Fly Fishing Central and Southeastern Oregon  by Harry Teel

Fly Fishing Central & Southeastern Oregon Guide Book

by Harry Teel (No Nonsense Fly Fishing Guidebooks)
Fly Fishing Central and Southeastern Oregon  by Harry Teel
This guide gives you a quick, clear understanding of the essential information you'll need to fly fish Oregon's most outstanding waters. You will not waste time. In a few moments, you will know where to go and how to fly fish. Take this guide along for ready reference, or use this book to plan your Oregon fly fishing trip. Either way, you'll have enough information and your fly fishing experience will be new, fresh and fun! This is the updated and redesigned version of Harry Teel's Guide to Fly Fishing in Central & Southeastern Oregon. It was popular immediately, updated and reprinted five times. Part of the No Nonsense Guide to Fly Fishing Top Waters series.

© 2005 Harry Teel/No Nonsense Fly Fishing Guidebooks. All Rights Reserved.

Trails from the "Fly Fishing Central & Southeastern Oregon" Guide Book
Displaying trails 20 of 22.

Displaying trails 1 to 20 of 22.

The Ana River offers a unique fly fishing experience in an honest-to-God desert river. It flows through a sand-and-sagebrush open landscape that is genuine Oregon high desert. The river flows from Ana Reservoir and discharges into Summer Lake. The river’s true origins are springs that are now covered by the Ana Reservoir. The Ana is only about seven miles long, doesn’t get much pressure, and holds some nice-sized rainbow trout, being stocked with 20,000 fingerling trout each year. The reservoir is stocked annually with catchable trout and every other year with bass fingerlings. If you like fly fishing challenges, you’ll like the Ana’s clear water and the need to make good fly presentations. You’ll work for what you get, and at times fishing can be frustrating because you can’t get a fish to rise. I suggest you take the time to walk a quarter mile or so along the banks and determine if you want to wade. Look for insects while you are walking. You’ll find an abundance of midges, mayflies, and terrestrials around the river. Types of Fish: Mostly rainbow trout.
Summer Lake, OR - Fly-Fishing
The Chewaucan is not a big river, but it is enjoyable to fish with a fly rod. It’s a pretty river, off the beaten path, and not very crowded. If you are in the area fishing the Ana or Lake of the Dunes and want a more forested setting or a change of location, give the Chewaucan a try. The Chewaucan flows out of the mountains and heads for the Great Basin, where it dissipates into the Oregon desert. As you go upstream from Paisley, you enter the Fremont National Forest. Much of the fishable river lies in this pine-studded drainage. The numbers of redband trout have gone down due to recent low-water conditions, but the fly fishing is still pretty good. Don’t forget mosquito repellent. You’ll need it! Types of Fish: Predominantly planted rainbow trout from 8 to 12 inches. Some nice fish in the 14- to 16-inch range are taken on a regular basis.. This eTrail covers the "where, when, and how" to fish in this region. You'll get a full-page map and information on the known hatches, suggested equipment to bring, and the best flies to use.
Paisley, OR - Fly-Fishing
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As of the summer 2003, the water conditions at Chickahominy were unfavorable: This once-great fly fishing reservoir was closed after years of little precipitation and low water levels. and many fish died. Check with the Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife or a local fly shop before going to “Chick.” Take note, however, of what can happen, and maybe the place will be back on your list by the time you read this. When Chickahominy is at full pool, it can grow big fish and grow them fast. The area was developed by the Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife as an angler’s reservoir and is a good-sized body of water covering roughly 500 acres. Types of Fish: Rainbow trout. The fish are stocked annually as three-inch fingerlings and grow rapidly. This eTrail covers the "where, when, and how" to fish in this region. You'll get a full-page map and information on the known hatches, suggested equipment to bring, and the best flies to use.
