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2/23/2015 Skwala season is just around the corner and the river is low and clear. Current snowpack (snow water equivalent) estimates for the upper Yakima are 26% of normal, not very good news for local irrigators. It’s a different story for anglers. If the next few months are reasonably dry, the river should be more stable this spring, with fewer days of off-
3/8/15 Afternoon water temps have been in the 44-
3/15/15 The Yakima is on the rise due to rain and releases from Keechelus reservoir. The current trend forecast predicts a peak of over 5000 cfs by tomorrow at Umptanum followed by a rapid drop. The river should be in decent shape by mid-
3/16/15 The Yak peaked at a little over 3000 cfs early this morning at Umtanum. Not much of trend down yet. About 1 ½ feet of visibility in the Canyon. Daytime water temps are down 6 to 7 degrees throughout the system due to cold water from Keechelus reservoir. Fishing will be better as the fish adjust to higher flows, clarity improves and daytime water temps rise. Runoff doesn’t affect water clarity as much above the Teanaway, but daytime water temps are down and flows are up.
3/20/15 Flows and water temps have stabilized over the past few days, the Yak is in good shape and the fish are acclimated and eating. Skwala, sparse BWO hatches and a few Caddis.
3/29/15 Increasing flows in the Yak since the 25th from Keechelus and Cle Elum reservoirs. Clarity is OK, fishing has been poor to fair. Current flow forecasts predict that the river will stabilize around the 30th. The Skwala hatch has slowed, most likely on the way out. BWOs are still pretty good and should continue to emerge through April. March Browns are typically an April hatch on the Yakima. None in the Canyon currently, a few in the upper river.
4/3/15 Flows and water temps have stabilized over the past few days, the Yakima is in good shape and the fishing is improving. BWOs, a few Skwala and March Browns are emerging in decent numbers in the upper river.
YAKIMA RIVER FLY FISHING REPORT
4/9/15 The Yakima is in prime condition. March Browns and BWOs. Fair to good dry fly, cloudy days are best.
4/24/15 Pretty good grannom hatches earlier this week, a bit earlier than normal. Cool weather the last few days slowed it down, but warmer weather next week should produce some good hatches. Still some BWOs and March Browns on cloudy days.
5/4/15 The grannom emergence is in full bloom. Even though grannom provide some of the best dry fly fishing of the year, there can be times during the day when there are too many caddis on the water and catching fish is difficult. The weather, the hatch and the stretch of the river all play key roles. The dry fly fishing has been very good the last few days.
5/13/15 Cool, cloudy weather the last few days-
5/25/15 Mother’s day grannom (Brachycentrus occidentalis) are pretty much done for this year. Another grannom, Brachycentrus americanus, is currently emerging, along with the Little Sister Sedge (Cheumatopsyche) and the Little Tan Short-
6/7/15 Good to great nymphing in the Canyon the last week or so. Not much dry fly, sunny with small PMD hatches. Some dry caddis in the Evening. A slow increase in flows since the 4th have kept the river temps at good levels and have helped the fishing in the Canyon and Farmlands.
6/22/15 Still good to great nymphing in the Canyon. Big dry fly fishing has picked up-
6/30/15 Good dry fly fishing morning and evening in the Canyon and fair to very good nymphing all day. Slow to good dry fly fishing in the Upper river-
7/3/15 Not much change since the last report. Water temps reached 63.5 at Ellensburg and 66 at Umtanum yesterday, still in the Ok range. Take extra care when playing and releasing fish. Make sure that they are fully recovered before releasing. Big fish are more vulnerable to exhaustion and may take up to 15 minutes rehab time before they have recovered sufficiently to be released. It’s better to reef on a big fish and snap the leader than to play them until they are completely exhausted. If you need a photo, rehab the fish first, then rehab the fish again and make sure that it is fully recovered. Never keep fish out of the water for more than 5 seconds.
7/17/15 Water temps peaked yesterday at 65 near Ellensburg and 67 at Umtanum, with a slight cooling trend today. 4000 cfs at Ellensburg and 3250 at Umtanum. Fair to good nymphing and fair to good with dries throughout the system. Morning and midday have been a bit more productive than evening on dries. With the higher water temps and lower oxygen levels we’re currently experiencing in the Yakima, we spend sufficient time with every ‘big fish’ to insure that it is ready to be released. This will vary quite a bit, depending on the size and condition of fish and time on the line. Most smaller fish can be released immediately if they are landed quickly, we use a quick release tool that does not require touching the fish. Don’t assume that a bigger fish is OK, take the time to make sure!