I grabbed this from The Deschutes Angler – Amy & John Hazel posted it Friday April 24th.
The ENTIRE Lower Deschutes River opens tomorrow – so you will now be able to fish Trout Creek, Mecca Flats, South Junction, and all areas upstream of the Warm Springs Reservation boundary. Unfortunately, we are still not able to float the river in any kind of boat. The BLM has suspended boater passes and has closed the boat launches. If you are out there floating in a craft you are easy pickin’ for law enforcement, so leave your boats at home and use the 40 miles of access road up and down from Maupin or join in with hundreds of anglers pounding the trails between Warm Springs and Trout Creek. You will be able to get away from the crowds better in Maupin. Camping along any part of the Deschutes River is still prohibited – this includes sleeping in your vehicle along the road. It is clearly posted, but I get a lot of questions about this on the phone. As I mentioned in earlier reports, the toilets are also closed along the river. One person messaged me about this and said, “What am I supposed to do, bring a shovel?” Um, yes. Hike yourself well away from the river and from common lanes of human traffic, dig a deep hole, and bury your business. Or, bring a wag bag or portable toilet as we use on the river for all of our trips. Or, use the one open public restroom located next to our fly shop in Maupin at the end of the parking lot.
We are all going through this Covid crisis together and it is not going to be easy for any of us to continue to deal with the restrictions on our lives, but I do believe that what we are doing is working. The curve seems to be flattening and we are saving lives – which is what is really important in the long run. It won’t be normal again for quite a while, if ever again, so we will make adjustments and try to make things work within the framework in which we have been placed.
When we are able to open our doors again, we will have to limit the number of people in the store and we will have to require that customers and staff wear face masks or facial coverings to reduce particulates in the air. We will be overjoyed to see the semi-covered faces of our customers when that day comes. As for our guide season, it is impossible to socially distance in a drift boat. We can still guide you on our private lakes if we drive our own vehicles and stay 15 feet apart from each other all day. Should I need to change your fly, you cast it to me and I make the change – voila – guiding from 30 or more feet away from someone is possible on the private lakes.
We are hoping that the river will open to camping at some time during the month of May when the salmonfly anglers are here. The BLM has been pretty tight-lipped about the possibility of opening, so we are sitting on our hands and waiting. In my opinion, camping and being socially distant is possible. TIght lines, and we will see you (through the glass door of the shop) when you stop by Maupin.