Central and Eastern Oregon Fishing Reports
From avid fisherman Tim Moran
Tim is elk hunting this week so check here’s his report from last week, which certainly has plenty of application for this week too:
Crane Prairie – Fishing Crane (or any of the cascade lakes for that matter) will be challenging in the forecast weather conditions. A mix of rain and snow and wind is on the menu. If you do brave those conditions wind drifting leech patterns or throwing small spinners and spoons will be your best bet.
East Lake – This might be your last chance to fish East and Paulina. There were good reports from both last weekend but the weather was perfect. This weekend – not so much. Balanced leeches, prince nymphs and buggers are taking fish sub-surface. Wind drifting leech patterns and nymphs on an intermediate sink tip is a great way to take fish in the wind. As bad as the weather might be – I have had good success fishing during snow flurries.
Lower Deschutes River – If I was going to fish anywhere this weekend I’d fish the “D”. With temps stabilizing on the mountain there isn’t anymore silt/mud being puked into the river by the White River so water clarity is good. The cooler and cloudy weather is perfect for swinging flies and hardware. Keep your flies and lures on the smaller side in the clear water and muted colors will work better too. More Steelhead are showing in the river between Maupin and Trout Creek so the fish are spread out. Guided clients are getting into 3 and 4 fish days. Trout fishing has been very good too. A 28″ red side was caught in the river below Warm Springs last week. It was a beautiful fish. Rainbows and a few browns are taking nymphs and at times the hatch will breakout on these rainy days and the fish will immediately key in on BWO’s or PMD’s. Look for hatches in the eddies and behind large rocks. This is also a great time to swing streamers for big trout.
John Day River – Bass fishing is pretty much over for the year as the bass get dormant when the river temps fall. Steelhead are in the river now but not yet in fishable numbers but that hopefully will change quickly. The last two years the fishing has been spotty at best but this can be a great fall and winter fishery.
Metolius River – The Met is fishing well and weather doesn’t really affect the river too much unless its cataclysmic. October Caddis, mahogany duns and BWO’s are coming off right now and you can fish the rusty spinner fall in the early evening when it occurs. The fish seem to like the caddis pupa more than the adult most times so fish that and another small nymph behind it. Small egg patterns can be highly effective too with spawning Kokanee in the river. There are big Bull Trout up from the lake following the Kokanee spawn as well so swing big gaudy streamers on sink tips to entice those brutes. Check in with Jeff at the Fly Fishers Place in Sisters for up to the minute river info, a guided trip or pick up the best flies and techniques for your trip. There is also a generous supply of flies at the Camp Sherman Store.
Fall River – Fall fishes well in the late fall and it’s a little easier when there is a little chop on the water so this could be a great weekend to hit it. Fish small nymphs either Euro style or under a small yarn indicator. Don’t be afraid to work the deeper holes and cut banks with a wooly-bugger or streamer for oversize Browns.
Crooked River – As long as the river levels are consistent this river will fish well. I love to fish small dry’s and droppers here but if the weather is bad a straight two nymph set up will catch a lot of fish. I’ll be incommunicado next week as I’ll be up in the Hell’s Canyon area chasing elk and maybe some steelhead! Good luck everyone!
Steelhead are spread out in the lower Deschutes as far upriver as South Junction. Fishing should pick up soon in the North Junction, South Junction and Warm Springs areas.
Fall can be some of the best trout fishing of the year in the area’s lakes and reservoirs. The cooler temperatures have sent most of the crowds home, and put trout on the bite as they feed aggressively to prepare for winter.
This is your last weekend to fish Odell, Crane Prairie and Wickiup before they close to fishing Oct. 31.
Umatilla River Coho made a strong push this past week with over 750 adults returning to Three Mile Dam.
Steelhead are starting to move into the John Day River.
A good bet for river redbands is the Chewaucan, which is a great fall fishery.
Campbell, Cottonwood Meadows and Deadhorse lakes are good choices for some great fall trout fishing.
Best bet in the Klamath Basin is to target brook trout in the upper areas of the Sprague, Williamson or Sycan.
Recent sampling at Fish Lake (Wallowa Mountains) showed there are good numbers of both stocked rainbow and naturally-produced brook trout. Combine with cooler fall temperatures and fishing should be great.