Steelhead Fishing Heating Up

Summer Runs are showing up in fairly good numbers and we’re getting fish with some regularity now. As the week goes on and the river drop the fishing should get better in the classic summer runs spots. Here is 1 of 3 landed in Jasons boat Sunday.

Posted by Jack on 05/13 at 02:44 PM in (0) CommentsPermalink

Summer Fish Are Showing up

Hot off the Clack this morning,  Nick Rowell and company hit 2 fish and landed this beauity. This is great to see, as May can offer some of the best summer steelheading the vally has to offer. They are bright and full of fight!

Posted by Jack on 05/06 at 12:36 PM in (0) CommentsPermalink

Deschutes Spring

It’s hard to get better than the Deschutes in April. The weather is perfect, the river is almost entirely yours, and the trout are eating all day. I hit it Sunday, starting around 9 and getting off close to dark. After a winter of steelheading it was a nice change of pace being back on a trout stream, looking up and down river and not seeing a soul in sight. All and all, the fishing was great. The fish are starting to move out of the slow water and nose into some of the deeper riffles and seams, and every spot I stopped gave up a few nice 12”-16” fish. As I expected, stone nymphs fished deep, were the name of the game, but a few of the bigger fish came on #16 king princes and #14 pheasant tails. No hatches to speak of, but there were some caddis in the bushes, so after this week of warm weather, I would expect some surface action coming up soon.

Posted by Jack on 04/08 at 09:39 AM in (0) CommentsPermalink

Sandy Chrome

Spring Bling!
Ted Neely has been on the Sandy mining for chrome and finding plenty of it. March and April are great months to be out on the east side, and usually we will find some overlap between late winters and early summers. To contact Ted for a trip visit his web site:

Posted by Jack on 03/28 at 09:59 AM in (0) CommentsPermalink

After The Long Wait

It’s been a long 3 weeks waiting for the rivers to rise, then drop. Sunday was finally the day it all came together again. The steelhead gods rewarded our patience with this beauity. After a couple came un-pinned, Here, Keefer holds the perfect winter steelhead on a trip out with Jason.

Posted by Jack on 02/24 at 05:25 PM in (0) CommentsPermalink

Test Day Up North

Ran a day up north with my buddy Jeff to see if any fish were around before I start my season up there for the rest of winter. The results are in.

We found some really…really nice fish to play along.

Posted by Jack on 01/17 at 05:15 PM in (0) CommentsPermalink

The Sputnik, Using Pro Tube

Tube: Pro Nano Tube Type 4 w/ Large Pro Hookguide
Thread - Veevus 10/0
Dubbing - Salar SSS Mikkeli Blue
Rear Hackle (Top)- Thin Ostrich Herl
Rear Hackle (Middle)- Golden Pheasant Tippit
Rear Hackle (Bottom)- Artic Fox
Rear Flash - DNA Holofusion
Rib - Wire, Size Brassie
Body - Mirage Opal Tinsel, Large
Body Hackle - Strung Saddle
Weight - Pro Tungsten Raw Weight
Overweight - Pro Soft Sonic Disk
Front Hackle (Bottom)- Artic Fox
Front Hackle (Middle)- Ostrich Herl
Front Hackle (Top)- Spey Marabou
Wing - Pro Finn Raccoon
Flash - Angel Hair
Topping Flash - Crinkle Mirror Flash
Last Step - Schlappin
Eyes - Pro Jungle Cock HD


Posted by Jack on 12/10 at 08:57 AM in Steelhead • (0) CommentsPermalink

Autumn Leaves

Autumn leaves Seem to form a golden canopy over the tracks and the little bit of remaining light makes the scene glow. There are no paints, tints or sprays that can make this spot look the same. It is a surrealistic place. The rail tracks come from around a bend, shoot straight a small distance and turn to disappear , almost making it like an artist’s scene.  The roadway follows the tracks and the tracks follow the stream, as do I. The same leaves cover the track bed and the path next to the stream and it looks like someone has spent some great amount of time in decorating this to look exactly right. And in a sense, someone has.  For whatever reason, nature has provided the canvas and the weather is of course the brush,  and mixed with time, it conspires to show you a scene that you will recall for many years to come. One of those pictures in the heart that gives a tug each time you recall it…..
  The stream flows so quietly that it looks motionless for much of the length that I can see.  Almost every nook and cranny that can hold a red or gold leaf does, exactly like the snow that is yet come this season. The heart of winter has yet to visit, and there are still some good days to be lived this season, but Old Man Winter will come soon.
  I stand quietly, part of me thinking that the light as well as the time is fading and I should not be squandering either, but the other part of me knows that this could never be a waste.  Indeed, it adds to the bounty that I already have. I have yet to set foot into the stream, but I am able to see my line unrolling across this wide pool below me and laying quietly across the unseen current, its length somehow connecting me to the water and the fish and, well… I guess, everything.
  Much of the time I cannot help but to dissect the watery habitat, looking for the most likely places that a fish might lay. I know the fish wants rest, food and cover. It is second nature to do this, but I cannot say if it is something that I have taught myself or if it is connected to “mankind as a predator”. But it does happen… and it happens without conscious thought.  And as I ponder this I realize that sometimes I take from the stream, and sometimes I simply take the stream itself.
  There are times, like this one, that being here is enough. Fishing should not be about the numbers, and there are rare times that it is not even about the fishing.  The river can cleanse you, but you must allow it to do so…..

