Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Deschutes Redsides

Home water. 

Surface slab.

Red side.

Mia captured this lift off.

It's been a fun few weeks over here!

Get some next April and May with us.


Monday, May 11, 2015

The BIGGEST Spey Clave on the West Coast

Check Out one of the Biggest gatherings of anglers interested in two handed rods on the West Coast May 15-17th in Sandy Oregon , sponsored by The Fly Fishing Shop !

Three reasons to go. Talk about steelhead fishing and rods all day! Free lunch by the best El Burro Loco . Free evening entertainment. Bring the Family!

Friday, April 24, 2015

Fly Fishing Book Of Revelation

A book by Jay W. Nicholas

In Review:

What is this book titled “Fly Fishing Book Of Revelation”?  Is this heading like the last chapter in the Bible, predicting the end times of our sport, or is this the mania meanings of words revealed to Jay through his fly-fishing life? If you flip through the pages, open up anyplace, and start to read it sheds some light on the flair and derisive nature Jay has in this book of fly fishing correlated terms and phrases.  Read on and you get a cross between definition and wit. Imagine the entertainment if Ken Kesey wrote the American Dictionary. Well my friends, Jay wrote this for us fly fishing fools! Get it and read it. You’ll be glad you did!

All of Jays books can be found here:

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Echo Glass




With so many manufacturers barking the benefits of increasingly faster actions, it's not surprising that veteran rod designer Tim Rajeff would ask "why follow the flock"? 

All-new for 2015, Echo introduces the first major production run of fiberglass Spey and Switch rods in the industry. Why fiberglass? Good question. Fiberglass recovers more smoothly than graphite, giving the caster a better sensation of how the line is loading the rod. Improved feedback through the casting cycle results in a fun, effortless, bug launching. 

Echo Glass Spey and Switch rods feature sensitive tips to protect tippet when slinging surface patterns on a dry line, and plenty of "sneaky power" to catapult long, heavy sink tips with ultimate ease. Steelheaders looking to increase their "hook-to-hand" ratio will be impressed with the way these rods absorb the energy of active, unpredictable fish. 

The Echo Glass Switch and Spey series is available now in the following weights/lengths:



Rods are in-stock and ready to ship. To order, give us a ring at 360.694.2900 

For more information, visit:  www.echoflyfishing.com

Thursday, March 19, 2015

The Steamboaters

Bend Pool By Rob Elam
Marty and I first fished the Umqua River together in 2004, it was my first time on the Umpqua and I fell in love with the solitude and beauty of the river.  In 2006 after getting hitched on the Deschutes, we drove to the Umpqua for our honeymoon at the Steamboat Inn. 

Ironically, Marty had booked a guide trip for us with Bob Burruss.  Bob was a retired high school football coach that had the enthusiasm and fire or a football coach. We met him early in the morning to secure our first run. As we waited for dawn, we drank coffee and talked fishing. When it was time to rig the rods he noticed I had a double hand and asked, wouldn't you rather cast a single hand. I declined saying "I was much better at casting a two handed rod." Bob was filled with information about exactly where to stand and on what rock. He was also full Umpqua stories and rapid-fire advice to help build confidence and that's what you need to catch an Umpqua River summer steelhead.  

At the end of that first fishless day, Bob suggested a good place for us to start the next morning and wished us well. This is just one of the many great experience we have had over the years fishing the Umpqua. The river produces passionate souls that have a profound commitment to preserving the culture of the fly-water and the wild steelhead. 
Mark swings a fly by Marty Sheppard

If you've fished the North Umpqua then you should know about the Steamboaters. 

"The Steamboaters, organized in 1966. Don Haines suggested the idea for a group "to preserve the natural resources of the North Umpqua" to Colonel Jim Hayden as they traveled together to the Federation of Fly Fishers meeting in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. The Knouses and Andersons seconded the idea at a gathering the next day and Stan Knouse suggested the name Steamboaters "because of its association with the inn where many of its members stay and because of the significance of Steamboat Creek, which enters the North Umpqua at the Station Hole." 