Riley, OR - Fly-Fishing
Crane Prairie is one of the finest fly fishing reservoirs in the West. It has more than its share of big trout, scenery, and wildlife viewing opportunities. The famed Deschutes River fills this reservoir and, though the lake is not very deep (11 to 20 feet), water levels are fairly consistent. Fish enjoy good cover and plenty of insects. Most people fish the reservoir from a boat or float tube. Try trolling large streamers and other wet flies. Nymphing works well early in the season. Fish near Crane’s distinctive submerged trees and stick-ups and close to the shoreline when the water is high. In low-water conditions look for the two main (submerged) river channels. Types of Fish: You’ll find rainbow and brook trout with a fair population of kokanee and illegally introduced bass. The size of these trout is amazing: three- to five- pound fish are common, and fish in the 10-pound range are recorded annually. This eTrail covers the "where, when, and how" to fish in this region. You'll get a full-page map and information on the known hatches, suggested equipment to bring, and the best flies to use.
Gales Landing, OR - Fly-Fishing
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This is the river most central Oregon fly fishers head to when winter weather is bad and fishing is off in other places. The primary fishing section of the Crooked is often under clear and dry midwinter skies and the only game in town. From Mileposts 12 to 19, which is really the prime area, you’ll find interesting water with plenty of riffles and pools. The area’s topographical features are impressive. High basalt walls and juniper, pine, and sage-covered flats create an environment right out of a Wild West movie set. Most of the time the water is off-color, but don’t let that bother you—it doesn’t seem to bother the fish. Types of Fish: Rainbows, cutthroats, and a rainbow-cutthroat cross. Most fish will run from 8 to 12 inches, but you’ll get a fair number in the 13- to 18-inch range. Jeff and I have seen pictures of fish bigger than six pounds, but I haven’t hooked one.. This eTrail covers the "where, when, and how" to fish in this region. You'll get a full-page map and information on the known hatches, suggested equipment to bring, and the best flies to use.
Prineville, OR - Fly-Fishing
Davis Lake is another water that has been lower than normal recently, reducing the numbers of fish. When Davis is right, it's one fine and challenging, fly-fishing-only hatchery. It's only about 25 feet deep and is thick with bugs. Catch and release fishing has taught the large trout to remain even more skeptical than usual. Davis Lake is located in both Deschutes and Klamath counties. It's about nine miles past Crane Prairie and Wickiup Reservoirs and the Twin Lakes. If any of these other waters is off, go a little farther south to Davis. Types of Fish: Primarily rainbow trout; other species have been introduced by the Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife but are no longer found. Largemouth bass have been taking hold since their illegal introduction in 1995. When Davis is at its best, two- to five-pound trout are common. This eTrail covers the "where, when, and how" to fish in this region. You'll get a full-page map and information on the known hatches, suggested equipment to bring, and the best flies to use.
Sunriver, OR - Fly-Fishing
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If I could choose only one river to fish, the Deschutes would be it. It has it all: beauty, variety of fish, challenging water, and a true test of fly fishing skills. Yet it’s possible to take a real neophyte to the river and, with some assistance, get him or her into fish. For these and other reasons, the Deschutes is probably the finest overall fly fishing river in western America. Its complement of big redside trout, salmon, steelhead, and whitefish offers a wide range of high-quality fly fishing. The river lies east of the Cascade Mountains and runs mostly north from Little Lava Lake into the Columbia River east of the town of The Dalles. From Crane Prairie Reservoir, the Deschutes is a relatively small, meandering stream. From Wickiup Reservoir on it becomes a full-flowing big river. The majority of the quality fishing is on this part. Types of Fish: Predominantly redside rainbow trout, some bull trout, and browns. Whitefish can supply some exciting fishing. Many hatchery-reared steelhead, which have one or more fins clipped for identification. This eTrail covers the "where, when, and how" to fish in this region. You'll get a full-page map and information on the known hatches, suggested equipment to bring, and the best flies to use.
