The Upper Deschutes will close at the end of this month from Benham falls all the way up to the headwaters at little lava. This is the last weekend to get up there until next season. The flow coming out of Wickiup has dropped and the river below the reservoir is in perfect condition right now. I got up there last night and had fish consistently eating small caddis on top in either black or tan behind rocks and along structure. I love fishing smaller dries but in the middle of the day finding a decent amount of fish looking up can be hard, the wading is tricky and the big boys are usually in the middle of the river. Utilizing a boat is very helpful and will increase your odds of catching some nicer fish. Nymphing a Stonefly or October caddis pupa is a great way to go with a smaller mayfly or midge trailer focusing on the downed logs and drop offs.
This is the time of year when the brown trout will start to get ready to spawn and that means streamers. They become more aggressive and territorial, usually not trying to eat your fly but attack it. I like to strip fast and cover water, fishing downed logs, cut banks and deeper holes with either a Sculpin or bait fish pattern, having some articulation helps give the fly some extra movement or “kick”. Fish White or Olive and don’t be afraid to use some bigger bugs.
Suggested Dries: X-Caddis Tan #16-20, Elk Hair Caddis Black #18-20, Henry’s Fork Caddis #16-20, Sparkle Dun PMD and BWO #16-20, Purple Haze #18-20, Tilt Wing PMD #16-18, Parachute Adams #16-20, Humpy Red #16-18, Para Cricket #12-16, X-Stimulator #10.
Suggested Nymphs: Deep October Pupa #10, Caddis Electric Rock Worm #14-18, Edible Emerger Tan or Olive #16, Psycho Prince #16-18, Guides Choice #14-18, BH Lightning Bug Black or Red #16-20, Micro Mayfly BH Olive #20, Glo Bug Clown #14, Serendipity Red #16.
Suggested Streamers: Kelly Galloup’s Barely Legal, Keller’s Nightmare Brown or Olive, Skulpzilla White or Olive, Icepic Black Or White.