Those fish rumors you have been hearing are true and so it is time for the first fish report of the year. A few dollies and steelhead have been caught in the area within the last few weeks. Like so many years before, the fishing started out slow, but continues to get better on a daily basis. Cold weather, rain and lots of snow pack are keeping the stream temps cold, but the warm sunny skies of April got the smolt to push out early. The warm April weather even got a few steelhead to sneak in.
Lots of pink and chum fry can be found at the mouths of creeks and around the boat harbors. These areas are likely spots to target Dolly Varden. For dollies, try checking out the mouth of Sheep Creek on a falling tide, the mouth of Salmon Creek bracketing the low tide, Peterson Creek Salt Chuck or at the mouth on an outgoing tide. Echo Cove can be good on an incoming tide. Small, sparse fry patterns are the ticket now. Try using the Green and Gold Fry, Epoxy Mini Minnow or Little McFry. Sparse Clouser Minnows in #6 can be good, too. For areas that see Hooligan and Sand Lance, try the ever-so-deadly Stinger Clouser or Neil Creek Dart.
For you steelhead enthusiasts, its time to get busy. When the water is on the rise and warming up those usually sulky fish can turn aggressive. In this situation, try swinging or drifting larger patterns like Hot Bunny Leeches, Duece Wiggalos or other bright flies in shades of pink, orange or fuschia. When the going gets tough or swinging is not possible, switch to dead drifting shrimp and egg patterns like Steelhead Glo Bugs, Money Bugs or the Liquid Wrench. Put in a little time, be stealthy like a ninja and your patience will pay off in the form of steely chrome.
Tight Lines and Good Luck,
-Brad, Mike and the crew