I love the fall in Central Oregon! You can always count on an Indian Summer – warm days and there are always a few nights that are warm enough to camp. Fishing usually picks up from August as the water cools with the cooler temperatures. As we progress into the fall – all the brilliance of changing colors can be seen against some crystal clear blue skies. My favorites to fish are the Crooked River and the Deschutes River. The Crooked is smaller than the Deschutes – but unless it is a freaky day you can count on getting into some fish. The Deschutes is a challenging fishery – however when you do find a fish you have a chance at some nice sized rainbows and in a the 4000 plus CFS t give you a good play. You also have the chance at those elusive steelhead – they eluded me this year. Well at least to the net – I hooked into a couple that took off like freight trains! Still wondering what I could have done differently to keep them on! The following are photos from a couple of trips that Dave and I took in October. Enjoy
One of Dave’s red side rainbow trout
Yes – another day – another trout! Checkout the progressive bend in his bamboo fly rod
An early morning swinging for steelhead
Yes – that’s me netting a nice red side rainbow trout
A closer look!
Swinging on my favorite run!
Another glorious fall day on the Deschutes. Warm and Sunny
Yeah! I am back in Stanley, Idaho. I have been here two weeks and the guiding season started early and furious. I truly am lucky to spend my summers here. I am going to take advantage of one last summer in Stanley! If you haven’t sorted your vacation for 2015 – give some serious consideration to visiting Stanley.
Enjoy the photos
Stanley, A laid back town with a lot of character! No need for parking lines.
Returning to Stanley after a day on the water
A view of the Payette Valley as you drive into Stanley from the West
The Scenery changes with every turn in the river
And thank to Verlon, I occasionally get a chance to fish from the boat!
A rare photo of Dave and I. Yes I row and he catches!
Dave and I recently treated ourselves to a guided day on the Williamson River and the Wood River in Southern Oregon. The best part of the day was just remembering what it is like to have someone else take care of all the fishing details! Yes I got to sit in the front of the boat and just fish! I did tie on my own flies! However, nothing is more relaxing and intriguing than fishing new waters under the guidance of a guide. Great day!
Mother Nature always plays a role in fishing pursuits. Sometimes she provides a stellar day where the fishing is easy and awesome. Other days she decides to make the day a bit more challenging. In our case rains a few days before increased the river levels and turbidity! Thus we didn’t hook and land any Williamson River fish, but as we floated we scared up a few and my goodness I am headed back there this fall. Some awesomely huge fish on this river. On the Wood River conditions were a bit better and I was able to land some nice Wood River Fish.
Regardless of what type of fishing conditions Mother Nature deals you! She always deals you some great scenery! Sorry I don’t have more photos! I was busy fishing.
My view from the front of the boat!
A long cast and a streamer connected with this nice Wood River Rainbow
Wow I have been negligent on posting to my web site. My excuse too busy fishing, teaching, and tieing flies. Actually lots of teaching for me this spring – which I enjoy as much if not more than fishing. Nothing more rewarding than the opportunity to teach someone to the sport that I love, live & breath.
I am loving my new home in Central Oregon! Lots of sunny days in the winter and plenty of water to fish. Almost too much. This winter I focused my days on the water on the Crooked River – a little gem to fish all year round and the winter provides some of the best fishing! I love to fish the Crooked as it has so much structure to analyze and it holds a fair number of fish. Some days the fish are very willing to take your fly and other days the fish just don’t seem to be around, but you know they are there. The structure and the fish make this an excellent river to learn to fly fish. If you’re looking to learn and you’re in Oregon – you can’t beat the Crooked as a learning paradise!
First day of Fishing in 2015! Yes a little snow but a sunny day – so no excuse not to get on the water!
A nice fish in the early April timeframe. Yes that is my favorite bamboo rod – made by my hubby – Dave Dozer
Dave and a nice Crooked River Rainbow – a great play on his bamboo rod. Yes he does makes time to fish!
I can honestly say that the last time I was at Lake in the Dunes was before the millennium. Yes remember that – big event. We were all concerned that computers would go down because of the ’00 in programs. Well the world didn’t crash that year, but a lot has changed since then. Cell phones, Facebook, and Instragram immediately came to mind! With all the change surrounding us every day – it is nice to know we can go back in time and experience a great fishery – even if is 16 years later.
Being at Lake of the Dune on Sunday, sure brought back memories. Yes last time I was at Lake of the Dunes it was in 1999 and the first time was probably in the 1996 vintage time. I started fishing in ’95 so way back then I can now say I was truly a rookie. On my first trip to Lake in the Dunes I hooked my first fish that could truly pull line off the reel. Not that I knew what that was back then. I remember being clueless on what to do and yelling “What do I do?” Dave returned in the same tone, “Fight it on the reel”. My reply back – ” I don’t know what that is”. Needless to say I clearly remember losing that fish. I was pretty disappointed. Now if I lose a big fish I say “Oh well, there will be another opportunity – no worries”
This spring Dave and I made two return visits to Lake in the Dunes! Both times I was reminded that how much I enjoy lake fishing and it certainly helps with surrounding scenery, and yes the big fish are nothing to complain about!
