Sunday, September 19, 2010

Deschutes River Fishing

This day we pulled out of Milton-Freewater about 5:40 a.m., on our way to the Deschutes River for a day of steelhead fishing. Tom and Bob were doing the driving, while Ginny, Mike, Doug and Dale were along for the ride - that felt good. Thanks guys for pulling chauffeur duty. Having made one short stop in Biggs to fuel up and offload some coffee, we arrived at the river's west side parking lot about 8:30. Weather along the way offered a small shower here and there, but no rain to be concerned about. After gearing up for the day we hiked down to the cable crossing, Dale pointed out some of the particulars of the the river (the need for studded wading boots and a wading staff) beginning at Moody Rapids' cable crossing.
Real Time river flow at Moody Rapids-->,00060
Best fly fishing flow is between 4500-5800 cfs, if wading out chest deep. The flow this day was about 5550 cfs, very comfortable wading.
From the Moody Rapids area everyone headed upriver to test the waters, their footing, fish for steelhead, and whatever. Having fished up through the Rock Garden, Tom did hook into a sucker and land it out on the basalt flats. Catching was slow this day.This writer wasn't there to witness, but heard that Doug did practice some dancing on the rocks and found out what the next step can hold for anyone fishing the Deschutes... understand he took on some water.
Deschutes River = The Chutes River= scoured basalt river bottom.
While at the basalt flats below Rattlesnake Rapids, we had a fishing pro watching our activities from the grassy river bank. This guy gave us no directions of help or guidance... he was fishing on his own, and catching.

Most of us took a lunch / snack break after fishing the flats except for Mike and he just kept fishing and fishing...
Ginny and Bob found a soft pillow of grass along the river bank to ease back onto and have lunch.

It was about 12:30 when everyone was ready to head back downriver to fish out towards the parking lot. This morning we had had several showers pass our way, and most of the day was filled with sunbreaks, and warm temperatures. The Deschutes was slightly off colored as being knee deep in the river one could barely see the bottom of the river. Working downriver everyone stopped along the way at different river access points, and Dale pointed out some spots where he previously had taken a steelhead out for dinner.

After fishing the Outhouse Hole, most of us were getting tired of the round trip 5-mile hike upriver, and standing in the river current for most of the day, not to mention the 4:30 a.m. wake up call.
So as everyone headed back to the rigs for the return trip home, Dale and Mike did stop and fish the Cable Hole downriver to the brink of Moody Rapids. The Deschutes River Cable Hole was the spot that Dale caught his first steelhead in hand.
So all in all it was a great day to have been fishing on the Deschutes River, OR. All-in-All it was not a good day for catching steelhead. Actually it was a no show day for steelhead fly fishing, which reminds one why they call this sport "fishing" not "catching".

A great day to be on the river.

Tight lines and good fishing.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

2010 Fly Fishers' Banquet

It was a beautiful evening, this evening when the Walla² Fly Fishers came together for our 2010 Fly Fishers' Banquet. This year we held our banquet at the Crossroads Restaurant in City Center Walla Walla, WA. Our very special guest speaker for this evening was world traveling fly fisher and photographer Brian O'Keefe.

We started our cocktail hour at 6:00 p.m. at which time the crowd begin to shuffle in and filling the room. We had a no host bar available to all. Scott and Dale sit up a couple of display tables for raffle and silent auction items.

This evening we had 38 Walla² Fly Fishers and guest for dinner, with a few folks coming in after dinner to enjoy Brian's presentation of Fly Fishing around the World.

Being that a picture is worth a thousand words, this reporter will let the following pictures tell the story and be the record of our evening's activities.



Making silent auction bids

Buying raffle tickets at a good price.
Tom did win the big prize of the evening.
He just keeps doing that.

Looking around the room things began to look like this a little after 6:00.

After everyone begin to settle in for the evening, dinner began to be served at 6:45 or so.

Our dinner was to have been a BBQ buffet, but since this was the very newly re-located Crossroads Restaurant they were unable to have their facilities setup for a buffet service, so we had their BBQ served via waiter/waitress in a rather crowded dinning room. Togetherness.

