Late Summer and Fall Steelhead Report

First of all, I apologize for the lack of posting this year. Gathering the motivation to write down a blog post has been an issue as of late. Anyways, here we go.

The Deschutes season has been an interesting ride so far. It has been fun but there have been times of despair. For whatever reason, there were some huge summer storms this season. Enough water fell to turn the Deschutes into chocolate. The issue was not the White River as many of us would have thought, it was actually the rivers above Lake Billy Chinook. The Deschutes coming out of the dam was brown. This happened more than once and we was lucky enough to be on the river for the downpours. Then, just as fall came, another storm hit us that really blew out the White River (I guess it was inevitable). The Deschutes itself was big enough that trees were floating past the Trout Creek put-in when one of our trips was set to launch. Anyways, it has been a good year to be adaptable and a good year to have multiple rain coats.

Deschutes Storm Lower Deschutes Shade Session

As for fishing, no complaints here. Early in the season was awesome. The fish were smaller on average but the vast majority of the catch was wild. We almost went a complete four day trip without landing a single hatchery sample. There was a little lull in the beginning-middle of September, but the fishing bounced back later in the month. In fact, it was brought back with some larger steelhead. Still, we have been seeing a dominance of native fish. Can’t complain about that. Our season on the Deschutes will continue into November. Fishing can still be good into the month and as a bonus, the river seems to be less populated.

Deschutes SteelheadLower Deschutes SteelheadDeschutes River Wild

We didn’t spend a lot of time on the North Umpqua in September. I ran one guided weekend over there and fished for a few days myself. Missing out on the North isn’t something I’m proud of and it feels like I haven’t seen a good friend in a long time. The Deschutes sucked up a lot of our time. Anyways, the North was its typical self this year. If you fished hard ad well, you could still find fish willing to eat something on the surface. It didn’t seem like any spot was extremely consistent, so it was a lot of moving and casting into pools that should work.

North UmpquaNorth Umpqua Steelhead Fly fishing

I know that its only October, but I am getting excited about winter fishing. My tying as of late has consisted of heavy, long intruders. They’re probably going to be on the sidelines for another couple months. We will be guiding the westside of Oregon for winter steelhead once January hits. If this might be something anyone is interested in, please send us a message and we’ll plan a trip.


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