The scenery can take your breath away!
On the third cast I hooked into this nice rainbow on a size 20 adams
Another view of the same fish – amazing how the lighting makes it look like a second fish – but it the same. Now mind I caught a few more of this size!
This fall I discovered the John Day River. Not only do you have stunning views of the canyon, brilliant fall colors – but water with a diversity of structure to explore This is a spot off the beaten path that is worth an exploration. I just hope that when you go it isn’t as windy as it was for me – however I persevered against the wind and totally enjoyed my time swinging for steelhead. Even though this was my first trip out I was lucky enough to hook and play a nice sized steelhead but after the third run – good ole “steellie” out smarted me and threw the hook. Thanks to Sue S for the great photos!
The John Day Canyon – Awesome scenery
I love the colors of our Central Oregon Fall
Well – it was fun to play this steelhead – but it won the game and threw the hook.
The local scenery is loaded with wind turbines – very cool.
Our early November weather allowed me to get out and fish multiple times! Fishing success varied from day to day – however Dave and I hit the jackpot one day early on in our float. Each of us caught multiple rainbows and both landed a nice 20″ plus Deschutes Redside. These rainbows are a blast to play and with the Deschutes current – you can to keep you eye on the game or otherwise the rainbows take a jump as they throw you fly. However – today was one of those days when Dave and I both beat the odds and landed some nice fish. Enjoy!
A nice rainbow on Dave’s bamboo switch rod
Nothing like playing a nice fish on a bamboo rod
A close up of a good sized Deschutes River Redside. No complaints from me.
Dave and I recently made a move to Central Oregon – allowing us to pursue trout multiple days of the week and in the fall for me to pursue that elusive steelhead. Good news or bad news between fishing and unpacking I haven’t done many posts – until today. I have spent my days on the water on either the Crooked or the Deschutes. As you will see with the photos these are two distinctly different fisheries. To contrast simply on flows and water depth. The Crooked the fall cfs is in the mid 70’s and you can pretty much cross back and forth across the Crooked at most spots. Whereas the Deschutes we’re talking more like mid to high 4000’s on cfs and you typically can’t wade more than 5 to 10 feet into the river. The Crooked River has murky water and lots of visible structure – great for new and skilled anglers. The Crooked River is loaded with fish always willing to show themselves and take a fly on the surface or sub-surface. The Deschutes is a large river with clear flowing water, the structure (feeding lies) for fish not as obvious and in the fall the fish rarely give their location. The essence of Deschutes Canyon is a must for new and skilled anglers. However, the number of fish taken on a fly is smaller. But when a trout takes you fly it is a strong trout and with the current always a fun game regardless of the fish size.
A photo album of this falls photos will show the spectacular scenery and fish that will treat any angler.
One of the many sunrises I saw as I prepared for my days of fishing.
Looked Down Stream at the Crooked River Canyon
Dave fighting a fish on his bamboo rod.
Don’t let the murky water deter you – plenty of fish that take flies.
A small Crooked River Rainbow – with splendid dots and colors
Later afternoon sun and showers entice another rainbow
Early morning sun and showers enticed a rainbow – just not the kind that take a fly.
Chasing that steelhead with my bamboo switch rod
Dave playing a nice redside on his bamboo
Now a steelhead – but a nice rainbow on the swing.
Wow – It has been a long time since my last post! It’s not that I haven’t been fishing – but I have been extremely busy with life. For starters – lots of days on the Salmon River this summer! No complaints here. It was a great season and the fish were keyed on big flies most of the summer. I don’t think I have ever gone through so many chubby Chernobyls. And again – the average size of the cutties continues to increase and a good number of fish over 17 inches. I continue to love my summers in Stanley and will return in 2015.
Another aspect adding to no time to post on my blog – is Dave and I have made the move to Sisters Oregon. Yes after 18 years in Corvallis – we have moved closer to trout water. In theory we can fish for trout every day of the year in Central Oregon. I’ll do another blog on my first 6 weeks in Central Oregon.
Rather than elaborate in words – I’ll let a few photos cap off the season. If you haven’t been to Stanley I love it not only for its great dry fly fishing for west slope cutthroat trout but for spectacular vista views.
The Sawtooths – in the warm glow of the morning sun.
The first glimpse of the Valley from Galena Summit
A rare shot of both Dave and I. Of course me on the oars and Dave fishing.
A nice cuttie that Dave landed on his Bamboo rod
First fish for a new angler! Pretty great first land.
I love the Sawtooths and I love guide floating the Salmon River. The river is cooperating for some early season floats! Yeah. With early season comes some nice opportunities for the cutties to take large salmon and golden stone imitations. Can’t beat that. And I forgot to mention how splendid the scenery is!
If the first float is an indicator of the season then I will be having a great season. My first float with Steve and Wendy – Celebrating their 25th. Always a pleasure to meet great people on the water and a special pleasure to get them into some nice cutties.
A nice sized cuttie for Steve!
A nice cuttie for Wendy
I also got the chance to “show-off” the Salmon River and the Sawtooths with Robin, a good friend from Portland. She agreed – A very special place in Central Idaho!