Bend, OR - Fly-Fishing
Diamond Lake may be the most productive lake in the state for trout food and quick-growing rainbows. Fish over five pounds are taken each year. People tend to think of Diamond as a trolling and bait-fishing lake, but you can also have great fly fishing action, depending on the chub activity. The Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife poisoned unwanted fish in 1999. Healthy Williamson rainbow trout were reintroduced, which provided thousands of 18-to 20-inch brutes. Then, by the late summer of 2001, the illegally introduced tui chub population again grew out of control. This trash fish, up to four inches long, ate the microscopic zooplankton that normally keep the lake’s algae in check. The uncontrolled bluegreen algae then dominated and released toxins that led to the lake’s closure. When this edition went to press, the lake was back to near normal with about 100,000 catchable fish planted each year, including chinook salmon, Eagle Lake rainbow trout, and about 15,000 two-pound rainbow trout. Types of Fish: Chinook salmon and rainbow trout, 10 to 24 inches, averaging one pound plus. This eTrail covers the "where, when, and how" to fish in this region. You'll get a full-page map and information on the known hatches, suggested equipment to bring, and the best flies to use.
Medford, OR - Fly-Fishing
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I’m one happy person when I’m in this remote section of Oregon and fishing the Donner und Blitzen (commonly referred to as just the Blitzen). If I could design my own trout stream, I’d use the Blitzen above Page Springs Campground as a model. The river above Page Springs flows through a relatively narrow canyon that’s lined with juniper and pine trees. If you like small, remote, desert streams, the Blitzen will fulfill one of your fly fishing fantasies. The Blitzen originates in the Steens Mountain range, one of the most scenic regions in Oregon. Donner und Blitzen, German for “thunder and lightning,” refers to a single river. This is a wonderful trout stream, but it requires lots of walking to get to the best fishing. Hardy rainbows are your reward. Because you will do a lot of walking to find these fish, make sure your wading equipment is comfortable and fits properly. Types of Fish: Rainbow trout, generally from 8 to 14 inches, although fish up to 20 inches are taken on a regular basis. This eTrail covers the "where, when, and how" to fish in this region. You'll get a full-page map and information on the known hatches, suggested equipment to bring, and the best flies to use.
Frenchglen, OR - Fly-Fishing
Fly fishing possibilities are almost limitless at East Lake. This combines with the short drive from central Oregon’s major cities to make East Lake a favorite still water. A roundabout reason for catch and release angling has helped this fishery. A few years back, higher than average levels of mercury were found in East Lake fish. The Health Department recommended not eating them. Almost overnight, East Lake transformed into a great catch and release lake, and sizes and numbers of fish improved dramatically. East Lake is about 1,000 acres and more than 170 feet deep in the middle. Water stays cool at this elevation, even in summer. Unlike its nearby cousin, Paulina Lake, East has vast, weedy, and shallow shoreline areas. Scuds, leeches, chironomids, mayflies, caddis, and damsels grow in these warmer areas. Types of Fish: Rainbow, brown, and a few brook trout, Atlantic salmon. This eTrail covers the "where, when, and how" to fish in this region. You'll get a full-page map and information on the known hatches, suggested equipment to bring, and the best flies to use.
La Pine, OR - Fly-Fishing
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Fall River is only about 25 miles southwest of Bend and is readily accessible off South Century Drive. Its proximity to the Sunriver resort and the towns of Bend and La Pine make it a popular destination for local fly fishers, especially those who prefer rivers. The water upstream from the falls is open year-round, which is a pleasure for winter anglers or Mt. Bachelor skiers looking for diversion from the slopes. Fall River is approximately 10 miles long, its origin being a spring below Wickiup Reservoir. It flows through a pine forest and ultimately empties into the Deschutes River between Sunriver and La Pine. You’ll like the topographic features of the area, from the gentle, rolling hills of the pine forest to the volcanic cinder buttes that are scattered across the landscape. During mosquito season, be sure to have a good repellent. Types of Fish: Rainbow, brook, and brown trout. The majority run 8 to 12 inches, but keep an eye out for bigger fish. This eTrail covers the "where, when, and how" to fish in this region. You'll get a full-page map and information on the known hatches, suggested equipment to bring, and the best flies to use.
