Trout Snipers

October 13, 2014

Date: 10/11/2014 9:00 am ? 4:00 pm

Location: Red?s the Mahre?s

Flies: WD40, Copper john, Anato may, Super Sinker, Pat?s stone

Anglers: Chuck and Ben

Results: 10+ fish to net and at least that many LDR?d, including 2 really nice fish that will haunt our dreams, right Chuck?!

Sun, wind, rain?sounds like a bad 1980?s lip-syncing-duet that still continues to get sampled and generate revenue by some weird music perfect storm; or wait, that was mili vanilli?I digress.  The weather on Saturday was anything but predictable in the traditional sense, however for anybody that?s fished this area before knows, plan for the worst because it?s no doubt coming!  The morning started out brisk, but sunny and very few clouds in the sky, and throughout the course of the day, threw insane 30 mph gusts that literally prevented me from launching the boat after a wade session and forced us to reconsider our decision to ?stick it out?.  Luckily, my anglers were not about to let a ?little? (significantly understated) wind get in the way of excellent fall fishing.

I like to equate summer dry fly fishing to the military?s infantry units.  Run and gun, play the odds, hit every spot, and you will likely be rewarded.  This is not that game.  If summertime = infantry, fall = sniper.  This time of year calls for a good game plan before a fishy section of water.  Call the play, set up the boat, make role assignments, and execute!  Find the water that is likely to support and hold multiple fish, get out of the boat, take a few shots at it, and then let it rest.  Rinse, lather, and repeat.  Not every stretch of the river is holding fish right now, so keep in mind the old saying of ?10% of fishermen catch 90% of the fish?.  The reason this is true, is because also, ?10% of the water holds 90% of the fish? and those 10% of the fishermen KNOW this fact.

The name of the game right now is SMALL.  WD40?s are getting it done, as well as copper johns, but my new favorite has quickly become the Super Sinker!  This fly is small, tied with wire wrap, and has a tungsten bead head and gets down into the zone fast.  It?s tied on somewhat of a circle hook and seems to do a good job of keeping the fish hooked throughout the fight.  You can run this fly solo, or under a lead fly, depending how fast you want it down.  I also recommend switching up to the smaller thingamabobbers or even a yarn indicator.  I will also caution you, the yarn indicators and New Zealand strike indicators take a bit more attention to keep them dressed and floating properly, so make sure you?re checking it ever so often.

Fall on the Yakima River is a special time with cold mornings and warm afternoons.  The trees are beginning to change colors and the fishing is dynamite.  Put the steelhead rod down for a day and get back to what addicted you to this sport in the first place; tactically stalking skinny water for that trout that haunts your dreams.  See ya on the water!

  1. What about fishing on the surface? I know the wind can play heck with it - but seems this time of year is all about the little dry. Any luck?
  2. We had a GREAT day on Sunday. 10+ fish, one close to 16" and several slightly smaller. We got em deep and on top on a purple chubby Chernobyl (Purple). Dry turned on fairly late in the day, but produced some big fish. Had a great time!
  3. Hi Jeff, early on in the day we found a riser and threw everything but the kitchen sink at dice. My gut says he was targeting emergers. Later in the day we saw a small mayfly hatch come off, but with the wind picking up, it didn't last long enough to switch to the dry rod. If you have a calm wind day, definitely bring your dry fly rod!
  4. Fishing the canyon yesterday for just 3 hrs, from 11:30am - 2:30-pm was good with #16 BH PT's, with a 16"er to net, plus 3 @ 13" and several small guys 'n gals. A few hard strikes on my #10 Stimulator on top, after 1:30pm. Everybody went into siesta mode off at 2:30! Folks, it just doesn't get much better than yesterday for fun in the sun!
  5. I fish the Yakima 3-4 times a year and knew of a run about a mile walk up river where I could arrive in time to pick off 3-5 fairly substantial fish during the BWO hatch. A major flood destroyed that pool and with that most of my knowledge of the river. Read this last post and realized I had a WD-40 from my occasional forays on the East Carson in California. My first cast yielded a three incher and another a nine incher. After about fifteen minutes my indicater disappeared and a mighty fish cleared four feet in the air. I thought it was a steelhead and despaired of landing it, but then soon realized that with 5X and the fish still on, maybe it was possible. Ten minutes later, after four more jumps and a half dozen reel-singing runs I had my fish. Just shy of twenty inches and incredibly plump. Later I broke the hook trying to get it out of a large whitefish! Will be ordering some!
  6. We fished the 24th with Leif and Shan. We landed trout and whitefish steadily thru the drift on Stones with WD40s as a dropper.