that it would still be a safe bet for a hookup or two, or more...

The Klickitat River:

What can I say, for chinook the "Klick has had a stellar year, for steelhead on the other hand it has been tough o swing up steelhead with consistency. In my experience of guiding the Klickitat when the chinook are in the system in force it's tough steelhead fishing. When the chinook are finished "takin care of business" the steelhead fishing tends to pick up. During the peak of a chinook run, especially a record one, the steelhead get nervous, they hide up against root wads, rocks and anywhere else they can find safety. I have watched chinook literally chase steelhead down and bite them....on another note, the three steelhead that I have caught over 20 pounds where hanging out right with the bullies....they were big enough to do so...

A great start to a day's work.
I say all that to say, now is the time to hit the Klick before it closes. You have less than three weeks before it closes for six months. I went over this morning to fish a couple of runs before I had to come in the shop for work and boy did it pay off! I hooked two fish...the first one wanted NO PART of the game I wanted to play...the second one allowed me to admire it, stroke it and thank it for playing the game! Check out the photo left!... it was an absolutely perfect fall morning to swing for steelhead. The rain was lightly falling, the fog just at the top of the trees, the rhythm of my cast and swing...bump...another six feet and instant chaos! The crushing grab and game on! 

That's why we do it! RIGHT?!

Get out a fishing report, don't wait for one :)

John Garrett
Gorge Fly Shop

"Fly Fish the World with Us"

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