State of the Deschutes

    Our “Crown Jewel” of steelhead and trout rivers in Oregon, the DESCHUTES River is in trouble!  But… It is still fishing quite well.

A good many of us who fish realize that the river now faces some new challenges. From where I sit, river temperatures, declining insect populations, algae growth and wide spread “black spot” disease are a few of the most often discussed subjects. Many of the folks that we come into contact with feel that the mixing tower at Lake Billy Chinook is the reason for the decline of the rivers health. There seems to be plenty of science-based facts that indicate this conclusion. And if I seem a bit iffy, forgive me. I am not a scientist, biologist or any other “ist” that has the education to make educated conclusions. I DO believe these problems exist and, more importantly, need to be addressed. I have seen the evidence and there can be no doubt that the Deschutes River is changing, and not changing for the better.

    Rather than drag you, the reader, through the thought process of trying to convince you of the reasons behind the difficulties. Or urge you to support the groups working hard to affect these declining changes (and you should be helping to support these groups). I will instead offer the same advice I have offered seemingly forever.

You might want to head to the Deschutes and do some fishing. Trout?  Steelhead? Same answer to both questions. Fishing has been reliably solid! No, not red hot, but very consistent regardless of the media’s reporting.

Guides are telling us that this season has been very good for trout. Caddis hatches are still going strong. Fishing has been great, and it seems that no one is fishing. It’s no secret that this year’s steelhead return has been very low, but the catching has been fair. Recently, it has turned into a great time to fish for steelhead. There have been many reported multiple fish days of late. There might be fewer steelhead, but with fewer folks fishing, your odds are actually better. Regardless of the difficulties there is one constant thread that runs through this…. A good day fishing is still, a good day fishing.
Declining insects, algae growth and all these negative issues aside… The fishing has been quite good. The river needs help, yes. And now! But, you should head on over if you are looking to get a bit of fishing in.

John Jones

Posted by Jack on 09/19 at 10:35 AM in (0) Comments






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