After a warm week with some overcast skies and sporadic rain, we can say: the bugs are out! The National Weather Service is calling for some temperature fluctuations over the weekend, but they should stabilize by Monday (UO’s Commencement for those who want to avoid the chaos of the University District). Aside from some swings in temp, the fishing should be solid through the coming week.
McKenzie River fishing continues to be nymphs in the morning hours (stone, Pat’s rubber legs, perdigon, Frenchie) and Green Caddis #14 in the evening. That said, we have had some luck with the dries earlier in the day. The dropping water levels, warming temps, and slowing river have brought out the bigger bugs, too. Dry-dropper set-ups are now a good option, and for those dry-or-die anglers you can have a solid day if you apply yourself.
Willamette River fishing has been solid for dries, streamers, and nymphs. The swing bite has returned, especially for soft hackles. We’ve seen small tan caddis (#14-18) coming off, baetis, and some larger caddis (think cinnamon colored, not green). In terms of bigger fish, the longer days have moved the witching hour back so get ready for those late evening summer time swings.
Middle Fork Willamette River Fishing Report:
Middle Fork Willamette from Oakridge to Black Canyon:
Water clarity is good but the run-off is keeping the flows high. You won’t find us complaining about water. Oregon needs it!
1840 cfs at Salt Creek and 4800 cfs at the NF of the Middle Fork. Both of these flows are remaining steady. Water is clear and we expect fishing to be excellent.
Middle Fork Willamette from Dexter Dam to Coast Fork Confluence:
Flows are back to normal at Dexter. Seems like the Army Corps is still unable to make up its mind. Fluctuations nearer the dam are frustrating and they do have an effect down stream.
Dexter now sits at 2840 cfs, which is essentially a summer flow. We’ll see how long that last before the engineers start playing with their valves again.
Jasper has flows at 4220 cfs. This is normal and the swingable runs are back in form.
Middle Fork from McKenzie Confluence upto Marshall Island
Armitage is at 6390 cfs, which is above normal and a little bump from last week. Through the confluence is fishing well. Over the weekend, expect a lot of sleds to be running up, and if the weather holds, there should a major float tube hatch in the Armitage vicinity.
McKenzie River Fishing Report:
Above Leaburg Dam:
Water clarity is outstanding (as always). Levels have been dropping but the river is still fast. While nymphing is always solid, we’ve shifted to the dry/nymph combo as the temps heat up and the hatches start. Green caddis, stones, and possie buggers have all been our go-to choices.
Vida is normal at 5030 cfs and Gate Creek is sitting above normal at 250 cfs but remaining steady.
Below Leaburg Dam:
Water clarity is good while water levels are still high, but fishing well. Nymphs in the morning, dries in the evening. Consider a dry dropper in the later morning or earlier evening. Throw a big bug to see what happens!
Flows below Leaburg are at 5400 cfs and dropping 20 cfs/hour. This is a little bump from last week, but should not be too much of a distraction.
Walterville is at 5490 cfs. That classifies as above normal for this time of year and it is quite a bump from last week. While this stretch is still fishing well, the increased flows will create some challenges whether wading on rowing. Pay attention and be safe.
Lastly, Hayden is at 5820 and rising by 30 cfs/hour which is normal. But, the Mohawk is still humming along at 488 cfs. This is adding to some clarity issues at the confluence down for a little bit.
Reservoirs we Fish:
For those interested parties, here are the current levels of our local reservoirs:
Hills Creek: 87% full
Lookout Point: 91% full
Dorena: 103% full
Cottage Grove: 99% full
Fall Creek: 9101 full
Fern Ridge: 101% full
About Home Waters
Home Waters Fly Fishing is the shop you've been looking for. For fly fishers, by fly fishers.
We're dedicated to providing friendly and knowledgeable service. So come on by or give us a call. If we don't have what you're looking for, we can probably get it.
Open Tuesday-Friday 10 a.m.- 6 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m.- 5 p.m. (541) 342-6691.
*Open Sunday and Monday the week before Christmas.
We are open Christmas Eve until 4pm and remain closed for the week between Christmas and New Year's Day. We may tack on a day or two to that week, depending on how the calendar works out.