YAKIMA RIVER ANGLER
FLY FISHING ON WASHINGTON STATE’S FINEST TROUT WATERS
Questions? Call or email us at: 509 697 6327 -
Yakima River Fly Fishing Report
Website by Yakima River Angler. All Rights Reserved.
1/21/14 Fair to good fishing. Nymphing and streamers. Larger than average winter fish.
2/21/14 Decent fishing yesterday. San Juan worms and caddis larva hooked more fish than the Skwala nymph. Nothing on Skwala dries. Cooling trend next week, the Skwala hatch will be on hold for awhile. The launches at Mahre’s and Big Pines were still blocked with ice.
3/6/14 Water temps reached 43.5 yesterday, Skwala typically begin to emerge at 42 to 43 degrees. Unfortunately the river was on the rise and fishing was mediocre. Had a few lazy bumps on the dry, no fish on. The Yakima is currently a little over 4000 cfs at Umtanum, still rising and off color. NOAA is predicting a 6000 cfs peak by tomorrow with a slight drop on the 9th followed by another slightly higher peak on the 10th or 11th. Doesn’t look promising for awhile.
3/26/14 The Yakima is in great shape. Skwalas are emerging, fair to good nymphing and dry fly fishing.
5/3/14 The Yak is rising and off color below the Teanaway. Currently 4400 cfs at Umtanum. Bumper boat time above the Teanaway. Sub-
5/16/14 The Yakima is in poor shape due to runoff and reservoir releases. The river should be back in shape by Tuesday or Wednesday of next week. The Grannom hatch (and fishing) has been good the last few days. The Salmon fly hatch in the Canyon is generally not particularly significant-
5/19/14 Still high, cold and off color. The Teanaway and other feeder streams are dropping, which will help clarity, but lots of cold water being released from the reservoirs. Current flow forecast predicts at least 4600 cfs at Umtanum through the weekend. High water and cold water temps-
5/23/14 Water temps are up with good color. Still a bit high-
6/4/14 The reservoirs are full, lots of overflow the last few days so the entire river is up substantially and water temps have dropped. 5200 cfs at Umtanum. Poor fishing currently. If flow predictions are accurate, the Yakima will be high for awhile. Current hatches in the Canyon: Various caddis, PMDs, and a few Golden Stones and Green Drakes. The best dry fly fishing has been in the evening, we’re seeing a variety of Caddis: Hydropsyche, Cheumatopsyche, Grannom (Brachycentrus americanus (nearly done for the year) and Brachycentrus occidentalis), Amiocentrus and Rhyacophila. These are mostly dark bodied caddis (Hydropsyche has a tan body) in sizes 20 to 12. Xcaddis, LaFontaine pupas and other emerger patterns. A size 16 or 18 peacock Xcaddis has worked well.
6/7/14 Flows have dropped (exceeding expectations) the last few days, currently 4000 cfs at Umtamum. Runoff issues should be done for the year, hopefully dam releases will not be a problem. The entire river is in good shape and water temps are slowly rising.
6/17/14 The Yakima is in great shape. PMD, Big Yellow May and Baetis hatches have been very good, the best we’ve seen in several years. Good to great day fly fishing on cloudy days. Fair to very good nymphing. Fair caddis dry fly fishing in late afternoon -
6/24/14 Mostly nymphing in the Farmlands and Canyon stretches, lots of sun and wind the past week. Decent dry fly fishing In the Cle Elum to Thorpe stretch with stone flies. The water temp gauge at Umtanum is currently broken, yesterdays high was recorded at 94.68 degrees. High water temp at Ellensburg yesterday was 60.39 and 64.57 below Roza dam, downstream from Umtanum. Water temps at Roza are typically a few degrees warmer than the Canyon, the water in the reservoir is slow and fairly shallow and heats up a bit. 56.49 at Ellensburg and 59.60 below Roza dam today at 11:30 am.
7/8/14 Summer flows in the Yakima (typically 3800 -
7/17/14 Good fishing with dry summer stones early morning and late afternoon/evening. Good dry caddis late evening. Ok to good nymphing during the sunny hours. Poor to good dry fly with hoppers and stones mid-
7/31/14 Hot weather=more water in the Yakima. Flows have been bumped up quite a bit the last few days for irrigation. Fishing in the upper river typically suffers during significant increases in flows, poor fishing yesterday. The Canyon handles these changes much better, good fishing yesterday. We’re beginning to see a gradual transition from Summer Stones and Caddis to Hoppers and other terrestrials.
8/8/14 Fair to very good fishing, lots of 6 to 12 inch fish mixed with decent numbers of 12 to 16 inchers and a few bigger fish. Evenings have slowed, shorter and later caddis emergence, fewer stones and smarter fish. Dry flies and Dry and dropper rigs have worked well. Slow to good dry hopper action.
8/17/14 Water temps are up. Higher water temps mean less oxygen in the river. 67 degrees near Ellensburg yesterday, 71 degrees at Umtanum. 500 cfs of warm water from Cherry Creek (via Wilson Creek) is raising water temps in the Canyon (measured at Umtanum). Handle fish with extra care and try not to remove them from the water. Bring fish to the boat as quickly as possible. Use heavier tippet and reef the fish in quickly. We use a quick release tool that allows us to release most fish in about a second. Bigger fish that take longer to bring to the boat should be netted, left in the water when removing the fly and then allowed to recover in the net, 5 minutes is usually sufficient. Don’t take a photo until after the initial recovery period, then rest the fish again. 10 seconds out of the water is too long. Big fish are particularly vulnerable to high water temps and exhaustion after being hooked and fought. The river is currently dropping, which will typically raise water temps even more, but cooler weather this week should help. Not much change in the overall fishing from the last report.
8/18/14 Great hopper fishing yesterday. The difference between OK and great on the Yak currently is hitting the spots with a lot of accurate casts. At summer levels, and after seeing lots of flies the last few months, the trout are reluctant to leave their safe, out of the current feeding lies unless that meal floats by inches from their feeding lane. Water temps are still high. Please read the previous fishing report.
Click to Enlarge
8/28/14 Slow dry fly fishing this week. Good to great nymphing. The river is dropping (the annual flip-