McKenzie and Willamette River Water Levels Perfect for “Opening Weekend”

Native mckenzie river redside

The traditional trout season opener is upon us this Saturday. The McKenzie above Leaburg opens and is in excellent shape. Nymphing with large stonefly patterns and smaller Pheasant tail or Red Copper John droppers is a solid bet on the upper river this weekend. Look for some afternoon hatches of Caddis, March Browns and even some Stonefly adults.

The lower McKenzie continues to fish well with smatterings of Caddis and March Browns still emerging. Yesterday I saw more mid sized stoneflies than I have all year. Start thinking about fishing some larger dries like Half Down Goldens, Stimulators and Caddis in size 10s. The frustrating Grannom Caddis hatch seems to be waning but the fish are still looking up to a Quigley’s Midget Caddis really well on shaded edges and riffles.

Many of the cascade lakes will be more accessible this year than in the recent past and fishing should be good early. Fishing Chironomid patterns early season is a tactic you can count on.

If you you want to combine a little fishing and a cool event up the McKenzie check out the 2013 McKenzie River Wooden Boat Festival. The festival starts around 11am and goes until 5pm. Over 50 whitewater boats with McKenzie roots will be on display.

McKenzie River Wooden Boat Festival 2013 2

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