Clarence Gordon was made an honorary member of the Steamboaters, as was Roderick Haig-Brown, the eminent writer from Campbell River, British Columbia. Although he fished the river only once, Haig-Brown later wrote:
“The North Umpqua remains one of the best and most beautiful of summer steelhead streams, and it has the tremendous asset of several miles of water restricted to 'fly only.' The strong flow of bright water is broken up by ledge rock outcrops,the pools are deep and long and hold fish well, and the fish themselves are usually responsive and in excellent shape.”

The Steamboaters are pleased to announce their annual winter social on Saturday April 4, 2015. 

I'm honored to be the guest speaker, presenting on  “Community, Conservation and the Next Generation.”  Educating the next generation of fly anglers and conservationists through mentor ship and community involvement. 

The event will be held, once again, at the Southern Oregon Wine Institute on the campus of Umpqua Community College. The doors will open at 5:00 with appetizers and a wine and beer cash bar, dinner will start at 6:30, and the program will begin at 7:30. Find out more here. 

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Keep'em Wet

Keepemwet started by Bryan Huskey 5 years ago when he was asked by a local fly club to give a presentation about his trout photography. He outlined anglers' responsibility to be good stewards of the resource and to handle catch & release fish with exceptional care, especially when additional time is taken to photograph fish. He called this portion of his presentation "Keep 'em Wet" that has transended into the hashtag #keepemwet. 

This winter, Native Fish Society  launched the “Keep ‘Em Wet” campaign to increase angler awareness about the negative effects of air exposure to wild fish.

"Don’t take us wrong,  I'm not saying we are purest, we’ve all taken fish out of the water to snap a photo, Native Fish Society staff members included.  But the more we learn about  handling fish we love the more healthy wild fish there will be to catch. 

As an outfitters Marty and I have have practised catch and release techniques from early on, teaching sports how to properly handle fish and how to minimize air exposure when taking photos.   

Even when anglers are taking precautionary measures, like crushing the barb, prolonged air exposure can make it difficult for fish to recover and there are delayed negative effects that may not be apparent even if the fish seems fine when it swims away.

Studies have shown that the longer a fish is exposed to air after exhausting exercise the higher their mortality rates are (Ferguson and Tufts, 1992; Gale et al, 2011).  Even 30 seconds of air exposure reduces a trout’s ability to recover and can provide a significant additional stress even when catch and release fishing (Ferguson and Tufts, 1992).

So, let’s get creative with the way we photograph our wild fish by keeping them wet and in the water.  Here's a few recommendations.  Till May 31st 2015, NFS will be holding a photo contest for the best picture of a wild, native fish from the Pacific Northwest with at minimum its gills in the water."

1. Keep the mouth, gill plates in the water cradling the backside of the fish or hand right under the pectoral fin, not squeezing the fish and  hold the tail with the other hand firmly. 
Wild 2013 photo by Marty Sheppard

2. Hold the tail firmly and lay the fish flat covering the gill plate. 
Winter Buck 2011 by Mia Sheppard

3. If you do feel inclined to take a photo of the fish out the water, quickly lift  for a second or two and then submerge the fish back. If you see there is no water dripping off the fish or its mouth is wide open gasping for air, it's been out of the water way to long. 

How to Enter the Photo Contest

To enter, email your photograph to mark@nativefishsociety.org and we will post it to our Instagram, Twitter and Facebook accounts with the hashtag #keepemwet. The top three photos with the most likes combined will win prizes!

Prizes for the Top Three Finalists
The first place winner will receive a brand new Gary Anderson Custom 12’0” 7wt Spey Rod donated by NFS Board Treasurer Peter Tronquet.  Our two runners up will get to choose between a day of steelhead fishing with Washougal River Steward Steve Lent on the Sandy River and a day of trout fishing with Willamette Valley Regional Coordinator Kyle Smith on the McKenzie River.

The three winning photographs will be published in the Summer 2015 issue of Strong Runs. Let the contest begin, good luck, and Keep Em’ Wet!
- See more at: http://nativefishsociety.org/index.php/conservation/keep-em-wet-campaign-photo-contest/#sthash.GhezXHJO.dpuf

Monday, March 2, 2015

Kick Plastic

 I drink out of plastic bottles, forget to bring in my canvas shopping bag when at the grocery story and we provide plastic bottles of water to clients, its a matter of convenience.  With a conscious effort we can all cut back our intake of plastic consummation and change our habits. 

