Winter fly fishers on the Deschutes are taking a few redsides and whitefish on nymphs but overall it’s slow. They report a far greater number of suckers in the river than usual.
Lake Billy Chinook has really been cranking out the kokanee over the last few weeks. One troller recommended practicing catch and release to prevent your fishing day from ending almost before it begins with everyone in the boat limited out. Many are just fishing with a few ounces of lead but no downrigger. A hoochie tipped with corn is trailed behind a flasher and the kokes have gone nuts for it. Orange has been the hot color for hoochies here. Bull trout available here as well although not so easy to catch as kokanee. Trolling slim, silvery plugs such as Rapala which resemble kokes will draw their interest at times as will J-plugs, Lyman Lures and herring. If this sounds like your cup of iced tea, see Random Links for LBC bull trout insight!
While kokanee fishing has been hit or miss for trollers at Odell Lake, those who find schools have been doing well. In addition to kokanee at this toe of year, there are large Lake Trout (Mackinaw) dwelling in the depths at Odell. Some dandies have been taken this week by the boats set up for deep trolling with downriggers.
Green Peter Reservoir has been very slow for kokanee trollers recently. In addition, the kokes have been running so small that an eight incher would be the lunker of the day. We’d advise holding off til March or even April for better results and hope these fish hit a growth spurt.