Sunriver, OR - Fly-Fishing
Hosmer is one of the most remarkable fly-fishing-only, catch and release fisheries in the state of Oregon. Feisty landlocked Atlantic salmon and large, beautiful brook trout make this figure-eight-shaped lake a real favorite of central Oregon fly fishers. Views of the snowcapped peaks make for one of the most scenic still waters for fly fishing in these parts. Types of Fish: Good-quality Atlantic salmon and brook trout. Both species grow to nice sizes in this food-rich environment. This eTrail covers the "where, when, and how" to fish in this region. You'll get a full-page map and information on the known hatches, suggested equipment to bring, and the best flies to use.
Bend, OR - Fly-Fishing
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If you like semiarid landscape, you’ll fall in love with the John Day River. It is the only major stream in the Columbia drainage system in Oregon without a hydroelectric project blocking migratory fish. The 275-mile river begins in the eastern portion of central Oregon, up in the Blue Mountains. It runs north from above the town of John Day to enter the Columbia River not far from the mouth of the Deschutes. Water levels vary considerably depending on the season and the demands of agriculture. Also, much of the river runs though private property, so access can be tricky. The John Day does offer three species of fish for the fly angler and not a lot of fishing pressure, except for the rafting crowd in early summer. Water flows vary dramatically, so consult a qualified guide. Fish for bass from May through August, and for steelhead in the late fall and winter months. Trout fishing is good most of the year. Types of Fish: Rainbow trout, steelhead, and smallmouth bass.
Kimberly, OR - Fly-Fishing
Here’s an excellent still-water fishery very near Sisters, Black Butte Ranch, and Camp Sherman, and hardly anyone talks about it. Lost Lake is very easy to locate and great for float tubing. If you can ignore the occasional traffic noise from the highway, you’ll enjoy casting to lots of healthy trout in one of the most productive lakes in the Sisters area. Situated in a basin below Three Fingered Jack Mountain, this 50-acre natural lake is fed by snow runoff and springs that well up from below the lake’s surface. The lake is shallow, with lots of prime habitat for fish and insects. The weed beds are full of nymphs, including Callibaetis, grey drakes, damselflies, dragonflies, Chironomids, and numerous still-water-dwelling caddis. Add in the abundant leech and scud populations, and you can see why the rainbows and brookies grow fat here. Types of Fish: Rainbow and brook trout. This eTrail covers the "where, when, and how" to fish in this region. You'll get a full-page map and information on the known hatches, suggested equipment to bring, and the best flies to use.
Sisters, OR - Fly-Fishing
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The main stem of the Malheur and also its North Fork offer some of the finest fall trout fishing I’ve ever experienced. I like to fly fish the main river from Riverside to about 10 miles below Juntura. I fish the North Fork above Beulah Reservoir. Beulah can be a good place for large trout if the reservoir hasn’t been severely drawn down. Try the east-shore shallows, especially in the fall. You don’t have to be very sophisticated on the Malheur either. Attractor-type flies work well, as do large streamer types. You can even fish Hoppers in the heat of July through September. Types of Fish: The Malheur is primarily a rainbow trout fishery.
Juntura, OR - Fly-Fishing
Mann Lake is remote. If there is such a thing as a pure desert lake, this is it. With the Steens Mountain Range as a backdrop and the desert floor as a stage, Mann Lake will dazzle you with exceptional desert scenery and good-sized fish. It’s roughly 270 acres in size and only 10 to 15 feet deep (may vary with precipitation), but large enough for lots of elbow room. The alkaline desert water of Mann is perfect for the Lahontan-like cutthroat trout that thrive here. The state of Oregon places fingerlings here every other year, and they quickly grow up to 24 inches in length. Types of Fish: Cutthroat from 12 to 20 inches, with some being a little larger. This eTrail covers the "where, when, and how" to fish in this region. You'll get a full-page map and information on the known hatches, suggested equipment to bring, and the best flies to use.