After dinner President Scott conducted the raffle drawings for goodies provided by FFF National and Skip Pritchard. Tom Craig won the big raffle prize of an Orvis fly box and a guided fishing trip on Mill Creek with Skip.
The silent auctions items were won by the following:

FFF 3 year membership --- Jan Atwater
Orvis fly box --- Jan Atwater
Grizzly hackle --- Jan Atwater
FFF T-shirt --- Ed Chesnut
fly tying kit --- Mike Garton

The raffle and silent auction items netted the club $468.
Thank you guys.

After the money works were over, our special fly fishing guest - Brian O'Keefe made his PowerPoint Presentation of his experiences of fly fishing around the world from the time he was a rather young man to his present day trips with a fly rod in one hand, and a camera in the other. You will find Brian's work in many of today's fly fishing magazines, and in his co-produced Catch Magazine. Brian broke down his presentation of this evening by discussing the different species of fish he had stalked and caught in his adventures to everywhere a fly rod could take him.

After Brian's presentation, Dale asked if he would tell the group of one of his most memorable fly fishing trips. He told us of a most hair-raising experience / trip to Africa, of which you will have to talk to him about the next time you see him. This reporter tells no tales.

All-in-all our evening together with each other and Brian was a great experience. We thank Brian for being with us and sharing his fly fishing experiences, we must thank FFF National and Skip for their donation of items to help fund this event and Thank you EVERYONE that joined us for the evening and those which help make it happen.

Brian invited everyone in attendance to contact him if they had any questions concerning his travels and advice of where to go, what to do, how and why.

To contact Brian you can follow these Internet links:'Keefe&ie

and/or email Brian @

Don't forget that you can also see more of Brian's work by subscribing to Catch Magazine -- FREE.
Issue #13 is great, just sign in and enjoy.

available on the Internet at this link connection...

OK, now looking at the banquet's bottom lines: cost was = $1754, the banquet funds intake was = $1414. So all-in-all this leaves the club's bank balance at a bit over $700 in the black. This means we had a pretty good year with a lot of good informational speakers to share their fly fishing experiences and expertise with the Walla² Fly Fishers.

Tight line and good fishing.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Walla² Fly Fishers' Banquet

Saturday 9/18

Please mark your calendars for our first Walla² Fly Fishers' Banquet with Brian O'Keefe - our guest speaker of the evening.

When: Saturday, 18th September 2010
Where: Crossroads Steakhouse and Lounge
207 West Main Street, Walla Walla, WA*
*formerly - the 26 Brix Restaurant
Directions: *click on above address for map/directions
Time: Cocktail hour begins at 6:00 p.m. (no host bar)
BBQ Dinner Buffet to be served at 6:45
Brian O'Keefe's program at 7:30

BBQ Buffet includes:
Beef ribs
Pork ribs
Baked beans
Cole Slaw

Banquet cost: $30/singles ~~ $55/couples
$18.75 children
~includes meal + service gratuity~
Your RSVP needed

Banquet cover charge ~without dinner~
includes no-host bar, silent auction items,
and Brian's presentation

RSVP unnecessary if you are not having dinner with Brian.

Brian O'Keefe is a world renowned fly fisher, with photography as his trade. You will find Brian's photography in many fly fishing magazines and websites on today's market. Brian is one of the nicest guys you would ever want to meet. So come out and join us for dinner, an evening of fly fishing experiences, to be shared by all.

Brian and wife Judith at a favorite winter fishin' hole.

We must give our caterer a ONE week's notice
of our guest count for food preparation;
so we ask that you make your Banquet meal RSVP
by noon Saturday 9/11/10

RSVP to: Scott Peters -
Dale McKain -

Walla² Fly Fishers is an affiliated chapter of the Federation of Fly Fishers (FFF) and this will be our first banquet for area fly fishers and all wannabe fly fishing guest. Banquet room capacity is 65 fly fishers, and guest.

Send payment for dinner to:
Walla² Fly Fishers Banquet
PO Box 674
Milton-Freewater, OR 97862

Thank you

A silent auction for various fly fishing items and 3-years FFF memberships will be offered.

