About this blog

This blog is all about fly fishing for native trout. On it I cover trip reports, fishing tactics, conservation, the latest news about native trout species and much more. This site provides a companion to my web page Nativetroutflyfishing.com.


Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Washington's Native Westslope Cutthroat

The eastern side of the Cascade Mountains in Washington hosts a handful of watersheds in which native westslope cutthroat have managed persist through the onslaught of habitat destruction and non-native trout introductions that the last century has brought about.

Every year a make a trip up to one of these streams to fish for these beautiful fish and this year I was joined by Clint. This year due to a high snow pack and cool spring we found the creek running about a foot higher than usually but crystal clear.

The Creek

Generally this stream is a pocket water fisherman's dream, but due to the high water the fish were not in their usual lies preferring the slower pools and runs. Once we found where they were holding, the fish were quite eager to rise for a dry fly. We worked our way upstream catching several cutthroat up to 12 or 13 inches in each likely looking spot.

A native Westslope Cutthroat

In the stretch above Clint caught the first fish but after unhooking it his fly got tangled in the net and in the few moments that followed I managed to catch 3 fish on three casts and lost a 4th one. After we got Clint's fly free he pull two more Westslopes out of the hole before we continued upstream.

We continued working our way upstream having to climb around several sets of falls to get to the best water between the last set of falls and the point where the creek forks.

The last waterfall before the best water on the creek.

Above these falls the average size of the fish drastically increases being closer to 10" instead of 6-8" below. It was above there that Clint got his big fish of the day.

Clint's big Westslope Cutthroat

A dry fly caught cutthroat

We finished out the day by fishing the rest of the way up the forks, I got a couple decent fishing on my favorite riffle on the stream before we worked our way back to the car about 1.5 miles downstream.

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