Monday, December 5, 2011

Catching steelhead is child's play in Wenatchee!

Well it has been a while since my last blog and report sorry about that but we have just been fishing everyday as the weather, the fish, and river conditions have created the perfect storm of steelhead catching! We cant miss a day as you never know when it will change. You can always "like" our Facebook page also for more information also. Right now  the weather is chilli in the mornings it is warming up and sunny in the afternoons and the fishing and river pressure are great as well! We have been spending most of our days floating the Wenatchee River in our raft with and occasional day or 2 on the Methow River also, as both are fishing very well as we are averaging 4 to 8 fish a day. We are using mostly jigs right now in blacks and pinks and some oranges  under a  bobber,  (or float for some of you guys) to get some bright nice fish that are hanging out for the catching. We have many days open if you are interested  in catching some of these prized fish and also we have gift certificates available on our website for all of your Christmas shopping needs! Lets go fish!!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Upper Columbia River Sockeye

Upper Columbia River Sockeye

Well, it's that time of year again that we get hundreds of thousands of bright little Sockeye salmon swimming the hundreds of miles over all the dams headed all the way to Lake Osoyoos, a lake that splits Canada and Northern Washington and feeds the Okanogan River. We will be fishing these quality fish in the Columbia River from Wenatchee all the way up to Brewster as they move up river. These fish aren’t huge but are very scrappy and lots of fun to catch, they are a perfect fish for kids as that when you are into them the action is hot and they are perfect size for kids and adults with fish ranging 3-7 pounds. Sockeye or reds or bluebacks as they are also called are primarily plankton eaters but will also eat small shrimp in the ocean and also insects and bugs as juvenile fish. Sockeye will spend as long as 3 years in freshwater as juveniles before heading to the ocean to spend 1 to 4 years in the salt making the fish anywhere from 4 to 7 years old when they reach the Upper Columbia Basin.

The gear
So now to the fun part, the catching of these tasty ruby red meat having feisty fish. There are lots of ways to catch these fish, lots of people use the old standby of herring dodger and red hooks 18” behind and that will work, but if you follow these steps and invest a little cash in the right gear your success will be greatly improved! We will go over all this step by step but here is the overview of how we fish this specialized fishery. Most of the fishing we do is a herring dodger with sockeye rig about 20 feet back from a downrigger trolled anywhere from 10 feet down to 50 feet. The rod makes a difference and we use Fetha Styx Homewater sh-1045-2 10-20lb rods, they have a soft tip so you can see your action and they are light enough to have fun with these fish and strong enough to land the occasional king we get on sockeye gear also ranging up to the 40lb class. Now onto the gear, we use a tandem hook set up with Macs Lures hoochie skirts with UV (thats imortant) in reds and pinks work best, and Macs lures 1.1 smiley blades above it all tipped with coon shrimp. The coon shrimp is important as I said above that they eat shrimp in the ocean and with good fresh coon shrimp your catch will be greatly improved! The recipe I use for the coon shrimp is right here just follow the link its the best one I ever used, the Pautzkes Nectar is the key to the brine, you can get it at Once you got your gear the rest is the fun part,
let it out find the depth that you are marking fish at, sit back and relax in the Eastern Washington sunshine, but don’t get to comfy as you wont have to wait long till your see your rod tip shaking! Your success rate can be greatly improved by going out with a guide for a day and learning the ropes and we are booking sockeye trips now at Good luck and see you out on the water!

What to bring
  • license with punchcard with Columbia River endorsement
  • sunscreen
  • boat fishing is definitely most productive
  • gear with shrimp
  • bbq cause these fish eat great!


Sunday, June 5, 2011

Springer fishing on Icicle kicking in to high gear

So its been a while since I updated this blog sorry about that but fishing has been too good to be sitting in front of the PC, and springer fishing on the Icicle River is not conducive to more than a few hours sleep a night. Fishing has been fair so far with at least a fish per trip average in my boat but the season is still very early with lots of fish to come still with a projected run of over 9000 fish we have only 234 fish at the hatchery so the next few weeks should be pretty good fishing. The weather is nice here in Wenatchee around 80 for past few days with lots of snow low, so the river very easily could get very high and dirty but will push in a bunch of new fish. When the water is high we catch them on plugs wrapped in bait strips marinaded in Pautzkes Nectar and when the water clears up we will be using Fire Cured eggs and herring also soaked in Nectar. So far it has been a nice mix of fish with several 5 year fish over 20 lbs and a mix of 10-15 lb fish as well as some jacks showing up recently also. We will be fishing the Icicle River through the first couple weeks in July and anticipating some pretty good fishing! We have a few dates open for the rest of the fishery if you want to catch springers in the sunshine get your date asap before they are all gone. See you on the water!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Steelhead was great but springers are coming!

