Should have posted this earlier, forgive me. Looks to me like the Klickitat will be fishable tomorrow. I’m guessing around 2′ vis. Certainly fishable for those looking for fall Chinook with bait or divers or heavy spinners/spoons. Flows continue dropping and from what I heard today the salmon bite it on. Water clarity should be improving over the weekend so if you can get out and fish it could be a good weekend.
For the fly fisherman, I think the water is good to go, not clear but plenty of vis for a good chance at a steelhead or chinook,. helps to have your fly in the water though.
Klickitat discharge peaked mid-day yesterday and has been dropping since. Satellite weather maps suggest most of the rain has passed so flow should continue dropping and water clarity should be improving over the next couple days. We dodged a situation that could have been much worse. NOAA’s discharge prediction indicated a rise in flows of nearly 400cfs, turned out to be only 175cfs. This provided a nice push of water so salmon should be moving and hopefully the bite will be on. Took the following pic around 9:30am at the town boat landing, about 6″ of vis this morning…I’m hoping it’ll double by this evening as I hope to fish.Putting together a list of fly rods and reels that will be going on sale this weekend through the rest of the season. The list will be found on a tab at the top of this page “Echo & Hardy Spey and fly gear sale” and should be up before the day is done. The list will include Echo, Hardy & Greys rods and reels along with Airflo lines. Please contact me if you have any questions or are interested in anything. We’ll provide free shipping to lower 48 US states on orders over $100 and we’ll cover the sales tax.
Klickitat Trader, (509) 369-3601. Email is best: firstname.lastname@example.org
The website has been down for about 24 hours. Struggled most of the day to figure out what was wrong and thanks to Evan Burck we got it up and running again.
Fished early afternoon behind the house, had about 1.5′ vis, the water was fishable but not good. Rain on and off and some salmon moving. It was a pleasure to fish. The evening water was a lot worse, 6″ vis at best, pics posted below.
The water is brown so I think it’s the result of a lot of rain in the upper watershed. Mt. Adams is getting snow so this isn’t glacial till. This push of water will likely make the salmon fishing better this weekend, nothing like a push of water to get salmon moving and increase aggression. Flows jumped quickly to around 875 cfs, an increase of about 175cfs. A lot less than the NOAA predictions but it could keep rising. Weather forecast suggests the rain will slow or stop tomorrow and Friday through the weekend will provide clearing as the hydrograph falls. Salmon fishing this weekend could be very good, steelhead will do what they do…steelhead are not predictable as far as I can tell.
Ugly pics of the evening water.
Water didn’t come into shape this morning as I thought and hoped it would. Actually it looked a bit worse in the lower river this morning. Had an errand this AM so drove downriver around 9am, on my return trip around noon it looked a bit better. The following pic was taken at the town boat landing around 2pm. I’ll be fishing within the hour.NOAA’s river forecast is ugly. If they are correct the river will rise over 300 cfs tonight and tomorrow, if that happens the water will go dirty brown..
I’m hearing the water is brown/blown out at Stinson this morning. Don’t know what happened, likely the heat of the last few days. I’ll post more when I know more.
Update: Returned from Stinson and the water doesn’t look as bad as I had heard. It’s still green but vis has dropped to around a foot. Since I’m assuming heat from the last few days caused this I’ll assume it’s cycling as it normally does earlier in the summer. Better water will be found upriver in the evening and downriver in the morning. This should apply for tomorrow (Sunday 9/21) because we’re having heat again today.
This pic taken around 2:30 pm at mile 16. About 1 foot vis, maybe a little more.
Fished the evening water behind the house. Water was way better than I anticipated, 3′ vis when I stepped out and it was close when I stepped in. I really enjoyed it though I didn’t even get a bump. There were salmon around big time, rarely a moment without some sort of confirmation. I swung a fly through what I perceived was the active water twice, no love for me…and a couple flies lost to the far bank vegetation. Ooh, it sure looked good and I was on my toes expecting a take most of the time. Took a few pics of the water I’m blessed to fish. First is the step in water, second is the water I expected to hook up in and third is evening setting in. I’m lucky to live this life.
Went up to Liedl this morning and noticed a little color in the water. Not bad, still fishable even with a fly, but if rains in the upper watershed continue it could get worse. Mt. Adams was enveloped in clouds but temps indicate it should be snow up there.
Clarity was good down low this morning but has gone to around 1′ vis by early afternoon. Assuming the color came from rains and not glacial till it should clear up pretty quickly. It’s still steelhead green, not brown but watch flows. If discharge spikes again it will get worse. Flows spiked from about 670cfs to 730cfs early this morning. The increase in discharge could/should/might initiate some salmon movement upstream.
Didn’t get a chance to get in the water until around 4pm. It was overcast a good bit of the day, mostly when I was NOT in the water. Fished until around 6:20pm and intended to go back out but dinner caught me and took the wind out of my sail. I did notice a number of salmon (assumed salmon). One I saw do a perfectly executed “steelhead roll” but it was definitely a salmon…got a good look at it. Most of the other activity was surface disruptions, not flopping but what looked like large fish slurping bugs off the surface. There was no hatch coming off so I assume they were salmon just moving around and sometimes nearing the surface.
We need some rain to get the salmon moving. Looks like Bonneville passage is falling off notably so it looks like the run will be good but nothing like last year.
Hearing mixed opinions concerning the fall chinook run up the Klick. Some are saying there are a lot of fish but few seem to be catching them. Most say they just aren’t biting! I haven’t seen anything that suggests the run will be anywhere near last year’s. They could be late but Bonny passage is petering out and so far we’re 105K below last year to date (9/13, fall chinook only). On the positive side, most steelheaders are doing reasonably well. The DART fish passage website is showing very strong returns of wild steelhead over Bonneville.
On another note: The Klicktitat Trader is loaded with Salmon/Steelhead appropriate spey and single hand fly rods, both Echo and Hardy/Greys. I need to move a bunch of this stuff so will be putting a sale page together in the next week or so. Hardy has produced, in the Marksman 2 series, some excellent spey rods. Stop by the shop and you’ll learn why I say this. We’ll be offering serious deals on spey and single hand rods, reels and full setups. Talk to me about classic Hardy reels and you’ll likely end up with one. Watch for a tab on top labeled “Spey & fly tackle SALE”.
Don’t understand the drop in fall chinook passage over Bonneville, could it be the 67K days were peak passage days? I was hoping for a 100K day…or two or three? Looks like the numbers will be very good but not what was predicted, though it could still happen.
There are a lot of salmon in the lower river, bank anglers and boaters below the Pitt Bridge are finding the most fish.
Frequently mention fishing behind my home because it’s where I fish the most. Seems I always have a plan to go elsewhere but it’s just too easy to fish the home water. I bought my house because of the water behind it, caught my first Klicktitat steelhead there a few years before I was transferred here. Used to hook a steelhead or two in the “home water” run each time I fished it. Around 2006 or 7 we had big high water and the substrate changed significantly. A lot of cobble came downstream and filled in the structure making it shallower and faster flowing. Fishing went downhill for me.
Last evening I took the plastic wrap off the 9126 Hardy Marksman2 I stole from the shop and replaced the Nextcast WA45 line I had been using with a Delta 8/9 multi-tip with the heaviest tip installed. Can’t say the Delta was better because it wasn’t but it did reduce my stripping a few pulls. Hooked a good steelhead. Strong wild hen took close to the far bank and gave me a serious mental boost. Didn’t try for a pic because I had her in shallow water and she clearly wanted to leave. Here’s a pic of tonight’s water.