Weekend Fishing Outlook: Yakima River, Columbia Basin

If you were lucky enough to fish the river midweek, you probably enjoyed some of what I would call great river conditions, given that it is May, a month that is synonomous with runoff in this part of the world. Fishing this past was all over the board, with canyon fishing the most consistent, and the farmlands and upper river playing a little more hit-or-miss. The caddis have really started to get rolling, and there have been a few fish looking up for caddis dries on shady banks. Unfortunately, it looks like the river is at the front end of another big bump, so I would suggest heading elsewhere this weekend if you're looking for a fishy fix.

Some of our Columbia Basin fisheries are really starting to get rolling, and should provide some solid Plan B options. Rocky Ford is always at the top of the list for anglers when our rivers are running high with snowmelt, and for good reason...it never blows out! Because it is one of the only moving water options around, don't expect to find solitude on this desert spring creek. If you are willing to fight the crowds, you can expect to catch fish sub-surface on scuds, leeches, and damselfly and callibaetis nymphs. Also, look for hatchs of callibaetis adults in the early afternoon hours.

In addition to Rocky Ford there a number of warmwater flyfishing options available this time of year. Largemouth bass can be found in many smaller lakes including H, Stan Coffin, and Fio Rito, as well as smallmouth in some odf the larger bodies of water like Evergreen, Potholes and Moses Lake, as well some lesser known desert creeks. Fish can be found on both sub-surface and topwater patterns, with smallmoith preferring structure such as drop-offs, humps and points, and largemouth congregating near weed edges, woody structure and lily pads. If bass fishing on the fly is something ypu've always wanted to try, now is the time!

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