It seems as though summer just finally landed here in Seattle and now, cool mornings, fog, shorter days and the arrival of fall fish in the area waters. Yep, summer came and went in a bit of a flash this year but it does bring some good news with it.
Puget Sound - Migratory coho/silver salmon are arriving and for the next couple months, shots at them from the beach or a boat of your liking is possible. We get questions all the time about how to chase them and this is why we are so adamant that people learn to fish Puget Sound. It really isn't much different than chasing sea run cutthroat. Flies...very similar if not exactly the same with maybe a bit more attention to herring patterns. Rods...same, 6wts are fine unless you want to buy an 8wt, we won't put up too much resistance. Lines...same unless from a boat and want a sinking tip or a full sinking line to get deeper. Reels...same, match the rod and line needs. Retrieve...same but different. Faster at times, more steady at times. Tides...fast dropping to big negatives from the beaches up north are our favorites but we have caught fish on neap tides as well so just go fish when you can.
Yakima River - Hopper season is here and caddis are out in the evenings. Flows remain high for probably another 2 weeks or so and then they will begin a steady drop to where walk and wade anglers have a chance to explore the river again. Until then, boat this baby and have fun.
Mountain Creeks - Prime time! Water is low and clear as the air we breathe so approach slowly and see if you can spot the fish in tailouts before making your cast. This will heighten your experience and slow you down to a pace where you won't breeze past holding water quite as quickly. Will also help you understand where fish sit and why in these smaller watersheds for future visits. Caddis, almost any attractor pattern and small stone-fly imitations will all be good choices. 5x tippet if you want but 4x is probably going to save you a few flies in trees.
Warm Water - Carp in local lakes, sloughs and of course expansive flats of the Columbia River are loaded with them right now. Feel how you may, they are crazy fickle fish that will test your presentation abilities and they happen to be big and strong so if it is a fight you are looking for, begin here. Small worm patterns, stone-fly nymphs, small crawdads, dragon fly nymphs and cotton ball flies on the surface. Bass are feeling water temps gently cool in some local lakes so get them on top while you can with anything from Chernobyl hoppers, frog patterns, mice, mini poppers and of course subsurface with leaches and crawdad patterns.
Steelhead - Haven't heard much from the Puget Sound rivers but as we get into early fall like weather, there really isn't a better time to carefully select a low water skater, a long belly line and swing for the ultimate surface take in this region. Upper Skykomish is a good choice for the walk and wade angler and believe it or not, the Cowlitz this time of year is also a great choice.
Cedar River - Home stretch for our urban fishery. It will close to all angling on the 31st of August so get your licks in while you can. Early or late is ideal. If you can wait it out and feel safe doing so, that last 45 minutes of daylight ignites the evening caddis and all the fish that weren't there before, are now there!
As always, we could write a book on everything in the these categories so we are just touching the surface so if questions arise, please call, email, facetime, message us...we are here for you!
EWA Staff - 206-708-7250