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MARCH 28, 2011

Yakima 3

Filed under Trips @ 11:10 am

The warm weather had pushed the CFS to upward of 3500 CFS. That's a lot of water for this time of year. Basically, it means drift boats and fishing tight to the bank. The fish are holding close, because that's what they do in high water. Bryan suggested using a San Juan Worm about two feet below a stonefly called a Pat's Stone. An indicator about four feet above the stone fly. Dead drifting the whole mess about six inches from the bank, which is a casting maneuver worth writing home about when the wind picks up.

We picked up some flies at Red's Fly Shop on the Yakima and immediately headed to camp and the aforementioned music, whiskey and food issues. Jim Garner brought the KFC and we ate like kings. No, that's the truth—KFC. Delicious after a couple of cocktails and a frontal lobotomy. We ate every crumb. The next morning we'd hit it hard.

The next morning was perfect. A slight mix of rain and snow. Perfect trout weather. What the heck, they gotta eat today as well, so they might as well eat a stone fly or a worm, and it might as well be ours. Needless to say, there was no one else fishing anywhere. I mentioned Bryan has a way with trout. Today was no different. For a while, every few minutes you'd hear him on the walkie-talkie yelling about someone in his boat having a fish on again. There really isn't any rocket science to this technique, but there is a huge science to understanding the whole gestalt of seasons, and flow, and trout, and mood, and opportunity and catching as opposed to fishing. He's a fishy kind of guy. That, and he understands the lifestyle and the mood of trout. You and I may have some work to do in that regard. Pretty simple. No one else hit much at all. Everyone in Bryan's boat got a boatload of fish. The biggest measured out around 20-something and the rest were smaller, but it's the fricking middle of winter and no one is supposed to be catching fish from the get go. Contrary to what most people think, it can be done. Ask Bryan. "Must be the season of the witch". (More in this series in the coming days.)

Yakima River Image 10

Jim Garner strikes a Yakima River rainbow on a Pat's Stone Fly, which he had
running about four feet above a pink San Juan Worm.  Photo by Gary LaComa

Yakima River Image 10a  Yakima River Image 10b

(Left) A typical pink San Juan Worm pattern used all winter long on the Yakima. (Right) A typical
Pat's Stone, which is usually run in tandem with a San Juan Worm.  Photos by Red's Fly Shop

Yakima River Image 11

Bill Graham hits a fabulous rainbow also on the Pat's Stone pattern.

Yakima River Image 12

Bryan LaComa nets a 20-inch rainbow and the celebration begins.

Yakima River Image 13

Bill Graham, Jim Garner and Bryan LaComa strike a timeless flyfishing pose.

Yakima River Image 14

A terrific Yakima winter rainbow goes home.

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