Feb 27, 2017

Columbia River Gorge Fishing Report (2/27/17)

I have been out of town for a while, so of course the steelhead have started showing up and the snow melted...

A winter beauty, brought to hand by our in shop legend Mr. John Garrett

Winter steelhead reports have been good and steady throughout most of the Gorge and beyond.  Good rains, warmer temps, and higher flows have gotten fish moving and biting (well as much as a winter steelhead will bite).  Heavy sink tips are the name of the game, and we have had a lot of people getting bit on our new Aqua Flies steelhead selection.  Shakes those cabin fever blues off and get out there and get fishing!

Carp on fly, in February!
While back in Chicagoland, I did get out fishing a few days in the crazy unseasonable weather they were having.  Zeroed on our musky hunt, but caught some largemouth and carp.  Which reminded me how quickly these warmwater fish can respond to spring temps.  Don't be afraid to get out there bass and carp fishing locally as soon as the weather breaks.  Look for dark colored bottoms in the area you are fishing, those will warm up first.  The carp we found were in as little as 4 inches of water with their backs out, slurping up insects and worms.  If you can find green vegetation you will likely find some bass too, especially in shallow dark colored bottom areas.

A few degrees increase in water temp can get fish feeding, even if the water is barely over 40F.

Trout fishing has been steady to excellent on the Deschutes, especially after the washout last week.  Skwala nymphs and BWOs have been good, as well as the old standards.  The Skwala hatch could start anytime from now through March.  I like an olive or brown stimulator, but there are a number of great patterns to match this hatch.  I tend to stick to size 10.

Flows:  The USGS sites give us real-time flows, while the NOAA site shows us predictions based on weather patterns.  Both are invaluable tools.

Hood River:



Deschutes near Madras:

Deschutes at the mouth:

Columbia River
Bonneville Dam Water Temps
Columbia @ Hood River (The mouth of the Hood backs up at 75 feet)

As always, we are happy to talk fishing anytime.  Give us a call if you have any specific questions on local rivers, gear, and tactics, or if you just want some encouragement to get out of the office.  541.386.6977

Ryan Van Duzor
Gorge Fly Shop | Product Specialist

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