Steelhead Fishing Report by NW Outfitters 12.23.17
The Ronde has some bank ice, but is flowing clear at the moment (at least at the mouth). Might be a window the next couple days, but it is supposed to to start getting cold even down there so it might be tough by the end of the week.
This is a great time to transition over to the Clearwater and the Snake. The Snake is the warmest around and even though the flows can fluctuate quite a bit it is still a good winter spot. The Clearwater is the best winter fishery with the “B” runs around and typically no ice until you get above Orofino.
Snuck down to the Clearwater on Wednesday and hooked a couple fish swinging a hoh bo spey fly at the end of 12 ft of t-14 on the lower river. No ice in the guides and even though the river was a little high it was a good day. The flows on the Clearwater dropped down to around 5500 today which will help get to some runs, but it also dropped the water temps since there is less water from the dam to moderate the temp. Looks like it might get really cold by the end of next week so if you can make it down the next few days you might have some better luck or at least not freeze to bad. String leeches, hoh bo speys, foxee dogs, and egg sucking leeches on a sink tip will slow your swing down and keep it in front of the fish longer. A big egg sucking leech, stonefly or egg pattern under an indicator will put it right on there nose it is just not as easy to cover water.
To read the rest of the NW Outfitters’ fishing report for the Coeur d’Alene, the St. Joe, the Clark Fork, The Spokane River, Hayden Lake and Crab Creek, check out their reports here.
Good luck fishing, and Happy New Year!