 1 in 10 Plastic bottles will end up in our oceans, and they kill 1 million sea birds each year. Costa is taking the lead and addressing the plastic toxicity .Learn how you can help. 

-          Each year humans produce over 200 Billion Plastic Bottles, 35 Billion in the US alone.
-          After a few minutes of use these bottles last for a thousand years, 10% of them end up in our oceans.
-          They kill 1 Million sea birds each year.
-          In the Pacific Ocean there is a “garbage patch” twice the size of Texas, this is just one of five in our oceans.
-          Over 2/3 of our fish now test positive for plastics.
-          If we work together, we can turn the tides on plastic.
-          The first step is to reduce what we use.
-          Carry a re-usable water bottle and bag.
-          And please recycle what you do use.
-          Because none of us want to live in a plastic sea.
-          Learn more at costadelmar.com

Monday, February 16, 2015

Restoring Juvenile Habitat

The Middle Fork of the John Day River is critical habitat for Chinook salmon, steelhead and bull trout. Dredge mining severely channelized the riverbed in the 1940s leading to a straightened channel and disconnected floodplain. The Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs teamed up with the Bureau of Reclamation and a variety of other partners to restore two miles of river. Wonderful to see people working to gether to bring back a river. 

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Carp - Game or Nuisance - Restoring the Malheur

Carp, a cultivated food source, and symbol of strength and courage in Asia for over 4,000 years is now a game fish for some and a terrible nuisance to others  When Europeans settled in the United States they where disbelieved that there where no Carp in the new land. Soon entrepreneurs began to import the prized fish, hoping to provide a familiar, profitable food staple to the rapidly growing nation. Julius A. Poppe was one of the most successful importers, expanded a stock of five common carp imported from Germany in 1872 into a thriving California farm by 1876. Fielding orders from throughout the country, he actively began to lobby for national cultivation of the hearty fish. Read more here.

Today we have a thriving invasive species in our rivers and marshes. 

In the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge they are a destructive, invasive species that is destroying one of the most important migratory birds corridors in the West.  Watch this video and see how the Refuge is trying to combat the Carp and bring one of the most important marshes back to health . 

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Rally For Public Land in Boise Idaho

From the inland rainforests of its panhandle, south through the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness and out to the high desert and canyons of the Owyhees, Idaho is defined by public lands. More than 60 percent of the state, or 34 million acres, is public lands that offer sportsmen fantastic opportunities.Read more here:

Transferring public lands to the states and making them available for sale to private interests is not in the best interest of fish and wildlife or hunting and fishing. Once privatized, these lands would become off limits to most sportsmen forever. And Idaho has a history of selling its lands. Nearly one third of the lands given to Idaho at statehood have been sold, resulting in hunters and fishermen losing access to more than a million acres.
Sportsmen are speaking up and asking decision makers to end this discussion that threatens our Western heritage and the freedom to roam America’s wide open spaces. Sportsmen’s rallies already have drawn hundreds of hunters and anglers to state capitols in Montana and New Mexico. More events are planned for Idaho and Colorado.
Join with your fellow sportsmen at the public lands rally in Boise on Feb. 12. Keep our public lands in public hands and send a clear message to your state legislators, governor, and members of Congress by signing the online petition. And if you’re in Denver, Colorado on February 25, consider attending this public land rally too.

Monday, February 2, 2015


We are proud to be a part of the Costa family! This is a company that is easy for us to stand behind. They have the best sunglasses, give back to the right causes, and as a whole, have awesome people running things. Hard for us not to share this opportunity, for you to check out, this press release:

Costa’s Manta Style Full of Grace, Determination
Daytona Beach, Fla. – Feb. 2, 2015 – Known as graceful, intelligent ocean gliders, manta rays move through the water in with fluid continuity, always searching, always determined. Similarly, Costa’s new sunglass style for active females, Manta, is built for adventure and movement, but full of unmistakable style.

Manta is one of Costa’s sunglass styles built specifically for active women. Performance features include great wrap-fitting coverage, and hypoallergenic no-slip nose pads and interior lining to keep the sunglasses comfortably in place all day for a “forget-they’re-on” fit.

The medium-fitting frame is constructed of nearly indestructible co-injected molded nylon and sturdy integral hinges. Manta’s frame colors include tortoise, shiny black, white, orchid, crystal bronze and matte ocean.

