Sunday, August 27, 2017

It's Still Summer, Dammit!

Your Olympic Peninsula Fly Fishing Guide. 
Catch & Release, Fly Fishing Only!

Conservation Alert! 

Please take a look at this link, and  send a note to our governor, to demand that the open water salmon net-pen farms be banned from Washington Marine Waters:

Then go to this Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife link:

Have fun! But seriously, get rid of these things.  

Okay . . .

It's Still Summer, Dammit!

Closer to the Equinox

      Despite some pretty extreme heat days this summer, these late summer nights are growing ever longer and cooler.  Stepping out into the evening darkness, under the starlight, I can smell the deep scent of the cooling air and falling leaves already. Much of this is due to the recent drought that has caused some of the leaves to fall early. But it's also true that autumn is taking hold now. Without looking at the calendar you could feel it. And the fruit and vegetable crops have been way ahead all year. Some of the insect hatches here, like the termites, have been a little ahead of the normal times as well. The Autumn Equinox is less than a month away now. So even though we may get some more hot days ahead, it won't last long. That full moon, coming on the 6th of September, will set the stage for some great tides and fishing this month too. However, it is till summer, and it will be for the next month before the solstice.

 So, I am getting tired of people claiming that it is "the end of summer", the "dying days of summer", early autumn", etc. Nonsense! It's 80 frigg'n degrees out there today, and that sun will scorch your hair off! We have months of good beach fishing ahead! And we will be heading back to the rivers once the rainforest rivers perk up, with a little cool rain. This usually starts around Labor Day, with some rain at night, in the higher elevations of the Olympic Mountains, and the October Caddis hatches begin around the September solstice. Big fluffy stimulaters and Elk hair Caddis, Skaters, Steelhead Caddis. Summer Steelhead and Cutthroat Trout on dry flies. That's some good stuff.  

    Ordinarily I would be haunting the beaches from dawn to dusk at this time of year, fly fishing for the ocean-run coho that have provided me with so much good fishing for years here. We didn't get much of a season this year. And it's been a down year for the pink salmon and coho salmon again so far. But there have been enough optimistic fishing reports in other areas around the region this year to give me the impression that these fish can rebound, given time. I still feel that the closures last year helped put many more spawning coho on the redds upriver. That's a good thing. Maybe we should do that more often.

Coho on a Miyawaki Beach Popper.
This is something worth protecting.

     We can be grateful for the cooing weather ahead, as it will improve the fishing on the lakes and streams, and even on the saltchuck. Most of our rivers are still running low and warm, but this autumn cooling will help all of that too. Even so, we need those first good autumn rains to get things moving on the rivers again. Check the fishing regulations and emergency rules updates before you head to the beaches, or the coastal rivers this year, as some of the waters will close early to protect returning coho salmon. Marine Area 9 will close to all salmon fishing on September 4th., (See page 3, item #5). Trout fishing on Puget Sound is still open year-round, catch and release only. And you will find coastal cutthroat trout and summer-run steehead out here on the Olympic Peninsula rivers in the fall. 

    One of the many things that I am grateful for is our wonderful, wild sea-run coastal cutthroat trout. And autumn is prime-time for these truly tough fish.

At over 24 inches this is the biggest autumn sea-run cutthroat I have ever caught here.
But I have seen two others caught, also in the fall, that were bigger.

  The next two months of fishing here are what we look forward to all year!

The most relaxing way to fish for sea-run cutthroat.
One angler, maybe two,  Call or write for details.

Your Olympic Peninsula Fly Fishing Guide and Instructor

    I am guiding fly fishers on the Olympic Peninsula beaches, rivers and streams. We walk and wade, or row along the shorelines in the dory, fly fishing for sea-run Coastal Cutthroat trout in freshwater and saltwater, and in the rivers for Cutthroat trout and summer steelhead. This is all strictly catch and release, traditional, barbless single hook, fly fishing only. Lunch, snacks, soft beverages, and use of some equipment is included. I also offer personalized and private fly fishing and fly casting instruction for beginners through advanced casters. I would be happy to help you plan your Olympic Peninsula fly fishing adventure, for all levels of ability, beginner to expert. Public presentations, Naturalist Guide, rowboat picnics, tide pool and  river trail day trips. Please call, write or email for booking details. Now booking for April through October and beyond. 

Bob Triggs
Little Stone Flyfisher
P.O. Box 261
Port Townsend, WA

Licensed Washington State Guide 
Certified Fly Casting Instructor
Trout Unlimited Aquatic Educator Award
2006 W.S.U.Beach Watcher / Water Watcher graduate
U.S.C.G First Aid/CPR/BLS/AED/BBP/HIV Certified

Phone: 360-385-9618