Salmon Flies on the Deschutes
Fished last week on central Oregon's Deschutes River for "Redsides", the local strain of rainbow. Late May/June is generally regarded as prime time on this river, since this is the peak of the salmon fly hatch.
As most may be aware, Oregon is experiencing a drought this spring, and consequently, the Deschutes is as low as I've seen it in years.
This didn't interfere with the fishing or boating in the least, but seems to have accelerated the season a bit. Late May is usually early in the hatch, but this year, once we got below North Junction, the numbers of salmon flies declined dramatically, and by the time we reached Dant it was pretty much over. We found good hatches of caddis coming off in the evening and fish we starting to collect in the eddies, so things are really advanced time-wise compared to the last several years.
For those thinking of going to the river, there are still abundant flies and good surface action in the Warm Springs to Trout Creek stretch. From Trout Creek down to Whitehorse and North Junction, things are falling off a bit. Below Dant, use July techniques (fish the eddies with small flies).
Nymph fishing is reliable and productive in the mornings. Soft hackles should start producing well as the caddis hatches build.