The time has finally come and the adult salmon flies have started to make their presence known on the Lower Deschutes. We’ve had several guides who found fish willing to opportunistically take some large dries in the lower stretches of the camp water, and the hatch is really starting to heat up in the Maupin area. It will take some time for the hatch to progress and work its way towards the day stretch, and it’s anyone’s guess as to when it will peak on the various sections of the lower river. Fish will move close to the banks and tend to be most concentrated along stretches of water with overhanging vegetation and trees crawling with big bugs. We have the rare opportunity to fish size 6 and larger dry flies to extremely aggressive trout, it is time to get excited about the spectacle that is the Deschutes salmonfly hatch. Keep in mind that there is typically only a short window that will produce the mind boggling dry fly action we all dream about, and that sometimes fishing nymphs will produce better numbers of fish. Dry droppers are a great way to fish this hatch, so be open minded in your approach! Smaller mayfly nymphs listed below will still be effective on the upper stretches of the lower river, but the fish will key in on the large stonefly nymphs in the very near future.
Suggested nymphs: Black or brown jimmy legs #4-8, peacock double bead stone #4-8, lex’s improved black stone #4-8, golden stone #6-10, black or red two bit hooker #16-18, black lightning bug #16-18, olive copper microstone #14-18, trout retriever #6-10
Suggested dries: Burnt orange or golden chubby chernobyl #6-8, chubby norm #6-8, fluttering stone salmon #6-8, orange or yellow X stimulator #4-8, rogue stone #4-8, true salmonfly #4-8, salmonfly rollin’ stone #4-8, demoe’s mill creek golden #6-10