The bias for big river fly fishing continues alive and well.
Exactly why were Washington fly anglers disappointed when the Hoko was deemed fly only water instead of the Hoh? The Hoko is poor water for swinging flies, period. No amount of angler effort or attitude will change the relative merits of the Hoh vs Hoko as swinging rivers.
If you want to swing flies, then buy the airplane ticket out west... and target big rivers with wild fish. Avoid the Hoko and its small stream brethren. For that matter, avoid your own local small rivers. Stay home. If PNW fishes who prefer to swing flies avoid the Hoko, then it only stands to reason that you should avoid your local rivers for their same shortcomings. Besides, none of us "fly fish" those small rivers anyway, we just tie our intruders a little light and put the weight on the line instead.
exhibit A: cheek. insert tounge here.
I'll take a nice summer day at home to practice casting anytime over the option of frozen death in upstate NY. As one who fished the upstate NY rivers for 6 years, yet avoided the Salmon River with a passion, I understand your dilemma. But for me, crowds are/were the issue, not spatially dispersed Intruders.