Umpqua River, September 4

Drew chuggin' a dry above Mott Bridge


Andrew stayed with us on his way to and back from some meetings he had in Sacramento from his home in Sisters, Oregon.  We fish together regularly and I’ve been trying to persuade him to join me on the Umpqua since his move to Sisters.  This turned out to be perfect timing for his first pilgrimage.  The weather forecast called for increasing clouds with the possibility of rain.  Perfect for summer steelheading!  We drove up together on Friday and fished an evening session on the Camp Water after  an introduction to Joe Howell at the Blue Heron Fly Shop and a hearty lunch at the Steamboat Inn.  Surveyor and Bridge runs were in the shade and empty.  Drew skated a dry while I followed with a sink-tip.  He raised a fish in the tailout of Bridge but we weren’t able to get it to show again despite a half dozen fly changes.  We moved down to Station and within a few casts raised another fish but couldn’t move it again either.  As we worked our way through the run a large fish broke the surface and chased the fly across the run as it swung but never grabbed it.   We switched to a smaller fly and on the first pass the big brute gobbled it!  Andrew couldn’t help himself and struck immediately ;>(  Perhaps a bit of a sad ending but we both thoroughly enjoyed a spectacular evening on a storied river we will not soon forget.

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