Yep, we have entered the season of rain which is vital to our way of life here in the PNW. This is where good rain gear, non leaky waders and a slight shift in tactics becomes a treasure for 4 season anglers. Far fewer people on the water (unfortunately for us) meaning more to explore uninhibited out there on beaches of Puget Sound, the miles of now wade accessible banks of the Yakima and the bigger winter rivers for anadromous fish.
We have the flow reports at the top of the page the flow levels for all the rivers in our region we feel you need to have a pulse on water levels in order to head to the water with confidence. If you ever have any questions, please call, it is what we are here for.
Puget Sound - It is just such a good time to be fishing Puget Sound, it really isn't even funny. Big SRC's/Sea Run Cutthroat are all over a myriad of beaches around the area. Small Euphausiids are working well according to our staff of guides who are on the water nearly every day covering most of the south and central Sound. We use a mid to tip flex 6wt like the T&T Zone out here most of the time with a floating line and we do so for a number of reasons. We would never be on the salty water without Sound Searcher's and other baitfish patterns as well though so be sure your box is well stocked because while the anadromous trout are typically not picky but like any fish, they have their moments.
Chum salmon are also beginning to make their entry into the Sound. This is at least an 8wt rod sized fish if not larger and they like chartreuse flies like Comet style ones.
Yakima River - We have a few weeks left of late fall hatches over here most likely before it really becomes a 100% nymph game until early spring. BWO's are a mainstay late the afternoon and likely still some October Caddis throughout the day. Water is extremely low so the Yak is as wade friendly as you can possibly see it so get out there. Our other suggestion would be to bring your trout spey like the friendly priced Orvis Clearwater in a 4wt.. We have been swinging flies for trout on light spey rods for 20+ years actually since the first couple came out in the late 90's. Cover the water in a steelhead fashion gives an entirely different look to the Yakima. A slower pace, methodically covering structure through the belly and tailout of obvious runs with soft hackles, nymphs with saddle collars or small streamers will all be effective.
Steelhead - Good news on the 1st of November that portions of the Snoqualmie and Skykomish Rivers are now open and with the little bit of rain we just got, flows came up and are dropping...perfect recipe for late arriving summer steelhead to be coming into the rivers and shaking up those that were already there. Just throwing this out there that if one were to choose to skate a fly right now on any of the rivers in our area, you might get a surprise or two. Otherwise T7 - T10 tips with your choice of fly will do the trick as well. Cowlitz still has a few fish around as well as a ton of Coho so this wouldn't be a bad choice either, just be prepared for it to be a bit crowded, particularly on the weekend. Klickitat is also producing some nice fish and if you are semi agile, there is decent access from the road to head over and walk and wade on your own.
We hope some of this inspires you to get out there this weekend. Fishing is good in all directions so get out there. Let us know if you have questions, we are here to support you where you are headed whether it's Lincoln Park, Deschutes or the Seychelles.
Have a great "fall back" weekend everyone,
EWA Staff | 206-708-7250