04-13-2000, 12:40 PM
Floated the Sky yesterday with a friend. River was up to over 7' but still had 4' of visibility. This is in contrast to the 4.8' level when the the forum clave hit it. Overcast day too so I felt really confident we would hit fish.
We started at daylight and fished hard through Two Bit, Eagles Nest (fishes great at this volume), the backside of the big Island (ditto), the rocky Island, Jack Daniels, the Hershey Bar and Buck Island. Pulled out at 5:00 without any fish encounters. No fish hit and only heard of two being caught. A flyguy in a pontoon boat hit a fish at Thunderbird and some gear guys hit a 10# fish somewhere upriver. We ended up fishing across from guide Mike Kinney and a client for a while. They also went fishless.
I am staring to become discouraged with this fishing thing. Two weeks to go and the fishing has been <b> s-l-o-w !</b> I hope Doublespey is right and the fish are just late.
Keep the faith!
Tyler's point about predation by pacific horse mackeral during warm water years scared the begeezus out of me. I used to make the trek to Neah Bay and the straits each year and can recall some years when the macks were running like small tidal waves eating everything in their path. It was impressive that the coho were actually faster swimmers than the macks and you could see the silvers strafing at double speed through the compressed leading wave of krill and herring being pushed by the wave of schooling macks. Seeing that was one of the profound memories I have of being out on Swiftsure in fact. Then there was the gathering of several pods of orca where I was able to film 75 or so in a giant feed-fest. (that'll go to mpeg one of these days) The true albacore were less than half the usual distance from shore, in fact they were being sold at the docks at Neah Bay for cheap $$. I bought one and canned it using apple cider vinegar, pickling spice and olive oil at 15psi for 90 minutes and I thought I'd never be able to eat canned tuna again - it was so superior to canned tuna.
But my point was, years when these chomping machines are around inshore I can't imagine smolt survival being healthy. Although steelhead probably behave a lot different, I gotta wonder if these factors play a part. As chief Seattle said "all things are connected".
Then again the shifting of thermocline zones in the open pacific have historically been found to affect steelhead migration and behavior, and they might just be out there getting bigger, and meaner, and....
04-13-2000, 01:16 PM
Don't feel bad - if Mike Kinney isn't getting his client into fish, there probably aren't many fish to be had!
I'm still hopeful tho - every run of fish this year (hatchery and native) have been at least two weeks late. I'm really hoping everyone else gives up and we have a hot couple weeks to end the season! <G>
04-13-2000, 04:45 PM
Tip, a day out on the river especially with the recent conditions. We are all doing the late fish dance and praying. I've been getting reports of summers in the Sandy. I'm hoping to get out in the next couple of weeks.
The infamous local river - the Vedder has recently received two "late" pushes of fish. The first about 3 weeks ago was felt to be the fish that normally arrive in late Feb. and another push just hit the river recently. This may have significance for other rivers - I hope so. This also presents a bit of a dilemma for me. To partake of a river with actual fish in it - I would have to go to the VEDDER...
There's only so much bait, bubbas and mouth-breathers a guy can stomach. The good news is that the Vedder goes fly-only in May, this can be great as long as the freshet is reasonable. We may need to to have an outing on the Vedder in May (man, that is still hard to even say!). Anyway, I hope some fish show in the Skagit/Sauk or Sky for Easter week-end as I still plan on bringing the Martini Bar down! Tight lines - tyler.
04-14-2000, 11:52 AM
Oh Yeah - I can practically hear the Mouth-Breathers drooling! Hell, I must be Bubba-proofed by now - I've fished the Cowlitz (Vedder South) and the Thompson at John's Rock!
Latest report was yesterday a guide and friend floated the Sky - the water was going out from snowmelt but they still had good conditions (about 2.5' vis). Caught 1 steelhead smolt. Other boats=Same Story.
Have Black GP, Will Travel (if necessary)
04-14-2000, 11:52 AM
Easter Sunday is probably out but Saturday might be a good day for a float.
Well, I'll be there - but where is still the question. Lets keep our eyes and ears open and make a decision next week. Tight lines - tyler.
There now you guys got me drooling too! My spring fling didn't last long enough. Hope the recent pushes bring the gnarliest, brightest, knot bustin' screamers to your lines!
Hopes to chase atlantics in a river in this region were dashed (for now) by flooding and mud. The New Hampshire F&G told me they lost an angler to drowning... which is a good opportunity to mention safety.
NE steelhead voyeur,