Tuesday, November 2, 2010

G4 Boots with Stream Tread Soles? Plus a short report ;-)

I have been fishing the g4's with Stream Tread soles since mid July. I have tried every form of bolt on cleats and all were inadequate. There is definitely a difference between a review from someones guiding experience versus actually fishing in something, this is an actual fishing review. Last week I was in Jack Hagan's shop (Northwest Flyfishing Outfitters) complaining and volunteering them to his rental fleet. Jack swore up and down that if I put the AlumiBite Star Cleats in I wouldn't miss felt ever again.

So my field test included the lower 15 miles of the Deschutes Monday with flows just under 6000 CFS and near zero visibility. I waded the toughest stuff the river has to offer and finished on the east side of wagon blast. For those of you that fish the lower lower you know this is the worst wade on the river and maybe anywhere. I have to say I was impressed. I tried to fish this exact water the week before with a combination of hard bite stars and cleats. It was a disaster and I honestly pulled out and did not fish while my partners in crime put on a clinic.

So my vote is YEA, with the AlumiBites I might even say they are better than felt with studs if set up with two pucks of cleats. NAY with every other form of cleats (I have tried them all).

On a plus side, the rubber shouldn't delam like the felt is famous for. The aluminum is soft so I imagine at some point the cleats will need to be replaced. All in all I highly recommend the G4's with the cleats...for whatever that's worth.

Oh...the fishing was radical.  I spent the day with Matt McCrary, also from Northwest Flyfishing Outfitters.  All told we hoooked 10 landed 5.  3 of the five were big boy bad ass fish.  Here is a picture of Matt with the biggest fish my guess is 35 or 36 inched.  The bottom fish was the brightest fish and an absolute hotrod.  Love the lower lower in late season.

Sam Sickles
C(541) 400-9602

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Deschutes Steelhead Report

The phone hasn't rung in a while so I decided to hit the lower lower with a couple buds of mine who are some serious Steelheaders.  Friday there were two of us and five of them from 1:PM to 5:PM.  Saturday there were three of us and six of them.  Sunday was an O 4 2 kinda morning with a massive storm from that left us having a bar B Q under the trees.  By the time we left on Sunday we were the only humans on the entire river.  So basically Friday was on fire, Saturday a front moved in and slowed things down, Sunday we got blown off the river. 13 fish in two and a half days isn't too shabby

I'm just going to post the three big 'uns.  Some serious slabs all caught inside the 4 mile mark. Two out of three came on dry lines.  I love late October;-)

Expect the river to fish well under 6000 cfs.  If the levels stays right expect bruisers like this for the next month.  See you out there.


Friday, October 15, 2010

Deschutes River Steelhead Report

This season has been a challenging one to say the least. Warm water temps effected fishing early, fluctuating water levels have been an issue of late. The White River has been doing it's thing on the lower river. The numbers of fish seem about average, but the river has been busy. More anglers and less fish than last year, coupled with the adverse conditions mentioned above and you get the picture.

With that being said we have had some good days, and the river is starting to thin out with the start of hunting season. The irrigation canals are turned off on the 15th and the river will be higher, but more stable from here on out. Look for the upper river (Warm Springs-Maupin) to fish well into November. The lower river clears out this time of year and this when we can expect a push of B-Run fish (12-15lb. steelhead bound for Idaho!) to turn into the river. If you are after the steelhead of a lifetime this is the time to be on the lower river! From Warm Springs to Trout Creek the reservation side is open until the end of the month. We traditionally experience some of our best fishing of the season on this stretch during the last two weeks of the month.

The season is drawing to a close but we still have some availability for lower river jet boat trips and upper river drift boat floats. If you haven't gotten your fill yet give us a call. I predict some of the best fishing of the season is going to be had in the next couple of weeks!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Deschutes Steelhead Report

Long time no see...no excuses!

Steelheading on the Deschutes in 2010 is a completely different animal than it was in 2009.  What we lack in numbers this year is more than made up for with 30" inch natives with shoulders that don't quit.  Over the last ten days I have spent on the river I have seen more 10 pounders than I saw all last year.  We released a half dozen legitimate 12 pounders and two fish in the fifteen pound range.  Sure, we are not having 40 fish days but we are seeing steady fishing with multiple opportunity to swing fish daily.  Water temps have remained in the mid sixties despite the cool weather fronts that have moved in and out of the CRG (Columbia River Gorge).  It's almost like summer came and went without notice.  Fall tactics should be in full effect.  Dry lines, drab patterns, skaters...oh yeah, and if that doesn't work go big and ugly, and don't delay.  Dry line fishing has been tough this year.  Grabs are soft and lack luster.  As the temps drop back into the mid fifties in the next 30 days expect the return of the freight train takes.

Labor day has passed which means fishing pressure will even out from Warm Springs to the mouth.  We are currently booked in September for sled trips and have some availability for drift boat trips. October is going to be return of the "Killer B's", if you are interested in fishing with us this fall don't wait, we will be booked out by mid September.