J. Morgan Jones

Posted by Jack on 10/15 at 10:50 AM in (0) CommentsPermalink

What 7’ of water looks like

Here are some before and after shots of the flooding we just had. All in all, this river came up just about 9’ from where it was before the flood. Luckly everything is pretty much back in shape and fishing great.

Posted by Jack on 10/07 at 10:14 AM in (0) CommentsPermalink

Tying the Coal Car XL

Bruce’s Summer Hottie

Posted by Jack on 09/07 at 11:56 AM in (0) CommentsPermalink

Bruce Berry’s Blowout Tube

Posted by Jack on 08/23 at 09:07 AM in (1) CommentsPermalink

Finn Raccoon in stonck now

New Finn Raccoon from Prosportfisher is on the self. This is the nicest hair we have ever seen. Huge patches of long, full, dense hair. You will get a ton of flies out of each patch.

Videos of Finn in action coming very soon

Posted by Jack on 08/21 at 10:40 AM in (0) CommentsPermalink

Beulah 4/5 Switch

you keep selling me these great catch-em-on-the-first-cast rods …
Here’s the result of first cast in Maine (Damariscotta Lake), of my Beulah 4/5 switch rod - on a Dahlberg diver.
Not a huge smallie for the area, but a great surface take, & a nice aerial fish.

Posted by Jack on 08/07 at 02:40 PM in (0) CommentsPermalink

Cure for the summer time blues

The Willamette river between Junction City and Corvallis has almost been forgotten as a viable fishery in the state, but is actually one of the best options around for summer fishing opportunitieswithin a couple hours of Portland. It’s loaded with cutties between 10”-15”, Rainbows averaging 12-15”, but fish up to 20” do make an appearance, Smallmouth and Largemouth Bass and tons of beautiful swing water for Steelhead. A recent trip with fellow guide, Larry Cross proved once again, the Big Willie is a very sweet place to hang out for a couple days. Beautiful scenery, awesome water, and usually 10 deg. cooler than in town. For guided trip info call us at the shop, and for the bass game visit Larry at

