At the start of the trip, Betty wasn't 100% sure about the whole fishing thing. However, after landing a nice Elk River hatchery hen, she was definitely sold on the whole gig. She did a nice job handling the feisty Elk Chinook. Michael was certainly tickled to share in Betty's joy.
Though a fly fishing addict at heart, Kathy acquiesced to running a plug, and was rewarded handsomely! As the fish ripped off 150 feet of line in no time, I think she sensed some panic in my demeanor. It was definitely a tug of war, but Kathy definitely settled down and patiently worked and worked and worked the King back to the gravel bar & boat and ultimately to the net. I know she considered handing the rod off several times during the battle, but Tom & I encouraged her to continue and we were all glad she did. These [...]
Saying Goodbye to our 2017 McKenzie River Salmon Season. Our final September salmon journey down the McKenzie this past week proved fun and surprisingly productive. We actually brought 3 hatchery salmon to the net on Thursday, September 7, including a double header on a last minute half-day effort. When I got the call, I was initially pretty skeptical about our prospects given the late date and the fact that I had pretty much already packed it in for our McKenzie River Spring-Summer Chinook Season. I guess since I was available and I had noticed a forecast for possible showers, I [...]
Tuesday's upper McKenzie River Trout Fly Fishing drift boat trip certainly proved fun & fruitful and certainly substantiated that McKenzie River trout fly action remains excellent and in fact fast & furious. As we pulled into the very first riffle just to demonstrate a new fly technique and the corresponding fly set-up, it was "Fish On!" instantly. As the day progressed, action would continue to heat up and just get better and better. My guests "Chill" Wills and his buddy Ricky were a total hoot constantly ribbing on one another as they had me in stitches the entire day. While [...]
Wes Connected with Numerous Late-Run Spring Chinook Over the past 10 days we have had great luck finding some quality Spring Chinook, mostly of hatchery origin. To our delight, all the fish retained had nice orange meat. Back-bouncing baits, running baits behind divers, and even plugs all produced strikes. Wes spent 2 days of his vacation successfully chasing after big fish and then also did a day of fly fishing for Rainbow Trout on the very scenic upper McKenzie River with his son Wes Jr. and grandson Taylor also joining in on the fun. It was great to watch all three [...]
Tim & Connie were down visiting from Port Angeles, Washington on Monday and enjoyed a long and scenic upper McKenzie River trout fishing float. Though hardly fly fishing experts, with attention and determination both landed plenty of scrappy McKenzie Rainbows, all on flies. We used both wet and dry flies and found success on both. We covered almost 11 river miles and found cooperative fish throughout the riffles, runs and pools separated by occasional larger rapids that occurred in areas of higher gradient and which characterize the upper river. The McKenzie River Drift Boat actually evolved on the McKenzie River. [...]
Fishing Reunion This past Thursday & Friday I had the opportunity and privilege of coordinating a mini fishing reunion on the McKenzie River for a group of former freshmen dorm mates dating back forty some odd years since college. What a fun group! It was so interesting to marvel at the incredibly diverse paths taken by each person leading to their current career. Included was a surgeon, a commercial real estate executive, numerous engineers, and a corporate financial planner. Lunch near Eagle Rock On Day One, we tried for salmon on the lower river which proved a tough nut to [...]
Spring Chinook are Challenging for Sure (Yet Well Worth the Effort) Garry, my guest last Wednesday, was quite happy to hook into several challenging McKenzie River Salmon during our 5 mile long drift. Though the first fish that was hooked on a diver and bait set-up, unfortunately shook the hook, the next 2 fish hooked were not quite so fortunate. Not one to just throw in the towel, Garry got right back in the saddle and found several deep holes and back-bounced his way into 2 more Springers, perhaps destined for a 4th of July barbecue. Spring Chinook Salmon is regarded [...]
McKenzie River Trout & Salmon Fishing Improving daily! Jeff & his friend David enjoyed some excellent fly action resulting in 50+ fish to the boat, not to mention, some spectacular scenery during their McKenzie River trout fishing adventure last Saturday. In the left photo Jeff is playing a feisty McKenzie River Rainbow Trout in direct view of famed monolith "Eagle Rock" as his backdrop. The upper McKenzie includes some rapids with pocket water and stair steps. It has quite a bit more gradient than the lower river below Leaburg Dam. The pool and drop character of the upper river [...]
My guest on Friday came up with a beautiful McKenzie Spring Chinook on a relaxing half-day effort. It was a great battle right out of the chute...... as the fish had no intention of cooperating. Succulent seared Springer on the barbie is hard to beat!