Fields, OR - Fly-Fishing
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The McKenzie is one of the most beautiful rivers in the West. The McKenzie drift boat, a boat type that is now used worldwide, originated on this river. President Herbert Hoover spent much of his fishing life on the McKenzie, and so have a lot of other people. There are numerous good resorts and motels located on or adjacent to the river. A night or two in these comfortable lodgings, coupled with a guided fly fishing drift, is one of the better recreational investments you’ll make. The McKenzie has limited access due to private property and a very difficult shoreline to wade. I suggest you retain the services of a qualified McKenzie River guide. Rainbow trout, steelhead, and salmon call the McKenzie home. Upstream from Blue River is the wild trout section. More than 6,600 rainbows are planted each year from Blue River downstream to Leaburg Lake. Types of Fish: There are two types of rainbows: stocked and native, plus salmon and steelhead.
Rainbow, OR - Fly-Fishing
The Metolius flows through a beautiful setting of old-growth pine forests with spectacular mountain views. The camping facilities are excellent and help make this a wonderful family recreation area. In August 1995 the Metolius went to wild fish only and all stocking was halted. This, along with some regulation changes, has been a very positive development. Trout here often don’t rise like fish in other rivers do, so it’s important to fool them with patterns they perceive to be an easy meal. The Metolius has an assortment of hatches at certain places on the river, daily and throughout the year. The Metolius is a fine fishing resource. Its crystal clear waters are tricky, and it will take you some time to learn the river’s idiosyncrasies, so be realistic with your expectations. Types of Fish: Predominantly rainbows, with some brown trout and whitefish, running 11 to 18 inches. Bull trout can get to 15 pounds but average three to five pounds. Kokanee (landlocked salmon) run and spawn in the fall. This eTrail covers the "where, when, and how" to fish in this region. You'll get a full-page map and information on the known hatches, suggested equipment to bring, and the best flies to use.
Camp Sherman, OR - Fly-Fishing
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The Owyhee, pronounced Oh-wa-hee, is believed to be an early mispronunciation of Hawaii. The river runs east from its source in Nevada toward the town of Adrian and then flows into the Snake River. The only part of the Owyhee River I’ll address here is that part flowing from Owyhee Dam downstream about 10 miles. The Owyhee is a fairly good-sized river, and long casts are sometimes needed. The river has all types of fly water too, including riffles, runs, pools, pockets, and runs full of boulders. My experience is that small patterns produce the best results. The geological formations along this river section are fantastic. The rock formations and colors are stunning, to say the least. Even if you don’t fish, the trip up the Owyhee River to the dam and Lake Owyhee is worth your time. Types of Fish: Rainbows from 7 to 15 inches, and good brown trout up to 20 inches. This eTrail covers the "where, when, and how" to fish in this region. You'll get a full-page map and information on the known hatches, suggested equipment to bring, and the best flies to use.
Adrian, OR - Fly-Fishing
Suttle Lake is surrounded by pine forest and there are some excellent views of the nearby Cascade Mountains. As of this writing, a small resort on the lake’s east shore rents boats; has a dock, store, and restaurant; and offers a base for non-angling family members. There are plans to expand the resort, and the expansion may be complete by the time you read this. When a lake is this easy to get to, you wouldn’t expect it to have a good population of large brown trout. Nonetheless, Suttle has them. Types of Fish: Wild brown trout, hatchery rainbows, and kokanee salmon. This eTrail covers the "where, when, and how" to fish in this region. You'll get a full-page map and information on the known hatches, suggested equipment to bring, and the best flies to use.
Sisters, OR - Fly-Fishing
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