River too high to fish? Head for a local lake

FISHING: Rivers may be blown out, but lakes yielding fish

January 22, 2011 

There are some good options for anglers who want to get out, but it doesn't look like the rivers are among them. Just as the stream-flow charts were reaching normal levels, they all started rising again Friday. Spencer Lake in Mason County has been good for trout, and the Purdy Spit has been producing sea-run cutthroat trout and resident coho.


Cowlitz: The river was running at 19,300 cubic feet per second Friday and was off-color, said Karen Glaser of Barrier Dam Campground. The river likely will be fishable by early next week.

Olympic Coast: The rivers were almost fishable Thursday, but steady rain falling Friday was likely to blow out the rivers if it continued, said Dave Steinbaugh of Waters West. There are definitely steelhead around when the rivers are in good shape, he said, especially in the Sol Duc and the Hoh.

Satsop: The river might be an option for the weekend because it clears up quicker, said Ron Adams at Verle’s Sports. The river was at 4,700 cfs on Friday morning.


American: The weather has kept anglers off the water, said David Anderson at Bill’s Boathouse.

Munn: A few trout are being caught from this small Tumwater lake. Try fishing dark-colored leech patterns with a fast-sinking line, and use a slow retrieve.

Offut: The action has been off and on, depending on the weather, said Becky Pogue at Offut Lake Resort. On Thursday, folks were catching limits by floating worms with a bit of PowerBait or marshmallows. The boat action has been as good as that from the dock.

Spanaway: Off the dock, anglers were catching brown and rainbow trout with worms or Power Eggs, said Bud Herlitzka of Spanaway Park Boathouse.

Spencer: Trout fishing has been hot, according Adams. Try using PowerBait and worms, or trolling a Wedding Ring tipped with a worm. Be sure to troll slowly because the fish are a bit lethargic.

Washington: Some good catches of cutthroat trout are coming out of the lake south of Mercer Island, said Randy Anderson of Sportco. He recommends using a Bahama Mama dodger with a pink hoochie, Wedding Ring or something else small behind it.


Fly-fishing: Some resident coho are being caught in the Wollochet area and at the Purdy Spit, said Anil Srivastava at Puget Sound Fly Co. Try using little olive Mini-deceiver patterns. If you want to try for sea-run cutthroat, try Purdy or farther south.

South Sound: No one has been giving the salmon fishing a try, said a staffer at Zittel’s Marina. Squidding remains good off the public fishing piers in the area, but the action has been different each night.


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