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Fishing report

Deschutes Red Side Trout & Steelhead Report (9/05/2022):
Deschutes Red Side Trout and Steelhead Report:  Dog days of summer are almost behind us as Fall knocks on the door. August has always been one of the toughest months to fish on the Deschutes and this year was no exception. I’m glad to see it go and happy that it’s September. The hatch is mostly small caddis and some very small BWO’s. Keep them in the 18 to 20 size range to help your odds. Concentrate your efforts in faster oxygenated water.  

Water type has a very important roll in getting trout to cooperate. Focus on choppy, fast water runs and riffles. In late summer / early fall, water temperatures are warm and you will find holding trout waiting for they’re next meal in or slightly below these fast water areas.  These are great places to fish dries, nymphs and wet flies in the morning and evenings. If you’re willing to brave the mid day slow time, it would be best to head for the deep heavy runs along the steep rocky banks. Get your flies down with lots of additional weight, and you will find the occasional trout sneaking in an extra bite of food.     

I would recommend the following fly pattern suggestions. BWO’s, size 20’s, Caddis adults, Larva and Pupa, size 16’s, 18’s & 20’s. PED’s size 12’s & 14’s. Either nymphs or adults. Also try big pocket water wholes, where the water is very deep. Places like this produce vertical seams that rotate aquatic insects around and around like a washing machine. Trout find safety and a good food source in pocket water. Don’t pass them by.Sometimes you may fish a bit closer toward the middle of the river in those heavy foam lines. Look for the swirls where the white foam lines are obvious. It can and will surprise you when a trout finds your fly in such turbulent water.

Pattern Suggestions: Thorax BWO 18’s, Elk hair Caddis, 16’s, 18’s, &20’s. Hares Ear Soft Hackle, 16’s & 18’s, Prince Nymphs, 12’s and 14’s, Sparkle Soft Hackles, 16’s, 18’s, CDC BH Pheasant tails, 14’s, & 16’s Double bead caddis, 14’s and 16’s. Lightening Bugs, 16’s, Rainbow Warriors, 16’s & 18’s & 20'sRiver level from Pelton Reregulating Dam: 3,820 CFS and the water temperature is 62 degrees.

Steelhead Report:

Well, really not much to report on. The numbers in the Columbia are very low, but not so low that ODFW had to close it. The summer steelhead count in the Columbia River barely met the escapement minimum so the season remains open, at least for now. In the Deschutes River numbers, of course, are equally as bad, but there have been a few steelhead caught in the lower 20 miles of the system. Sherars Falls counted only 19 summer steelhead over the falls since the 14th of July. So far, not any better than last year at this time, but the ODFW decided to open the steelhead season on the Deschutes this year in spite of the ridiculously low numbers. Needless to say, the odds of catching steelhead in the Deschutes is poor. Hopefully it will improve later this fall.

Please join and support the Deschutes River Alliance. We are fighting very hard to preserve, protect and maintain the health and wellness of the Deschutes River.

Go to this link to find out what’s been happening and educate as many friends as you can. http://www.deschutesriveralliance.org/

If you have Q’s, Please don’t hesitate to call, I will be more than happy to help!

Thank you for your time,

John Smeraglio

Deschutes Canyon Fly Shop Guiding Services

P.O. Box 334, Maupin, OR. 97037

(541) 395-2565

john@flyfishingdeschutes.com