April, 1998

4/1: A SHORT DAY OF INSTRUCTING ON THE HILL allowed an hour of casting on Gore Creek after 3:00. Not great fishing - two identically sized 12 inch rainbows - one took a micro soft hackle and the other a suspender midge emerger. More casting with a variety of midge types brought no results. It was a nice day, however.

4/3: FOUR DIFFERENT SPECIES ON GORE CREEK. That's always a cause for celebration even if only seven fish altogether were landed. The ice is off the deepest hole on this stream and the trout were quite active. Saw probably sixty fish or so - some were in the shallows towards the pool tail and maybe only ten feet from my waders.

They were somewhat wary however and after catching two browns, a cutthroat, and a rainbow, the pool was basically disturbed enough that I left it and headed for other parts. Fish preferred a tiny chocolate midge pupa fished close to the bottom. A couple others downstream (including the brook) took a micro soft hackle.

4/5: SUPER FISHING ON GORE CREEK this afternoon. A #20 cdc midge emerger did the damage, but we fished it deep rather than in the film. Had probably fifteen fish on in the hole noted above and landed two thirds of them. Then moving downstream using the same fly we released another 6-9 nice fish. A really good day of fishing for this time of year.

4/10: THE LAST, LONG WEEK OF SKI TEACHING CAME TO AN END TODAY - - AND GLORY OF GLORIES, caught the first fish of the year on the surface. Granted it was caught on a stuck-in-the-shuck midge emerger, but what the heck! A surface feeder is a surface feeder and we love them all! So I overdid the surface stuff and probably missed out on several other fish, but it sure was fun to cast to rising fish for a change.

Could tell that the winter floating fly reflexes needed exercising as I missed several other fish and barely lip hooked a few others that jumped once and left me empty handed. But, oh what fun. Hopefully next week will lead to more of the same before the inevitable runoff starts.

4/11: SAME CREEK - DIFFERENT STORY today. Started out with the emergers, but no success so shortly changed to a sunken combo rig of a micro soft hackle and trailing red midge larva. It made the difference as five rainbows between 10-13 inches came to the midge and one 12 inch brown on the soft hackle. Lost several others. A storm is brewing for tonight and the Eagle is out of shape (snow melt) throughout its length, so we'll have to hope that weather permits us to get back out on Gore Creek again tomorrow.

4/12: DUMBFOUNDINGLY GOOD FISHING on Gore Creek this afternoon. The first tiny hole yielded six fish on and four landed. Everything took a stuck-in-the-shuck #18 midge emerger fished deep. Only spent an hour on the stream yet landed a dozen fish and lost another eight or ten.

4/13: NOT QUITE A REPEAT OF YESTERDAY but it was close. Saw some small bwo's on the surface and lots of midges and tried a pair of surface flies for a bit, but they were completely unproductive so returned to a sunken combo of the same emerger midge noted above followed by a #22 micro soft hackle in bwo colors. Immediately got into a bunch of rainbows and couple of brooks - and then casting blindly above a large boulder, hooked & landed one of the best rainbows ever from this stream. It had to be close to 18 inches and was thick as my forearm probably weighing a good 2 #.

4/14 & 4/15: ABSOLUTELY BUTT UGLY weather these past two days, but fished for a while anyway. Yesterday below Dowd Junction on the Eagle only had two fish on and managed to lose them both - but they were good ones - over 16 inches. They took that little stuck in the shuck midge emerger fished deep.

Today I went back to Wolcott and fished below Trestle Rapids. Managed to land six lovely rainbows between 14-18 inches. All but one came to the midge emerger - the exception took a scintilla egg fly. Conditions were gruesome. Temperatures in the 20's, iced up rod guides, snow squalls, frozen fingers, and horrible downstream winds. But it's still better than no fishing at all.

4/18 - 4/20: Tried fishing Gore Creek a couple of times this weekend, but it was brutal weather, and with the exception of three smaller fish landed, not a whole lot of fun.

By contrast the Eagle below Wolcott provided really exciting fishing today. For a change I put on one of the small black Stonefly imitations that we devised last summer. Trailed that pattern with one of those stuck in the shuck things, but the fish were looking to the larger fly for sustenance - and they took it with a vengeance. Landed roughly nine nice rainbows and hooked/lost another half dozen or so in the two hours out on the water. It was unusual to have so many hooked fish eject the barbless hook so easily, but it's probably better to have that happen than have to handle them to remove it.

4/21: IT'S ASTONISHING to be wading amidst a whole school of brookies that barely pay any attention to me, but that happened today on the Gore. Nice weather for a change and the fish took a variety of flies - from a buckskin to black midge pupa to stuck in shuck midge emerger to a bastard surface midge, etc. Didn't catch more than ten fish but they were coming to the surface and bulging for emergers so it was great fun to watch them and participate in something of a feeding frenzy. Last and largest trout was a 15 inch brown.

4/22: THESE ARE HALCYON TIMES. We're probably only a couple of days away from the beginning of runoff, but the Eagle this day was to die for. It was maybe 55 degrees in the air; midges were coming off the water; a few caddis were mating, and here & there a Stonefly crawled up on the rocks to dry off & molt.

The fishing was almost indescribably good. Trout have moved into their summer locations and were feeding voraciously. Immediately hooked and eventually lost a huge fish (for the Eagle) that had to be 20-21 inches, and the action was continuous for the two more hours on the water. Fish took elk hairs in the shallows, midge pupa everywhere, small stones, and OS-1's. Along the way landed three whitefish between 2-3 pounds and numerous browns and rainbows from 12-16 inches. It was glorious. Have to fly to Oregon tomorrow to visit the folks, so suspect that when I return, the good times will be over until later in July.

4/23-4/28: THIS SPRING'S TRIP TO OREGON was nothing to talk about fishing-wise. The entire Umpqua River system was completely closed to fishing in an attempt to assist the endangered searun cutthroat population in its spawning effort. Unfortunately there were apparently only 30 of those fish that passed over the Winchester Dam ladder last year, so I suspect this effort will probably be a lost cause. It's really a shame as searuns were a wonderful fish to catch (and eat) when I was a kid growing up out there.

But my brother & I did go to a local logging pond and had several nice days of casting for bluegills and black crappie. Some nice bass inhabit this pond too, but we were unsuccessful in hooking any of them. As always, we used double sunken fly rigs. A nymph trailed by a lead eyed olive woolly bugger seemed to be most efficient and double hookups were not uncommon.

Last Logbook Entry

4/29: THE END IS NEAR! But fishing was hot on Gore Creek today. With flows doubled from last week wading is getting tougher and stream color reflects the coming of major spring runoff. Nevertheless the trout were feeding actively. Tried a number of nymph combinations with the best being a generic #16 stone up front followed by a #18 standard prince. Caught roughly fifteen fish in an hour & a half - none really large, but all were feisty. The lone brown was in the 14 inch range and the balance were smaller rainbows.

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