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Tuesday, November 27, 2012

NF Nehalem Report

A few steelhead are showing on the NF Nehalem river.  Nov 26 the water flow was 46" and dropping.  Nice green tint to the water.  We hooked one crazy chrome fish that went nuts, saw 3 Bald Eagles cruising the river looking for dead salmon and enjoyed a beautiful sunny day on an amazingly beautiful river. 

Prime time is coming soon and by mid-December fishing should be full swing. 

Friday, November 23, 2012

Water Time Outfitters Newsletter- Winter Steelhead

Winter Steelhead are coming...!  Check out some new fishing tips, video, schedules and other fishing related stuff for the November newsletter from Water Time Outfitters.

Water Time Outfitters November Newsletter

Good luck on the water!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Oregon Winter Steelhead Workshops

Want to catch a winter steelhead on the Trask, Wilson, Clackamas, NF Nehalem, Neccanicum River or Eagle Creek?
These workshops are designed to get walk in fly anglers comfortable with a variety of spots and techniques that will put them into fish on the Oregon's best coastal rivers.

Here is how it works. We start at the crack of 9:00 am at a designated location near the water with coffee and donuts. We’ll review maps that will give you at least a dozen productive steelhead runs that you can drive and walk to often these are spots we personally fish. With coffee in hand we’ll discuss the maps in detail.

Then when we’ve reached proper caffeine level we’ll grab a bunch of gear and head out to fish a few spots. At this time we cover: fishing techniques, fishing strategy, fly selection and more. This is also time to talk about lines, rods and rigging. We’ll have plenty of spey rods and nearly 20 fly lines for you to try out and get a feel for different systems. We will have ½ dozen spey rods and switch rods for you to try out and different lines to try on your own rod. If you need some basic spey casting lessons there is usually time for that as well. On the smaller water river classes (NF and Neccanicum) the single hand and switch rods will be the center of attention. 

If we actually catch a fish it will be by accident. The purpose of this workshop is to give you the tools you need to find, read, and properly fish good steelhead water the actual fishing will be secondary.

Around 1pm we’ll break for a hungry man’s lunch and then head on to some more spots with steelhead water you’ll want to drool on!

Steelhead Workshop Classes offered in 2013:

January 26th  -Clackamas & Eagle Creek meets at Royal Treatment Fly shop   

January 26th - North Coast Class- Trask, Wilson, Kilches meets in Tillamook, OR
February 16th - North Coast Class - Trask, Wilson, Kilches meets in Tillamook, OR
February 23rd - Clackamas & Eagle Creek meets at Royal Treatment Fly shop
March 23 - Clackamas & Eagle Creek meets at Royal Treatment Fly shop

Need flies? Royal Treatment Fly shop has a special package of winter steelhead flies for you:
Click here to see a recommeded selection of flies for the Clackamas River.
Workshop cost is $100 including meals and is limited to 8 anglers. Spots fill fast.
Call 503-704-6449 to reserve your spot.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Snow in my chili, Oregon's Deschutes River Steelhead in November

High desert in central Oregon is great during the summer and fall but when winter weather hits you had better be ready for the cold.  It is mid-november and Water Time Outfitters has great clients like Jeff, Penni and Eric who are ready to brave the cold and mine for steelhead in the cool waters of the Deschutes River.  Steelhead in the Deschutes river are of a genetic strain that stays in freshwater a long time; their final destination is to spawn in late winter or early spring.  That means long after the prime time crowd has left the river, steelhead by the thousands swim silently in the cold waters of thebig river northbound from the Cascade mountain crested town of Bend. 

Our first days lunch was hot chili that warmed us up inside out just as snow flakes began to fall.  Snow fell softly and then moved on as the weather changed quickly.  We wondered how the night might go with precipitation in the air.  Arriving in camp with the glow of lanterns lit in the sturdy canvas tents and the crackle of a warm fire we quickly forgot we were in the wilds of the canyon in winter weather.  Heaters warmed each tent and Marty our camp preparer delivered hot chocolate chip cookies fresh out of the oven.  That night we clinked our glasses in a toast to the weather and the steelhead gods which were so generous our first day. 

Each day we worked our way down the river about 10 miles.  The runs and riffles of favored steelhead water were everywhere.  What we didn't see were other anglers.  The scenery and setting were amazing.  We even saw 2 bull elk along the river.  Golden eagles soared high above distant ridges and mallard ducks were around each soft bend in the river. 

