Fishing Report – Middle Fork Willamette – Late April 2021

Spring is my favorite time of the year to fish the McKenzie and Willamette Rivers. Cool days, light rain, and overcast skies make the Dry Fly Fisher drool with excitement.

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After a very unseasonably warm April, cooler temperatures and rain arrived later in the month and it began to feel like spring again.

March brown, caddis, osprey, and swallows were all out in abundance. These are good signs for an Epic day of fishing.

Here we go….

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Justin and I decided to fish the Middle Fork up high and after a delayed start to scout some rapids we were on our way.

The day started off great with fish smashing our Possie Buggers w/ Legs and Black Copper Johns off our Hopper/Dropper setup. The trout all seemed to jump like dolphins once hooked. The fishing was great mid to late morning, but slowed down a little between 1 p.m. and 3 p.m.

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Later in the afternoon the fish began to look up and all I used was a Chubby Chernobyl which was my hopper or top fly the entire day. Justin also used Purple Roosters, Purple Haze, and Parachute Adams with some success, but they seemed keened in on the big Chub.

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It was one of those days where you had to be there to believe it. Great fishing, great friends, fun rapids, and beautiful scenery.

Flies Used:

Chubby Chernobyl Pteronarcys Size 8
Possie Bugger w/ Legs Size 10
Black Cooper John Size 14
Purple Rooster Size 16
Purple Haze Size 14
Parachute Adams Size 14

Flies I’d Try Too:

Western March Brown Size 14
Mega Prince Size 8
Big Black Stone Fly Patterns Size 6
Hare’s Ear Size 10 or 12
Prince Nymphs Size 10 or bigger

It was nice to have some rain, because most of April felt like June and Oregon is way low in rainfall percentages. Which reminds me…

Be very careful with fire as we begin to camp under the stars at our favorite fishing destinations. Oregon last year saw the worst fires in the state’s history. People are still recovering from the devastating fires last summer and we do not need carelessness starting fires that should never happened in the first place. It’s one thing when lightning is around but, unattended campfires, burning during restrictions, cigarette butts, dragging trailer chains, target shooting in dry areas are all examples of careless and dangerous ways that ignite fires. Yes, my years rangering in Yosemite the Telegraph Fire was started in July by a man target shooting with tracer rounds in dry brush…Carelessness

Tight Lines,

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1 Response to Fishing Report – Middle Fork Willamette – Late April 2021

  1. Yeager says:

    As always, thanks for the updates and reminders to keep our beautiful area wildfire-free!

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