Hope everyone has had a great couple of months, the best is yet to come.

Tight lines,


Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Deschutes Steelhead Report 8-4-2010

Fishing is good early and late.  Water temps are unreasonably high due to PGE's Round Butte experiment.  Fish are spread from Buckhollow to Heritage, by my count 82% natives.  The 82% comes from the last seven days I have been on the river.  The fish pictured above is cookie cutter of the natives we have been landing 28-31" and full of piss and vinegar.  Please make sure you pressure these fish and release them as soon as possible.  Carry a net as this quickens the landing process significantly.  If the bite is not on get down and dirty immediately, do not dilly dally trying to move fish to a dry line fly.  With temps in the mid to high 60's these fish need a presentation in their wheelhouse.  Good luck and we will see you down there.


Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Deschutes Steelhead Report

Fishing has been tough due to water temps.  We hit 13 on our last trip thanks to the steelhead slayer pictured left.  The summer heat is in the canyon, mornings fish best but fish can be found all day if you know where to look.  To date fish have been landed well above the carnival runs on the lower river.  We look for fishing to improve dramatically as the river is artificially cooled at round butte.  Sled days are pretty much booked up through the second week in August but fishing should be good out on the day stretch from Pine Tree to Macks Canyon.  Call us for available drift boat trips.



Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Deschutes Steelhead Report

Every year we float Macks Canyon to Heritage on the 4th of July with close friends.  About every other year we hit chrome.  Ordinarily I expect to catch Steelhead.  This day was different.  We show up at Mack's to an empty campground and parking lot.  On the 20 mile drive down the lower access road we saw one drift boat and only a few campers.  It was 90 degrees in the canyon and the sun was high in the sky.  We are late and our friends John and Michelle have put on ahead of us.  No big deal I can guess where his boat is parked, probably on one of the most productive pieces of steelhead water on planet earth.  Pretty good guess, we didn't have to float long to find our friends.  I gave John some trouble for his errant casting which showed the lay-off for trout fishing since late April.  A couple hundred feet down the run I notice that John is wading pretty deep, the river must still be up a bit and this is an ugly wade.  The run comes to a standard uneventful July ending so we move on.  At this point we have already settled into racing down to wagonblast or some other piece of carnival water.  The next run down gives up fish, but rarely.  John decided to stay in the boat with his dry line so I head up with my faithful friend RB Meiser.  As I reach my destination I notice John coming up, apparently he can't stand the idea on not getting his ass kicked in July.  Dry lines first...three casts in and John is well into his backing with a fish breaking water down and clear across the river...this fish COULD GO ALL THE WAY!.  Luckily this fish was worked back to the pool where he was measured, photoed and released.

July is my favorite month of the year to fish.  The crowds are light, the weather is fantastic, and every run and camp is available.  We are now booking Summer Steelhead on the lower 24 miles of the Deschutes River.  We hope you can join us this year.  Please call 541-647-2584 to book a trip or check us out www.riverborneoutfitters.com.



Saturday, July 3, 2010

Deschutes River Fly Fishing Report


The Deschutes Caddis hatch is slow to come on with all the intermittent weather. The peak of the Caddis hatch is still to come when summer finally arrives here in Central Oregon. Fish are still looking up though, fish the grassy banks with some cobble, micro eddies, back eddies, and anywhere you find shade. Just because you aren't seeing rising fish, doesn't mean you can't catch them up top. Find the right water and you will have success. Nymphing can be productive, though there are still fish spawning or that are post spawn and are easy targets for nymph fisherman. So when in doubt dry fly fish!

Monday, May 31, 2010

TC-HF      5/28-5/30/10

Fishing is hot, when the weather heats up. Things slow down with the cooler days. Plenty of big bugs still as far down as Maupin. We had good success on the cooler days by pitching big bugs around known lies, also found some fish during some intermittent Drake and PMD hatches.

A boat went down this weekend in Whitehorse (not ours thank god) Everyone was okay. As of now the boat is still in the rapid, somewhere down low around House Rock. If you find some river booty below there shoot me a P.M. and I can point you in the direction of the likely owner.

Take care, tight lines, and most of all...
be safe out there on the river!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Deschutes River Fly Fishing Report May 23, 2010

Short and sweet, been a long weekend.  Fishing is great but it's not easy.  Conditions are tough, wet, cold, and windy.  Bring some PMD, BWO, Caddis emergers, variety pack of 16 bead heads, the world famous posse bugger....and oh yeah, some Stones, Norm Wood Special should do.

Look for water that is hard if not impossible to fish and you will find many players.  That is not to say that there aren't some fish to lift out of the popular runs, but if you want to fish the players find some rip rap, boulders, and beyond your comfort zone wading.

The Salmon Fly hatch has the brakes on until this front moves through and the temps come back up.  That is not to say you won't find some players but it is to say the fish are not stupid at this point.  Fish hard and often because you never know when the big day or week will be...my guess Memorial Weekend and the week after.

Posted some pictures here.

Have a great week.


