Location: Yakima River
Weather: Sunny, slight winds, high temps in the 90s.
River Conditions: ~3500 cfs, 4-5 foot visibility, water temps in mid and upper 60s. Find current river flows HERE.
Hot Flies: Wybie Hares Ear (#14-16), Coffee Pats Stone (#6-8), Peach Chubby Chernobyl (#6-10), Gold Lightning Bug (#14-16), Purple Chubby Chernobyl (#6-10)
Bug Scene: Summer Stones and Hoppers
We’ve been seeing a lot of grasshoppers in the fields and grass along the banks of the river. Summer Stones are also hatching and fish are keying in on these big bugs. Fish are looking for both adults and nymphs. Pick up a decent size fish right now and you’re sure to feel a few “Stones” in their stomach! There are still some caddis and PMDs hatching, with fish mainly eating the nymphs.
Fishing Forecast: Pound the banks, fish a dry-dropper rig
Now is the time you should be pounding the banks with big dries because we are in HOPPER SEASON! Hoppers will be dropping off the grass along the edges of the river. To best imitate this, put your flies right on the edge of the water. Focus on grassy banks, boiling water near structure and in current seams. Fish are willing to come a bit shallower right now in order to take advantage of these insects. Flies like Chubby Chernobyls (#6-10) in peach, tan and purple can imitate hoppers well. Luckily, these flies and techniques will also imitate the Summer Stones that are hatching.
Tie a dropper off of the back of a larger dry and effectively cover both life stages on top and subsurface. Fishing a Pat’s Stone (#6-10) in coffee 16-36” below a high-riding dry can be a VERY deadly combo right now. Other effective nymphs for droppers right now include Wybie Hare’s Easr (#14-16) and Psycho Princes (#14-18). Make sure to fish these smaller nymphs with a tungsten bead to get them down to depth quickly. Brass and glass beads will sink, but not quickly enough to where you want to be fishing.
IMPORTANT! PLEASE READ!
The Yakima River is used for many different types of recreation. We are deep into the “Rubber Hatch.” Floaters come down the Yakima in very large numbers every year. This is great! This means that our public lands are being used and that our areas will remain open for years to come.
The Yakima River is a fast-flowing body of water. It may seem slow, but it can be fast and in some sections, treacherous. If you are floating the river, make sure you are staying safe and being aware of your surroundings. Make sure to know the section of water you are floating. Always carry a life jacket when you are on any sort of floating craft, because you never know when you might get separated from your canoe, kayak, inner tube or raft. A couple of our guides have had to help others who have flipped their water craft this season. There have also been some other water saves this season by the Kittitas County Sheriffs Office. Please, please PLEASE be safe out there!