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Delayed Report: Spring Break Road Trip

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  • Delayed Report: Spring Break Road Trip

    Road Trip March 22-31
    3 Rivers, 2 States
    3 species
    Fish caught on dries, nymphs, and streamers


    We started out on the Crooked, but found low flows and mediocre fishing. White fish were more than willing, but trout were far and few between. Conditions looked better further East and we were all excited to fish a river we had never been to before. Next stop, Owyhee.

    Low low low water. We knew to expect winter flows, but dang was it low and slow! Skwalas were starting to come off and the weather was looking warmer so we were pretty hopeful for some trophy brown action. Instead we found combat fishing, trash left everywhere, and an occasional Skwala floating by just to rub it in. I had the Owyhee on a pedestal and it definitely fell way short of expectations. We ended catching a few browns in 1.5 days of fishing, all subsurface and nothing trophy sized. Happy to have had success as the conditions were challenging, but not what we had been hoping for. We looked again for better conditions on other water and decided to leave for greener pastures. Hoping to make it back in the Fall to give this river another chance.

    Crossed into Idaho and found what we had been searching for: good flows, consistent hatches, and decent weather! 5 days of epic fly fishing ensued. Stepped out of the truck, noticed rising fish and decided it was dry fly time. Two casts later and my buddy is into his first fish. That set the tone, the rest of the day was basically casting to rising fish feeding on a baetis hatch and trying not to giggle like a school girl at the ridiculous catch rate we lucked into. From there the fishing continued to be hot, mostly subsurface with occasional surface action when conditions aligned. Awesome trip and just what we needed!

    Now I'm back home, keeping an eye on the Big C's temp and tying up some hybrids!

  • #2
    Thanks for the report! Sorry to hear about the Owyhee.

    Where did you fish in Idaho?
    aka Scott Richmond

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    • #3
      Nice one. Nothing like being on a mission and nailing it just right!

      The O has been bucket list for a good decade, but daaaaaaamn that's far for a 2 night trip out of PDX which is usually what I can muster with the kid schedule. I've also been saying I'm going to start carping 5 minutes from home for a good decade and haven't done that either!

      Choices! We have a lot of choices in Oregon.
      https://www.ryanchinauthor.com/singl.../05/20/Choices

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Mr. Chin View Post
        Nice one. Nothing like being on a mission and nailing it just right!

        The O has been bucket list for a good decade, but daaaaaaamn that's far for a 2 night trip out of PDX which is usually what I can muster with the kid schedule. I've also been saying I'm going to start carping 5 minutes from home for a good decade and haven't done that either!
        Yeah, no way I would make that trip for 2 days of fishing. The stars aligned for this trip, giving all of us a window where we could venture out despite kids, wives, and careers. I fished more days in this trip alone than I had in the last two years if that says anything! This will be my first Spring really trying to put some effort into carping the local haunts. I'm excited and prepared to be humbled and frustrated, but you can't beat the drive time! If you want to hunt the flats some time hit me up. My schedule can be wonky with all the life happenings, but stars can align sometimes, lol!

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        • #5
          So Mr. Chin, you should have gone a decade ago which is about when my buddy and I made the trip there in mid May. Action was subsurface with size 20 nymphs and top water in the evenings. It wasn't overly crowded, lots of available water, nice weather, and aggressive fish. Subsurface during the day but good dry fly action during the evenings. Maybe we were really lucky. Recent reports make me reluctant to try it again.

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          • #6
            Curious as to how you approached the O.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by pigs View Post
              Curious as to how you approached the O.
              Our approach was: Find fishable water without anyone in it (this was most times the biggest challenge); approach said water strategically to avoid spooking fish in the low water conditions; fish subsurface with nymphs or streamers depending on water conditions and time of day; watch for top water action and switch to targeting specific fish taking bugs on top. Success rate: low. We felt better about ourselves though as everyone we spoke to pretty much seemed to be having the same catch rate, lots of skunkings so at least we had fish to hand. We passed water that might have been more productive but had several people fishing it. Not interested in being elbow to elbow, which we saw plenty of people doing. With higher flows the time on the O would have likely been better and less disheartening, but the trash and the number of people wouldn't have changed (or only gotten worse!). I had that river on a pedestal and probably came in with unrealistic expectations. I hope to give it another try some day under better conditions.

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