It’s starting to feel like Fall more and more over there, which is good. The nights are longer which bodes well for the water temperatures therefore fishing the mornings remains the most consistent for Steelhead. Anywhere from the town of Maupin down to the mouth has produced consistent, good fishing as long as the White River stays in shape. The last week or so it was pumping out “chocolate milk” colored water which clouds up the river downstream and really puts a damper on the fishing. As of yesterday it is clear and the river is back in shape. Keep an eye on it though because this next week has very hot weather in store which could cause it to act up again. Overall, there are good numbers of fish in the river and they are moving into the river daily, so now is the time to be down there.
The Crooked River continues to fish well with consistent hatches of Caddis and PMD’s, especially on Cloudy days. The 7 mile section of the Crooked below Bowman Dam is virtually all public and there is a lot of great water in there. Nymphing has also been productive using small zebra midges and caddis pupa.
Word has it the Green Drakes are back on at the Metolius! If the weather cooperates we will see these bugs out there into October. Throughout the day there have been tons of small Caddis and Mahogany Dun hatches which means you can fish dries all day. Drakes will be most active in the afternoon until about 4pm, and in the late evening (around 7pm) olive and mahogany dun spinner falls can be sweet. The parachute green drake has been a good one when the drakes are out, other than that fishing mahogany comparaduns has been the evening go-to. Subsurface fishing has been good, I recommend fishing jigged nymphs because of the no split-shot regulations on this river. The jigged flies sink quickly, which is import when no added weight is allowed.
September-October is one of my favorite times of the year on the Fall. With longer nights bringing about cooler temperatures, you don’t get eaten alive by mosquitoes out there like you do in Late June through August, which is nice! Furthermore, from a fishing standpoint it can be awesome too. On warmer, windier days don’t hesitate to throw grasshopper patterns such as Morrish’s Hopper Other than that we have been still seeing caddis, PMDs, and a few mahogany duns and BWO’s as well. The latter two will increase in abundance as we get closer to Autumn.
East has picked up again and the fishing has been very good. Strong, consistent callibaetis hatches have been coming off daily allowing anglers to fish dries all day long. The extended body callibaetis have been great but they don’t float too well after a few hookups so be sure to have your Dry Shake handy. Small, black ant patterns are good, too. If the hatch slows or the bugs aren’t out, cast and strip callibaetis nymphs with a clear, intermediate sinking line.
Crane Prairie Reservoir
Crane has also been fishing well primarily with chironomids fished under Strike Slip Indicators in the channels. Stripping damsel and calibaetis nymphs, as well as sparse leech patterns has been decent as well.
The moral of the story is: you have a lot of options in the Central Oregon area right now. While our local waters continue to fish great as well, if you find yourself on the other side of the Mountains, be sure to bring your fly rod along.