Monday, March 12, 2018

It's In The Air!

Your Olympic Peninsula fly fishing guide.
Catch & release, fly fishing only!

It's Chum Baby time!
Now available at the Orvis Bellevue, WA fly shop!

Counting  Chum Salmon fry in a smolt trap. 
North Olympic Peninsula small stream.
In a good year they will count over one million.

Spring Romance!

Here's a brief video from the Coastal Cutthroat Trout Coalition
They are doing important research on our sea-run coastal cutthroat trout. The data that they have been gathering has helped us to understand more about what these trout need, and how we should be managing them for a sustainable fishery in the future. Please support them!

       We are having some stellar, spring-like weather here right now. And if I wasn't so busy being busy this week, I would be out on a beach, casting a fly, and getting a sunburn. But March has always been kind of slow for sea-runs around here. Not that you can't get a solid surprise now though.  But it will be more likely that your fishing will pay off if you head down south on the Hood Canal beaches, or to the southern half of Puget Sound, for the next few weeks. I am hearing good things about the resident coho fishing down there now too. Those areas are typically ahead of us by a few weeks, as far as trout hitting the saltchuck sooner, and chum and pink salmon fry entering the estuaries earlier. By the end of March things will be picking up closer to home. And by Mid April we will be seeing plenty of chum fry along our beaches, and the cutthroat will be close behind. And these warmer days will really help. Most of the resident coho that I have caught up here have been in May and June. They just show up, passing through here. And they will grab a trout fly and fight like hell! Fun stuff.
       On my beach walks lately I have not seen much baitfish action, but there's plenty of sea birds feeding in the currents. For the most part I see that they are eating sandlance. Not surprisingly, as these seem to be the most prevalent of forage fish here.  Ask anyone who has been fishing for salmon in the summer and fall around here, (Washington Marine Area # 9) , and you will hear stories about the sandlance spilling out of the salmon, and all over the decks, when they land them in the boats. Some of the fisheries researchers have said to me that the bait balls we see on the surface of the bay, and on Admiralty Inlet area, with fish chasing them, and birds wheeling and diving over the teeming froth, are mostly comprised of sandlance now. I like tying flatwing flies to imitate these long slim forage fish. Fished on a slow swing, they can be deadly.

      It's uncanny how quiet the beaches can seem to be, at times, with very little to indicate that there's any fish around. But comes the day when there are, overnight, millions of sculpin swarming around that the edges of the tides, bait busting all over, birds galore, and the trout are right there and crashing the bait. Those sculpin and stickleback are just about everywhere in Puget Sound. Try a Matuka fly for that. I tie them weighted and unweighted, in mottled, earthy tones of grey, black, brown and green. The trout eat them. Don't forget to tie some Muddlers too. Or you can be cheap, like me, and buy them in a plastic blister pack, at the hardware store, 2 for a buck-fifty. For some reason, the cheaper you get those flies, the better they seem to work. 

     I finally got the dory painted. I'm still tying flies. It's going to blow like hell here tonight, And there's been ice in the boat every morning. So it goes. It's not spring yet. But it's getting there. In another week or so we will be past the time of year when a deep frost can kill your garden. And there will be more bugs and other food becoming available to the fish. I hear that the Skwalas are showing up on some rivers now too. For instance, if I were interested in Yakima River trout fishing right now, and through the early spring season, (Big Stoneflies!), I would be looking at fishing with my guide friend Derek Young. He fishes all over the western states. Catch him if you can.

     We will be back on the water this spring! Just in time for the beginning of another beautiful season of wild sea run Coastal Cutthroat trout fly fishing on the saltwaters and rivers of the Olympic Peninsula, Hood Canal and Puget Sound. Drop me a note or give me a call for details. All trips, casting instruction sessions, public and fly fishing club presentations, and rowboat picnics, must be booked in advance.

Your Olympic Peninsula Fly Fishing Guide and Instructor

      I  guide fly fishers on the Olympic Peninsula beaches, rivers and streams. We walk and wade, fly fishing for sea-run Coastal Cutthroat trout in freshwater and saltwater, and in the rivers for trout and summer  run steelhead. This is strictly catch and release, traditional 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.  I would be happy to help you plan your Olympic Peninsula fly fishing adventures, for beginners through expert anglers. 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! 

This is the way to go fly fishing for sea-run Cutthroat!
SSShhh!!!  Listen to the quiet . . .
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
W.S.U. Water Watchers and Beach Watchers Graduate
U.S.C.G First Aid/CPR/BLS/AED/BBP/HIV Certified

Phone: 360-385-9618