Posted by Jack on 06/29 at 12:27 PM in (0) CommentsPermalink

Hatchery -vs- Native Debate

Here in the Pacific Northwest, we used to be blessed with an abundance of salmon and steelhead in our many rivers.  Hatchery and wild fish both, and in good numbers at times, subject to natures ebb and flow. Now what we find ourselves with is an abundance of fisheries though not a lot of fish.  It is by anyone’s standards, a large and complex problem. And the solution does not seem to be in sight. There are a good deal of visions out there in the world, but that is certainly not the same thing as solutions.
Some time ago, we decided to be involved in sorting through the abundant evidence regarding the “Great Wild versus Hatchery fish” debate in order to make some sense of what the “root” difficulties were and what the correct solution would be.  I, like most of us, have my own vision of cause and solution, but I felt that in order to be objective, one needs to disregard previous judgments, associations and idealistic concepts. Similar to starting from scratch, we needed to set aside much of what we believe we know and start with a new file cabinet. Take a good hard look at BOTH sides of the issue, base everything on good solid scientific research and make a determination according to where the evidence takes us.
It was back in the day that this Ben Franklin guy discovered electricity and things have gone downhill since then. Fish used to be incredibly abundant around the turn of the century, the one ending at the close of 1899 that is.  Then dam building became all the rage. Fish were unable to pass many of the new dams, and while fishing was commercially viable, we were taking more fish than were being spawned at the time. So hatcheries were brought to the forefront to supply a never ending stream of revenue and food for the masses. And based on this, an entire industry began to develop that included canneries, boat builders, commercial fishers, recreational fishers all the way down the line to even shuttle drivers on the local rivers. It has developed into an industry that today provides more jobs than the oil industry. And more experts it would seem.
“Can’t see the forest for the trees” is an apt phrase. And another one might be “can’t see out of the forest for the trees.”  The wild versus hatchery difficulty seems to be a multi faceted one that encompasses   many (and rightfully so) related issues. Listing the facts as we have determined them is actually quite simple.  Here are a few things we have discovered…
Dams and the resulting lack of wild fish passage.
The environmental state of the rivers will not allow our rivers to support the runs of years ago.
The hatchery fish are taking up resources needed by the wild fish.
Spawning redds are being populated by hatchery fish.
Hatchery and wild fish are mating and the resultant fish are flawed.
It is the management system.
It’s the commercial fishers.
It’s the tribes.
It’s the recreational anglers.
Or not. Feel free to add a few of your own.
We have seen evidence, studies and opinions that support all of the issues listed above. And we have seen the same thing that dismisses all of the above. We like wild fish in our system. Ultimately we would like to see only wild fish in the numbers that would sustain the current industry, or better. And we would like to see this accomplished in the correct manner. To us, the correct manner would be taking into consideration ALL facets of the fisheries and the industry that surrounds them. This is a subject area that is little discussed in the public domain. And it should be.
As an example, perhaps we should focus on the special interest groups (including clubs and organizations) and their goals of including no hatchery fish in future fish runs. Make no mistake; we are in favor of wild fish. They should be protected and encouraged. Some special interest groups have decided (and they have their own good reasons) that hatcheries need to be eliminated, regardless of the price to be paid. But herein lays yet another difficulty. There are some who feel that special interest groups tend to solicit (at least some) support for their groups through donations from those who are in the industry, but when acting in a manner they feel justified, these is no consultation sought from those whose support is requested. We have not stated that the goals of wild fish advocates are incorrect, but we do question the methods.
Hold on! Please don’t burn the article yet…..
If you can step outside your own views for a moment and consider some other issues that we feel are related, perhaps we will be able to get together as a community and seek solutions that the majority feel are favorable for everyone involved. Almost sounds like a Democracy, does it not?  When any group or individual makes a decision without input from those that it will affect it tends to be thought of as self serving.  To put this plainly, if a group of concerned people get together and through a common bond decide to put and end to hatcheries without public preview, it usually appears to be self serving. And IF that group’s common bond is flyfishing then the fingers start to point and the “Elitist” word comes out. And if you belong to a group that feels that the issue needs no discussion with others, or worse, you don’t care about other’s opinions, you have just described elitism. And it reflects badly on others. And the worst issue? Instead of bringing more support from other members of the fishing community, there is a resultant further fracturing in that same community. What kind of force could the entire fishing TRADE bring to the table? Perhaps we all need to be invited……
We need common goals. We need solutions that enlist the help and concerns of ALL people that fish or earn a living from the resource. We need to stop enabling others to make decisions for us. We need to have common goals that the majority supports. To put it simply, we need to all be going in the same direction. Perhaps we need to shut down the hatcheries, perhaps not. More importantly, we need to address the correct issues. Deal with the negative ISSUES that are affecting wild fish. ALL the issues, not a select few.
We wish that wild fish were strong enough to support the recreational and the commercial fisheries and the associated business that are related. We know that this is not the case. Our goals should be to rectify all of the negative issues that our fisheries are facing. Some feel that it is wiser to only fight the battles that you can win, but you cannot win the battles that you do not fight. Our demographic for who should be enlisted in helping to keep our runs healthy and numerous should be everyone that fishes. This is not the politics of Republicans versus Democrats in congress and their difficulties in doing anything positive. This is about fishing, and everybody that holds a fishing license should be given the chance to be involved.

There is, we feel, a solution.  We all enjoy fishing and would not care to see this pastime eliminated. The recreational angler exists because they like to fish. This is the common goal that united many of us to become fishers. Because of this interest many small business were formed that cater to these very anglers. We have no desire to stress the economy with further unemployment. Nor do we wish to see anyone involved in the trade suffer as a result of the decisions of the few. The solution as we see it is to ELIMINATE the need for hatcheries… As good or bad as they may be judged in the future, if we eliminate the need, they will go away. Believe me, if the powers that be could stop the outgoing expense that supports the hatchery system, they will. 
The waters have been so stirred up that it is difficult to know what the truth is regarding wild versus hatchery fish. Simply picking a side and supporting it does not work for everyone out there. Some of us need information in order to support anything. When the fishery becomes depressed to the point that we are forced to stop fishing it is going to be too late to look back and say “Gee, perhaps the hatcheries had some good points after all.” We are the stewards of this planet, like it or not.  And that carries a big responsibility to the ecology and the resources here. And lest we forget…it includes all of us too.
We all fish the same waters…….

JM Jones

Posted by Jack on 05/28 at 10:59 AM in (0) CommentsPermalink
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