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Doublespey 04-18-2000 01:18 PM

Remaining Optimistic
I was sitting in front of the computer looking at the Skykomish guage (it was blown at the time)this last weekend and getting a little bummed about the rotten returns of steelhead to our Puget Sound rivers. Then I remembered several recent years when run timings have also been "off" but the steelhead did eventually show.

Last year the hatchery steelhead in the Puget Sound rivers didn't show in December and January. Everyone had given up when they finally made their appearance in mid/late February. The guys that were on the water had great fishing and almost no competition.

Last summer's fish also had a "down" year, but if you hung on the fishing in late October and early November was great!

I checked the Olympic Peninsula sources for current reports and found that bright native fish are continuing to show up in all the rivers in numbers not usually associated with April.

So hang in there - I'm not making any guarantees, but am hopeful that the last few weeks will give up some of the best fishing of the Spring C&R season on the Sky, Skagit and Sauk.

See you out there!

Brian / Doublespey

andre 04-20-2000 05:19 PM

RE:Remaining Optimistic

Talk about a group of optimists, the term is synomous with Steelheader. What other breed of individual (other than a love struck teen) is willing endure the highs and lows that we experience throughout the season. With many of us as our affections and needs to hunt mercuric bullets grows it is simultaneously, softened by "adult obligation" of growing children.

Each day I get reports of success and future attempts to tame a steelhead even if for just a brief moment, we all share these successes and failures. The Long Distance Release of the once in a life time fish, feeling that viscous strike, reel handles that rap against your knuckles, the endo leaps where your heart ends up I your throat, and finally that indescribable feeling when you've released a hard fighting wild fish. We have all been there and relive those experiences thru stories and reports. Are these the qualities that keep us coming back for more? Is it the friendships that span nations and the ages? Are we truly that competitive? Why are we steelheaders? Surely it has nothing to do with the spending of money on trips and gear because most are more than willing to replace paper with graphite, forged aluminum, or gucci plastic string.

What keeps you coming back, is it simpy because we are optimistic?

I recall reading about a steelhead bum's ex-wife said after their divorce that being married to a steelheader was worse than being married to her first husband who was an alcoholic.

andre 04-20-2000 05:21 PM

RE:Remaining Optimistic
PS. Did I mention that the Sandy has been picking up?

andre 04-20-2000 05:21 PM

RE:Remaining Optimistic
PS. Did I mention that the Sandy has been picking up?

andre 04-20-2000 05:21 PM

RE:Remaining Optimistic
PS. Did I mention that the Sandy has been picking up?

Doublespey 04-20-2000 06:38 PM

RE:Remaining Optimistic
Yeah, that was Ed's (your illustrious Skagit guide) if I remember correctly. And with luck like yours it's easy to remain an Optimist! I'm gonna get you a T-Shirt with I LOVE BEN HOWARD printed on the back and a pic of a big bright steelie on the front!

And yeah, thanks for the Sandy report. =8^o

I just got the pics back from our epic float and am remembering the majestic jungle-like canopy of trees over the Sandy and some of the great water we fished that day. Gotta do it again soon!

andre 04-20-2000 06:58 PM

RE:Remaining Optimistic
Check out the April pics at

I also got a report that the Oregon coastal rivers have been kicking fish out


juro 04-21-2000 07:18 AM

RE:Remaining Optimistic
WOW - those are some mint steelies. Must be close to tidewater. Good to hear some runs are doing well. Almost time to hit the East Fk Lewis for equally bright summer runs Columbia-sized!

I hope the void in Puget streams is due to a late season...

andre 04-21-2000 10:12 AM

RE:Remaining Optimistic
East fork reopened on Sunday, I've have a report of a fly angler with 1 kelt and 1 chromer. Who knows maybe i can pac it soon.

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