Layering with good thermal base layers like a thin merino wool then a medium thermal with good fleece and a warm hat coupled with waders that didn't leak and all were warm and toasty even when the mercury dipped into the 30's and 40's.  Not bad by B.C. standards but still a big change from a warm and comfortable office. 

By the last day all had experienced the thrill of fighting and landing steelhead on the fly rod.  Wild and hatchery fish were caught.  Some were lost but most were landed.  A few good pics happened along the way as well. The photos along with the text from this trip. 

Even with a few snowflakes the chili was still great!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Deschutes River Steelhead Wrap- November 1

Steelhead fishing was generally good with the occasionally tough day this year on the Deschutes river.  (See photos below).  Overall, we had consistent results and found fish on almost every trip.  We had a few tough days as can be expected on a year with 10 year lows for fish returns.  All in all it was a great season and we had a blast. We caught some incredible fish made some new friends and shared an amazing river with a lot of people. 

Here is a note from one of our recent customers:

Hi Rob,
On behalf of the three of us that fished with you and your stellar team of guides, I want to thank you for what was by far the best guided fishing trip I have ever been on! We talked to a person at one of the fly shops the day before the trip who stated that the steelhead counts were at a 10 year low. I was fully expecting this trip to be the same as every other with other guides where we didn’t catch anything for the 3 days. Don’t get me wrong, it is steelhead fishing so catching one is a bonus, and to have 6 fish between the 3 of us and 10 more hookups was phenomenal!

Not only were all the guides amazing at fishing, the food and accommodations exceeded all expectations.

Please sign us up for the same time next year, 4 fisherman or maybe 6 if I can pull it together.

Lastly, send me a good mailing address for you. I want to send you a gift you may find useful on the river. It is just to say thanks again for the best fishing trip I have ever been on.

Feel free to use this as a testimonial on your site.
Steve E.

Looking forward to another great year ahead.  If you'd like to fish with us find us at:  Here are some highlight photos.





Clackamas River Steelhead & Salmon to See Big Changes

Casadero Dam on the Clackamas River- Summer 2012

The Clackamas River is fish bearing stream about to see big changes. It is near the city of Portland, Oregon and flows through communities like, Oregon City, Gladstone, Estacada, Barton and Carver among others. Spring and fall Chinook salmon, coho, winter-spring and summer Steelhead run in it's waters. Flowing off the cool slopes of the Mt. Hood the Clackamas River is a complex system with a number of power generation projects interupting it's flow. PGE operates with-in the Clackamas basin and is up for relicensing it's current project. For relicensing PGE has been tasked with some major changes to the way business is done.

Warm water temperatures are death to salmon & steelhead juveniles as well as resident trout. The Clackamas river has been exceeding the maximum temperature requirements during summer months. PGE's solutions to lowering the water temperatures are big moves that in theory will improve the health of the river system.

North Fork Dam on the Clackamas River

First, adding spawning size gravel to the system below River Mill Dam is supposed to help the water run faster and cooler. Thousands of yards of gravel are expected to be added to the river. More water will be below the riverbed surface and under and around rocks gaurding it from the sun. This also mitigates for lack of spawning size gravel moving through the river system from upriver tributarys. The dams stop this movement of important sized gravel and over the years this is having a cumulative effect. Less spawning gravel for wild fish.

Fish Trap below Casadero Dam on the Clackamas River- Spring Chinook in the water

Second, Faraday lake on the Clackamas river system is a diverted portion of the river split apart at Casadero Dam. This water historically sat in the lake and then is run through power generation exiting back into the main river channel. This is also beleived to be a culprit of warmer water temperatures in the lower river during the summer months. The current plan calls for eliminating the lake and channelizing the water to the power generation facility.

Third, new fish trap facilities are planned to be state of the art and reduce fish handling. A new facility is being built near North Fork reservior. This new facility is promised to be much better than the old facility below Casadero Dam.

Fourth, new juvenile collection traps will be placed at the top of Rivermill and North Fork dams. Funneling fish into the newly updated bypass tube that takes downstream migrating fish from above NF all the way to below Rivermill dam.

Suffice it to say there are a lot of things going on with the Clackamas river system this year (2012). We'll see how these new changes impact our wild and hatchery steelhead runs.