Neah Bay Last Weekend
I was going through big time coho withdrawel. Had kind of sworn off Neah Bay after 14 days over 6 weeks last year with practically no salmon. But then I started getting antsy. Hadn't fished since Sheridan Lake a month and a half ago. Time to go fishing even if it was tough again.
Started on Friday morning with no real plan and no place to stay. The Airstream was still up on the Sauk and both The Cape and Tyee had no vacancies. The Whaler was up at the farm but had been run a couple of weeks ago so should be ok. Beach reports were good so we could go there. What to do, what to do?
Loaded beach rods and ocean rods, whaders and boots, little flys and big flys, sleeping bag and pad. So I picked up Harry and the Whaler and off we went. Reminded me of the old Paint Your Waggon song "Where am I going? I don't know. When will I get there? I'm not certain. All that I know is I am on my way".
The drive was the same with beautiful trees and empty beaches to remind you of what a great place we live in. Great conversation with an old friend.
We passed up a vacant motel room in Clallam Bay which was probably stupid as the next empty room was probably in Forks. But we got lucky. Got to the Cape and Gordy and Sheri had a room for Saturday night so we only would have to drive to Forks or sleep cold one night. They had turned away about 30 people before us. Then the impossible, somebody checked out a day early. We were set.
Went over to visit Coy and Janice around their campfire and got a bit of a report. (do miss Topwater, sorry you are gone Chris) Umitilla Reef and Swiftsure both were holding fish. Nothing much in close that they knew of. (we saw a few birds and the remnants of a ball-up just off Wadda yesterday but that was it for the whole weekend)
So the next morning we make the 1.5 hour run to Umitilla. Good water though so not a bad trip. Fish were around the 240 foot line so ran out a long way. We don't use sounders so not sure how deep we were when we started to see a little activity. Not much, just a bait fish now and again. Stopped and had a few casts and each got a follow. Changed to a fucia colored fly and started to catch. Big northern coho with kypes on the males. Not huge but 9/10 pounds and hot. Reminded me of the old Sitka days. Fish were spread out with no significant bird activity. One here, one there. So we scratched out a reasonable day with 8 to 10 to hand each. We only had 2 double headers. 3 hatchery fish went for a boat ride. Life is good.
Sunday is rock fish day in less than 20 fathoms by regulation. Got plenty in beautiful conditions. Had to take off jackets and sweats because it was too hot. Got checked by Fish and Game twice. Good to see the enforcement.
So now the boat is on station and the Airstream should arrive on Thursday.
Come on out. The fish are big. Trout Bum