Fishing for trout on the lower stretches of the Deschutes has been consistent and cold. The trout are moving into some slower and deeper pools for the winter as they stock up and pack the pounds on. The Kings have been spawning and the fish definitely key into the big eggs that don’t make it into the gravel, but rather float downstream in the current. Using two or even three flies under an indicator is our preferred method this time of year as well as European style nymphing with a drop shot rig. Make sure your flies are getting deep enough with a couple small split shot just above your first fly, I like to put them above a knot if I can to prevent them from sliding down towards the flies.
The Steelhead fishing has been decent the last few weeks, finding your fish will take some work but is not impossible by any stretch. This time of year you can typically see an influx of bigger fish that arrive a little later in the run consisting of good numbers of wild Steelhead. Wild fish are curious and can be very ‘grabby’ when presented with a swung fly which can make this time of year a very exciting one. A few rules of thumb I use when searching for Steelhead are fishing closer to the surface in low or altered light conditions and staying down deep when the sun is on the water. I use smaller traditional patterns in the mornings and evenings fished on or just beneath the surface and switch to either an intruder or leech on a sink tip for the rest of the day.
Suggested Dries: Purple Haze #14-18, Parachute Adams #14-18, Clarks Stone #8-10, Orange Chubby Chernobyl #8-10, Henry’s Fork Caddis #16-18, X Caddis #16-18, Cutters Caddis #16-18
Suggested Nymphs: Black or Brown Jimmy Legs #8-12, Deep October Pupa #8-10, Guide’s Choice Hare’s Ear #14-18, Jigged Tungsten Hare’s Ear #14-16, BH Real Hare’s Ear #14-18, Red Two Bit Hooker #14-18, Red Pheasant Tail #14-18, CDC Jigged Pheasant Tail #14-16, Olive Micro Mayfly #16-18