Saturday, May 15, 2010

Deschutes River Fly Fishing Report May 15, 2010

Well it's official, big bugs are showing from Penton Dam to the Falls.  Fishing has been strong for the last week with most of the action coming subsurface.  Fish are not keying on the big bugs just yet.  Dry fly fishing will become more and more productive as the hatch progresses.  When the Hatch progresses so does the angler pressure.  Fishing from a driftboat is the best way to access the Deschutes.  If you have time we recommend three days from Warm Springs to Maupin.  It is not uncommon to raise dozens of fish a day on drys when the fish get keyed in.  If you don't have time choose the day floats from Warm Springs to Trout Creek or Nena to Harpham flats.  As everyone heads to Warm Springs remember there is no better access on foot or by vehicle than the Maupin area, and the fishing is second to none.

Carry some big foam bodied salmonflies and goldens.  When nymphing use a big stonefly and size 14-18 beadhead as a dropper.  Most beadhead patterns in the 14-16 size range will bring fish to hand, with mayfly patterns being the most productive.

The weather is great this weekend so enjoy.



Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Deschutes River Fly Fishing Report -5/3/10

The Deschutes 2010 Season has officially begone. The section of river bordering Warm Springs Reservation opened up to fishing April, 24th. Though sections of the Deschutes are open year round the April opening date signals the beginning of the season for many. We are currently experiencing our spring high water period. The watermasters need to make room in the reservoirs for the snow melt, they release water into the Deschutes and Crooked Rivers to do so. One benefit of dam released events versus traditional run off is that you will usually have good water clarity. Fishing in high water is entirely possible, and potentially productive.  Focus in on slower water and seams where fish can escape the heavy flows. Fish fairly long leaders and use split shot. Traditional stone fly nymphs and small droppers work well. Some erratic dry fly hatches can come off this time of year. Look for March Browns, Mahogany Duns,  BWO's, and Caddis to be present.

Redside Trout and Steelhead are Spawning in the River Right Now! Stay off of the gravel beds, don't drop anchor in areas you suspect spawning activity. There are also a lot of steelhead smolts in the river. If you are catching  fin clipped fish they are smolts. Very your tactics and the type of water you fish if you are finding them on a regular basis!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Deschutes and Crooked River Fly Fishing Reports

Spring has sprung here in Central Oregon. Look for fishing to improve dramatically with the arrival of warmer weather.

Currently, the Crooked River is blown out as a result of annual water releases out of Prineville Resevoir. Look for fishing to be great once the water levels come down below 3oo cfs ideally. In May the Mothers Day Caddis start to show and this prolific hatch makes for some great dry fly action. A size 16 Brown Elk Hair Caddis will do the trick. Try using hi viz patterns to help be able to see your fly in a sea of naturals and foam bubbles.

The Deschutes River doesn't open up entirely until April 24th. Look for fishing to be good early nymphing stoneflys and micro may droppers, PTs, and/or HaresEars. Water temps are on the warmer side at this time, possibly a result of the new fish passage tower on Billy Chinook. The stonefly hatch might be a little early this year!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Winter Steelhead Report February 9, 2010

Fishing conditions are tough.  The rivers are low and clear.  Tactics remain the same, cover a lot of water, swing everything, and find fish in transition.  We continue to scratch out dime bright fish.  This fish came at the bottom of a tailout in 24" of gin clear water.
We have been jumping some fish in really skinny water moving up river despite the lack of rain.  For those waiting on the next big push of water to get after it...you may be in for a long wait.  Weather forecasts are not good but you know how that goes.

See you on the river;-)


Monday, January 25, 2010

Winter Steelhead

Hi All!  Fishing has been good locally and semi-locally.  Timing has been great and the fishing gods have blessed us on all but one outing. The last two weeks have been solid and we have been performing the wood shampoo.  Swinging the Sandy and nymphing the Hood have been productive.  Look for fishing to improve over the next couple of months.  Traditionally we like to fish the drop...that said we have been fishing the river on the rise with great results.  With the higher water don't overlook the areas normally too low to swing.  Type 11 to 8 have been go too tips with lighter more sparsely tied maribou spiders.  We have some limited opening over the next couple of months.  Look forward to seeing you out there.


Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Winter Steelhead

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The chill in the air, a freezing east wind, breaking ice off your guides after every cast, everybody and their dog out trying to catch a fish. There is nothing like chasing winter chrome.  That's been winter fishing late December through the first week in January.  With the last push of water and air temperatures hovering around 40 degrees the fishing has really turned on.  I have been fishing non stop since Chrstmas in my local haunts and it's been poor to very good.  In my 20 years of chasing winter steel I have never seen so many early natives.  I turned back a 15 pound buck last week, and as of Sunday I have seen many fish.  I hope this trend continues.

Most of my winter fishing is local but I know of a couple guys that have been putting the crush on them on the coast.  My openings are limited this year, and as always the river condition is critical as well as fragile, but hey, so far so good.  I look forward to hearing from you this season for winter steel or to talk about Trout and Steelhead trips in the spring.