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  1. #1
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    Seattle Area Advice

    Hey,

    I'm making my first trip to the PNW. I have about a week to spend in the Seattle area. My friend and I want to spend a few days in the city then head out to the Olympic peninsula. I'm going to bring a 3 and 5 wt with me and try to get into some fishing. What would you guys recommend targeting at that time of the year (late July/early Aug)? Any help would be appreciated.

    I could use city advice as well for Seattle. Cool things to do or see? Neighborhoods, food, bars?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Carry the 3wt to some Alpine lakes or maybe fish some of the narrow mountain streams.

  3. #3
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    There's about 37 threads about this, try searching.

  4. #4
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    My big recommendation for you would be to learn to recognize pacific poison oak and then stay the hell away from it. It's all over the place near the streams. My other great advice would be don't try to catch a car ferry back across the Sound to Seattle on saturday or sunday evenings in the summer.

    Late summer is usually a good time to wade fish in the Sound for sea run cutthroat. The fish are in shallow; usually no need to wade out past your knees, beach access is abundant. Plus, no poison oak on the beach! Loads and loads of interwebz info on that fishery so no need to go into it here. Then, visit a Seattle fly shop, buy some sea run flies and get your up-to-date info there.

    Here's the thing of it: PNW coastal streams are relatively infertile and tend to be very tannic. They serve as spawning/nursery streams but large fish can't make a decent living in them and they go down to the salt to feed. Resident fresh water trout (non-migratory coastal cutthroat) are disappointingly small for those of us who are used to catching trout over 12". Sea run cutts, by comparison, can grow up to 4lbs. Your call; if you want to thrash around in nearly impenetrable thickets of poison oak, devil's club and blackberry to chase after 10" trout, be my guest. I honestly recommend you go out to the Hoh valley and just enjoy the scenery. Don't get hung up on seeing the Olympic mountains, those are just more rocks and ice. America has plenty that. The Hoh rain forest is the truly unique place to visit. It is our premier rain forest and way better enjoyed for hiking than it is summer time trout fishing. Get yerself some of that nice and legal WA cannabis and then go relax in the Hoh. Your best fishing may actually be right next to Seattle. You can spend a couple hours fishing a tide in the Sound for sea runs and still have the night in Seattle. There is no nightlife in Forks, WA. Seriously. The best thing you can say about Forks is that at least you aren't in Aberdeen.
    Last edited by neckdeep; 07-26-2017 at 10:36 AM.
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by AK47bp View Post
    There are exactly 37 threads about this, try searching.
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by neckdeep View Post
    My big recommendation for you would be to learn to recognize pacific poison oak and then stay the hell away from it. It's all over the place near the streams. My other great advice would be don't try to catch a car ferry back across the Sound to Seattle on saturday or sunday evenings in the summer.
    Thirteen years of living on and fishing the rivers on the Olympic Peninsula and never once saw poison oak or heard of anyone getting poison oak.

    Sea-run cutthroat along the beaches would be the OP's best bet for trout, unless the park miraculously opens the Elwha to fishing. The best sea-run fishing is going to be on Hood Canal when it comes to the actual Peninsula while there other options on the Kitsap Peninsula and South Sound.

    If you must fish the rivers, the Greywolf near Sequim and N. Fork Skykomish above Lake Cushman are two decent bets for smaller fish. There are some nice trout in the upper ends of some of the western rivers (Sol Duc, Bogachiel) but they are few and far between but offer some great scenery and camping options.

    Stop by Waters West fly shop in Port Angeles and they'll give you the most up to date info on what's happening on the Peninsula.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by topwater View Post
    Thirteen years of living on and fishing the rivers on the Olympic Peninsula and never once saw poison oak or heard of anyone getting poison oak.
    I'd probably be the guy who'd manage to step in some anyway. Hate that stuff. It's all over the coastal stream bottoms south of the Columbia. I've only fished the Peninsula rivers for winter steel when the leaves are gone and it is hard to spot. I just assumed it extended up into the Olympic.
    I have come for you my child and the gift I bring is murder.

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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by SpeLunker View Post
    Hey,

    I'm making my first trip to the PNW. I have about a week to spend in the Seattle area. My friend and I want to spend a few days in the city then head out to the Olympic peninsula. I'm going to bring a 3 and 5 wt with me and try to get into some fishing. What would you guys recommend targeting at that time of the year (late July/early Aug)? Any help would be appreciated.