Costa’s Manta style can be customized in its full array of patented color enhancing polarized 580™ lenses. Costa’s 580 lens technology selectively filters out harsh yellow and harmful high-energy ultraviolet blue light. Filtering yellow light enhances reds, blues and greens, and produces better contrast and definition while reducing glare and eye fatigue. Absorbing high-energy blue light cuts haze, producing greater visual clarity and sharpness.

Costa’s 580™ lenses, the clearest lenses on the planet, are available in either glass or impact resistant polycarbonate. Lens color options include: gray, copper, amber, blue mirror, green mirror and silver mirror. Manta is also available in customized Rx sun lenses.

“We designed the Manta sunglass style for active women who live for the water,” said Chas MacDonald, president of Costa. “The lightweight, form fitting frame combined with the clearest lenses on the planet turn these stylish sunglasses into an indispensable piece of gear suited for any outdoor adventure.”

Manta retails starting at $169 and is available at www.costadelmar.com and at authorized Costa retail partners.

About Costa™
As the leading manufacturer of the world’s clearest polarized performance sunglasses, Costa offers superior lens technology and unparalleled fit and durability. Still handcrafted today in Florida, Costa has created the highest quality, best performing sunglasses and prescription sunglasses (Rx) for outdoor enthusiasts since 1983. 
For Costa, conservation is all about sustainable fishing. Many fisheries that should be vibrant and healthy are all but devoid of native fish because they have fallen victim to poor fishing practices, unregulated development, lack of watershed protection or all of the above. Costa works with partners around the world to help increase awareness and influence policy so that both the fish and fishermen of tomorrow will have healthy waters to enjoy. Costa encourages others to help in any way they can.
For more information, contact 1-800-447-3700 or visit the company’s web site at www.costadelmar.com. Join the conversation on Facebook at www.facebook.com/costasunglasses or on Twitter @CostaSunglasses.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Don't Get Locked Out

Do you value public lands for hunting and fishing? 

A couple years ago, I met a hunter in Southest Oregon who believed the balance between federal and local control of public lands in Oregon was skewed in the wrong direction. As we talked about public lands in Malheur County, he said, “We need to take back the management of our land from the federal government.” 
At the time I wasn’t aware of the debate over public lands management that was happening in Utah and other Western states, where  legislative efforts were under way in an attempt to turn federal public lands over to the states.
 I replied, “Are you sure that is a good thing? Malheur is the poorest county in the state. How is this county going to manage your public land if there are no funds available? What will happen to our wildlife and habitat? Will that impact our access to hunting and fishing?” 
His simple response: “We’ll still be able to do all that.”
The federal government holds our public lands in trust so current and future generations can enjoy the rich beauty and resources that they offer.Federally managed parcels provide access to popular fishing destinations like the Deschutes, Klamath and Grande Ronde Rivers. As a professional guide, we depend on the ability to share the beauty of our public lands with folks from across the nation.
Public lands rightfully belong to all Americans. In an increasingly crowded West where open space is rapidly becoming one the rarest and most valuable assets of the Western lifestyle, ensuring that these lands stay in the public trust is more important now than ever before.
Request that your elected officials actively pledge their support for our public lands legacy and reject efforts to transfer federal public lands to individual states. Find out more and sign the petition > www.sportsmensaccess.org

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Swing the Fly 2.3 Winter

Steelhead Paradise
The Fly Matter
Brown Trout
Time to Fly South and more ...

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Are you interested?

Hope you all are having a lot of cheer in the holiday season. We just want to plant the seed with you in case you are interested in some of the fun stuff we have going on in 2015. We take care of most of our booking for the whole year in the next three weeks. Things fill up and we hope to be able to connect with you before they do!

January through May. Get in on this! The time is fast approaching!

June and July. 
Multi day trips for friends and family. Fully guided or self guided. Contact us for full details.

Day trips and camp trips August through October. We utilize a 20' Wooldridge jet boat launching out of Macks Canyon. Secure your dates now!

