Archive for July 12th, 2012

12
Jul
12

Deschutes River Passage: Restoring Runs & What All Goes Into It.

“A 12-pound male salmon, one of thousands of Chinook that biologists and volunteers released into the Upper Deschutes tributaries above the Pelton-Round Butte Hydro Project in 2008, has made history. It’s the first fish to return. A fish with its right maxillary bone clipped — a marker indicating it was released in the Upper Deschutes tributaries, swam into the Pelton fish trap on May 25. The fish had migrated down the Deschutes River in 2009, spent two years in the Pacific Ocean and swam up the Columbia River and 100 miles up the Deschutes.”                                                                                                                   

The first Chinook to return to a release area of the upper Deschutes River.

The Deschutes Passage has been an interesting project to study on many levels. The passage way construction, introduction of steelhead and salmon fry into upper tributaries of the Crooked, Metolius and Deschutes Rivers, habitat reconstruction, club participations, stream flow efforts….all the associated issues with getting Steelhead and Salmon to return above Pelton Dam. It is worth going back and reviewing the news releases and ‘science’ behind this 15 year long project if you have any interest in stream restorations or ocean going species. This returning fish is not new info. The piece is over a year old, but the project as a whole is worth digging into including recent news of some concern about the sockeye run.

 Deschutes River Passage   The archives of the Bend Bulletin might be useful also
12
Jul
12

Kid’s Outing, Fishing, All Alone………Beautiful

What are the chances of, in the Summer, going to a beautiful setting and not laying eyes on another soul save your children? Fishing was productive for the little ones. The view was amazing. The weather perfect. And, the privacy priceless, as they say. 

My grandchildren were fortunate that dad had some time off and that he felt the compulsion to get them away from toys, games and TV. They had a very good time catching trout and enjoying the wonderful view of Mt. Hood. Most important was my granddaughter was relentlessly on her dad “when are we going to go fishing again”. It had the look and feel of a sunny, late October day, not mid-July.

12
Jul
12

Fly Fishing: Line Management Onto the Reel

Regardless of the type of reel (level wind, spinning or fly reel) it always important to watch how the line is going onto the reel whether fighting a fish or quickly reeling in to re-rig or cast. Reeling in a tangle onto the reel while playing a substantial fish is a possible disaster.

Here I was playing a substantial fish off the reel and I had reeled that mess down through the rod’s guides. When the fish ran, the tangle did come off the reel but failed to make it back up through all the guides. Fish gone. Fortunately no damage to the rod’s guide(s).

Normally, I would use my right hand fingers to tuck the fly line, above the tangle, behind my forefinger/middle finger and against the cork. From there I would attempt to use my off hand to untangle the mess by allowing some slack to the line around the tangle. If the fish is sizable, you may only get one shot at this. In the photo above, I never noticed the tangle as I fought the fish.

12
Jul
12

Fly Fishing: Casting With Your Off Hand

There are  obvious practical reasons to learn to cast with your off hand. A few years back, because of injuries and degeneration, I had to have my right wrist fully fused. A titanium bar was inserted from the back of my middle finger/upper knuckle, up my forearm and screwed in along with the wrist bone being replaced with hip bone and then fused. May I just say that it is a very painful surgery/recovery if you consider it. That said, years later, my right hand is slowly suffering loss of sensations and swelling/pain in the knuckles.

A full day of casting (maybe catching) eventually makes the right hand give out. I have learned to ease this gradual decline by casting with my left hand/arm. I have never progressed beyond a single haul, but I can get the line out via roll casts and normal casts. The right hand is able to do the normal line retrieval. Because my reel is still set up for left hand cranking, if I do hook a fish I still have to revert to bringing the fish in with the normal right hand holding the rod while the left hand cranks the reel or strips. But, that occasional casting with the left hand helps. It also helps when the lay of the land necessitates a different casting presentation.

Also, there are theories that doing endeavors with your off hand, arm, foot etc. actually may improve your performance afterwards with your dominant side. I recall my son’s venture into throwing the javelin. He had smaller practice javelins/darts and he was encouraged to also practice throwing with his off hand and practice his footwork to support that off hand approach-throw. It seemed to work…for whatever reasons. The same seems to work by casting with your off hand. 

Not only do you expand your tactical possibilities, but you may well improve your strong side casting abilities. Worth a try.




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