Tight lines and good fishing.

Walla² Fly Fishers

Scott Peters - President
Skip Pritchard - Co-President
Barry Gould - Treasurer
Dale McKain - Secretary /
Blog Master

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Working with WDFW & in SEARCH of a new club President

This evening the Walla² Fly Fishers had a most important monthly meeting. This was our first meeting after coming off our summer break. We had a lot of club business on our plate to discuss right after our pre-meeting dinner. Again dinner was good and hot, everyone had all they could eat.
Thank you China Buffet.

After dinner President Scott called the meeting to order, and announced that he had to relinquish the post of club president. Scott explained that with the club's first election of officers, it was anticipated that the positions would be held for a period of 8 months as the club was getting established. At this point in time those officers have held their respective club offices for 15 months. Scott explained that with his family and work obligations, he was finding that he needed more time to attend to those matters, and was giving notice of his resignation as club president.

We now need someone to step forward and help the club to continue move along in the growth direction we have been going. Barry indicated he would remain on as Treasurer and Dale will remain as club Secretary. NOW is the time for all good fly fishers to consider your abilities to help carry our club's banner as our next President. Let's hear it for our next club President.

This evening we had 23 club members and guest in attendance.

After Scott's announcement we discussed the need to consider a new meeting location, as we have outgrown our present location at the China Buffet. The past couple of meeting before our summer break, we actually had people sitting in the doorway of the banquet room. Scott announced that he had contacted Jacobi's Cafe at 416 No. 2nd Avenue in Walla Walla and they would have a meeting room for our future meetings. A vote was taken and it was agreed that our future meetings will be at Jacobi's beginning with October 13th meeting. Please see sidebar for directions. Also it was discussed the upcoming banquet we are having on Saturday, 18 September. Dale, Scott, Barry and Jan have been working on this event and at this time all seem to be going together well for that evening's event. Barry gave a brief Treasurer's report and it seems there will be enough money in our bank account to pull this banquet off and will have a few dollars to spare. A Deschutes River steelhead fishing trip was discussed, which is to be made on Sunday 19 September.
After this business discussion we had the fly box door prize drawing, and then proceeded into our presentation of the evening.

This evening we had two guest speakers from Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife: GlenMendel - WDFW Fisheries Biologist and Dave Karl - WDFW Fisheries Habitat Biologist.

Glen Mendel

Dave Karl

These guys really gave our group a lot of information concerning the present condition of southeast / central WA fisheries, and northeast OR fisheries.
Glen briefed us on the condition of the fisheries on the Walla Walla, Tucannon, Grande Ronde, Touchet and lower Snake rivers. He gave us an update on the conditions of the area hatcheries and the numbers history of steelhead and salmon returns, with prospect of future returns and fishing opportunities.
Dave told us from his experience concerning the fisheries habitats of this area and his personal fishing experiences on many of the streams and rivers of southeast WA and northeast OR.
Both of these guys gave us plenty of info on where to fish and when to be there for the best fishing opportunities. They made available to our meeting two handouts: 2010 Washington Fishing Prospects and Trout Fishing Guide to NE Oregon.
It was also discussed by Glen some of the opportunities that our club might have to work with WDFW with hands-on fisheries projects, such as working with the steelhead and salmon redds counting crews, giving some helping hands around the Tucannon River Hatchery and fishing lake area, etc.
They gave us the name of Ken Junt - WA game law officer and Tim Brown - OR game law officer for our immediate Walla Walla River fishing areas.
One point both of the gentlemen emphasised was the North of Falcon Process for Washington. They ask our group to track this process for 2011 and try to make attendance to the most local / area meetings to establish salmon fisheries catch allocations and season openings.

We wish to thank Dave and Glen for all the info they shared with us this evening, and let's hope as a club we get to use it in our near future fishing endeavors.

To polish off the meeting we had a second raffle drawing for the second fly box made available for this evening.

Tight lines and good fishing.

Walla² Fly Fishers

Scott Peters - President
Skip Pritchard - Co-President
Barry Gould - Treasurer
Dale McKain - Secretary /
Blog Master