Steelhead season is gone but it was another great season! The rivers were way more up and down this year than in the past few years so level and flow were tough sometimes but it kept being consistent especially the second half. Now we are getting ready for spring chinook on the Icicle that will open mid May and is promising to be another good year up on the Icicle river in Leavenworth. We will be fishing it using herring plunking and back-bouncing and also ran on divers, or using eggs with Pautzkes Fire cure running different colors on different days fished the same ways. We also will be running some bait wrapped  plugs  on the end of our Fetha Styx 1021 plug rods to catch them also, like the one pictured above, that is a pretty typical Icicle river fish with fish this year expected to be a little larger usual. We are booking spring chinook trips for this spring starting mid May with the best fishing being in June and early July, as with all trips we will be providing all the gear and bait, we will be floating in a fiberglass driftboat on this scenic float. Book your trip early as this fills up quickly! See you on the water!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

23 Days Left to get the best fishing of the year!

So we only have 23 days left in this GREAT steelhead season  and fishing is as good as it has been all year! All year we have battled with fluctuating river levels and crazy weather but here at the end all is calming down and fishing is very good. We have been fishing mostly the Wenatchee River and have been doing very good n the upper river but there is also lots of fish in the lower river and not as much pressure so we have been splitting up our floats and alternating the days on which stretch of river to fish. We have had some great days with an over 20 fish last weekend! We have also been fishing the Methow River where there is great fishing also the river is in great shape and the fishing is good  I have been fishing it at least a day or 2 a week and having great success. We are fishing with the same jigs as earlier marribou and areo jigs in blacks and pinks. The fish at this time of year are mainly smokers  but great fighters with it being a great time to get your eggs for salmon season, only a couple months till springers on the Icicle!  We are booking trips with days open till the end of the season and also booking trips for springers on the Icicle openning May 15 and also Sockeye and Summer run kings for the Columbia that will open July 1. We have great fishing in the sunshine go out and get some!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Hello all!
So the rivers are all flooding, as I type this the Wenatchee River has gone from 1500 CFS to over 15,000 CFS in the matter of 3 days!  I am hearing stories from the west side of the mountains that are much worse than what we have gotten here but it still sucks cause we have  a river full fish great fishing weather and cant fish! Well or can we???  So I have gottten lots of emails asking where to fish what to do?  We have it pretty good over here as we have options. Over on the coastal rivers they re nor so lucky. Some basic principles apply to all high water fishing, fish close to shore, fish soft seams ( the slacker water usually from current lines to the shore), fish a river that is on the fall not the rise, larger presentation, look for clear tributaries flowing in fish will lie along that seem also to clear out there gills. Think like a fish where would you be in hurricane if there was debris flowing at you thats the way the fish feel with high water and all the junk flowing down stream.
Here in NCW we have other options also.  We have a great stable river full of fish that runs the whole stretch of NCW in the Columbia. It will cloud up abit but is stable flows and will fish very good this time of year from the confluence of the Wenatchee all the way up to Chief Joseph Dam. You can use bait in this section of river while it is still barbless hooks but I use jigs tipped with shrimp cured in Pautzkes Fire Cure and soaked in some Pautzkes Nectar. Also the Methow river will be fishable way before the Wenatchee will be ready so that's another great alternative all the ice should be off with the warmer temps and it should be fishing great thats where I will be this week hitting some holes on the Columbia on my way up. Don't forget about the Okanogan River also it fishes very good this time of year. Hope this helps, just cause one river is out of shape use that tie to expand your fishing it will pay off in the long run and hopefully in the short run also with a few fish in the cooler! See you out there! Brad

Friday, January 14, 2011

winter steelhead is good in NCW!

Hey all! Hope everyone had a great holiday, I definitely did lots ofgood food, great company, and lots of fishing and even more catching! Fishing is  good on the Wenatchee River now and also  the Columbia is fishing really good using shrimp in Pautzkes  cure and marinated in Nectar. On the Wenatchee we are using our tried and true cold water jigs that will have a little slower action and cold water steelhead cant resist them as we got 9 the other day in a half day fishing. Fishing is good a little chilly but book a trip and catch some fish we are offering cold weather specials this time of yer also! See you on the water!