OFC Fishing Observation Guide
Whether you’re a beginner or an avid angler, it helps to familiarize yourself with Oregon Fishing Club (OFC) waters. Before you head out, take note of the following observations to ensure a successful trip, especially if fly-fishing is on the agenda.
- What does active wildlife mean?
If you notice a lot of squirrels running about or birds flying overhead, then it’s probably going to be a good day. When swallows fly over the lake, it means the bugs are hatching – which, in turn, means the fish are active, too.
- Should I fish even if the water is off-color?
Yes. When the water is muddied and dirty, you can count on the fish to be active in shallow, darker areas in an effort to camouflage themselves. Two can play at that game if you use large, dark-colored flies, such as black and brown buggers and leeches.
- How does water temperature affect Northwest Oregon fishing conditions?
Always pay attention to the weather. When a warm-front storm arrives in either winter or early spring, it will warm up the water temperatures and raise the barometer – so head out the next day for prime conditions. Otherwise, look for warm water temps in the winter, particularly between 10 and 3 o’clock, and cool water temps in the fall.
On windy days, remember to cast across the wind. It will make it easier for you and will position your line in profile view of hungry trout. If you spot a calm patch of water, head over and use your fish nymphs and emergers.
- Why isn’t my seal-bugger working?
Having no luck with your seal-bugger? Check your fly; oftentimes, the tail can get wrapped around the hook, reducing its effectiveness. Also, try not to let the fly enter the water tail first when casting.
- Do I need a fish finder?
While you don’t need one, it can be useful for determining the depth, creek beds and structure breaks in each of our lakes. Since these spots are known for their abundant trout, a fish finder can tell you exactly where to cast to get the most bites.
- What do I do if I see a boil or hump?
Sometimes you can tell where the fish are feeding by the rise and bend of the water. Even if it’s not a complete boil, chances are the fish are just under the surface. After sighting a boil, cast ahead to minimize the noise of your fly, and after noticing humped water or light reflections beneath the surface, keep your cast within two feet of the surface with a sinking fly pattern.
- When is a wet fly more effective than a dry line?
First, when used with a floating line/leader, a wet fly performs well in the winter and early spring when the fish aren’t very active. The sound of the plop will pique their interest.
Second, if there’s a breeze, take advantage of the ripples to hide your leader and catch the fish off guard.
Learn more about OFC-exclusive lakes, ponds and rivers throughout the Portland, Oregon area by contacting us today.