Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Adipose Spring 2010

The Wild Steelhead Coalition's Spring 2010 Adipose Newsletter is out. Please take the time a read the newsletter. It covers several topics including the Steelhead Summit that took place in March, the IHN virus that has hit steelhead hard in Columbia and Snake river tributaries and now the Olympic Peninsula, Patagonia's Partnership with the WSC and the project of developing an accurate historical baseline of Columbia River Basin steelhead and salmon. The future of our native fish are in our hands.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Yummy Chummies

I always wondered what happened to all those chum salmon in Alaska after their eggs were stripped from them for the Japanese sushi market. I figured they went to the harbor seals, sea lions and high priced supermarkets that fool yuppies into thinking they are getting a bargain on Alaskan Salmon by not mentioning they are chum or even Keta. Hell its good to see my lab Sage get a chance at Omega 3 oils, high-quality protein, vitamins A, D, B6 and B2, as well as niacin, riboflavin, calcium, iron, zinc, magnesium and phosphorus. And I'm sure it is better then the dysentery she would get from eating them on the streamside, though I am not certain about how much. But in all seriousness, it is going to be a little more nutritious to the horse face and pig snot treats we get in bulk at the grocery store. And for Allah's sake, without a doubt, it's got to be better then the shit my dog has been eating in my backyard. Ew..................

I need to go fishing because I am writing about this crap..............

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Sea Lion Versus Salmon

I drive over I5 every morning coming back from work and not only wonder if them boys fishing the bathtub are catching but also if any of them are loosing there fish to Sea Lions. It happens all the time, but I have only seen it happen in person while fishing in Sitka, Ak. We lost about a half dozen fish one evening just outside town a couple years ago. I wish we got video like this one. Too bad they think it was a Polar Bear.

Monday, April 12, 2010

North Umpqua

For those of you that are interested in the rich history of Oregon's fabled North Umpqua River and what is going on with this fishery, you need to check North Umpqua Fly Guide. Here local guide Mark Stangeland, one of only ten guides who guides the fly fishing only section of this Oregon gem discusses this river and the history that has made it so special in the heart of all steelheaders. Legends like Frank Moore, Major Mott, Zane Grey and Jack Hemingway called this river home and helped to make this a world renowned fly fishing destination. Looking forward to skating a fly on this river this summer, this site is the perfect way to get mentally prepped for the months to come.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Another Victory for the Hoh River

Once again the Hoh River Trust has succeeded in acquiring 7,000 acres of land along the Hoh River just downstream of Washington's Olympic National Park. The Hoh River Trust is an organization that was formed by the efforts of both the Western Rivers Conservancy and the Wild Salmon Center (non-profit groups based out of Portland, Oregon), and was financed by a combination of federal, state and private money. Based out of Seattle, Washington the Hoh River Trust's objective is to conserve, restore, and enhance these lands in the Hoh River watershed for the benefit of fish, wildlife, and people. With this purchase, there is increased protection of vital habitat downstream of the Olympic National Park for anadromous fish, and gaps are now being filled between it and the Pacific Ocean. Now the healing process can occur from decades of industrial timber harvest along this mighty river. Read more courtesy of the Seattle Times.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Annual Met Trip

About this time of year for the last several years I take a step away from steelhead and head to one of my old stomping grounds on Oregon's Metolius River. Back in the day I would spend a considerable amount of my fishing time beating my head against the ponderosa pines on the banks of this river looking for its elusive redband, brown and bull trout. The crystal clear spring fed waters, amazing bug hatches, hard fighting fish and sometimes behemoth bulls kept me coming back. To this day when someone asks me where I fish I always say the Met, though over the years I seem find myself going there less and less. Yet every Spring I make at least one trip to this river in hopes of renewing my faith in trout fishing.

Though I can't seem to get the pull of a steelhead off my mind the thought of one of those mid-teen bull trout on the end of my six weight is usually enough get my mind off steelhead for at least a couple days. I didn't find one of those huge green demons, but what I did find was the beautiful river I used to fish devoid of other fishermen as well as a few scrappy fish that wanted to play. I guess the cold 26 degrees and snow were keeping the yuppies on the slopes of Mt Hood and Mt Bachelor instead of on the river.

Keith Darnall about to release his first Metolius Bull Trout.

The Metolius River is located about 120 miles Southeast of Salem and 15 miles north of Sisters, Oregon. The spring fed waters originating from an underground aquifer East of Round Butte, Oregon. This spring feeds the river before going through series of gorges where other smaller tributaries meet and ending in the western end of the Lake Billy Chinook. This river contains several species of fish, redband and brown trout, two species of char, brook and bull trout as well as mountain whitefish. Though both brook and brown trout are not native to this system, they can be found from residualized hatchery planting in the past. In the fall you will also find a migration of kokanee (landlocked sockeye salmon) that move up from Lake Billy Chinook to spawn.

The name Metolius is a Warm Springs Indian name for stinking fish, named for the smell of carcasses from dead sockeye and king salmon found on its banks after spawning in the fall and winter. With luck and the new ladders put in both Round Butte and Pelton Dam downstream on the Deschutes River there is hopes of bringing these fish back to this upper watershed. Read more about this project here and on Oregon Live.

This is by far one of the most beautiful rivers I have ever fished and a river worthy to visit if only for hiking and camping purposes. Fishing is just a bonus, but do not expect to catch much. These fish see everything and their reputation for being difficult to catch holds up for those who do not fish it regularly.

Chrome Tails

Calvin Fuller with a tidewater Dean River Steelhead.

Tucked away in the Northern Idaho's panhandle is a rich and vibrant growing community of Sandpoint. Sandpoint, located on the banks of Lake Pend Oreille is in the heart of a rich hunting and fishing community. Surrounded by lush forest and healthy lakes, the opportunities for the outdoorsman are vast. World record Gerrard Rainbow and Lake Trout and an array of warmwater species inhabit the local lakes while the local creeks hold Westslope Cutthroat, Bull Trout and Rainbow Trout. Its location is also key being close to neighboring systems like the Clark Fork, Kootenai and Cour De Alene. Hunting opportunities include elk, moose, woodland caribou, mule and white-tailed deer, cougar, black bear and bighorn sheep. Sounds like fun don't it?

Calvin Fuller and Tom Anderson owns and operates Sandpoint Outfitters in Ponderay. They offer both fly tying and fishing classes and can keep you up to date on the local fishing and hunting opportunities in the area. Keep them in mind when you are in Northern Idaho.

Calvin recently entered the blogging world with Chrome Tails. Chrome Tails will allow you to follow him, friends and family as they travel the world in pursuit of its fish and game in exotic and beautiful locations. I am still envious of his Sustut trip he took years ago with his father Jim, not to mention their recent trip to Tierra Del Fuego. These guys really know how to live right and their travels are a worthy read indeed.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Happy Easter

Tis a shame the sacrifice made by our small bunny friends in the name of fly fishing. In the honor of their divine sacrifice I will celebrate Easter by swinging and dead drifting them in the cold clear waters of Central Oregon. Happy Easter everyone!