Rattlesnake Lake: A Great Place to Fish

 Posted by on June 20, 2012 at 5:51 am  Outdoors  No Responses »
Jun 202012
 
Rattlesnake Ridge looking over Rattlesnake Lake

Rattlesnake Ridge looking over Rattlesnake Lake

Last week, my friend Rob and I went trout fishing at Rattlesnake Lake. Unfortunately, the weather was not cooperative. It was cloudy, misty, and only in the 50s. The wind gusts made us bobble in our float tubes.

Old tree stumps on Rattlesnake Lake

Old tree stumps on Rattlesnake Lake

The fishing was slow by any measure — I only got a few bites all morning! I attributed the lack of action to the low pressure system which seems to tamper the bite. Only a few other fishermen were out on the water and none of them seemed to have any luck either except for one guy fishing chironomids from a pram in the middle of the lake. I didn’t have my anchor for my float tube with me so I’ll have to wait until next time to fish chironomids at Rattlesnake.

Float tube on Rattlesnake Lake

Float tube on Rattlesnake Lake

Despite the dreary weather and lack of action, the trip to Rattlesnake Lake was quite enjoyable. I saw a couple of bald eagles soaring overhead looking for a trout breakfast. The old growth tree stumps jutting up like ghosts from the depths. The ever-present Rattlesnake Ridge standing protectively over the lake. A remarkable place to spend a morning.

 

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Spring Rainbow Trout at Beaver Lake

 Posted by on April 24, 2012 at 6:46 am  Outdoors  No Responses »
Apr 242012
 
Beaver Lake rainbow trout on a fly

Beaver Lake rainbow trout on a fly

One of the highlights of springtime in Western Washington is stillwater fishing for rainbow trout. My brother and I fished Beaver Lake near Issaquah a few days after they stocked it with 6,000+ rainbows in early April. Although Beaver Lake can be fished from a short stretch of public shoreline, it is best fished from a boat. If you are a fly fisherman, a boat or floating device is required since there is no room for a backcast from shore.

It was a calm sunny afternoon in the 50s and, for the first hour, we got to enjoy the weather paddling our canoe since we didn’t get any bites! I finally landed a fish a few minutes later but my brother had no love from the fish. Since he was a rookie, I figured it would be best to start him on a light spinning rod and some Power Bait. Surprisingly that combo did not produce.

Determined to get my brother his first rainbow trout, I switched him to a Mack Wedding Ring trout lure after seeing some fish feeding just below the surface. Within a few minutes, he was catching them like a pro even though he didn’t cast more than 20 feet! At one point, he had another fish on the line before I could get the previous one onto the stringer! I think he got “hooked” on fishing that day.

I had equal success on my fly rod. Using a full sinking line and a size 10 red bead-head nymph, I caught a fish on almost every other cast. Although the rainbows were only small planters between 9 and 12 inches, they were a lot of fun to catch.

We kept some trout for dinner. After a “hard” day of fishing, I like to use my quick and simple fried trout recipe. The delicious trout dinner was a good footnote to the day.

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Trout Fishing on Lake Alice

 Posted by on April 8, 2012 at 9:52 am  Outdoors  No Responses »
Apr 082012
 
Alice Lake near Fall City

Alice Lake near Fall City

Not having been fishing for a couple of months, I went to Lake Alice near Fall City, WA twice since they stocked the lake with rainbows in mid-March. The first time, a few days after the fish plant, I fished for half a day and had only one bite to show for it! I did not see any other fishermen catch anything that day. No one had a plausible explanation why the fish were not biting. It’s extremely rare to be skunked within a week of a fish plant!

Fishing in the rain

Fishing in the rain

Not wanting to admit defeat, I went back to Lake Alice several days ago. When I arrived, I was the only fisherman on the lake. And for good reason. During the first hour, it was in the low 40s but calm and pleasant. Then the weather turned dramatically in the next hour–the skies quickly darken and I was pelted with driving rain and winds gusting to about 20 mph. The wind whipped up waves that made my float tube almost impossible to control. However, it was all worth it.

I quickly caught my limit of five trout. Yes, they were all small planter trout but they were fish. Having not fished in a couple of months, I was a little rusty handling the first couple of trout before the rhythm came back. I was trolling a #10 olive wooly bugger and a red bead head nymph on a full sinking line. My 5 weight fly rod was a little heavy for this job.

Rainbow trout on a wooly bugger fly

Rainbow trout on a wooly bugger fly

By the time I got back to shore to pack up, I realized that my hands were almost frozen and  unbuckling my fin flippers was painful. Despite the chilly weather, it was a great fishing outing and my family enjoyed the rainbow trout we invited to dinner that evening. I’ll tell you how I cooked them in a later post.

 

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Outdoor Links: Huge Rivers and Mythical Beasts

 Posted by on March 21, 2012 at 2:33 pm  Outdoors  No Responses »
Mar 212012
 

The elusive Pacific Blackberry  blackberries

Salmon fishing in the Yemen  yemen

March is the month for migrating Sandhill Cranes in Washington –  cranes

The Snow Peak Tulip Lantern LED lamp –  lanternp

Advice for a Seven Day Trip to Oregon and Washington –  7-days

Huge Rivers and Mythical Beasts –  huge-rivers-and-mythical-beasts

Backpacking Bike Trip  backpacking-bike

Are Rainbow Trout native to Idaho?  trout

Oregon Public Broadcasting TV special on Climbing Mount Hood  -mt-hood/

A Wild, Solitary Journey on the Pacific Crest Trail  a-wild-solitary-journey-on-the-pacific-crest-trail

San Juan Islands:

 

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