After a frigid January where our temps rarely hit 15 degrees, the month of February has been slightly warmer and certainly more conducive to Steelhead fishing. I've spent a lot of time on the water this month, and done quite a many trips for this time of year which i'm very happy about. Needless to say, not every day was good conditions and we fished in some very cold, windy, and snowy weather this month which is to be expected. Hey, it is winter Steelhead after all!
Overall, we saw some really good fishing this month while we still had stable conditions, two of my best days this season came this month. As the conditions began to destabilize and we got some warm weather, followed by rain, the fishing has quickly deteriorated over the course of the past week. The largest concentration of fish in the river remains in the upper reaches, which is normal for this time of year. Staying dialed in on the fishes behavior and key locations was monumental to our success this month. Going very long and light with our leaders was crucial to getting bit in the prolonged period of low water we had. Fresh bait the right sized egg sacs also played a critical role. Pink worms, beads, and some flies and jigs also made up a portion of our catch, all fished suspended under a float.
The recent rise in water and ice cold runoff from the tug hill has made things very difficult over the past few days. Hooking a few fish a day became the norm, but that's just the way it is when you're dealing with instability in the river, you have to take the good with the bad. Once flows drop down a bit or the fish settle into these flows, the fishing will pick back up in the River. We are seeing a large amount of spawn out fish for this time of year, and plenty of fish have been showing signs of spawning activity. We will see how things shape up going forward into march, we should have a mix of pre spawn, spawning, and post spawn fish to keep us busy, however we are a few weeks away from the main Steelhead spawn. I think we will see some decent to good fishing in March but only time will tell.
I have very few dates left for spring Steelhead on the river, give me a call or text to inquire.