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Kalama River

Thursday, September 3, 10:26 p.m. PDT


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What to Expect in September

How to use this section.

Large numbers of coho can be expected to enter the Kalama in September, the bulk of them after the third week of the month. Look for water that has some flow, but is moving slower than steelhead water. Cast down-and-across, but retrieve the fly at the end of its swing. Coho are chasers and can follow your fly right to the rod tip, so don't quit your retrieve too soon.

Beginning September 1, the stretch of water below the first hatchery becomes fly-only (the "Beginner's Hole"). A popular coho fly on this river is Bumblebee. It's like a traditional steelhead fly with a body made from olive and black chenille. Some anglers swing a purple Egg Sucking Leech through the pools, but if you're snagging fish you should put on a floating line and a lighter fly.

The coho hot spots can be crowded, so get there early in the day (like, pre-dawn). If you find yourself surrounded by leaping, rolling coho, move on. They rarely bite when they're acting like that. Most of the coho action is in the lower five miles.

If you're looking for steelhead, tie on a size 6 or 8 black Woolly Worm with a red tail or an After Dinner Mint. The Kalama has a high south bank, so the river is shaded much of the day and fishing is not restricted to just the early morning and evening hours.

For more on September tactics and flies, see the Rivers in General forecast

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Other Info Sources

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The Greased Line Fly Shoppe 360-573-9383

Recent News Articles

Public Meeting on Kalama, Washougal. July 29, 2015

Public Meeting on Kalama River Steelhead. June 19, 2015

Chinook Limit Increased on Kalama. May 19, 2015

Guide to Fishing Spots in Lane County. March 21, 2015

200,000 Kalama Coho Fry Die. March 21, 2015

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