Yep, it's the end of August, kids are going back to school, vacations are ending and return to office is possibly looming in the near distance...DON'T GIVE UP! There is plenty of fly fishing left this summer and in fact, in many ways it only gets better after the end of August.
Puget Sound - What a year for our beloved Pink Salmon. As we write this, there are anglers still catching tons of pinks off every point along the east side of the Sound from Kayak to Brown's. Pink flies of course but this past week we have been seeing some salmon of a different color mixing in. Silver Salmon have been mingling among of the Pinks so be sure to have some chartreuse flies and go back to your larger baitfish representing Herring and Sandlance because they will be actively feeding when they are entering the Sound until they reach their desired estuary. Same beaches, same retrieve, bigger, stronger fish. Go get them!
Yakima River - As we approach September, we actually get a bit excited about getting our Yakima back from the irrigation canal it is during the summer months. As flows drop, structure and character will once again become evident and access to those without a boat will be wide open. Fall hatches give us the giggles...big October Caddis and little Blue Winged Olives will begin to emerge sometime towards the end of September when the water temps cool off. Until then, some hoppers are out as are caddis. Mornings are going to be the time to be on the water before temps reach 70 or more. Fish will be more active in the AM so get up and over the mountains early.
Snoqualmie Forks | Mountain Creeks - We haven't seen these this low in several years and yet because of their freestone nature and rapid descent from the high mountains, they have fished well in the mornings as well but they warm much faster throughout the day due to their low flows. Water is super clear so look for them in water moving a bit faster as it both provides cover, will be slightly cooler with more oxygen. Caddis on top or swing some soft hackles down and across runs. Most of the creeks close at the end of October so there is ample time to still get out there, learn some new places or enjoy what you may already know.
Cedar River - We are less than a week from its seasonal closure so wade in while you can. Same as above, fish early OR, if you dare, get out at dark and toss a mouse pattern against some of the log jams. Just saying, you might be surprised what the larger, hard to find trout in here might eat at night. Big Stimulators would work well too and likely a bit easier to cast.
Warm Water - Well, guess what? Most of the water in the lakes is...still warm! Bass and Bluegill on small or large poppers, foam flies like hoppers or big ants are all good options. If you are tying your own, be sure to tie in a weed guard so you can land your fly on lily pads and scoot it off without issue. Muskie are still eating big flies in Tapps and Mayfield. Wire leader sorta a must unless you enjoy donating $20+ flies to fish.
Steelhead - Not a ton of options close to Seattle at the moment. Look to the Cowlitz for the tail end of the summer run which actually can fish well into October, above Blue Creek. Yes, the hatchery fish will stray past so fish access points above the hatchery. Skagit is open but has never had much of a summer run steelhead population but if you are into swinging, trust us, we are too so we get it, then there are few places as pretty as the Skagit in the summer. Small flies, long leaders and Scandi heads are perfect on both. The Deschutes is open for steelhead so that is always a good option though we fear it is going to be BUSY so bring your patience.
We got into this business to take the knowledge we have and help others become better fly anglers. We thoroughly enjoy doing just that and watching you improve and share those experiences with us, we freaking love it!
So please ask us questions, we look forward to answering them. Have a great weekend and seen you, talk with you, message with all of you soon!
EWA Staff | 206-708-7250