Apr 23, 2017

Columbia Gorge Fishing Report (4/23/2017)

Seasons of Change in the Gorge
A beauty of an early summer fish, photo by Sam Sickles

The Winter steelhead season is on it's last legs.  The fish I have seen caught have all been pretty colored up as of late and many are likely kelts.  Sam from Steelhead Outfitters has gotten into some early season hatchery summer steel on the Sandy, and if you are hard up for some swung fly action I would head out with him or hit the Clackamas.
Gabe is a San Juan Worm believer now!

The trout season has really gotten rolling as of late.  Gabe and his lady crushed them on the Deschutes with big stonefly/rubberlegs and San Juan or Gummy worm dropper.  Not much dry fly action yet, but it is coming!  Get stocked up on our excellent assortment of salmonfly and golden stone dries and nymphs before you head out!  Sam still has some open dates for the upcoming hatch on the Deschutes, don't hesitate before they are gone!

The general trout opener for Oregon and Washington was yesterday (4/22).  I have already had good reports on the lakes that are now open and accessible, including Laurance and Kingsley lakes locally.  Pulling a woolly bugger/leech or dropping Chironomid larvae under a bobber are killer spring techniques.  I am leaving for my annual lake fishing excursion this week, and will give you all the breakdown when I get back!  

Outcast boats are on sale right now, but the sale ends today!  So, if you have always wanted a float tube, now is your time!  There are not many things as enjoyable as floating around a serene lake catching trout on the fly...
The big girls have been few and far between, but persistence pays off!

The smallmouth bass fishing is finally picking up.  Water temps vary greatly on the river, and are overall still pretty chilly, but the backwaters have warmed up quite a bit and the fish are responding.  I have found the best action on Clouser minnows and big crayfish imitations fished on a sinking line.  The fish in the shallow warmer water seem to want it moving fast, but the fish in the cooler water liked it slower.  I have been fishing my new Sage X 790-4 with Lamson Waterworks Force SL Series II #3 loaded with a Rio Coastal Quickshooter and SA Sonar Titan int/s3/s5.  This setup is absolutely incredible and easy to cast.  The X and Force are feather light and don't wear you out casting all day.  Look for my more in depth review of the Sage X in the coming months...

The smalljaw slayer Combo!

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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