Bring on the winter steelhead run on the Rogue River, Oregon! Had one steelhead on this day, but it came unglued. Would have been a double (bird and fish) McNabb.
The mild temperatures, clouds and light rains continue to dominate the Rogue Valley weather as we enter early June. The river is flowing at a fair clip about 2100 CFS at the above pictured area. The final fish count for the winter steelhead run is 14,255 fish. There are already 103 summer steelhead counted into the upper river above Gold Ray Dam. The spring chinook numbers are rising daily the count now being 8,662 salmon. A good spot to intercept a “springer” with a fly is a natural crossing over a gravel bar. Early in the morning or late in the day is often a best time for such a feat. I like it when the fish can be seen moving through such water all day long. Then you know that you are right on a peak of the run! Good fly patterns are the Carpetbagger series, Muddy Buddies and generally long dark leech patterns.
Here’s the mid-week look at Spring salmon on the upper Rogue River. There is a lot of water flowing. I checked the CFS this day at 4,400. That didn’t discourage me for I was headed for a gravel bar again. There was a fresh beauty to the Rogue Valley skyline.
While the Rogue River flow is up, the tributaries have diminished. This is a good time to check and learn the basalt rock bottom. Knowledge like that can come in handy when one has to cross at a higher future flow.
The Rogue’s flow swelled along the river banks. A wide flooded area offers opportunity to fish many migration lanes. With the Rogue’s Spring chinook count only up to about 1,300, there just has not been a lot of movement to note.
The Salmonbagger was fished extensively. Naturally the G.R. Hare’s Ear was attached as a dropper fly.
Spring fills me with energy and optimism. There is no fresher time of year.
It’s Steelhead Weather on the Upper Rogue River, Oregon. This means cold, foggy mornings with sometimes–if you’re lucky–clearing up in the afternoons. Today was exceptionally clear and bright. The chill, however, remained in the air and in the water. A visit to the middle Rogue River brought one fish to hand.
Earlier this week trips to Takelma on the upper Rogue River, the hatchery section and Rogue Elk Park were fun but the large steelies and coho eluded us.
All in all a slow cold start to December. Let’s hope for some rain and the fish counts to rise.
Out on the Upper Rogue River in the drifter with you on the oars & me twitching a Carpetbagger aka Selbicky’s “Magic” Fly is my favorite place to be. Looking for the big fall steelies…