November Splender
Contact us for our limited availability.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Help Prevent the Collapse of Olympic Peninsula Steelhead

The Olympic Peninsula is home to the last great native populations of winter steelhead in Washington State. The fish are unique because of their large size, with some individuals exceeding the rarified 30lb mark.  Although the populations were considered "healthy" by the State of Washington when they were last reviewed, they have experienced a long-term decline in abundance. Declines have occurred despite these populations occupying watersheds containing the most intact habitat on the coast of California, Oregon and Washington.  The populations may be resilient, but their declines necessitate proactive and precautionary changes to management to avoid further declines and listing under the Endangered Species Act.   
The Olympic Peninsula is one of three regions left not listed under the Endangered Species Act but with the current downward trends, it could be listed soon. 
Do your part as an angler and Sign the Petition

We ask that the Statewide Steelhead Management Plan that was adopted by the Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission in 2008 be enacted this year.  Some specific examples might include:
•MSH escapement goals were developed in the 1980’s and included several assumptions that we now know are false—a reevaluation of escapement goals and Olympic Peninsula steelhead population dynamics is needed.
•MSH escapement targets should incorporate uncertainty in run sizes and harvest rates to ensure a high probability of goals being met despite poor monitoring data
•Efforts should be made to test assumptions in measuring escapements and harvest rates to ensure fisheries management reflects actual population biology and is not systematically inaccurate.
•Although MSH is the court-ordered co-management objective, the state is free to do what it wishes with its portion of the catch—Washington should be managing its portion of the catch with conservation as its first objective as is mandated by the mission statement of the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife.
•Mandatory catch and release of wild steelhead in sport fisheries would preserve fishing opportunity while ensuring better conservation of declining wild stocks.
•More widespread use of Selective Gear Rules for both commercial and sport particularly in times and places where few hatchery fish are present, or in where large numbers of resident rainbows and juveniles steelhead are handled, would better protect wild steelhead by increasing the survival of released fish.
•Increased monitoring and enforcement for sport and commercial (tribal) fisheries would ensure compliance with existing regulations and accurate data for fisheries management
•In-season management would allow fisheries to be proactively shut down or effort reduced if in-season creel data from sport of tribal commercial fisheries suggested escapement goals were unlikely to be met
•Wild steelhead gene banks need to be established in multiple watersheds—preferably in the largest and healthiest watersheds which have the highest probability of supporting self-sustaining, abundant, and productive steelhead populations into the future.
*Forming public work groups with a diverse group of stakeholders to identify Wild Steelhead Management Zones
*Accountability for gill net by-catch drop out and mortality of kelts and ripe fish.  Must be part of commercial catch quota .
•Establish limited entry or a quota of "fishing from a boat rod days" in certain sections of river for guides and non-guided anglers. ( tag systems in sensitive holding areas)
*Require a special endorsement for guides to limit the extent of guiding on the Olympic Peninsula rivers. 
If we make some changes and sacrifices we can prevent the collapse of the Olympic Peninsula steelhead.  If we don't we can expect further listings under the Endangered Species Act and further loss of fishing opportunity and hard economic hit to rural communities. 

It is essential that the State, the ONP, and the Tribal co-managers work together to come up with a recovery plan that puts the health of these fish populations first. If we all take care of wild fish, wild fish will take care of us.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Steelheaders Unite

Wild Steelhead - Myers from Trout Unlimited on Vimeo.

If you love steelhead and rivers and call yourself a steelheader don't miss the launch of TU's Wild Steelhead Initiative. 

Wild Steelheaders United

Earl Harper Studio — 6:30p.m.
5531 Airport Way S
Seattle, WA 98108
PHONE: (206) 763-9101
For more information, contact host John McMillian.
Empire Room — 7:30p.m.
205 10th St.
Boise, ID 83702
For more information, contact host, the Ted Trueblood chapter.
Lucky Lab Taphouse — 6:30p.m.
1700 North Killingsworth St.
Portland, OR 97217
PHONE: (503) 505-9511
For more information, contact host Dwayne Meadows.
Wild Steelheaders United
Juneau – (Kickoff and Wild Reverence Showing)
Silverbow Inn Backroom — 6:30p.m.
120 Second Street
Juneau, AK 99801
PHONE: (907) 586-4146
For more information, contact host Mark Hieronymus.
Santa Cruz/Monterey
Seminar Room, Moss Landing Marine Laboratory — 6:30p.m.
8272 Moss Landing Rd.
Moss Landing, CA 95039
PHONE: (831) 771-4400
For more information, contact host Sam Davidson.