    I could use city advice as well for Seattle. Cool things to do or see? Neighborhoods, food, bars?

    Thanks!
    As mentioned, most of the Cascade rivers are pretty barren.

    The lower reaches of the Snoqualmie (below the Falls) and the Skykomish (below Index) have a few cutts or plants but as mentioned, rarely anything above 8".

    Summer run steelhead are largely gone, though a few get up the Stilliguamish, both North and South Forks. The South Fork of the Stilly is easier access in general along the Mountain Loop Highway.

    I got pretty frustrated with trying to fish the rivers so I resorted to the alpine lakes like Melakwa, Lake 22, Coal Lakes, among others that all requires a decent hike, which is part of the trip.

    As far as Seattle nightlife, I'd recommend the Blue Moon on 45th for the last of the divey boho beatnik taverns.

    For the Olympics, I always liked the Elwha for hiking and camping with a few cuts in the upper river.
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  9. #9
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    For the Olympics, I always liked the Elwha for hiking and camping with a few cuts in the upper river.
    Pretty cool to see the new viewing area where the dam used to be.
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  10. #10
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    X3 on SRC, do some research about incoming and outgoing tides.

  11. #11
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    Man, I still haven't made it there to see it. Tried last fall but the road was closed. Still intrigued by the recovering river.

    Sport Fishing Regs: http://wdfw.wa.gov/publications/01914/wdfw01914.pdf

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Norseman View Post
    Man, I still haven't made it there to see it. Tried last fall but the road was closed. Still intrigued by the recovering river.

    Sport Fishing Regs: http://wdfw.wa.gov/publications/01914/wdfw01914.pdf
    If you have a spare few days, do the grand tour

    http://www.canoekayak.com/elwha-unplugged/

  13. #13
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    Blog from researchers working at the mouth of the Elwha, (friend of a friend):
    http://www.coastalwatershedinstitute.org/blog/

    Cool aerial photos of the much larger delta.
    Well maybe I'm the faggot America
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  14. #14
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    ^ nice, that's a fun read. Perfect use of a pack raft! I still have a few hard boats... maybe I'll make it there before I fade out of it completely. That water is really inspiring.

  15. #15
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    As far as fishing in Seattle goes, I wish someone had given me this advice before I spent hundreds of dollars in non resident Washington licenses, it's only 9 hours to Missoula, 5 hours to bend and 4 hours to Canada.

    The Tractor Tavern in Ballard might be my favorite place to see a folk show ever though.
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by ak_powder_monkey View Post
    As far as fishing in Seattle goes, I wish someone had given me this advice before I spent hundreds of dollars in non resident Washington licenses, it's only 9 hours to Missoula, 5 hours to bend and 4 hours to Canada.

    The Tractor Tavern in Ballard might be my favorite place to see a folk show ever though.
    It's an hour+ to the Yakima which is a good fishery.

    I haven't been to see the Elwha since the dams got nuked, glad old Slade Gorton is gone. The histories tell that the Elwha had the largest king salmon running up it in excess of 100 lbs:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elwha_Dam
    Merde De Glace On the Freak When Ski
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  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buster Highmen View Post
    It's an hour+ to the Yakima which is a good fishery.

    I haven't been to see the Elwha since the dams got nuked, glad old Slade Gorton is gone. The histories tell that the Elwha had the largest king salmon running up it in excess of 100 lbs:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elwha_Dam
    I worked on a old house in Duvall that had newspapers from the 1890's on some the walls you could read some of the articles even then they were writing about the over fishing in Puget Sound, they scooped them up with paddle wheels
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  18. #18
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    What was weird was how the Tolt crashed from being an awesome steelhead stream in the early 80's to virtually nothing (fish counts of < 50 steelhead) by the mid 90s. Then there's the story of the North Folk of the Stillaguamish and Deer Creek erosion.
    Merde De Glace On the Freak When Ski
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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buster Highmen View Post
    It's an hour+ to the Yakima which is a good fishery.
    so is Rocky Ford
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  20. #20
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    All very valid points. Well done Patrick.
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  21. #21
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    I have a responsibility to not be intimidated and bullied by low life losers who abuse what little power is granted to them as ski patrollers.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by neckdeep View Post
    There is no nightlife in Forks, WA. Seriously. The best thing you can say about Forks is that at least you aren't in Aberdeen.
    You obviously haven't been in the Golden Gate Chinese restaurant lounge for karaoke.
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