Tomorrow, May 16th, we kick off the 2019 Columbia River Summer Steelhead Season. With a daily bag limit of 2 steelhead through June 30th, and 1 steelhead during the month of July, this has become a favorite fishery for many. Fishing the Columbia River below just Portland gives us the opportunity to get in front of the fish before they spread out and head up the tributaries. With the higher water we are seeing this year, conditions look perfect for a successful opener! While summer steelhead love coon shrimp paired with a spin ‘n glow, at the start of the season we will upsize our presentations with a prawn to make them even more attractive in the higher, more turbid water. We spend a lot of time scouting to determine which spots the fish are favoring, and discovering which coon shrimp flavors are preferred each year. A prepared fishing guide, who has put in thought and effort, is worth his weight in fish fillets, and makes a world of difference when you’re out on the water with us.
This year we are expecting a decent run of summer steelhead bound for the Lower Columbia tributaries, which are the fish we catch in the early part of the season. As we move into July, we typically follow the fish and shift our fishing efforts to the Lewis River. On this Washington river, we side drift and break out the light tackle and salmon eggs. There’s nothing better than feeling that bite in your hand and watching a fresh summer steelhead jump out of the water with your bait in its mouth! This is a very active fishery as we run the river in a jet boat on the warm summer days. You’ll have the rod in your hand all day as you cast into the runs. We have a guide who grew up steelhead fishing on the Lewis River. That experience gives us a huge advantage on knowing where to find fish after they are spooked and highly pressured in the latter part of the fishing day. Summer steelhead on the Lewis River lets us keep the action going all day.
Whether you’re fishing for summer steelhead on the lower Columbia River or the Lewis River, prepare to be surrounded by beauty. Oregon and Washington provide some of the most amazing scenery year round. It’s easy to be distracted by the bald eagles swooping down from the huge fir trees. You may spot deer in the trees and river otters playing along the banks. A guided fishing trip is a chance to get away from the busyness of your daily schedule. Enjoy all that the day has to offer while we take care of all of the details.
Questions? Looking to get out for some summer steelhead? Contact us on our Questions and Reservations Page